BIRDLIFE OVERBERG EVENTS AND VAGRANT BIRDS SEEN DURING THE FIRST QUARTER OF 2018
Posted on the 27th March 2018
IMPORTANT VAGRANT SIGHTINGS, EVENTS AND OUTINGS DURING THE FIRST THREE MONTHS OF 2018
At the beginning of the year it was decided to maintain regular updates of rare birds seen in our region, together with a brief overview of events, outings and the like. Kindly forward any such news to us in view of updated information regularly.
• Western Yellow Wagtail at Betty’s Bay beach on 2 January
• Pectoral Sandpiper near the Rooisand Nature Reserve hide on 5 January
• White Wagtail at the Rooisand Nature Reserve on 9 January. Other birds reported from the site included Great White Egret, Sand Martin and Western Yellow Wagtail.
• Garden Warbler – mist-netted at Elgin by Jessie Walton on 9 January
• Morning outing to De Mond Nature Reserve led by Chris Cheetham on 11 January
• Monthly talk for the Somerset West Bird Club by Anton Odendal: “The African Black Oystercatcher as the bird of the year and other stories”. 11 January
• Monthly coastal cleanup at the Hoek van de Berg Nature Reserve on 13 January
• European Honey Buzzard photographed at Napier by Steve Peck
• Carin Malan gave fascinating insight into birding in the Kgalagadi and southern Namibia at out monthly talk on 22 January
• An immature Common Cuckoo was seen and photographed along the walkways close to the Windsor Hotel in Hermanus on 28 January
• A non-breeding Franklin’s Gull was seen and photographed at Stony Point, Betty’s Bay on 2 February
• Anton had an interview with John Kieser of Plastics SA in Cape Town on 7 February where collaboration was consolidated. A joint media release in this regard will follow at some point.
• Flight for Birders course was presented in Pinelands, Cape Town on 9 and 10 February – the conservation section of the course focused mostly on our campaigns on our coastline and estuaries and was received with great enthusiasm by participants.
Coastal cleanup at Hoek van de Berg NR
Hard, but satisfying work
• Some members participated in the regular summer CWAC count along the shores of the Botvlei on Saturday 10 February.
• A male Red-backed Shrike was found this morning along the Paardenberg Road, just off the Swartrivier Road, near Botriver on 5 February.
• Approval has been received for a funding application which BirdLife South Africa has been facilitating for the Nuwejaars Wetland Special Management Area (NWSMA). The project, being funded by the WWF-SA Elizabeth Harding Bequest for bird conservation, will be focused on bird habitat rehabilitation initiatives within the Agulhas Plain-Heuningnes Estuary IBA. The NWSMA is a biodiversity stewardship initiative involving a number of private landowners in the Agulhas Plain IBA.
• Anton met with Tarron Dry of the Overstrand Municipality’s environmental section to discuss several issues related to BLO’s conservation projects on our coastline and estuaries on Friday 16 February.
• Carin and Anton attended the Western Cape Birding Forum meeting at the Helderberg Nature Reserve on Saturday 17 February. They formally resigned as Chairman and Secretary of the Forum and negotiations regarding replacements are currently underway.
• Ten members participated in the monthly BirdLife Overberg coastal cleanup at Kleinriver estuary mouth in collaboration with Coastal Cleanup Conservation Trust. 11 children from the Recycle Swop Shop and 13 learners from Hermanus High. In total 35 volunteers in participated.
• BirdLife Overberg Annual General Meeting on 10 February, during which Anton gave a PowerPoint presentation on progress with our conservation campaign on our coastline and estuaries. The first monthly Oystercatcher Hero award was given to Narina Howard of the Recycle Swop Shop.
Cape Rock-Thrush at Rooiels -Jenny Parsons
Moulting penguin at Stony Point - Jenny Parsons
• Elegant Tern seen and photographed at Gansbaai Harbour on 22 February.
• Several teams of members are still doing bird counts throughout the region as part the quarterly Bird Bird Count. Results and comparisons will be released early in April.
• Chris Cheetham got a whopping 64 lifers on a tour of Mozambique and Zimbabwe!
• We again presented a Flight for Birders course at the Fernkloof Nature Reserve on 9 & 10 March – there were several new sections to the course and we are looking forward to quite a few participants joining our club’s activities.
• Paula and Chris got several CAPE ROCK-JUMPERS along Rotary Drive on the morning of 11 March. Also interesting that CAPE CLAPPER LARKS were found up there.
• A MARABOU STORK was reported on 12 March at the Karwyderskraal Landfill Site on the Karwyderskraal road.
• The Oystercatcher Hero of the month award was given to THE ONRUS LITTER LADIES at our monthly meeting in March. Colleen Ratz accepted the award on behalf of the ladies and BirdLife Overberg donated a small financial contribution to their cause.
• Otto Schmidt gave a stunning presentation on birding in Namibia at our monthly meeting on 12 March. The talk was very well attended and our appreciation goes to Robin and Di for stunning catering. We thank Carin Malan for chairing the meeting and Carol and Hoogie for accommodation our guest speaker and his spouse.
• WEEKDAY MORNING OUTING: Thursday 15 March: Morning outing to Witkrans, the Danger Point peninsula and Stanford.
• Saturday 17 March: Monthly BLO coastal cleanup along the second section of the Hoek van de Berg Nature Reserve
• WEEKEND MORNING OUTING: Saturday 24 March - Morning outing to Rooiels, Stony Point and Harold Porter Botanical Gardens. Steve Peck got his Blue-mantled Crested-Flycatcher! Report on the website.
The conservation campaign on our coastlines and estuaries is going strong