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Thursday, July 21, 2011


Cold this morning but sunny and busy with camera clubs.Some guys here from Edenvale camera club and a few people from Pretoria.Frost is thick on the ground.
Ambient temp: -1 degree Celsius.
Water temp : 2 degrees Celsius.
Birding very quite feel sorry for the camera guys as they wanted action. Best sighting for the morning was a
Burchell's Coucal seen in the tree next to hide number 2. A couple of glossy ibis and that is it really. The pans are clean of the seed now except for pan number 1 which is still pretty well choked up. There is no surface algae but i did notice quite a bit of algae on the floor of the pan outside hide number 4.Water levels are still very high which is great for the fish that where put in but not for the waders.
Bird List
Red knobbed coot,little grebe,grey headed gull, Egyptian goose,reed cormorant,blacksmith lapwing,olive thrush,cape reed warbler,black headed heron,black crowned night heron,green backed heron,giant kingfisher plus the doves.

Saturday, July 9, 2011


Absolutely insane coming out here this morning. The wind is bitterly cold and is blowing directly into the hides.
Temperature: 8 degrees Celsius [car temp] 1.5 degrees Celsius [thermometer temp] wind chill insane
Water temp : 2 degrees Celsius.
A little overcast but really uncomfortable.
A new lifer for rondebult today .Great Crested Grebe. African Goshawk
 Not a fantastic list today due to the weather.

Black Headed Heron                                                              Little Grebe
Blacksmith Lapwing                                                               White Faced Duck
Egyptian Goose                                                                      Red Knobbed Coot
Black Collared Barbet                                                                        Levaillant’s Cistacola
Great Crested Grebe [Rondebult lifer]                                   Feral Pigeon
Laughing Dove                                                                       Cape Turtle Dove
Sacred Ibis                                                                              Hadida Ibis
Fiscal Shrike                                                                            Cape Reed Warbler
White Breasted Cormorant                                                     Common Peacock
Southern Masked Weaver                                                       Cape Sparrow
African Goshawk [Rondebult Lifer]                                      Grey Headed Gull
Reed Cormorant                                                                     African Darter
Olive Thrush
I wanted to visit Marievale but that would have been crazy with today’s temperatures.
                                          Black collared barbet
Great Crested Grebe

                                                      Common Peacock
                                           Common Peacock Female
The peacocks where in full display today and where actually competeing for this female.I have never seen a female display and in fact did not know that they did in fact display.

11/06/2011 - - - 19/06/2011

11/06/2011- 19/06/2011
Arrived at 09.45 am this morning, felt lazy so slept in. Besides it was still cold when I arrived and there was frost on the ground in some places still. The trees have lost all there leaves and the frost has made everything that Highveld tan colour. The reeds have all died of for the winter. Work has been done in front of hide number three. The island has been cleaned so all the weeds and grass has been removed and some of the reeds have been cut back. The seeds on the dams have turned a dark rust colour. Dam number three has no more seed on it today and dam no one is completely covered with two lonely common moorhen the only birds in sight. Dam number two has a little seed still lying around on the surface of the water. The water levels are still very high.
Ambient temp: 8 degrees celcius 09.45am
Ambient temp: 21 degrees celcius 12.45 pm.
Water temp: 8 degrees celcius

African Darter                                                                         Grey Heron
Black Crowned Night Heron                                                   Little Bittern
Thick Billed weaver                                                                 Masked Weaver
Common Myna                                                                       Cape Turtle Dove
White Breasted Cormorant                                                      Reed Cormorant
Feral Pigeon                                                                            Laughing Dove
Ostrich                                                                                    Common Peacock
Red Knobbed Coot                                                                 Dabchick
Grey Headed Gull                                                                    Egyptian Goose
Lesser Swamp Warbler                                                           Yellow Billed Duck
White Faced Duck                                                                  Spur Winged Goose
African Stone Chat                                                                   Dark Capped Bulbul
Fiscal Shrike                                                                            Black Smith Lapwing
Speckled Pigeon                                                                      Masked Weaver
Common Moorhen                                                                  African Rail [Rondebult lifer]
Giant Kingfisher                                                                       Hamerkop [Rondebut lifer]
Wattled Lapwing [Rondebult lifer]                                           Three Banded Plover.

I bumped into Percy on the 17/06/2011. We had a great discussion about the fact that a lot of birds that had disappeared from Rondebult where back. He felt that it was because they had put in about 8000 fish about 18 months ago. A lot of work has been done and is reflected in the fact that I have seen darters, white breasted cormorant, grey heron, giant kingfisher and  reed cormorant. Hides 5, 6 and 7 are still closed to the public due to the fact they need to cleaned out and the areas around the hides need to be cleared so the pans can be seen. Hide number 5 has been burnt out so is not usable at all.
Most of the seed that was covering all the pans is gone except for hide number 1 which is completely covered and will be for some time to come. I noticed algae for the first time at hide number 3 so I will keep an eye on that and update if it gets any worse. Water levels are still very high so a lot of the waders like Avocet and black wing stilt are not around currently. I have noticed an increase in the number of camera clubs visiting Rondebult which is great. I have found that a lot of them are not birders at all but need to do bird photography to progress in the clubs. I am not sure what this means but it is great never the less and who knows maybe I can convert some of them into becoming birders.
                                         AFRICAN RAIL
                                          LESSER SWAMP WARBLER

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Arrived late this morning only got here at 12.00. Weather is not great but the sun is out after an awesome thunderstorm.
Ambient temp: 14 degress c
Water temp: 19 degrees c
The green seeds are still covering most of the dams but are changing to to a rust colour and i expect them to have disappeared soon.The reeds are also starting to change to that tan colour as the temps get colder.Birding is not great today and the best pics where of a cape wagtail and a reed cormorant.water levels are still extremely high.I used the normal entrance today and it is disgusting with rubbish dumped all over the place.

bird list
black winged kite,white rumped swift,cape turtle dove,white faced duck,wattled starling,sacred ibis,hadida ibis,grey headed gull,red knobbed coot,olive thrush,southern masked weaver,lesser swamp warbler,black headed heron,black crowned heron, swamphen,little bittern.feral pigeon,cape wagtail,white breasted cormorant,blacksmith lapwing,myna,peacock,yellow billed duck,thick billed weaver,spur winged goose,egyptian goose,common moorhen,speckled pigeon,fiscal shrike,laughing dove,dabchick.