During October and early November, Prof Dave Drew and Anton Kunneke were pleased to host Prof Jonathan Barichivich, Research Professor (Directeur de Recherche) in the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in Paris, France. Jonathan will be working with Dave and Anton to better understand how the long-lived Clanwilliam cedar (Widdringtonia wallichii) has responded over multiple centuries to changing environmental conditions in its natural range in the Cederberg mountain range. Increasingly threatened by habitat loss, frequent fires and climate change, this iconic tree is at risk.
During his visit, they were able to make a very fruitful reconnaissance visit to several sites where small but valuable populations of these trees are found, to plan the next steps of their collaborative research project. We're looking forward to working closely with Jonathan and his colleagues to better understand long term climate variation in the region, but also to be able to get a clearer picture of how this vulnerable species can be managed so that, hopefully, it doesn't disappear in coming decades.