Cheryl Faull and Eileen Chapman. Kirstenbosch Photograph by Graham Pringle
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Kirstenbosch Bird Walk 15 September 2015 by Graham Pringle

Anyone who looked out of their window at 7.00 am on Tuesday morning would have probably returned to bed!

However, two enthusiastic ladies, Cheryl Faull, who led the July walk at Kirstenbosch and Eileen Chapman, a visitor from Johannesburg, decided to brave the elements and turned up for the walk.

From the time we set off, shortly after 8.30am, the weather steadily improved and whilst we had very light drizzle or heavy mist every now and then, it was quite warm and there was absolutely no wind which is always good for birding.

The birding was actually really productive with our first good sighting being a Jackal Buzzard followed by a pair of Levaillant’s Cisticolas within the first 5 minutes. We then came across some Swee Waxbills, feeding just in front of us, and Common Waxbills behind them. Next was a pair of Little Rush Warblers flitting about within a couple of meters – not always easy to see. We got to see Swee Waxbills on at least two other occasions.

The African Goshawk appeared above, quite high and calling, we also got to see it another couple of times in the morning but always flying. Olive Thrushes were all over (strangely not calling) as were Cape Robin-Chats and in full song, of course Sombre Greenbuls also making themselves heard.

Other good sightings were Black Saw-Wing and all three species of Canary, Cape, Forest and Brimstone. Possibly the best sighting was of two Amethyst Sunbirds in the same tree at the beginning of the Protea Garden. Also a few Cape Sugarbirds.

All in all we had a most enjoyable morning (despite the gloomy conditions) and the species tally was 27 seen and 6 heard calling.

My thanks to the ladies for their company and a really pleasant walk.

Graham Pringle.


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