Main Article Content


Purpose: Wetlands are assets in the country, and they help make cities lockable and attractive. The study aims to assess the spread of alien invasive plants that affect the wetlands and construct a policy framework that could be used to preserve and conserve groundwater resources (Wetlands) in urban areas of Mpumalanga Province, specifically White River. This research will answer why alien invasives are a threat to wetlands.

Methodology: The study was conducted in White River on Longtom Street. A single observer conducted fixed-width line transect surveys to investigate species richness and abundance for all the untreated species detected next to the wetland. Three transects per habitat type were visited twice through twice per week.

Main Findings: During the survey, seven different alien invasive species were observed. The leading species was Solanum mauritianum, followed by Chromolaena odorata species; the third most dominant species was Lantana camara and Tecoma stans. Most species observed were illegally dumped by the residents that stay closer to the wetland, and no awareness, information, and training about the importance of wetlands were provided to the residents.

Implications: The framework can do more to help local communities manage urban wetlands, identifying opportunities for mapping and functional assessment to improve restoration and protection efforts. It can facilitate research and peer-to-peer exchange on innovative funding and financing methods for nature-based projects.

Novelty: Findings and recommendations resulting from this study will be summarized into a strategic guide by the end of 2023. It is recommended that all alien invasive plants in the wetland be eradicated. Wetlands must be protected to improve human health and well-being.


Wetlands Alien Invasive Assets Clearing Urban Area

Article Details

How to Cite
Mafuwane, H. C., & Muchie, M. (2023). Biological Invasion Threat to Wetlands in Urban Areas of White River, Mbombela in Mpumalanga Province, South Africa: A Case Study. International Journal of Students’ Research in Technology & Management, 11(1), 01–10.


  1. Balwan, W.K. and Kour, S. (2021). Wetland-An Ecological Boon for the Environment. East African Scholars J. Agri. and Life Sci, 4(3), 38-48. 2021.v04i03.001 DOI:
  2. Costanza, R., d'Arge, R., De Groot, R., Farber, S., Grasso, M., Hannon, B., & Van Den Belt, M. (1997). The value of the world's ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature, 387(6630), 253-260. DOI:
  3. Costanza, R., De Groot, R., Sutton, P., Van der Ploeg, S., Anderson, S. J., Kubiszewski, I., & Turner, R. K. (2014). Changes in the global value of ecosystem services. Global environmental change, 26, 152-158. DOI:
  4. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. (1993). Constructed Wetlands for Wastewater Treatment and Wildlife Habitat: 17 Case Studies. (EPA832-R-93-005).
  5. Estrada, G. C. D., Soares, M. L. G., Fernadez, V., & de Almeida, P. M. M. (2015). The economic evaluation of carbon storage and sequestration as ecosystem services of mangroves: a case study from southeastern Brazil. International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management, 11(1), 29-35. DOI:
  6. Fisher, B., Turner, K., Zylstra, M., Brouwer, R., De Groot, R., Farber, S., & Balmford, A. (2008). Ecosystem services and economic theory: integration for policyâ€relevant research. Ecological applications, 18(8), 2050-2067. DOI:
  7. Gleeson, T., Alley, W. M., Allen, D. M., Sophocleous, M. A., Zhou, Y., Taniguchi, M. & Vandersteen, J. 2012. Towards sustainable groundwater use: setting longâ€term goals, backcasting, and managing adaptively. Groundwater, 50(1), 19-26, DOI:
  8. Hatfield, J. L., & Dold, C. (2019). Water-use efficiency: advances and challenges in a changing climate. Frontiers in plant science, 10, 103. DOI:
  9. Mafuwane, H. C. (2019). Factors that affect the optimal utilization of groundwater resources at Bushbuckridge and rural areas of Mbombela in Mpumalanga Province. Journal of Creativity, Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship, 3(2), 31-42.
  10. Mafuwane, H. C. (2019). Factors that affect the quality of services at animal feeding enterprises in Gauteng Province. Journal of Creativity, Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship, 2(2), 25-44.
  11. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. (2005) A Report of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. Ecosystems and Human Well-Being. Island Press, Washington DC
  12. Mitsch, W. J., Bernal, B., & Hernandez, M. E. (2015). Ecosystem services of wetlands. International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management, 11(1), 1-4. .2015.1006250 DOI:
  13. Mitsch, W.J. and Gosselink, J.G. (2013). The value of wetlands: the importance of scale and landscape setting. Ecological economics, 35(1), 25-33. DOI:
  14. Mumma, A., Lane, M., Kairu, E., Tuinhof, A. and Hirji, R. (2011) Kenya: Groundwater Governance Case Study. Water Papers, World Bank, Washington DC.
  15. National Environmental Management. Biodiversity Act. (2004). Act No. 10 of 2004. Alien and Invasive Species Regulations. 43735. No. R. 2020.
  16. Ramsar Convention Bureau. (2001). Wetlands Values and Functions. Ramsar Convention Bureau; Gland, Switzerland
  17. Ramsar. (2004). Flood Damage Reduction in the Upper Mississippi River Basin - An Ecological Alternative.
  18. Seward, P., Xu, Y., & Turton, A. (2015). Investigating a spatial approach to groundwater quantity management using radius of influence with a case study of South Africa. Water SA, 41(1), 71-78. DOI:
  19. Seward, P., Xu, Y., & Turton, A. (2015). Using backcasting to explore ways to improve the national water department’s contribution to good groundwater governance in South Africa. Water International, 40(3), 446-462. DOI:
  20. Turner, R. E. (1977). Intertidal vegetation and commercial yields of penaeid shrimp. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, 106(5), 411-416. DOI:<411:IVACYO>2.0.CO;2
  21. Watanabe, M. D., & Ortega, E. (2011). Ecosystem services and biogeochemical cycles on a global scale: valuation of water, carbon and nitrogen processes. Environmental science & policy, 14(6), 594-604. DOI:
  22. Whittaker, R.H. and Likens, G.E. (1973), August. Carbon in the biota. In Brookhaven Symp Biol (Vol. 30, pp. 281-302).
  23. Yotova, G., Varbanov, M., Tcherkezova, E., & Tsakovski, S. (2021). Water quality assessment of a river catchment by the composite water quality index and self-organizing maps. Ecological indicators, 120, 106872. DOI:
  24. Zedler, J.B. and Kercher, S. (2004). Causes and Consequences of invasive plants in wetlands: Opportunities, opportunists, and outcomes. Critical Review in Plant Sciences, 23, 431-452 0.1080/07352680490514673 DOI: