An elusive skolly

Infrequently observed at Verloren Valei, the Basuto Skolly or Basuto magpie has a somewhat disreputable reputation, as its name implies. By Justin Bode Thestor basutus, Basuto Skolly or Basoetoe Skollie, is the most widely distributed species in its genus. While … Read More

Conserving our lepidopteran heritage

Verloren Valei illustrates how important a role protected areas play in conserving our biodiversity. By Justin Bode Lepidoptera are recognised as playing an important role in ecological systems, and also act as biodiversity indicators. For these reasons, the Southern African … Read More

The ultimate defence

As a defence mechanism, many butterflies are poisonous. Other butterflies mimic their poisonous cousins to warn off predators. By Justin Bode When a poisonous butterfly is bitten, the toxins released stimulate a vomiting reflex in the predator that results in … Read More

Something special down in the marshlands

The Mountain Sylph butterfly is confined to high-altitude grasslands and loves wetland environments—it’s almost as if Verloren Valei was designed for it. By Justin Bode Metisella aegipan aegipan, Mountain sylph or Berg-walsertjie has a scattered distribution in the high-altitude montane … Read More