Posted on the 27th September 2013

I had one of the best stays ever at Mountain Mist Nature Reserve up the West Coast - perfect weather, flowers everywhere, waterfalls and streams and birds galore. Two new species - Greywinged Francolin (very very shy, had to stalk them forever to get just one photo) and the biggest surprise and thrill - a pair of Black Harriers not only arrived but decided to nest. I was able to sit on a rock and listen to the female calling, but as she is on the ground in bushy fynbos I couldn't see her. Then on Tuesday afternoon the calling was different, and I got there in time to see both birds fly up out of the fynbos, circle around, then one settled back onto the nest while the other (male) flew away over the hills. Who would have thought these magnificent birds would nest on a mountain top almost as high up as Table Mountain.

Once again a Protea Canary was on a nest on the balcony ledge of one of the guest cottages - I photographed one here two years ago - same bird? I don't know, but she's very calm and not bothered by people always looking at her, so I took my quick photo and left, and then found another one (her mate?) just outside the cottage - two photos attached!

Three dark-phased Booted Eagles, four Black Eagles and many Yellow-billed Kites and Jackal Buzzards seen daily. A Cape Siskin had built a nest inside a light fitting on another cottage balcony - photo attached.

All in all, one of the best weekends at Mountain Mist in the 14 years I have been visiting this paradise.

Margaret Maciver 









Protea Seedeater

















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