Mission: Monitoring illegal building and developments along the Wild Coast
Date: 30 May 2009
Requesting organisation: Rob Stegmann of DEDEA
Location: Wild Coast, Transkei
Pilot: Reid Wardle
The Bateleurs have again flown Rob Stegmann of DEDEA on a flight to monitor illegal building and developments along the Wild Coast. Pilot Reid Wardle volunteered for this second mission for DEDEA which took place in late May 2009.
Here is an account of the mission from Rob Stegmann:
“We met Reid Wardle at the East London Airport and soon thereafter were en route to the Wild Coast. The air was smooth and the weather held the promise of a good flight. Not long into the flight we were amazed at the number of problems that we were witnessing. This could be attributed to the flight taking place over a weekend. A total of 87 incidents were recorded, including: new structures under construction, forest clearing, sand mining, marine-related offences and the operation of ORV’s within the coastal conservation area. Reid had warmed to the objectives of our flight and did a fine job of getting the aircraft over the spots from which data was collected. He is a true asset to The Bateleurs. At 17h30 we returned to East London after a very successful survey, fortunate that the sun had not yet set although sorry that our flight had come to an end.
Subsequently the data was collated and then presented at the Wild Coast Illegal Cottages Task Group (WCICTG), with copies of the comprehensive report being circulated to Regional Managers. The Regional Managers have given their assurance that this data will be utilised during the forthcoming holiday period for planning of their operations.
I would like to thank The Bateleurs for their ongoing support, without which these flights could not take place and we could not effectively deploy resources to participate in the national effort to conserve our biodiversity.”