Maremani Nature Reserve
In northernmost South Africa close to the Limpopo River, which is the frontier to Zimbabwe, the Aage V. Jensen Charity Foundation has since 1999 developed a nature reserve of 38,000 ha.
Through the acquisition of a number of arid hunting and infertile farming areas it has become possible to let the natural animal life of the wooded savannah regenerate in a large continuous natural area without internal fences, but with watering holes and secure habitats. Upon thorough studies of the viability of the area, numerous large herbivores have been re-introduced, i.a. black and white rhino, elephant, roan antelope, sable antelope and the special Central and South African Lichtenstein’s hartebeest.
Maremani Nature Reserve maintains good populations of most of the large carnivores on the African continent: leopard, wild dog, spotted and brown hyena, side-striped jackal and black-backed jackal. Now and then a cheetah is seen, and in one area of the reserve a reintroduction of lions is planned in connection with a science project for young researchers and students. Many scientists and experts have contributed to planning the nature reserve. The management is supervised by one of South Africa’s most recognised nature experts, Dr. Salomon Joubert, former director of Kruger National Park, who contributes to securing the contact with students and scientists who visit Maremani.
Education and information on natural values and environmental issues – South Africa
Maremani Nature Reserve is dependent on the support of the local population if natural values and in particular vulnerable animal life are to be preserved in the long run. The Foundation therefore attaches great importance to education and information on natural values and environmental issues in the local communities with the purpose of disseminating knowledge about the natural environment and its wildlife and creating understanding of the importance of preserving these values out of regard for the coming generations. The neighbouring schools to the reserve have received new facilities and a new kindergarten, and the Foundation has invested in a bus that takes school children on guided tours in the reserve 2-3 times a week all year round. This way many children get an opportunity for the first time to meet the large animals and express their enthusiasm as they learn all along about the biodiversity of the savannah.
An actual nature centre for education and information has been planned in connection with the reserve.