(This trip report first appeared in the August 2013 newsletter of the Lakes Bird Club and is posted with the permission of the Editor. - Ed.)
Birding Outing Plettenberg Bay - 3 August 2013
Thirteen of us met at Old Nick's early on Saturday morning...what a beautiful morning, still, sunny with just a bit of a nip in the air, which was very surprising seeing as we had had an awful berg wind the previous day! Of the 13 attendees 6 were new members! Welcome to the newcomers. John Bircher lead the way first to the pond next to Old Nick's where Brown-hooded Kingfisher and White-throated Canary were some of the more interesting species spotted. We then drove on up to the Plett sewerage works which was heaving with ducks, Red-billed Teal, Cape Teal, Cape Shoveler to name a few. During our ambles around the various “ponds” we came across a Grey Sunbird which was a lifer for several of our members. We had a comfort break back at Old Nick's which turned into quite a birding treat for us, there was a beautiful bold Southern Boubou bouncing around in the bushes, totally unconcerned about all his admirers with “big eyes”. Then it was back into the cars and off to the wetland next to Penny Pinchers. Initially we thought that we had spotted an Osprey in the fir trees, which caused quite a stir but on closer examination this was not the case. However, nice sightings were had of Pin-tailed Whydah and Southern Pochard. The next stop was the estuary which was carpeted in the most glorious swathes of coloured succulents. The first sighting was a Cape Longclaw, then a Whimbrel and then to our absolute delight 7 Greater Flamingo's and an Osprey!! We spent some time perched on a grassy bank admiring the elegant Flamingos and a couple of Purple Herons before heading back to the cars for a much needed lunch and were rewarded with a fly past of a flock of Red-faced Mousebirds In total 74 birds were identified which is remarkable seeing that it was winter.