ID #1087

Seekoeivlei (Hippo) Nature Reserve, Memel, Drakensberg, Eastern Free State.

The Klip (Stone) River meanders through the Seekoeivlei wetland, which stretches from Memel northwards for 15-km.  Many oxbow lakes characterise this wetland, which is unique and one of the few remaining sponge areas in the catchment of the Vaal River.  This extensive marsh was recently declared a RAMSAR site (a wetland of international importance).  The marsh and adjacent wetlands covers an area of 4400 Ha. The very rare whitewinged flufftail is one of several bird species that can be spotted in the marsh, as well as the crowned crane and endangered wattled crane. Small carnivores such as serval, African wild cat and white tailed mongoose feed on rodents and birds in the marsh at night. Hippo were recently reintroduced into the reserve. The entrance is north of Memel. Permits can be obtained from the office in town.


•    One 5-bed chalet
•    Ablution facilities for campers, but no hot water
•    Braai facilities
•    Bush Camp is being planned

This is one of the best birding areas on the Highveld. Interestingly, there are two Ramsar sites on the Vaal River, the other being at Barberspan. For an abundance of birds, make sure to visit during summer. Summers are hot with typical highveld thunderstorms. Winters are warm and sunny but nights are cold.

Memel is on the R34 west of Newcastle, which is on the N11 south of Ermelo, which is at the intersection of the N2 with the N11 and the N17. AASeek

Contct:            Chief Nature Conservator
Seekoeivlei Nature Reserve
Box 236 Memel 2970
+27 (58) 924 0183 telephone
+27 (58) 924 0159 fax

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Last update: 2014-05-20 00:01
Author: Alan McIver
Revision: 1.2

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