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This biodiversity stewardship project aims to provide formal conservation protection for the area of the Rhenosterspruit Nature Conservancy, and beyond. 

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Bordering the Cradle of Humankind, north of the Lanseria Airport and with the Magaliesberg Mountain range dominating the northern horizon, find the Rhenosterspruit Nature Conservancy.

The Conservancy lies centrally between Pretoria, Johannesburg and the West Rand, and is a largely unspoilt, natural area. The region, including the Cradle of Humankind, is a valuable link through to the Magaliesberg range, and therefore an important link in a conservation corridor for species migration.

The green lung represented by the Rhenosterspruit Nature Conservancy is characteristic of Africa's diversity and vast open spaces. The Conservancy members protect grassland, savannah, wetlands, rivers, ridges and biological biodiversity - including vulnerable and endangered grasslands - from the prevalent pressure of development and other threats.

The Conservancy is a place where residents "stretch out and breathe", and a place where visitors can appreciate anew the connection with the natural world.

The location allows urbanites to slip away for a brief encounter with nature, to observe first hand the footprint of history, and to appreciate scenic beauty on the doorstep of the city.

Regular events on the "Conservation Calendar" are informative outings, and children especially enjoy the opportunity to get close to nature. These events are usually led by an expert in a particular field.

What is so special?

The RNC spans about 10 000 hectares, crossing three major rivers, mountains and geological systems.

These differing habitats allow for a rich diversity of fauna and flora - different habitats and conditions being associated with the many and varied changes in the landscape. One of the magnificent features of the Conservancy is hectares of Egoli Granite Grassland - an endangered vegetation type.

Travel back further in the region's history and it becomes apparent that the gold miners who started the first mine in Transvaal here, were not the first to marvel at the value under their feet. The cultural, archaeological and paleontological treasures are evidence of the many people who have defined this place as a rare gem.

The landowners in the Conservancy recognise the value of conservation. With enormous pressure from all directions into this space, it takes a special vision and thorough sense of being "rooted" in this land. The members of the Conservancy define themselves not by what they create, but by what they refuse to destroy.