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 Post subject: Using a (human) Bird Guide...
Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 9:36 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Mon Dec 26, 2011 11:13 pm
Posts: 334
Location: Jo'Burg
As a serious birder, (and sometimes we really are far too serious!) it is easy to become fixated on doing everything yourself, with regard to finding birds. If it's not done the 'hard way', the sighting is somehow less real.

I'd fallen into this trap, and have only recently started to add audio IDs to my list, which has opened up a new world for me.

This week I broke with tradition and actually forked out money for the first time ever to a bird guide. R195 for three hours and I cannot imagine why I have never done this before. It's like walking past a tap to reach the river...!

This took place at Bonamanzi, a non-SANPark, so I won't go into detail, but suffice it to say that a good (or even fair) guide is definitely worth the investment. I'd walked the area the previous day, armed with Roberts and Sasol, and while I saw some lovely birds, no lifers appeared.

Next day got 3 definites, :cam: plus I was shown two more which I rejected as I could not make a certain ID before the bird flew off.

Interestingly, the guide relied far more on audio than visual alerts and as a result we walked far less and saw far more than I did in the same area just 24 hours before...

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 Post subject: Re: Using a (human) Bird Guide...
Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 4:37 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2008 10:18 am
Posts: 275
Hi Huntsman

I agree, it is great to find the birds yourself, but every guide I have used has been awesome. I have used three guides, all the time in areas where I had limited time to visit, so I have no regrets using them to see the birds like the green barbet, spotted ground thrush and Sekoki skops owl, and pipit. Rather than wasting money on the travel.

I also realised that they are great ambassadors to birding and conservation in their comunities :clap: so we should support them financially just for that reason!


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 Post subject: Re: Using a (human) Bird Guide...
Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 5:32 pm 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:38 pm
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Location: In the shadow of Table Mountain
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I agree. I have us returned from a trip with a guide and other birders. I wanted to do the trip myself but it didn't work out that way. Just as well, as I would not have ID'ed anywhere near the +/- 400 birds we saw on the trip.

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 Post subject: Re: Using a (human) Bird Guide...
Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 6:03 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Tue May 19, 2009 2:15 pm
Posts: 1896
Location: Johannesburg - too far from the closest Sanpark
We've used community bird guides a few times, always worth the money

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