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Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

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Safarigirl
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Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Thu Nov 08, 2012 1:19 pm

Has anyone encountered any nesting bee-eater colonies at the riverbanks in Kruger NP?
If so, which bee-eater species, when/which months and where/locations?
Any other good places where bee-eaters are regularly seen in the park?

Bee-eaters are my favourite birds & I´m hoping to find a few on our next visit in July!
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Bush Baptist » Thu Nov 08, 2012 1:53 pm

:hmz: I have seen white fronted nesting at the Biyamiti causeway, but cannot remember the month. I was not much into birds then.

January to March, carmines can be seen throughout the park.

On a little loop near the Sweni hide, I have seen little bee eaters on more than one occastion.

Hope this helps.
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby bert » Thu Nov 08, 2012 2:13 pm

a month ago a colony of white-fronted visible from the bridge after entering Phabeni gate.
very close to the brigde in the river bank

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Highbury » Thu Nov 08, 2012 2:30 pm

If you visit the park in July , only white-fronted and little bee eaters can be seen , the other 3 species are summer migrants . Realistically in July your best chances are to view WF bee eaters at bridges where there are steep river banks . I have seen breeding activity at the low level bridge east of Biyamiti a few times , and the low level bridge near Shingwedzi .

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby o-dog » Thu Nov 08, 2012 2:36 pm

Hi there,

I have seen them in holes in riverbanks in June/July period. But this is just the White-fronted Bee-eaters.
The drive from Pafuri to Crook's Corner used to be the best place for them that I can remember. Also E of SHingwedzi on the road to Kaniedood Dam.
Letaba area could be good on the dirt road from the main road to Mingerhout Dam.
THen as BB mentions, try the area around Biyamiti. I remember seeing them along the river banks in that general area as well especially E of Biyamiti.

Bluecheecked, European and Carmine Beeeaters wont be around in July but Little should be around as well - Kaniedood Dam has been good for that species for me.

Cheers :thumbs_up:
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Thu Nov 08, 2012 2:51 pm

Thanks BB, bert, Highbury & o-dog for your fantastic help and advice!! :gflower:
I´ve noted all your suggested locations on my map now & hoping to find a few of those tiny beauties + a nesting White-fronted bee-eater colony on our trip in July then! :D

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Bart47 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 1:50 am

About a week ago when we were staying at Berg en Dal i found a great bee-eaterspot near the camp. If you go outside the camp and turn right to that gravelroad you can do two things: You can go on one of those two loops around the camp or go to that waterhole wich is a one way. At the other side of that waterhole i saw a male and a female littlebee-eater together. She was sitting on a twig while he was catching bee's and butterflies for her. He was very very busy. If you drive carefully towards them they won't go away. You can see and photograph them while they do their thing. Him feeding her goes very fast. He flies in with the bee, kills it with one stroke and gives it to her. All in a splitsecond so a fast DSLR will be handy. I used a big lens but with 400mm you can do the job. I shot about 32 gigs of these little guys, so fun and touching to see.
Also there were a lot of white fronted bee-eaters in that area. I saw one catching a big dragonfly at 5:30 in the morning.
I also saw lots and lots of European bee-eaters close to Byamiti, sometimes they were sitting on the gravelroad with dozens at once so i had to drive very carefully. Don't know if they do their matingritual in SA (i saw that in France last may)

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Wed Nov 14, 2012 6:36 pm

Thanks so much Bart47 for sharing your sightings and locations, I especially love that cute story of the male little bee-eater bringing presents for the female...you were so lucky to see this AND to get it on photo as well!!! :clap: :dance:

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby James of the Jungle » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:34 am

Do different species of bee eater ever interact or nest in the same area? Or is it just a case of them sharing hunting grounds?

I have a great photo of a Carmine and a European bee eater sharing a perching in December last year. Will see if I can find the photo.

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:50 am

James, it is unlikely that they will nest in the same holes, but they can often be seen hunting in the same area.

Safarigirl, I too have seen the nesting spot for White-fronted Bee-eaters near Phabeni gate. They are there pretty much all year long. The spot mentioned by someone else between Biyamithi and Croc Bridge next to the low level bridge ( 25° 19.005'S, 31° 44.645'E) used to be a good spot too, but not sure how it was affected after last year's damaging flood.

Malelane bridge is another good spot to look for White-fronted Bee-eaters.

There is another nesting colony just north of Lower Sabie heading up towards Skukuza just past the bridge over the Lubyelubye creek.

Little Bee-eaters are a bit more difficult to locate, but they can be seen anywhere throughout the park really. Malelane bridge is one such spot and so too the low water bridge over the Letaba just south of Shimuwini.

As explained by some others. European, Blue-cheeked and Southern Carmine Bee-eaters only visit our region in Summer.

Here are a few photos to wet your appetite with:

White-fronted Bee-eaters - Malelane bridge
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Rare form from Pafuri.
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Southern Carmine Bee-eater - H4-1
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European Bee-eater - H4-1
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Little Bee-eaters - Shimuwini
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Blue-cheeked Bee-eater - Sweni bird hide
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Last edited by Elsa on Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Pics resized.
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby cheetah2111 » Wed Jan 16, 2013 10:01 am

Incredible images WTM :clap: :clap: :clap:

This is off the alpha loop between H4-1 and H1-2 near Skuks :thumbs_up:

Image
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Ifubesi » Wed Jan 16, 2013 10:11 am

Unfortunately I don't have the exact co-ordinates but there is a spot next to the main tar road between Skukuza and Lower-Sabie where I ALWAYS find Southern Carmine Bee-eaters in December. The best description I can give of the spot is that there are some dead trees on the river's side of the road next to one of those small viewing loops. The Bee-eaters always perch-hunt from these dead trees. A couple of weeks ago there were also some White-fronted Bee-eaters joining the party.
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Sat Jan 19, 2013 8:28 pm

Thank you all for your helpful replies James of the Jungle, wildtuinman, cheetah2111 and ifubesi, I really appreciate it, such a great and helpful forum! :gflower:

@wildtuinman
Thanks for sharing those specific locations, I´ve written them all down & will try to locate the sites when we`re in Kruger in July! *can`t wait* And what lovely lovely pics of the different bee-eater species! Fantastic images! :clap: :clap: :clap:
The White-fronted bee-eater colony nesting site "close to Phabeni Gate" that is visible from the bridge, when coming from Phabeni Gate, is the colony on the left or right hand side of the road?

@cheetah2111
Thanks for sharing this great pic of the carmines! :D

@James of the Jungle
I´d really love to see that pic!

Looking forward to our trip in July very much now! :dance:
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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby James of the Jungle » Thu Jul 24, 2014 11:51 am

Hi all

We enjoyed a fantastic sighting of white fronted bee-eaters at Matjulu waterhole in the Berg-en-dal area late last year.

Such fun to watch these birds, they are like the clowns of the bushveld.

Image

Image

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Re: Nesting bee-eater colonies in Kruger NP?

Unread postby James of the Jungle » Fri Jul 25, 2014 11:54 am

James of the Jungle wrote:Do different species of bee eater ever interact or nest in the same area? Or is it just a case of them sharing hunting grounds?

I have a great photo of a Carmine and a European bee eater sharing a perching in December last year. Will see if I can find the photo.


Found it :thumbs_up:

Image


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