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Encyclopedia > Fynbos
Cape Floral Region Protected Areasa
UNESCO World Heritage Site
State Party Flag of South Africa South Africa
Type Natural
Criteria ix, x
Identification #1007
Regionb Africa

Inscription History UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... The Fynbos. ... As of 2006, there are a total of 830 World Heritage Sites located in 138 State Parties. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_South_Africa. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... This is a list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Africa. ...

Formal Inscription: 2004
28th Session

a Name as officially inscribed on the WH List
b As classified officially by UNESCO
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State...

Fynbos is the natural shrubland vegetation occurring in a small belt of the Western Cape of South Africa, mainly in winter rainfall coastal and mountainous areas with a Mediterranean climate. Shrubland is a habitat type dominated by woody shrubs. ... Capital Cape Town Largest city Cape Town Premier Ebrahim Rasool Area - Total Ranked 4th 129,370 km² Population  - Total (2001)  - Density Ranked 5th 4,524,335 35/km² Elevation Highest point: Seweweekspoort Peak at 2325 meters (7628 feet) Lowest point: sea level Languages Afrikaans (55. ... A Mediterranean climate is a climate that resembles the climate of the lands bordering the Mediterranean Sea. ...

Contents

Cape Floral Kingdom

Fynbos grows in a 100-200km wide coastal belt stretching from Clanwilliam on the West coast to Port Elizabeth on the Southeast coast. It forms part of the Cape floral kingdom, where it accounts for half of the surface area and 80% of the plant varieties. The fynbos in the Western regions is more rich and varied than in the Eastern regions. Clanwilliam is a town in the Western Cape province of South Africa. ... Port Elizabeth is a city in South Africa, situated in the Eastern Cape Province, at 33°58′ S 25°36′ E. The city is located on Algoa Bay, and is one of the major seaports in South Africa. ... The Cape floristic region is a floristic province of South Africa. ...


Of the world's six floral kingdoms, this is the smallest and richest per area unit. Contrast it in size with the Holarctic kingdom, which incorporates the whole of the northern hemisphere apart from the tropical regions. The diversity of fynbos plants is greater than that of the tropical rainforests, with over 8000 species of plants occurring in the area, around 5000 of which are endemic, i.e. do not occur anywhere else in the world. Of the Ericas, 600 occur in the fynbos kingdom, while only 26 are found in the rest of the world. This is in an area of 46,000 km² - by comparison, the Netherlands, with an area of 33,000 km², has 1400 species, none of them endemic. Table Mountain in Cape Town supports 1470 species, more than the entire United Kingdom. A floristic province is a geographic area with a relatively uniform composition of plant species. ... The Holarctic is a term used by zoologists to define the ecozone covering much of Eurasia and North America, which have often been connected by the Bering land bridge. ... In biology and ecology endemic means exclusively native to a place or biota, in contrast to cosmopolitan or introduced. ... Table Mountain is a flat-topped mountain in South Africa that overlooks Cape Town. ... City motto: Spes Bona (Latin: Good Hope) Location of the City of Cape Town in Western Cape Province Province Western Cape Mayor Helen Zille Area  - % water 2,499 km² N/A Population  - Total (2004)  - Density Not ranked 2,893,251 1,158/km² Established 1652 Time zone SAST (UTC+2...


Fynbos families

The King protea is the national flower of South Africa.

The name fynbos is Afrikaans for fine bush and refers to the fine, needle-like leaves of many fynbos species. The majority of the plants are evergreen hard-leaf plants. Three of the characteristic fynbos plant families are proteas, ericas and restios. Proteas are represented by many species and are prominent in the landscape as one of the few large-leaf plant types, generally with large striking flowers which may be pollinated by birds. Ericas or heaths are generally smaller plants with many small, tubular flowers and needle-like leaves. The grass-like restios - only a few species of which are known outside the fynbos area - grow in wetter areas. More than 1400 bulb species occur among the fynbos, of which 96 are gladiolus and 54 lachenalias. Download high resolution version (1024x684, 132 KB)King protea, Protea cynaroides Image Number K7853-2 King Protea, Protea cynaroides, the national flower of South Africa. ... Download high resolution version (1024x684, 132 KB)King protea, Protea cynaroides Image Number K7853-2 King Protea, Protea cynaroides, the national flower of South Africa. ... Binomial name Protea cynaroides L. The King Protea (also known as Giant Protea, Honeypot or King Sugar Bush, Protea cynaroides) is a flower, the largest member of the Protea genus. ... Look up Wiktionary:Swadesh lists for Afrikaans and Dutch in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A Silver Fir shoot showing three successive years of retained leaves In botany, an evergreen plant is a plant which retains its leaves year-round, with each leaf persisting for more than 12 months. ... Genera See text The Proteaceae are a large family of flowering plants, which includes 75-80 genera and 1500 species of evergreen trees, shrubs, and herbs. ... Genera See text The plant Family Ericaceae (Heath Family) or ericaceous plants are mostly lime-hating or calcifuge plants that thrive in acid soils. ... Genera See text The family Restionaceae of flowering plants contains at the latest review (2003), 40 genera and 950 species all of which are tufted or rhizomatous herbs. ... Species About 260, see text Gladiolus (from Latin, the diminutive of gladius, a sword), sometimes called the sword lily, is a genus of flowering plants, iris family (Iridaceae). ... Lachenalia is a genus of bulbs in the Hyacinthaceae family, which are usually found in Namibia and South Africa. ...


