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Birding: KRUGER

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Yolandé Oelsen
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Yolandé Oelsen » Sat Feb 06, 2010 8:41 pm

And more African Fish Eagles
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Malachite Kingfishers
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Common Waxbill
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Yolandé Oelsen
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Yolandé Oelsen » Sat Feb 06, 2010 8:46 pm

Bateleur
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White Storks
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Comb Ducks
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Water Thick Knee
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Hamerkop
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Giant Kingfisher
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I will post some more photos on my flickr photostream...
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Yolandé Oelsen
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Yolandé Oelsen » Sat Feb 06, 2010 9:08 pm

Some more for here....

REd-backed Shrike
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Levaillant's Cuckoo
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Yellow-throated Longclaw
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Croaking Cisticola
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Amur Falcons
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Skopsie
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Skopsie » Sun Feb 07, 2010 9:55 pm

Yolande, the pics are great and brings back good memories.

I had word from Tony, our HR at Lower Sabie, that the total count for the BBW at Lower Sabie for the weekend was 272! :shock: This includes the Stiffnecks, Lizet and SO and the other people participating in the BBW.

I am curious to find out what happened at Sirheni. :hmz:
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Johan van Rensburg
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Johan van Rensburg » Mon Feb 08, 2010 6:19 am

We arrived back home safe 21:00 last night and crashed immediately... Wow! but I was tired! First thing this morning I had to see what happened this week on this thread during our (Sirheni Stiffies') absence... As I am on my why to work time is a bit tight to get into a report-back, but that I will start working mine on soonest.

Anycase... I am extremely pleased at seeing some LSSN-feedback. I'd love to know what that team's tally was though... kinda seems a bit hidden in the "total count" quoted by Skopsie... :twisted:
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Imax
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Imax » Tue Feb 09, 2010 1:42 pm

Well all I can say is that Sirheni was a blast. We had brilliant birding and even better company.

Our team consisting of Niall and SO, , Washington Irvin, Swampie, Moegaai , Daniel and I set off from Joburg at 3 am on Thursday morning. We had our fist stop in Magoebaskloof at a spot where Niall had previously found Cape Parrot. When we arrived there were none there, so I turned my attention to finding a long time bogey Cape Grassbird. Well this is the time that one parrot decided to make its appearance and where most of the team could tick it off, I had no such luck.

On to Tzaneen where we had arranged with Skopsie to go and view the Magpie Mannikins in his garden. Skopsie, thank you again for your hospitality, even though he had to leave for an important appointment he gave us the roam of the garden for as long as we wanted and provided refreshments.
We had no luck on the Mannikin in the garden so went down to the little vlei just below his house. Finally after finding many other nice ticks we found our quarry, but arriving back at his garden there it was on the feeding tray. A good lifer for most of us.
On to the Phalaborwa gate, with the aim of finding Dusky Lark near Letaba, but just inside the gate we found one on the road. With this I added Steppe Eagle as lifer.
A long trip up to Sirheni also added Purple Indigobird and Yellowbilles oxpeckers.

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Martial Eagle
After settling in we went down to the lapa to meet the other birders for the weekend. There were three groups totalling 41 birders, and it was nice to meet the other members of our group: Joel and Diane, Leonie2 and SO, Eugene123, JVR, his son, and a friend from St Anderton.
Birding the camp the following morning was a disappointment, but I think there were just too many people about. At least I got my final lifer for the weekend in Red-faced Cisticola.
From there we headed out to Punda, and had very good birding, with some great sightings of Pallid Harrier and Eurasian Golden Oriole.

Our team was in serious trouble when we got the afternoon drives time a bit mixed up with the morning drive and we were slightly late. But all was made up when one of us laggards spotted two Verreaux’s Eagle-owls in a tree in daylight. We had very nice supper at Shingwedzi, and set out for our night drive back to Sirheni.
Here I must also give thanks to Hennie our driver. The best guide I had so far met in the park. He really knows his stuff, and its thanks to him that some of the others found the location for the Thrush Nightingale and finally spotting it.

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Redheaded Weaver

On the two night drives we easily added more Verreaux’s Eagle-owls, Spotted eagle owls, Barn Owl, Bronzewinged courser, Kurrichane Buttonqail, , Fierynecked, Squaretailed and European Nightjars. Not to mention the numerous snakes and chameleons.
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Square-tailed Nightjar

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Fiery-necked Nightjar

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European Nightjar

Hennie said that he had only ever found Green-backed Cameroptera in the park, but the photos of the one found at the down chorus found him a Grey-backed Cameroptera.
The Purple Dusky Indigobird debate will also go on for a long time still, and Eugene, sorry for putting you on the spot with the European Roller, but I am glad that I did as the photos of the one we stopped for with the grasshopper was great.
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European Roller tossing a grasshopper

Thanks team for a fantastic weekend!

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Johan van Rensburg
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Johan van Rensburg » Tue Feb 09, 2010 10:02 pm

The Sirheni stiffnecks

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Large view

Amazing how a group of "strangers" can in minutes become fast friends! This is one !WOW! group of people!
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Johan van Rensburg
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Johan van Rensburg » Wed Feb 10, 2010 6:09 pm

While I am still busy getting my pix sorted, I thought some non-bird sightings may entertain you...

Chameleon, flap-neck
Celebrated for its colour-changing prowess, they remain a rare sighting in spite of being quite abundant. But at night this changes... the chameleon's camouflage fails it when a spotlight picks it out... it stands out like phosphorescence on a dark night
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Large view

African wildcat
It looks like your average pussy, but this is not a kitty to be sharing a suitcase with...
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Large view

Most snakes tend to be nocturnal. So, when the sun goes down, they come out to play... On a night drive it is common to see snakes. The variety is often stunning

Puff adder
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Young Rock python
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Common Egg-eater
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And last (and probably least :lol: )... insects! I just cannot go by an interesting gogga without having a good look.

Antlion
Most of us know the larwal stage of antlions that live in sandy areas and use funnel-shaped pits to trap their prey in... This is what they look like as adults. Superficially resembling dragonflies, they are the largest members of the lacewings, with wingspans up to 160 mm.

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Large view
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Johan van Rensburg
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby Johan van Rensburg » Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:01 pm

I guess the BBW night drives will always be the major highlight of many things that make the BBWs so attractive...

Here are some more night drive shots...

Verreaux’s eagle-owl.. It has been four BBW-seasons since my last... (sounds a bit like a confession, hey :lol: ) On this trip we saw no less than 5!
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Large view

Fiery-necked nightjar sitting in an ideal position to show off its features.
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Bronze-winged courser
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Spotted eagle-owl
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Large view
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dianne
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Re: Birding sensus weekends in Kruger

Unread postby dianne » Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:50 am

I promised JVR I would post something after the trip - sorry it's taken so long! In the end, I only just made it to the weekend - albeit a day late - as I had an unexpected business trip to London, which interferred a little with our plans. I sent JoelR off with Leonie2 without me, and followed a day later (after getting lost in Polokwane in the dark - all the roadworks lol - and finding myself a rather dodgy BnB in Louis Trichardt at about 11 o'clock at night). Enjoyed the weekend - although I was pretty exhausted and shamed myself as a birder by spending a lot of time dozing :redface: This meant I didn't do too much spotting or chatting - but I did do spotlight duty on the game drive vehicles - so that's something at least.

SANParks, HR, JVR and other forumites- thanks for all the organisation that went into the weekend - and my mini-team - you put up with me in my useless state :clap: - I'll do better next time :tongue:
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mtsuru
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Bird watching in September 2010

Unread postby mtsuru » Fri Aug 06, 2010 1:56 am

Hello,
I will be visiting Kruger Ntl Park 9/12-9/15. Is it worth driving up to the Northern section this time of year? I am interested in seeing colorful birds ;>
I was hoping to stay in Skukuza and Satara but not sure if I want to drive all the way up to Pafuri (probably not enough time).

Thanks! :D

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Fatcat
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Re: Bird watching in September 2010

Unread postby Fatcat » Fri Aug 06, 2010 5:27 am

Hi Mtsuru, the Northern migrants should start arriving by then eg. bee-eater family - even if they're late, the Parfuri area is so beautiful its well worth the drive (once you get past the Mopani belt :) Time would obviously be a factor from either of those camps. We stayed at Shingwedzi and it took us nearly a whole day there & back. We did breakfast at the picnic spot at Parfuri (stunning!!!), which took some time though. Enjoy anyway :whistle: :whistle:
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mtsuru
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Re: Bird watching in September 2010

Unread postby mtsuru » Fri Aug 06, 2010 5:42 am

Hi Fatcat,

Thanks for your quick response!! I would love to see a bee eater! They look very beautiful. It's great to know that it is possible to do a day trip to Parfuri from Shingwedzi. I still need to see the Big 5 so will work on figuring the camps out.

:)

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Josh of the Bushveld
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Re: Bird watching in September 2010

Unread postby Josh of the Bushveld » Fri Aug 06, 2010 7:20 am

mtsuru, welcome to the forums. There are at least 2 species of Bee-eater that don't migrate (Little and White-fronted), so even if the migrants haven't arrived there's still a pretty good chance you'll see one
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mtsuru
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Re: Bird watching in September 2010

Unread postby mtsuru » Fri Aug 06, 2010 7:36 am

Hi joshilewis,

Great, thanks!!!


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