The Editor’s Note

June 5, 2009

About 60% of South Africa’s Blue Crane population resides in the Western Cape. Here the birds favour farmlands, particularly pastures and wheat plantations, above the indigenous Fynbos habitat. But climate change threatens this unusual success story. The western parts of our country are expected to be most hard hit by the extreme weather conditions that climate change brings, and existing agricultural practices could become economically unviable, with detrimental effects for the cranes.

Kerryn Morrison manages the ICF/EWT Partnership for African Cranes and, together with her passionate team of crane conservationists, is carefully monitoring the Western Cape’s Blue Cranes so that we can react to the signs of climate change well in advance of it becoming an insurmountable problem.

When I asked Kerryn how she came to be so passionate about cranes, she said they are a perfect flagship species that can be used to highlight environmental issues to people and so change environmentally destructive behaviour. Kerryn was just four years old when her nursery school teacher predicted she would work with animals, and she has never wanted to be anything other than a conservationist. Her dedication is not without reward, and she has received broad acclaim for her exceptional dedication to crane conservation, and is recognised as being instrumental in combating the trade in cranes that takes place throughout Africa on a daily basis. We are extremely proud of being able to say that Kerryn has grown her career with the EWT since 1995.

We will be celebrating the success of our crane conservationists on World Environment Day, on 5 June, with this year’s theme being ‘Your Planet Needs You – Unite to Combat Climate Change’. Learn more about this day and other EWT climate change projects by entering our online competition , open only to our loyal supporters, and stand in line to win a fabulous getaway to a South African destination.

– The Editor

Projects
The EWT at Nampo Harvest Day 2009

Every year the NAMPO Harvest Day provides the EWT with an opportunity to engage with visitors on conservation issues and projects, talk about problems and solutions, distribute educational materials to farmers, school groups and the like and promote the EWT as a whole. This year was no different. Click here to read more.

Contact: Claudia Hodkinson