South Africa celebrated IBD on 17 May at the Kruger to Canyons Biosphere Reserve as part of a Sustainable Living Festival. The main objective for holding the celebrations at the Reserve was to increase public and policy awareness for the regional biodiversity and the concept of the biosphere as a possible driver for sound regional development. The event also served to promote biospheres as engines for sustainable development. The exceptional variety of the landscapes and ecosystems under different management regimes in the Kruger to Canyon region made it ideal to focus IBD activities on exploring and explaining the interface between biodiversity and agriculture and ecosystem services. The celebrations were filmed.
As part of the celebrations at the Kruger to Canyons Biosphere Reserve, some 300 participants monitored the species and ecosystem variety of 19 different sites in four eco-regions: Grassland, afro-montane forest, savannah and aquatic ecosystems. Within only 24 hours more than 1000 different species were found. Over 10 media teams from South Africa (SA) and Germany attended the 24 hour monitoring which was supported by German Development Co-operation (GTZ, DED, KfW and BMZ), GEO magazine, the Province Governments, the SA Environmental and Tourism Department, the SA Air Force, FAO, IUCN, Kruger National Park, the CBD Secretariat many other partners.