The Cape Orchid Society has partnered with OrchidMap, a citizen-science led initiative that maps indigenous orchid distribution across southern Africa. OrchidMap invites members of the public to photograph orchids in nature and upload the details of their locations on to the OrchidMap database. This is done via the website or a dedicated app which asks for an image (for proper species identification), GPS co-ordinates, date of flowering, etc. The GPS co-ordinates are not shared with the public. The location of the species photographed are displayed on the OrchidMap site in quarter-degree squares, which limits the possibility of orchid poaching and other safety concerns. OrchidMap hopes to improve current orchid distribution information, increase our knowledge of orchid habitat, flowering times and geographic distribution, as well as aid in opportunities for orchid management in South Africa.
The Cape Orchid Society is a chapter branch of Wild Orchids of southern Africa (WOSA). The mission of WOSA is to conserve the indigenous orchids of southern African in their natural habitat. They aim to improve the interest in orchids in southern Africa through education and research, as well as by engaging with the public and governance institutions to ensure the survival of indigenous orchid species. WOSA holds an annual conference where local and international orchid conservationists, hobbyists and academics share their expertise and experiences in orchid conservation. Contact WOSA to find out more about the events they host.