Tanglewood Nature Reserve

Saturday, 5th October 2019

Tanglewood Farm is just simply one of those conservation gems. Resting below the cliff that divides Kloof from Westmead. A place where the moment you drive through the gate, you forget that you are less than five kilometres from the bustling business centre of Pinetown. The landscape is made up of a substantial grassland area with three small dams the grassland meanders up a hill into an area of bush mosaic and a steep hill that climbs up to the base of a large cliff face, which overlooks a forest patch.

The weather was pleasant but overcast, which was ok, but not ideal for birding or photography. The group split in two with Elena kindly agreeing to lead one of the groups and Sandi the other, as it was my first visit to the farm, and I was not familiar with the pathways.

I was in Elena’s group and as the other group proceeded to the grassland, we took the pathway that leads up the hill. One thing that we need to remember on future visits is that this pathway is not for those wanting a leisurely walk! 

As we set off, we could hear a Narina Trogon calling in the forest area, which immediately raised the level of excitement in the group. Elena did warn, that we would have to negotiate the steep hill if we wanted to pursue it, but with the Trogon calling we chose to continue. Our persistence was soon rewarded with our bird of the day, and beautiful views of this magnificent bird. Continuing along this path, which branches off below the enormous cliff face, proved a little difficult for some of the group, who chose to turn back rather than negotiate the rocky path.

The other group also divided into smaller groups, fortunately we had enough knowledgeable birders in each group to keep them all informed. 

We gathered at “the boathouse” to complete our list and share our experiences. We were later joined by Carol, the owner, who shared some of her experiences of living on the farm and some of the animals that had been rehabilitated and released on the farm.

A total of 97 birds was recorded (seen & heard).

Report by Terry Walls

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