Indigenous Tree Project  

Trees are protected for a variety of reasons, and some species require strict protection while others require control over harvesting and utilisation. In addition all trees occurring in natural forests need to be protected in terms of the National Forests Act of 1998 (NFA). In 2000 the South African Department of Water Affairs and Forestry (DWAF) reviewed the list of tree species protected in terms of Section 12 of the NFA, which had been in place since 1976. They decided to implement a process to create the first comprehensive national list of protected trees created through objective scientific criteria supported by a computerized scoring system.

It was decided that trees needed protection if they:
(i) have Red List or important biodiversity status.
This means the extent to which a species is considered as threatened or potentially threatened with extinction according to the World Conservation Union (IUCN) Red List System of categories and criteria.
(ii) are important as a keystone species.
These trees are central to their own ecosystem functioning and have other important fauna and flora dependent on them; or they grow in a particularly fragile environment.
(iii) are threatened in terms of sustainability.
Some part/s of these trees have commercial significance or are valuable to the livelihood of local people; or their harvesting needs to be controlled for utilisation in a sustainable manner.
(iv) have cultural and or spiritual value.
The social importance in relation to sustaining spiritual or cultural values, and the landscape value of a species is also relevant.

Management of Protected Tree Species

Protected tree species require extensive management. The law states that any person wishing to cut, destroy or prune a protected tree, or to transport or sell its products, has to apply for a license to do so. Not only are licenses required for the harvesting of any of the listed 47 species of protected trees, but also for any trees that occur in a natural forest. If you intend building it is worth knowing these laws and procedures. You need to apply for a license to cut any tree/s, but these licenses are generally easily granted as long as you have sufficient grounds for felling. I am glad that there are measures in place to try and circumvent unnecessary tree removals. However I wish that more property owners, architects and authorities would genuinely attempt to devise alternative building designs that include or incorporate protected trees.If you wish to apply for a license we have covered this procedure in ‘Licensing Application Procedure’. Return to the first page of this blog and choose this option form the menu on the left hand side of the page.  In brief, the process begins with requesting the license application forms from the regional offices, which are situated all over South Africa in each province. These are provided electronically via e-mail, faxed or posted through to the applicant, or taken off the DAFF (Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries) web-site. Once the applicant has filled out and signed the form, it needs to go back to the regional office, where an assessment will be made of the application. The license will then be either granted or not, based on this assessment.

Leadwood Bushwillow
Combretum imberbe
Leadwoods have wood that is amongst the heaviest in the world, which means the trees grow exceptionally slowly. It also means that the wood is much sought after for fuel, as it burns for a long time with great warmth. Many Leadwoods only finally die when thousands of years old, and their premature harvesting by humans is a desperate ecological loss for the area where they had survived millennia of fire, flood and drought.


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Other Programs








Volunteer snare removal program

We have conducted numerous successful projects via this program.We have build up massive support from the public due to the nature of the work we do.We organise special snare removal projects for this initiative.Our Volunteers range from  8 to 50 years in age.


MACW penryn 1







Student Snare removal Programs

This module was designed to re introduce and create awareness amongst  the youth with the vision to discover and develop students passionate about wildlife. This program was successfully implemented with great success.

MACW Fish poaching 2







Community Service Snare Removal Program

We believe in second chances and created this profile to assist troubled youth and to teach them and to rebuild their broken spirits. Removing snares is a life changing experience. It creates a feeling of worthiness. It teaches respect and a sense of  responsibility.







Specialised Snare Removal Program

Called the MACW Bush Warriors these are specially trained units operating on contract with the goal to protect and conserve our free roaming wildlife. These teams clearing and maintain properties and work in conjunction with the  MPTA and other specialised organisations.

macw night rescue 1







Search & Rescues

We pride ourselves with a 100% success rate when called upon. Unfortunately most wildlife caught in snares don’t survive due to strangulation or fatal wounds. Domestic animals have a better chance of survival  but it depends on the breed and temperament.








Wildlife Services

We are dedicated to build up records.Our immediate focus will be  recording all.Wildlife movements we encounter, total number of animals found dead in Snares, animal tracks found and other vital information to be reported to the Mbombela Environmental committee . We will collect  all information by means of photographs , GPS and reports.


Active Electronics student poster 1







Awareness &  wildlife appreciation programs

MACW believes that only through creating awareness and educating the youth we will be able to make a change. Our main focus is to roll out the program in all the schools inMpumalanga. Our goal will be teaching the children  about the animals they may encounter on a daily basis i.e. free-roaming wildlife.  By educating children they will have the knowledge and with knowledge comes  understanding and appreciation. In this way we hope to eradicate fear  caused by not understanding the animals .