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 Post subject: Tshokwane Picnic Spot
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 11:35 am 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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The birds (Glossy Starlings and Yellow-Billed Hornbills) together with a vervet monkey or two are a real pain at Tshokwane.

I was pondering the following as one sat above Jaco V's head launching nepal attachment 1 and another nearly grabbing my toasted bacon and egg from my hand, how well a tame Sparrowhawk or something of the same caliber would work at places like Tshokwane, Afsaal and Nkulu.

Just let the Sparrowhawk sit out there on the open on a rest.

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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 12:01 pm 
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Agree fully with you, and dont forget the (afrikaans name) tiptol and the grey lourie at Lower-Sabie. Even when you are sitting at the restaurant, they are exceptional agressive. :)

Bloody birds.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 2:01 pm 
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Thank heavens they have not started grabbing beers and Scotch on the rocks , so I'm OK.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 2:14 pm 
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mikev wrote:
Thank heavens they have not started grabbing beers and Scotch on the rocks , so I'm OK.


:lol: Make it two of us, although a vervet monkey once almost took off with my beer in Berg en Dal Camp :roll:


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 2:35 pm 
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Then they should station a leopard there to keep the monkey's away :twisted: ...atleast then i will see a leopard :roll:


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 2:59 pm 
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Agree there wildgardenman.

The birds are pretty much the same at Afsaal as well.

We even had some arrowmarked babblers begging for food while the hornbills and starlings just helped themselves.

DD. what can I say there bud. Maybe you should just get this thing off your chest and go to the zoo. When I last visited JHB zoo, they had a snow leopard there. What a beautiful creature.

I know that it would also be a very distant 20th place, but if you like I will zip the pic I have of a lazy horse and send it to you.

Maybe we should join forces and go on a mission.

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Leave KNP alone. Go build a hotel someplace else. Reserves are for the preservation of wildlife.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:05 pm 
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Pics will do me no good BH... You think if I showed a pic of a crested guinea fowl to WTM he would believe me???? :lol: :twisted:


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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:16 pm 
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Ok DD so are you planning on capturing the beast when you find it. Crested guinea fowl are one thing but dude, count me out on the leopard. These things do not groom their nails the way we do.

Need I remind you that one of the rules are that you are to stay in the car at all times. Another is that you are not permitted to remove flora or fauna from the park.

How else will you prove it without a picture? :twisted:

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Conservation is not an option.
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Leave KNP alone. Go build a hotel someplace else. Reserves are for the preservation of wildlife.

Think Pink. ..


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 Post subject: Tsokwane Picnic site
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:42 pm 
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Don't blame the animals, blame the visitors who started feeding them. If no-one EVER fed an animal at a picnic site, this wouldn't be a problem, now would it? We stopped for a quick smoke break at Afsaal in June, and there was a whole table op people (1 family) feeding the birds and trying that the birds would take food from their fingers, in clear view of the staff working at the restaurant. No-body told them not to, and I wasn't about to take on a family of 12. I rest my case.....

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:45 pm 
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I will wait for it to sleep on a branch then creep up on him ...then grab some hair from its tail and run like hell...will take somebody along to use as human shield... :twisted:


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 6:19 am 
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I will keep him busy by offering him some beer and biltong? :mrgreen:

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:02 am 
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Oh well, here I go again.

I love the birds, the songs, the colour. Breakfast wouldn't be the same without them.

You just have to remember to have finished the food before going back for your second coffee!

Richard


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:22 am 
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I made mention in my January/February 2006 trip report that when we visited Tshokwane on that trip that there was only one dove and none of the usual flocks of birds present at the picnic spot. Something one immediately notice.

I suspect that maybe the numbers of birds at the larger picnic spots fluctuate according to available food outside of them. Where I work we normally do not see Red-winged Starlings during the summer but during winter they come in to town to feed on trees with berries.

Will be interesting to get an indication of the number of birds at Tshokwane in the different months as it might show that when food is low the come for easy pickings.

Lower Sabie restaurant area always have a lot of birds.

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 Post subject: Re: Tsokwane Picnic site
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 10:59 am 
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Suzz wrote:
Don't blame the animals, blame the visitors who started feeding them. If no-one EVER fed an animal at a picnic site, this wouldn't be a problem, now would it?


I do not fully agree with this, Suzz. Yes some people do feed, but this is very very uncommon lately.

We've been to the Park over the past weekend. We stopped on a loop along the Olifants river on the dirt road between Letaba and Olifants and had coffee and rusks as we watched the sun come up. No sooner we had 4 Glossy Starlings right next to the car, waiting for scraps. I do not believe for one moment that these birds hang around there waiting to be fed.

They are just clever enough to see an easy opportunity for finding food.

Even if you did not feed a single bird at these picnic spots, they would still be clever enough to hang around there waiting for a scrap to fall or lie around.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 08, 2008 9:51 am 
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Once again the wild garden man is correct. No wonder he has more horns than a herd of Kudus. :lol:

I agree. The animals are very clever and we should not underestimate them. The birds in particular, seem to understand that the parks are a sanctuary and they are far more tame that the birds around our 'hood.

We have a few starlings around and I cannot even get a half-way decent photo of them as they are very skitterish. In the KNP, they just about sit on top of you. They just seem to sniff out the food and they know that we have food available.

I recall the very first time I saw a mocking chat was at Mlondozi dam. The bird was on the ground, jumping up at the front of a car to peck off the insects that had splattered on the front of the car. That is some intelligence for an animal with such a small brain.

I also see this behaviour with the waggies (wagtails) in our area. They do pretty much the same thing as the mocking chat, to get a meal.

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Conservation is not an option.
It's imperative.

Leave KNP alone. Go build a hotel someplace else. Reserves are for the preservation of wildlife.

Think Pink. ..


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