I am sure you are also reeling from all that is going on in our country and our suburb currently.  I find I need to draw back a bit and focus on what is around me and in my sphere of influence, to keep me grounded.   My thoughts and prayers are with everyone who is affected and has suffered a loss recently.  We are fortunate in Doringkloof that we have a very supportive community to help us cope.

With COVID still keeping us in level 4 lockdown, it is unfortunate that we again have to cancel the bird ringing due for this coming Saturday.  Even though it is outdoors, we will not be able to keep the correct social distance.  Also, it looks like it will be very cold these next few days!

Keeping with the bird theme, the virtual Birdlife Bird Fair takes place on July 30th  and 31st .  The program looks very interesting.  You can register on


We are grateful for Mike from Nature Conservation for brush cutting on the bridges, banks and areas not accessible to the tractor.  Also, the bird hide has had a new lick of varnish, as have the notice boards and they are looking great.  Thanks to Astrid for some interesting new posters in the notice boards.

Sadly the spruit has been a victim of crime too – one of the rubbish bins has been cut at ground level and stolen and 3 of our tree identification signs have been stolen (two a while ago and one recently).

I would like to thank everyone who walks in the spruit and collects rubbish as they go – it really makes a difference and adds to the enjoyment of the area for everyone else.  THANK YOU!

The neighbourhood watch patrols in the early morning allowed for Marcus to spot a porcupine in the spruit toward the N1 highway – all puffed up, quills out and rattling and unhappy at being disturbed!  I am so excited about this!  I have seen a couple of cane rats nibbling at roots in the early evening too.     So our efforts at creating a bit of a haven for some small wildlife is paying off, even now in all its winter drabness!

I do need to acknowledge the late Clive Napier (ex-councilor for this area) who played a big role in encouraging Marie de la Rey and the first FODS committee in getting our Friends group going 12 years ago.  He was a great supporter.

We also remember Weidrich Gerber with sadness and gratitude – many meetings and AGM’s were held at Cherry Berry and we were always served so cheerfully by him and his family.

Take care everyone and God bless you.


Penny Dekenah

(chairperson FODS)