Loziba Wildlife Reserve
Loziba stands against extinction
The remaining wilderness areas across Africa continue to face decisive threats. This is due largely to human intervention, activity, and population growth. In order to combat threats from humans, protect biodiversity and ecosystems, Loziba Wildlife Reserve (in partnership with The African Conservation Trust) has committed to reclaiming this wilderness for the many animals that have historically called the southeastern tip of Africa home. They remain dedicated to establishing a private/community wildlife reserve on the existing Mawana Game Reserve and its surrounding community land. Part of this commitment includes creating a sustainable wildlife conservation project which is economically and financially viable for all participants and places emphasis on the harmonious balance between humans and nature.
Located east of the town of Vryheid- within the Umkhanyakude District Municipality (3.5 hours from Durban), Loziba recognizes the benefit of promoting harmonious relationships between communities and animals, education and providing jobs to local communities. In finding ways to share land and resources, Loziba believes all beings can thrive, multiply and remain prosperous.
The reserve has outlined how it plans to involve 47 farms (privately owned), community trusts, private trusts, companies, and partners to cover a vast 34,000 hectares.
benefit to animals
Significantly, a herd of elephants were introduced to the land in 2003 having broken out of a fenced property (which will be included in the proposed reserve land). This herd has proven to be instrumental in Loziba recognizing without the establishment of protected land, these animals and many more face conflict with humans and heard destruction (*can we put it bluntly–death… or is there a more visitor friendly word).
A site visit by the WWF confirmed the proposed reserve is ideal for the conservation of Black Rhino- who are currently listed as being critically endangered. While these critical species made a tremendous comeback from near extinction, only 5,600 remain and face continuous threats from poaching and trafficking.
Loziba will focus efforts to support the protection of threatened and endangered species (such as Elephant, Black Rhino and White Rhino) whilst providing habitat to a range of birds, reptiles, amphibians and mammals- making this an exciting tourism and visitor destination. Loziba intends to work closely with the local communities in order to promote and achieve harmonious living between animals and humans. Inclusive of this is the plan to create a continuous block of community/private land (properties) which allows for space for animals to roam freely without the presence of fences. Within the reserve fences will be used around the perimeter while small capture/release bomas and paddocks will be used for endangered species and when necessary to accommodate species’ needs.
benefit to humans
Loziba has outlined its plans to build self-supporting tourism programs- by offering tourist excursions, lodging and safaris (in the form of driving and walking). Loziba will work towards implementing a human/wildlife conflict strategy while playing a critical role in providing education on interpretation and the conservation economy. They have charted plans to focus on long-term planning for restorative land use and conservation agriculture in neighboring communities.
ecosystems & biodiversity
This unique landscape is home to an array of biodiversity including important vegetation, habitat types, endangered plants in addition to animals. Critical ecosystem services will be provided in the form of water, soil, and species life cycles.
Experience Loziba: Through our Terra Explore Expeditions (www.TerraExplore.bz), visitors are provided with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work alongside scientists to aid in their work, experience wildlife in their natural habitat, and become ambassadors in the need to conserve these vital species.