THE JOHANNESBURG VOLUNTARY MOUNTED RIVER RANGERS
The Johannesburg Voluntary Mounted River Rangers conduct daily environmental patrols from one equestrian base on the north side of the largest city in South Africa.
From Where to Where?
Patrols cover a 17 km stretch of City parkland and river trails along the Braamfontein Spruit and the Sandspruit Rivers. Public parks in Riverclub, Parkmore, Bryanston - and from time-to-time, Paulshof & Sunninghill are also monitored by our Rangers.
Sewerage spills, illegal dumping, littering and water pollution need to be managed on a sustainable basis. Horses and volunteer riders offer a low-impact solution for observing and reporting these problems to city authorities so that rapid interventions can be applied.
Since 2002 the numbers of vagrants inhabiting informal squatter camps along the Braamfontein Spruit have also mushroomed. The River Rangers supply regular updates to the SA Police Services (SAPS), as well as Community forums & Security managers in the above areas so the size and spread of these camps can be controlled.
The reporting of fallen trees, fires, flood damage, the spread of invasive vegetation and the illegal pumping of water out of local rivers is also part of the River Ranger mandate.
Our patrol horses are stabled on land leased from the Johannesburg Property Company (Propcom). We operate from the base at the Field & Study Centre in Sandton.
Anyone wishing to ride as a ranger will be assessed by one of our stable managers. New rangers are asked to complete 2 forms if they wish to become members. You need to complete an indemnity form and you need to provide us with emergency contact numbers.
Ranger members pay annual subscriptions to the JVMRR (currently R750 p/a) and riders are asked to commit to 1 or 2 patrols per week.
No, most rangers don’t have their own horses. You will be provided with horses by our service provider and our riders go out in groups of at least 2 horses with a maximum of 4. The allocation of the horses is done by the stable managers because they know the condition of the horses and they’re in the best position to judge who should ride which horse on a particular patrol.
Rangers are asked to wear khaki shirts, beige jodhpurs and dark green jerseys (in winter). Lime vests are supplied at each base and must be worn over shirts or jerseys. All riders are required to wear helmets.
Please untack your horses and make sure they have water. Wash the bits and return the saddles and bridles to the tack room. Then fill in a Report Sheet in the daily log book.
Cases reported should be written up in the Case Report book after you’ve made contact with city officials. Lists of contact numbers for the SAPS, ARM (cable theft), Pikitup, Johannesburg Water, the Roads Agency and others are pinned to the notice boards at the yard. Fill in the reference numbers you are given, the name of the person you speak to and the date on your Case Report sheet.
When a problem has been attended to, this should be noted with the date in the ‘completed’ section of the file.
Squatter reports should be faxed directly to Inspector Lee Ramdiyal (SAPS) and Peter Burner (Reservist Force) on the map sheets supplied.
If your horse has any problem please notify the stable manager and grooms.