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Sunday, November 27, 2011

26/11/2011 Big Birding Day

It is our national big birding day and i started at Rondebult this morning at five thirty,good light going to be another scorcher today. Surprised i am the only birder here but then we are limited to a 50 km radius of our starting point and have to do three pentads still today.looks like i have chosen pentads that are not popular which is great. My 2 hour count at Rondebult produced 67 species inclusive of the shy and reclusive African Rail.Water levels are pretty low and i think this might have to do with the photographic clubs wanting good photo ops of waders.Might be wrong but that is the impression i get. the dam in front of hide number one is filling up and i see a lot of work has been done. A lot of the reeds have been removed and the banks have been built up. In front of hide number two i saw hundreds of fingerlings so the fish that where put in have breed and seems to be successful. Here are a few pics from today.
The ever present white throated swallows once again producing good photos.

                                                                      Little Grebe
                                                                  Black headed heron
                                                                       Glossy Ibis

Monday, November 14, 2011

12/11/2001 # 2

After having got the three banded plovers done and dusted eventually got around to the rest of the morning.Was not a bad visit just very hot. Arrived at 5.30 am and it was already 26 degrees c. Played golf later in the day and the temp got up to 41 degrees c so rather uncomfortable. Lots of little bittern flying around as well as black crowned night heron,squacco heron,dabchick,various warblers,yellow billed duck,red billed teal,spur winged goose and the ever present menace the Egyptian geese. They are getting out of hand at hide number two,there chicks are really getting big with there wings developing really quickly now. Of the original 8 there are only 6 left.
The male is very aggressive and chases any other duck that is  landing away.
                                                          Juvenile Egyptian Goose.
 A few more from this morning.  White throated swallow
                                                        Red Billed Teals
Juvenile Red Knobbed Coot
                                                             wood sandpiper
                                                           little reed warbler

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Rondebult this morning was hot,arrived at 5.30 am and it was already 26 degrees.Middle of a heatwave here and expect temps to rise into the mid 30's today. Got a whole sequence of three banded plovers doing the bone dance.
The male arrived and started doing his dance, he bobbed up and down while the female kept moving away. she eventually succumbed and went down on bended knee accepting his advances.
Foreplay consisted of the male doing a dance on the back of the female. He actually drummed his legs and claws on her back and in this way stimulating her. It did make a bit of a noise i was about 4 metres away from them and i could hear the drumming noise.

after about three minutes of this dance they settled down.
she then lifted her tail for him.

not more than fifteen seconds and it was over

he flew of and left her to sun herself in the afterglow of a good copulation.