Decided to go for a quick visit to WCNP over the weekend. Left CT in partly cloudy conditions, became more and more overcast as we got closer to the park. Arrived at about 10:00 at the gate, greeted by very friendly Johannes. About 5 km’s into the park, Asterix spotted a Spotted Eagle Owl - very well spotted if I might say so. (Phew, I’ve just used the word “spot” three times within eight words). We were just starting to enjoy the sighting (the owl was still fiddling around on his branch) when the rain started to come down quite heavily.
We headed for the Geelbek restaurant (car’s windows up, nothing to spot but rain and more rain) and had a nice cup of warm coffee. We decided to rather head for Langebaan and spent some time there, hoping that the rain would clear in the afternoon.
Our hopes were not in vain, the rain cleared and we re-entered the park in the early afternoon. Spent some time at both bird hides (not too many birds, nevertheless a great experience for us novice birders). Also had a few very interesting sightings on our way through the park (especially raptors, although all of them seems very common) – the park is also in a great condition vegetation wise. Left the park again at about 16:00 in the afternoon. What a great day spent out in nature.
Some of our sightings included:
(the not too common) Ostrich,
quite a few “steenbokkies”,
tons of tortoises.
Some interesting birds (at least to us novices):
Spotted Eagle Owl,
Pale Chanting Goshawk,
Black Shouldered Kite,
Lesser Kestrel (we think, otherwise Rock Kestrel),
Lesser Double-collared Sunbird,
Kelp Gull, etc.
Here are a few photos (quality not that great, resized considerably). Our camera also "somehow got set" to take photos at roughly 3.5 megapixles, instead of the usual maximum 6 megapixels. (Aaarrrgggg
, why is there even such a setting in the camera, who would ever want to take photos at less than the maximum setting? - still, no one to blame but myself).