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New undertaking for Atlas of Namibia to plot green invasive aliens that did not arrive by spaceship

New undertaking for Atlas of Namibia to plot green invasive aliens that did not arrive by spaceship

Barbara Curtis, a botanist and Eco Awards Assessor, needs assistance in locating alien invasive plant species across Namibia. She has been asked to put together something on alien invasive plants for the revised version of the Atlas of Namibia.

“Since it is an atlas, my first though was to have maps of the worst species, but when I looked at the records that the National Botanical Research Institute and the alien atlas have, I realised that what has been recorded is considerably less than the real extent of the problem, therefore this would give a false impression of the severity of the problem,” she explained.

She said this is why she is contacting people who would be able to give her localities of invasive alien species. “It does not have to be precise, near a town, or on a farm and the district would help a lot and even if you have seen invasive cactus, for example, but do not know which species, just ‘cactus’ will do,” she emphasised.

She said she intends to lump all cacti together anyway and is particularly interested in cactus and the newly invasive rubber vine. “Please help me gather information from far flung places by passing on this message to friends on farms or other rural situations,” she pleaded.

To help Curtis all you need to do is to report alien vegetation directly to her at [email protected] or enter them online to the alien atlas at

About The Author

Mandisa Rasmeni

Mandisa Rasmeni has worked as reporter at the Economist for the past five years, first on the entertainment beat but now focussing more on community, social and health reporting. She is a born writer and she believes education is the greatest equalizer. She received her degree in Journalism at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) in June 2021. . She is the epitome of perseverance, having started as the newspaper's receptionist in 2013.