North-west Zululand – Vryheid Chelmsford Dam Nature Reserve
About the Birding
Chelmsford Nature Reserve lays 23km to the south of Newcastle and comprises the vast Ntshingwayo Dam – the third largest dam in all of KwaZulu-Natal – and the surrounding grasslands. The dam itself is renowned as a fishing destination, but also boasts small numbers of game and an impressive list of over 210 bird species.
About the Birding Site
North-west Zululand is one of the most varied of the birding routes in KwaZulu-Natal ranging in habitat from high altitude temperate grasslands in the west, to low lying subtropical thickets in the east including several large wetlands. Given this incredibly high habitat diversity, it is no surprise that the route also boasts an impressive checklist of birds including 58 of Southern Africa’s endemic and near-endemic species, many of which are confined to the extensive grasslands and wetlands.
Other Related Information
Travelling south from Newcastle along the N11, turn along the D210 towards Normandien. The gate to the reserve is located 6km along this road. Access to the eastern edge of the dam is possible through the Richgate section.
The nearest towns to Chelmsford Nature Reserve are: