Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks for last 2 weeks

Dear All

Please find attached the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past two weeks days. Click here and here for the movements.

Some interesting movements from our Cape N207 during this period.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Kenneth Stainbank Outing

3 March 2018

Report by Elena Russell

A pleasant morning’s birding, maybe not the greatest our bird count was only 63 – see the bird list by clicking here. I guess it is the end of summer.

At the dam there are plenty of weavers’ nests but no weavers only a lone African Jacana.   The YBK’s are still around but not for very much longer!  A juvenile/sub-adult African Fish-Eagle had us confused but we managed to sort it out and it was Tamsin who put us straight.

A pair of Grey Waxbills have taken over an old Spectacles Weaver’s nest. Some excellent photos of the birds collecting nesting material – we rated this bird of the day.

An Olive Sunbird most definitely had a white tip to its tail. The bird was seen in shade and sun and the tail had a rather large white tip, quite obvious in the photos. Hopefully somebody will be able to give us an explanation.

But there could be this very, very rare Woodpecker, look carefully at David’s photo, we think it could be the Long-billed Woodpecker. Very rarely seen if ever!  This is what is known as the Pinocchio Syndrome, highly contagious.

Long-billed Woodpecker – David Swanepoel

We paid our respects at Roy’s bench and then wandered slowly back for our picnic tea.

Thanks to Sandi for the bird list (attached) and to David Swanepoel, Mike Stead and John Bremner for the great photos.

Please note the next outing is to Durban Botanical Gardens. I thought it was the Bluff but that is not till August.

Cheers

Elena

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Bisley Valley Nature Reserve Outing

Bisley Valley Nature Reserve, Pietermaritzburg

21 January 2018

Report by Dave Rimmer

The BPLN Sunday outing for January was held on the 21st where nine  birders joined me at Bisley Valley Nature Reserve in Pietermaritzburg. The group started assembling at the entrance gate from 6.15am and wasted no time in starting to tick off the birds whilst we waited for the late-comers. First birds of the day included Diederik and Klaas’s Cuckoo, Amethyst Sunbird, Barn Swallow, Rufous-naped Lark, Cape Glossy Starling and African Palm Swifts.

We then proceeded down to the resource centre, parked the cars and headed up the eastern side of the reserve in the direction of the reservoir.

Bisley Valley being a prime spot for bushveld birding close to Durban, our target birds for the day were Acacia Pied Barbet, Common Scimitarbill and Brubru. And they did not disappoint as we had good views of all of them within the first couple of hours.

Common Scimitarbill (EJ Bartlett)

Initially the birding was slow due to poor light, and those that we did see tended to be quite distant making photographic opportunities difficult. By the time we got up to the reservoir the list was close to 50 species, including Southern Boubou, Willow Warbler, Familiar Chat, Southern and Black-crowned Tchagra, Chinspot Batis, African Firefinch, Fiscal Flycatcher, Neddicky, and Dark-capped Yellow Warbler.

One bird sadly gave us only brief views. After it disappeared, both David and I had the same thought that it was possibly a Common Whitethroat – but we left it off the list as unconfirmed. A pity – that would have been a lifer for many, myself included.

Beyond the reservoir is some good grassland habitat which afforded us views of Long-tailed Widowbird

Spotting the long-tailed Widowbird

Common Waxbill, African Pipit, and a Plain-backed Pipit.

By now we were two hours into the walk, the sun was getting warm so we started to make our way back down to the cars. En route we picked up on Rattling Cisticola, Red-throated Wryneck, Streaky-headed Seedeater, Kurrichane Thrush, Violet-backed Starling and Brimstone Canary.

Violet-backed Starling (EJ Bartlett)

Following a brief break for refreshments, we carried on through the western side of the reservoir down to the small dam with the bird hide at the bottom. This gave us our bird of the day – Black Cuckoo, along with Red-backed Shrike, Yellow Weaver, Little Grebe, Green Wood-hoopoe, White-bellied Sunbird and an African Fish Eagle. We called it a day at 11.30 am finishing off with a final tally of 86 species for the day. Click here for a full species list for the day.

