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2015 Cape Fires

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2015 Cape Fires

Postby Sico » Tue Mar 03, 2015 5:31 pm

I saw an article on news24 where they showed pics of a tortoise burnt by the fires.
Any ideas on what impact these fires are going to have on the diverse herpetofauna in this region?
Mark
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Re: 2015 Cape Fires

Postby reptile » Tue Mar 03, 2015 5:36 pm

Would like to know the same!
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Re: 2015 Cape Fires

Postby Ales » Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:32 pm

Fires in the cape have been happening for millions of years, it's part of nature. The biggest threat to the fauna and flora is actually people putting out fires. Every year flynbos plants naturally die and dry grass, branches and wood would be part of the bush. In a natural setting, a yearly fire in the area would sweep by and burn these few dead plants. When people immediately put out fires for years on end they allow the bush to get thick of dead, dry materials, then a massive, unstoppable fire erupts because of the amount of dry plants. Because this fire has so much "food", it is obviously very destructive and that is when animals and live plants die.
What a world....
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Re: 2015 Cape Fires

Postby reptile » Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:07 pm

So actually not a bad thing... interesting. Thanks Ales!
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Re: 2015 Cape Fires

Postby Bushviper » Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:55 pm

A few years ago they calculated that the fires up the West Coast had killed 40 000 angulate tortoises. Within a few years they were plentiful in that area again. Nobody must tell me that the few kept as pets are a threat to the species.

Fires should be lit every year so that they are "cooler" and run through much quicker.
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Re: 2015 Cape Fires

Postby ewertb » Wed Mar 04, 2015 8:55 am

A lot of the fynbos species actually require the occasional fire to propagate, help have their seeds sprout.
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Re: 2015 Cape Fires

Postby Blet » Wed Mar 04, 2015 9:40 am

Also consider Angulates only produce 1 egg at a time and potentially 6 over the course of a season. Amazing how they can bounce back.
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