Kirstenbosch Walk Feb 2016
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Kirstenbosch Bird Walk 17 Feb 2016 by Otto Schmidt

This is a working relationship with the Cape Bird Club and Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens with bird walks by the Cape Bird Club members.

An enthusiastic group of just over 20 persons including a visiting UK birder set off shortly after 8am on a lovely morning. A slight breeze kept conditions pleasant for the first hour, with the temperature increasing steadily thereafter.

We headed up the gardens, with our first call that of the Sombre Greenbul, but this species did not show itself until much later. A male Southern Double-collared Sunbird was much more obliging, and a pair of Levaillant’s Cisticola was a surprise. Common Waxbill was added as we moved on and the list slowly grew. Our first overhead raptor was a Forest Buzzard, with a Common (Steppe) Buzzard seen a little later. On the ground, Cape Robin-Chat, Olive Thrush, Cape Spurfowl, Cape White-eye and others were seen before we detoured slightly to find the pair of Spotted Eagle-Owls in one of the wild almond trees near the stream.

In the Protea Garden, Cape Sugarbirds were plentiful and very approachable, and Orange-breasted Sunbirds, a single female Malachite Sunbird and African Dusky Flycatcher were also about. A dark-phase Booted Eagle overhead was a nice raptor to add. A few Alpine Swifts were seen flying over, and a pair of Pied Crows was spotted amongst them.

We enjoyed the views from the Boomslang, but the highlight bird of the morning was undoubtedly the very confiding Lemon Dove pottering about just off the path in the forest below the Boomslang.

With a few people peeling off earlier, the rest of the group returned to the main gate at about 10h30 after a most enjoyable outing. The final species tally was 26 seen, two heard only (one of these amazingly was the Karoo Prinia, heard in several places but not showing itself) and two other species only glimpsed very briefly by a couple of people.

Click on any of the images below to see more details.


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