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Three speakers from Brazil as well as participants from Chile, Finland, France, Latvia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Sierra Leone, Pakistan, China and Austria formed part of a webinar at Mandela University’s Forestry Department.

A total of 350 local and international guests attended the webinar entitled “Enabling Modernisation in Silviculture" facilitated by Dr Muedanyi Ramantswana on the George Campus.

The webinar shared progress and efforts in modernising silviculture operations both locally and internationally. African countries included Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Malawi, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Presentations were delivered by a panel of experts, including four local speakers.

Damien Naidu from Sappi shared cutting-edge technologies currently being tested and used for improved nursery plant survival and growth. Mechanised planting on steep terrain based on the experiences of using a dozer for semi mechanised planting and drones for chemical spraying, was presented by New Forestry Solutions’ Dumisani Shweni from a contractor’s perspective.

Sam Twala from Ntsu Aviation Solutions looked at the legislative constraints and opportunities for drone usage in forest operations and Michael Breetzke from Swift Geospatial highlighted the benefits of using satellite imagery to monitor different forest operations like harvesting progress and stand health assessments.

The speakers from Brazil shared different mechanised planting solutions for plantation forests, how silviculture applications such as pest control and weeding are conducted using drones and the challenges of integrating technology in silviculture operations and technology improvements globally.

The event is expected to take place again in October 2023. 

For more information and copies of the presentations delivered visit: Mandela University - George campus ; and or

Contact information
Dr Muedanyi Ramantswana
Senior Lecturer and Forestry Programme Coordinator
Tel: 044 801 5022