Eskom controls 3000 ha of West Coast around the Koeberg Nuclear Power Station. Eskom has opened this property to the public. The property was proclaimed as a private nature reserve on 18 October 1991 and was officially opened by the then administrator of the Cape, Kobus Meiring.
Two major veld types are represented on the reserve: The flower rich West Coast Strandveld (Spring daisies, mesems, yellow cups of grielum and creamy white arums) and dune veld. As only 0.74% of West Coast Strandveld is being conserved at present, the Koeberg Nature Reserve plays a vital conserving role for this threatened veld type.
The reserve is home to a number of animal species. The Grysbok, Steenbok and the larger Duiker are buck species which occur naturally in the area. The Bontebok and Springbok have been introduced.
The area's largest predator is the Caracal (rooikat). The elusive African wild cat, Grey mongoose and genet can also be seen. The most common reptiles are the Cape Cobra (geelslang), Mole snake, Boomslang, Skaapsteker and the angulated tortoise.
The reserve has an abundant birdlife with 153 species recorded to date - including the Ostrich, African Fish Eagle and Cape Penduline Tit; and there are pans with bird hides to view the birdlife from.
The reserve provides some members of the local community with an opportunity to generate income by cutting rooikranz (vegetation) to sell for fire wood. This activity serves the dual purpose of removing an invasive alien species and empowering between 50 and 100 otherwise unemployed people to earn an income
A hidden natural asset within the reserve is a large aquifer or underground lake. The Blaauwberg Municipality pumps approx. 6 000 million litres of water per year from the aquifer for the town of Atlantis, supplying the whole town's water needs. The water quality and level of the water table is monitored by the Blaauwberg Municipality and Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
There are two hiking trails on the reserve (both of which begin at a small info kiosk which is well-hidden behind the covered visitors' parking; one needs to follow the signs carefully. The small parking area on the left, just past the traffic circle, is not the right place - go on up the road to the top of the hill, then turn hard right down past the covered parking. You'll be able to pick up a good map and birding pamphlets at the info kiosk):
The Dikkop Trail is a 13 km circular walk (meanders up north) which includes pristine strandveld, dune veld and a 2km walk along the beach. The walk is most spectacular in spring when the wild flowers along the route are in bloom
The Grysbok Trail is a two hour walk starting at the Visitor Centre and includes a stretch along the beach and passes a salt marsh which is rich in birdlife in the winter months. . The trail sidles around the main reactor, heading for the beach on the Cape Town side. It twists along the ridge of the dunes before winding down to the sea past a small salt-pan.
Booking for the trails can be done at the Koeberg Visitor Centre at telephone no: (021) 550-4021 office hours.
There are no less than 18 "Nos", including "No photos of the Koeberg Plant". This one is not easy to obey, as the "Plant" and its squat buildings or power lines are omnipresent.
We'd love to see any photos or information you have regarding Koeberg Nature Reserve.