BIRDING FUN DAY – 12 to 13 Nov. 2021
Judy Kotze, Margaret Oosthuizen and I – were in team ‘Banded Martins’. We started at D’Urbanvale at 5h00 on the Friday afternoon. The weather was perfect and we really enjoyed birding along the Durbanville farm roads. Highlight was seeing three Banded Martins, on the Spes Bona Road – really close to our car. I have atlassed this pentad monthly for more than 10 years and never seen them in my ‘home pentad’. Blue Crane, numerous Red-capped larks and a Common Buzzard were all good to see.
Next we travelled to the Old Malmesbury Road, near Philadelphia. At the ‘Two Bridges’ we saw many Little and White-rumped Swifts, as well as a Spotted Eagle Owl. Travelling back to the N7, all the regular roadside birds were seen. The farmers were harvesting along the Vissershok Road, where we saw many Yellow-billed Kites, enjoying the bounty behind the harvesters.
Saturday morning – thanks to a special permit the teams were allowed into Kirstenbosch Gardens at 6h00. This is always a HIGHLIGHT. Forest and Brimstone Canaries, and many Swee Waxbill were seen. A Forest Buzzard and an African Goshawk added to our Raptor count. Sombre Greenbuls were very active and calling. Alas – NO Lemon Dove!
Next we went on to Strandfontein. Many Greater and Lesser Flamingo, ducks of all varieties and numerous Black-necked Grebe were seen. Water levels were not ideal for waders. Our route after this went on to Milnerton Lagoon Mouth, where numerous Common and Sandwich Terns were seen, amongst African Black Oystercatchers. Onward via Dolphin Beach, Melkbosstrand, Darling Hills Road and back to Durbanville via Malanshoogte Road. We were happy to see 127 species by 5h00pm.
Congratulations to Gerald Wingate and Deona Andrag (The Boston Barbets team) who won the day with 131 different species seen. A nice braai was held at Gert and Judy Kotze’s home, where we chatted at length about the great sightings and wonderful weather during the competition. A good time was had by us all.