CWAC at Zandvlei Nature Reserve – 20 April 2019.

This is a working relationship with the City of Cape Town and the Cape Bird Club.

Alan Morris started the co-ordinated bird counts in December 1974 and they still continue at Zandvlei.

Firstly congratulations to Mark Arendse you told me he has worked for the City for 37 years today. Mark is the Environmental Education Manager at Zandvlei Nature Reserve. He previously worked in the Abattoirs in Maitland.
It rained over night and the odd shower was passing until 08h30 with the wind from the SW. The estuary mouth had been partially opened in case the ingress into the main waterbody was high. It was full moon on Thursday 18 April 2019 with a high tide inflow through the mouth. At 12h00 the bulldozer was closing the mouth of the estuary.

The water flow under the railway bridge was measured at 1 metre per 8 seconds, and the main waterbody appeared to be quite full at the edges.

An unusual sighting were the 36 Little Grebes amongst the Coots in the main water body. They were stationary for some time and we guessed they were full and resting after fishing. There appeared to be plenty of small fish which a flotilla of Cape Cormorants were herding with their fishing method. We noted a Cape Teal family with the parents herding 6 chicks across the northern bay.
We could see many White Storks and Great Pelicans circling in a thermal above the False Bay landfill site while counting along the lower section of the western shore at about 11h00, they were too far away to count them. The Giant Kingfishers are back and moving about the main waterbody looking for fish.

The northern Marina canals and the night heron roost area were not counted today.

Thank you to all who assisted with the count today on a rainy start to the morning clearing quickly by mid morning. Ross Devenish did the count and photos in the southern Marina canals. It was also 2 Oceans Marathon Day, so the Main Road was being pounded by many passing feet from all parts of the country and the world. The trains were also stop starting inbetween Steenberg and Lakeside stations, so who can guess what was causing these delays.


photographs by Gavin Lawson.

Gavin Lawson.



Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.