Yellow Weaver (EJ Bartlett)

Many thanks to regulars Penny de Vries, Cheryl King, Vauneen Kerr Wilson, David and Tania Swanepoel, along with newcomers Tyron Dall, EJ Bartlett and Barbara Cloete, and last but not least my birding buddy Penny for venturing out for the day, as well as sharing with us some of your photos included herewith.

One of the rewards of leading outings like this one is being able to grow the life lists of those taking part, and this particular outing didn’t disappoint with three birders bagging lifers. Congrats to

Tyron Dall – 5 Lifers (Black Cuckoo, Common Scimitarbill, Brubru, Plain-backed Pipit, Dark-capped Yellow Warbler)

EJ Bartlett – 4 Lifers (Black Cuckoo, Brubru, Plain-backed Pipit, Southern Tchagra)

Vauneen Kerr Wilson – 2 Lifers (Acacia Pied barbet, Familiar Chat)

Yours in birding,

Dave Rimmer

 

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Jubilee Park Outing

 

21 February 2018

Report by Sandi du Preez

Eight birders attended the outing to a very hot and humid Jubilee Park in Westville.

I think the birds felt the same as there were very few to be seen. It would have been nice to start earlier in summer, but mid-week there is always a problem with traffic.

From the car park, we watched an African Harrier-Hawk raiding some nests – always fascinating to watch, but maybe disturbing for some! The main reason for going to Jubilee Park is to see the Pied Mannikins, and they did not disappoint. They were in the pond area with the extremely restless and active Bronze and Red-backed Mannikins (they need a dose of Ritalin!) and it is good to be able to see the size of the Pied, in comparison to the other species. This was a lifer for some of the group.

At the entrance there was a Thick-billed Weaver busily weaving it’s nest and we all marveled at the neatness of the construction.

During the walk through the forest some of the birds we saw or heard were Fork-tailed and Square-tailed Drongo, Black-headed Oriole, White-eared and Black-collared Barbet, Tawny-flanked Prinia, Black-bellied and Red-winged Starling, Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird, Green Wood-hoopoe, Golden-tailed Woodpecker, and a young Olive Sunbird which had us working hard for an ID.

Altogether 37 species – click here to see list.

We came across some old tree stumps with interesting patterns formed by termite tunnels. They looked like beautiful sculptures.

Termite patterned tree -John Bremner

Gorgeous Crocosmia (Falling stars) were in flower which gave splashes of colour to the forest.

Crocosmia – John Bremner

When we went back to the cars to fetch our picnic things, a Familiar Chat and a Southern Black Flycatcher were waiting for us. As we were leaving, a Woolly-necked Stork flew overhead.

Thanks to John Bremner for the photos.

Sandi du Preez

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (Click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

The search for Mac has been hampered by bad weather. Hopefully better news next week.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

No news of Mac yet, hopefully I will have an update for you next week.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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SAPPI Outing

Report by Elena Russell

SAPPI Outing Saturday 3rd February 2018

Late Friday afternoon we had the most massive storm; hail, lightening, thunder and torrential rain. I wondered about the North Coast and hoped the storm never got as far as SAPPI but of course it did. The silver lining was that Jenny had offered me a lift!! The road into SAPPI was horrific (at least I thought so) but Jenny was not daunted, but the muddy side road to the hide was questionable. Anyway the security man came to all of our rescue and agreed to open up another access road to the picnic site so as they say in the classics ‘all’s well that ends well’.

We had a good turnout, some members did not pitch maybe because of the weather and at 10:30 when we were having our picnic tea and doing the list it had started to drizzle. Our total count at tea was 84 and then Jenny and I picked up two more so 86 – not too shabby.

One of the reasons to go to SAPPI early in the year is the Brown-throated Weavers and they did not disappoint. Some really nice photos.

We didn’t get any rarities but then the waders were almost swimming, no sand banks due to the storm, but that’s birding.

Some of the specials; Scarlet-chested Sunbirds,  Great White Pelicans, Water Thick-knees (hidden away), Willow Warbler, Black-throated Wattle-eye, one lone Cape Shoveller and Black-crowned Night Herons.

Plus lots of Hottentot and Red-billed Teals, good views of Burchell’s Coucal and so many Moorhens we lost count.

