We believe in sustainability
What we do
The Nuwejaars Wetland SMA is rehabilitating its key areas and cultural features. More
Enhancing the wellbeing of all who live here is an imperative for the SMA. More
Our tourism venture will include training for operators and entrepreneurs. More
Production and food security is enhanced through sustainable use of land. More
Sustainably-utilised products will prove a key
economic driver for communities here.
By developing the SMA's infrastructure, we can
unlock the area's sustainable capital.
The Nuwejaars Wetland Special Management Area (SMA) is an area in which 25 private landowners and local communities work together to collectively manage our land for conservation.

Through this unique conservation model, some 46,000 hectares of often critically endangered habitat is now protected on the Agulhas Plain - at the southernmost region of Africa. The primary goal of the Nuwejaars Wetland Special Management Area (SMA) is to protect - and use - the land included in the Special Management Area sustainably, according to triple bottom line principles. We aim to find the balance between environmental integrity, human wellbeing and economic efficiency within the area.

While biodiversity and wetland conservation is promoted, so too are sustainable farming practices. As such, farming and conservation work hand in hand. Endangered plants and animals are protected. At the same time, food security from farmland in the Nuwejaars Wetland Ecosystem is not threatened.

This collaboration between landowners and local communities is the first of its kind in South Africa. It required significant commitments from all landowners and communities involved. All had to agree to title deed restrictions to ensure sustainable conservation principles would be maintained. Already the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has expressed its interest in the Nuwejaars Wetland Special Management Area (SMA), as a working example of its Man and the Biosphere programme.
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- Restore wetlands and other often-threatened habitat through rehabilitation and alien-clearing;
- Promote the wellbeing of all who live within the broader area;
- Promote the sustainable use of biodiversity products to benefit all;
- Promote diverse uses of the wetlands, natural habitats and intensive agricultural activities;
- Promote sustainability in all forms of agriculture;
- Manage the land and manage fire;
- Address climate change;
- And encourage tourists to visit the Agulhas Plain's unique sites.
The SMA's objectives
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These picturesque photos of our eland were taken recently in the evening on the Nuwejaars Wetland SMA.
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The Greater Overberg FPA Working on fire fire fighters show just how brave they are. This chopper pilot, fighting a huge wild fire next to the Nuwejaars Wetland SMA, scoops water from an SMA member's dam - dodging trees, startled ducks (and a howling wind) in the process.
This is the third sighting (and the first photograph) of an Amur Falcon on the Nuwejaars Wetland SMA. This little falcon is not known to head as far south as the Agulhas Plain, so we're honoured to provide a home for them. They breed in East Asia, before migrating to southern Africa. In the past it was reported that these little birds were hunted for food along their migration route, but campaigns were launched to end this practice.
The Greater Overberg FPA Working on fire