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Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Identify and index birds in Southern Africa

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Safarigirl
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Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Sun Dec 16, 2012 11:48 am

Which are the best locations/places/camps to find different species of Sunbirds in Kruger NP? Sightings?

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yoda
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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby yoda » Tue Dec 18, 2012 8:26 pm

Safarigirl wrote:Which are the best locations/places/camps to find different species of Sunbirds in Kruger NP? Sightings?


I have often seen Sunbirds in the camps in the winter months when the Aloes are in flower. Olifants had a number of different species if I remember correctly.

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby okie » Tue Dec 18, 2012 9:32 pm

They can be see all over Kruger . Last year , at Red Rocks ( Shingwedzi area ) , a White bellied S/bird came to drink nectar from flowers in a tree right next to us . Then a Marico S/bird chased him away , and sat there , singing away , for the next 5 or so minutes , before he also flew away . I have some pics , but they are not great .
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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby wildtuinman » Wed Dec 19, 2012 7:28 am

As mentioned by yoda, winter in general is the best time to see sunbirds in Kruger. Most camps have suitable flora for sunbirds but the best camps for them perhaps are Orpen camp (some scarce and interesting sunbirds have been recorded here so take good notice as you don't want to miss Plain-backed Sunbird), Olifants camp, Punda Maria camp, Berg-n-Dal and also Malelane gate. There was a Collared Sunbird nest next to the Skukuza shop this winter.

Crooks Corner have also produced some interesting records of scarce species so make sure you know your sunbirds well and try and get some good photos - Variable and Plain-backed Sunbirds are big records!
Last edited by wildtuinman on Thu Dec 20, 2012 6:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Leeukos » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:06 pm

I was at Orpen in Julie this year and saw a number of Sunbirds in the camp. I could only get photos of a Marico Sunbird and a White-bellied Sunbird.

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby okie » Wed Dec 19, 2012 7:22 pm

Marico sunbird seen at Red Rocks September 2011


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And White bellied S/Bird at the same place a few minutes earlier

Image
Tread softly , and let your departure not be spoiled by the damage of your arrival

Next :
3 - 6 Sept 2013 - Punda.
7 - 10 Sept 2013 -Shingwedzi .
11 - 13 Sept 2013 - Balule .
14 - 17 Sept 2013 - Satara .

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:48 pm

@yoda, okie, wildtuinman, Leeukos & okie again
Thank you so much for all your helpful replies! We`re going to Kruger NP in July, so hopefully we manage to find a few Aloes in flower with sunbirds! :D And thank you so much for those lovely lovely pics! Fantastic sightings & so beautiful, thanks for sharing! :gflower:

Safarigirl

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby adrianp » Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:51 am

If you want to photograph them, the secret is not to stalk or chase them around. Rather wait (even put a blanket over yourself to make a temporary hide) by an aloe/food source with the sun in the right place and stay put, and eventually they will visit. That way you can choose your flower background and lighting for a perfect shot.

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:21 pm

Thanks adrianp for all that great advice! :D

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby pnm » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:58 pm

Hi Safarigrl

All the advice is spot on. Adrianp has very good advice - someone gave it to me and I tried it and it works. I usually go at lunchtime when the camp is quiet and then sit on a rock, bench, tree stump or the ground. I sit dead still and soon the sunbirds ignore me. Anywhere there are aloes is a good place and I cannot think of one camp without aloes. I attach photos of some birds I have got in aloes at various camps.

These three aloes are in Skukuza. Turn right after the petrol station and follow the tar road towards the camping sites. I stood about a metre from them and the birds often didn't even seem to see me.

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Here is a Scarlet chested sunbird on the Skukuza aloe.

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And an Oriole arrived - the aloes are bird magnets.

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In Lower Sabie near the old entrance gate - Marico I think:

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Opposite the petrol station at Punda Maria:

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Another:

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As you can see - they are all over Kruger, one can get close ( I don't have a fancy camera) and anywhere there is an aloe one is sure to come along. I just marvel at how much they fight. There are thousands of blossoms but they all seem to want the same one. Must be territorial.

Keep well and (big please) post photos of the sunbirds you get on your trip.

Pete from a 35°C Paarl
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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby Safarigirl » Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:02 pm

Thanks Pete for such great advice, loved hearing about your Kruger stories & thanks for the detailed location tips, I´ll try to find those aloe flowers in Skukuza in July & hopefully can come back with a few sunbird pics as nice as yours! Your photos are stunning btw! Thanks for sharing! :D :gflower:

Safarigirl from a -22 degrees cold northern Sweden :roll:

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Re: Sunbirds in Kruger NP?

Unread postby pnm » Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:29 pm

Hi Safarigirl

I made a mistake: it is not turn left after the petrol station it is turn RIGHT. I am left-handed and have mixed up the two my whole life much to the annoyance of friends and family.

I hope to be in Kruger in June July, just not sure where and when yet. I usually book a year in advance but this year what could go wrong did so now I have to hope for cancellations.

Keep well
Pete - who would gladly exchange a few of your -22° for our boiling heat today.
Pete


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