SAPPI never disappoints and thanks for some great photos – John Bremner, David Swanepoel, Mike Stead and Mike Jackson.

Cheers

Elena Russell

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

You will notice that Mac movements are missing this week. Her transmitter has stopped transmitting but we will be searching at its last location this week as well as at her roost/nest site for any sign of her.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.  Mollie has been very active in this past week, exploring a large area.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Columbia Trip Report

Hello all,

Lisl van Deventer and I recently returned from a 24-day trip to Colombia and managed to get 701 (33 heard-only) species including 50 (4 heard-only) endemics and a further 87 (4 heard-only) near-endemics. Mostly very pleasant conditions and some absolutely superb cloud- and subtropical forest birding. It’s a fascinating country with friendly people and pretty good food too. Full trip report published on CloudBirders.com, https://www.cloudbirders.com/tripreport/show/20601/30733

Kind regards,

Pieter Vrey

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.  The recently released Cape Vulture- N208 has been recaptured and is back in rehabilitation. Although a strong flier and healthy bird when released, he was not progressing well in the wild and is receiving the necessary care and treatment.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Umbogavango Outing

Report by Elena Russell

Saturday 6th january 2018

The indemnity form had not been left at the office by security. Without it we were not going to gain access to Umbogavango, one of our favourite birding spots.

We were considering whether to toyi-toyi into the office and demand our rights but a few phone calls were made and all was sorted out amicably.

We had a very good crowd, old and new members and some visitors. We broke up into 3 groups, my thanks to Mike Roseblade and Adam Cruikshank for leading two of the groups.

Our bird count was eventually 103 not too shabby (click here to see the list) – some of the highlights: Common Buzzard, Malachite Kingfisher (adult and juvenile) Buff-spotted Flufftail, Natal Spurfowl, African Spoonbills, Purple-banded Sunbird, Mountain Wagtail, Black-throated Wattle-eye, Black Crake and lots more!

Thanks to Sandi du Preez for the attached bird list and thanks to John Bremner, Adam Cruickshank and Tyron Dall for some really great photos.

Cheers

Elena

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (Click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past 10 days.  Please also find the movements of a recently released rehabilitated Cape Vulture- N208. This individual has stayed quite close to his release site so far and is being closely monitored.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Sapphire Coast Bird Challenge

Hi All,

We are excited to have the Sapphire Coast Bird Challenge up and running.

The Sapphire Coast Bird Challenge is open to all residents and visitors to this part of the KwaZulu-Natal south coast. The aim of this challenge is to see who can see the most bird species in this region in 2018. The area stretches from the Mbokodweni river in the North, to the Mpambanyoni river in the South, about 9km inland, and 1.5km into the ocean.

Participating in this challenge will not only be lots of fun but will make a valuable contribution to conservation initiatives in the Sapphire Coast area.

A big thank you to Henk Nel and the BirdLasser team for making putting it together. What is really exciting is that everyone that participates between now and the end of March will go into a draw to win some amazing birding books compliments of Bargain Books SA.

Here is a link to the challenge:

https://www.birdlasser.com/challenges/sapphirecoast2018/overview

Please feel free to forward this email far and wide as possible. If anyone has any questions that can feel free to email me and I will answer them.

Thank You,

Adam Cruickshank

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here)  the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

Another early email since New Year also falls on a Monday this/next year.

Wishing you all the best for 2018 – hopefully we can make a concerted effort towards addressing the threats to these magnificent birds in the coming year!!

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

I am sending this mail early so that my computer can take a break on the 25th J.

Wishing you all a blessed Christmas and enjoyable festive season

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

Posted in Home, Posts | Tagged | Leave a comment

Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and a very adventurous N207, for the past week.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

Posted in Home, Posts | Tagged | Leave a comment

Latest Cape and Bearded Vulture tracks

Dear All

Please find attached (click here) the movements of our Bearded Vultures; Jeremia, Pharaoh, InkosiYeentaka, Lehlwa, Mac, and Mollie and our Cape Vultures; Bennie and N207, for the past week.

Kind regards

Sonja Krüger

http://www.projectvulture.org.za/

https://www.facebook.com/projectvulture
https://twitter.com/vultureproject

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