Notice on partial restrictions on climbing at the Chosspile (Issued 26 May 2016) Climbers who frequent the Lord of the Rings Sector will know that there is a Black Eagle (Verreaux’s Eagle) nesting site at the right side of the crag, just right of the chains of Fossil Fuel.
They have nested there for most years since climbing started there over 20 years ago, including recent years. And climbers who climb at Chosspile will know that there is a nest site toward the left end of the crag that has not been used for some years but could potentially be used again.
It should be noted that the Black Eagle is on the red-data list and therefore to disturb a nesting pair is a criminal offense; the club is wary of this but at the same time values the importance of the Lord of the Rings sector to the climbing community and seeks to protect access as much as possible.
The club is currently in discussion with one of the country’s most prominent bird conservation societies to develop a policy for future guidance on climbing restrictions at all crags during raptor breeding season (April to October). Following some attention from a raptor conservation group, and in the interests of maintaining long-term access to the crag, the Mountain Club of South Africa (MCSA) is implementing some restrictions on climbing at Chosspile.
- With immediate effect no climbing is permitted at the Lord of the Rings sector until end October.
- If it is confirmed early in this period by an appointed representative of the club that the eagles are not nesting climbing may resume.
- No dogs are allowed at the Lord of the Rings Sector during the nesting season, unless they are deemed not be nesting as per point 2.
- If it is observed by an appointed representative of the club that the juvenile birds have fledged the nest, climbing may resume earlier than the date in point 1.
- Updates on breeding status and restrictions will be posted via the weekly “Reminders” e-newsletter. There have been recent reports of Black Eagle activity at the Bronkies Crag. We remind climbers that climbing is not permitted in the Eagle Sector (markers at the base of the crag). The consequences of climbers not observing these restrictions could lead to closure of these crags, so please work with us so that we can secure long-term access and help protect the wonderful Black Eagles.
Mountain Club of South Africa, Magaliesberg and Johannesburg Sections If you still have draws up please contact Andrew Pedley. Any other queries can be directed to the respective MCSA offices or you can email firstname.lastname@example.org