The Rietvlei Wetland Reserve is just fifteen minutes from the centre of Cape Town and is a large freshwater wetland on the floodplain of the Diep River where it flows into the Milnerton Lagoon and, subsequently, into Table Bay.
Although the Rietvlei Wetland is situated within a very busy residential area, the Reserve is a birder’s paradise, especially in spring and summer, when the migrant birds arrive from the northern hemisphere.
From Common Terns to Swift Terns and Whiskered Terns these migrant visitors are something to look forward to.
There are two bird hides at Rietvlei where you can get really close to seeing the birds and we have spent many happy hours here.
Some 180 bird species are listed, including pelicans, flamingos, ducks, coots, herons, plovers, weavers and swallows. Many small mammals (e.g. Cape Grysbok, Cape Grey Mongoose, African Clawless Otters and Caracals), reptiles and insects live here, along with several frog species. We have often seen these Cape Flapneck Chameleons in the Rietvlei Wetland Reserve..
The cute and shy little grysbok can often be seen around the Rietvlei Reserve.
Of course we have seen so many birds here like these White-throated Swallows being fed by their mother.
Also the very pretty Lesser-striped Swallows.
Spoonbills can often be seen scrounging for small bites.
There are also beautiful flowers that can be seen during various seasons. Here are some Cape Snowdrops.
Some strange insects can also be found here like these day moths called Heady Maidens.
And these Cape Suurings or African Sorrel or Oxalis that are edible with a sharp sour taste.
The Black-wing Kite was in the mating season and we caught them in the act.
The Great Crested Grebe is a magnificent bird to be seen around the various pans, here the adult is feeding the chick with a fish.
Clouds of Weavers can be seen in the reeds surrounding the pans.