Fire

Fire is a necessary stage in the lives of almost all fynbos plants, and is common during the dry summer months. Many of the seeds germinate only after the intense heat of a fire. In readiness for fire, most proteas retain their seeds on the bush for at least one year, a habit known as serotiny. They do this in structures which resemble the original flowerheads. In some species these structures are strikingly beautiful and long-lasting, which accounts for their use in dried floral arrangements. Serotiny is the behaviour of some plant species that retain their non-dormant seeds in a cone or woody fruit for up to several years, but release them after exposure to fire. ...


Economic uses

Rooibos (Aspalathus linearis) and Honeybush (Cyclopia intermedia) are of economic importance, grown and harvested in large quantities in the Cederberg area, and making up an important export. Proteas and other floral species are grown in many areas and their flowers harvested for export. Restios continue to be used for thatching as they have for hundreds or even thousands of years. Binomial name Aspalathus linearis (N.L.Burm. ... Binomial name Cyclopia spp L. Vent. ... The Cederberg mountains and nature reserve are located near Clanwilliam, approximately 300 km north of Cape Town, South Africa at about . ...


In many areas with Mediterranean climates, fynbos species are popular garden plants, in particular aloes and geraniums, and in cooler regions are used as window plants. Species See Species For other uses, see Aloe (disambiguation). ... Species About 200: Pelargonium radens Pelargonium scabrum Pelargonium triste et al. ...


Fynbos areas are a popular attraction for tourists, especially in the vicinity of Cape Town, and are also important recreational areas for locals. City motto: Spes Bona (Latin: Good Hope) Location of the City of Cape Town in Western Cape Province Province Western Cape Mayor Helen Zille Area  - % water 2,499 km² N/A Population  - Total (2004)  - Density Not ranked 2,893,251 1,158/km² Established 1652 Time zone SAST (UTC+2...


Conservation

Large parts of the fynbos region have been developed for agriculture or through the urban expansion around Cape Town. Fynbos areas are also threatened by the spread of alien species, in particular wattle and acacia species from Australia, as well as pine plantations. Many species have gone extinct, and more than 1000 are endangered. Their conservation is a priority, and reserves have been established in many areas.


External links

  • Western Cape School Network on fynbos
  • "Protea Atlas Project" with excellent information and images.
  • Fauna & Flora International's work on fynbos

  Results from FactBites:
 
Fynbos (128 words)
Fynbos (Afrikaans for fine bush) is the natural vegetation occurring in a small belt of South Africa, mainly in the South-western Cape.
Three of the characteristic fynbos plant families are proteas, ericas and restios[?].
Of the Ericas, 600 occur in th fynbos kingdom, while only 26 are found in the rest of the world.
Fynbos Biome (2547 words)
Fynbos is characterized by the presence of seven endemic or near-endemic plant families: Blacktips (Bruniaceae), Guyalone (Geissolomaceae), Sillyberry (Grubbiaceae), Brickleaf (Penaeaceae), Buttbush (Retziaceae), Dewstick (Roridulaceae) and Candlestick (Stilbaceae).
Shrubby Fynbos is ecotonal to forest where rock outcrops, gorges and stream courses protect the vegetation from fires, and Grassy Fynbos predominates where the summer component of the rainfall allows grasses to outcompete the restioids.
Grassy Fynbos was categorized as either Mesic (on southern slopes and nearer the coast) or Dry (northern slopes and predominantly inland).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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