BeKZN Sit-in – Pigeon Valley Nature Reserve

18 May 2023

Eager to be able to tick a Spotted Ground Thrush the sit-in crowd gathered at Pigeon Valley.  Due to extensive damage to the centre path, it was decided that we would sit close to the entrance where said Thrush is known to hang out at times.

Having duly set up our chairs we waited…..

We had a flowering Halleria lucida (Tree fuchsia) that attracted some attention from the sunbird family; Olive Sunbird, Amethyst Sunbird and Collared Sunbird were all seen at various times while White-bellied Sunbird seemed to prefer the gardens across the street. 

Olive Sunbird – Poobalan Naidoo

A little red Duiker daintily picked its way along the edge of the forest.

Red Duiker – Poobalan Naidoo  

There was very little sunshine and the birds seem to be more interested in sitting in the sun just above the rooftops of the homes across from the park, we had Familiar Chat flicking about.

Familiar Chat – Poobalan Naidoo

Southern Black Flycatcher and Fork-tailed Drongo gave some ID challenges while Cape White-eyes gleaned alongside raucous Village Weavers in the Vachellia zanthophloea (Fever Tree).

Fork-tailed Drongo – Poobalan Naidoo
Village Weaver – Poobalan Naidoo

As always there were walkers and they were rewarded with Paradise Flycatcher flitting quickly through the branches, inquisitive Dusky Flycatchers and Yellow-rumped Tinkerbirds

Dusky Flycatcher – Poobalan Naidoo
Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird – Poobalan Naidoo 

Black-sparrow Hawk made an appearance dashing overhead from one section of canopy to another and African Goshawk was also seen.

Of the Spotted Ground Thrush there was no sign.

But I can’t think of a better reason for a return visit to come back and visit this little gem of a reserve.

Sit-in leader Jenny Norman

Report written by Jane Morris

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