Report By Elena Russell
2 December 2017
We had an excellent turnout for our Christmas outing to Springside. Could it be the famous toasted cheese and tomato sandwiches as prepared by our chefs, Marion and John. Most definitely, they and I mean the sarmies, get better and better each year! A big thank you to Marion and John for the catering – the sandwiches were delicious.
Also thanks to Mark and Cecily for their assistance.
Even Steve Woodall pitched up (much later) – he says he was looking for a butterfly, I think he had heard about the sarmies!!
We broke up into 3 groups and my thanks to David Swanepoel and Mike Roseblade for leading the other two groups. Springside has all sorts of different paths to meander up and down and although the weather was a bit dicey to begin with (spitting with rain) it improved during the morning and we had some jolly good birding.
Our total count at the end of the morning was 77 but as we gathered in the parking area there was the bird of the day – Broad-tailed Warbler.
The raptor count, due to the weather, was not too good, YBK’s and a single African Goshawk. Lots of Cuckoos were heard, Klaas’s, Diederik, Red-chested and some of us were lucky enough to see the Emerald. Sunbirds: Collared, Amethyst, Greater-doubled Collared, Olive and White-bellied.
The weaver count was very good. Holub’s Golden Weaver and a number of nests by the picnic site (vlei area) and further up by the stream. Some of the Thick-billed Weavers have made nests in the weeds on the hillside which looked a bit odd. Maybe they chose higher ground due to the heavy rains? Also Village, Dark-backed and Spectacled.
Here are some of the other birds, plants and dragonflies photographed:
Many thanks to Mike Stead (aka the photographer) and David Swanepoel for some great photos and of course Marion and John for their generosity and hard work!!
Here’s wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a great birding New Year.