Tongoland-Pondoland BioProvince

In southeast Africa this BioProvince (as defined by Armen Takhtajan) extends from the mouth of the Limpopa River to Port Elizabeth. In the north it stretches inland for some 240 km but further south where the mountains come close to the sea its inland boundary is no more than about 8 km from the sea. The area experiences a mild climate and due to the warm Mozamnbique current coastal parts have moderately high, well-distributed rainfall. Further inland there is a rapidly increasing degree of draught, which is exacerbated by the desiccating 'berg’ winds. This has a significant impact on the vegetation of coastal valleys. In terms of geological composition the area can be broadly divided into two zones. The northern coastal plains are composed of Cretaceous and Tertiary marine sediments while the rest of the area falls within the Table Mountain Sandstones and sedimentary strata of the Karoo formation.  The flora comprises some 3000 species and includes two endemic families (Rhynchocalycaceae and Strangeriaceae) and a number of endemic genera including Anastrabe (Scrophulariaceae), Bachmannia (Capparaceae), Burchellia (Rubiaceae), Ephippiocarpa (Apocynaceae), Galpinia (Lythraceae), Harpephyllum, Jubaeopsis (Arecaceae), Loxostylis (Anacardiaceae), Pseudosalacia (Celastraceae), Rhynchocalyx (Rhynchocalycaceae), Stangeria (Stangeriaceae) and Umtiza (Fabaceae). Two genera, Atalaya and Protorhus, occur nowhere else in Africa, but are found in Asia and Madagascar.

The following accounts for this BioProvince have been written or will be written with particular reference to endemic and locally important species. Accounts available are displayed in green or yellow. Those displayed in red are either in the pipeline or awaiting expert contributions.


Major Ecosystems
Endemic Vascular Plant Flora
Endemic Flora (Pondoland)
Bryophyte Flora
Fungus Flora
Lichen Flora
Invertebrate Fauna
Amphibian Fauna
Reptile Fauna
Bird Fauna
Mammal Fauna
Conservation Status