The Bot River protea is restricted to the botanically rich habitat of the Cape Floristic Region, where conservation is a high priority. Conservation measures currently being undertaken in the region include the restoration of the landscape to its natural state, through the burning and cutting of invasive alien plants, the purchasing of land to protect against the threats of encroaching urban development and agriculture, and the establishment of new protected areas (4) (8) (9). In addition, the conservation organisation Fauna and Flora International are coordinating projects that promote ecologically and financially sustainable cultivation of fynbos plants, to provide long-term, community directed protection of this fragile ecosystem (9).
At present only a small proportion of the Cape Floristic Region lies within reserves, with the majority of these protected areas in mountainous areas, and very few in coastal regions, where the Bot River protea resides. Some Bot River protea populations are protected by privately owned reserves, but these tend to be very small, and the level of protection provided varies. In order to ensure the preservation of coastal fynbos habitat, and Bot River protea populations, a larger network of protected areas should be established with greater connectivity between reserves (8).