Report by Elena Russell
3 December 2016
Our December/Christmas outing to Springside was lots of fun. There was an excellent turnout, with people coming and going before we could even say hello!
The weather for once was hot and sunny and the birding was good. We split up into 3 groups and thanks to Terry and Lesley for leading two of the groups.
Our total bird count was 61 and the prize of a very nice bottle of wine donated by Lesley on behalf of BLPN for guessing the correct number of birds seen was won by Frankie – there was some debate about the female Red-throated Wryneck and then I was told I had left off Southern Black Tit so who should have won the wine is a mystery – never to be solved and never to be mentioned again!
We made lots and lots of toasted sandwiches, many thanks to the “chefs” Kay and John and their assistants, Marion, Cecily and Adam and the rest of us who sat around and chatted (never forget this is the Saturday Chat show) and demolished the sandwiches.
We had some good birds – juvenile African Harrier Hawk, African Firefinch, Cape Rock-Thrush, Grey-headed Bushshrike, Long-crested and Crowned Eagles, African Goshawk, Golden Weavers (there are a couple of nests at the picnic site), fabulous views of Cape Grassbirds, masses of Bronze and Red-backed Mannikins, Lesser Honeyguide, Violet-backed and Red-wing Starlings, lots of weavers, Tawny-flanked Prinias, Purple-crested Turacos, Croaking and Rattling Cisticolas, YBK’s, Little Rush-Warblers calling in the reeds at the picnic site and the only Cuckoo was Diderick – just to mention some of the birds seen.
Even Fungus, Chameleon and a Blue Lizard were photographed.
We raised R434,00 for the Hillcrest Conservancy – well done BLPN birders.
My thanks to George Victor of the conservancy who came down and opened the gates for us at 06h00!!
Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for the New Year.