Posted on the 18th November 2013

We have just completed another Flight for Birders bird identification and conservation course at the educational centre at Intaka Island, Century City. This despite the heavy flooding that had occurred in many parts of the Western Cape over the weekend. Some registered participants in the course could in fact not attend due to the weather and other factors.

This centre remains our favourite venue for the presentation of these courses. The facilities are fantastic and the close proximity to a wide selection of birds makes these courses far more practical and hands-on. The only drawback is that I am watching birds in the reeds outside the window most of the time – not to supportive of one's concentration. The practical outing on Sunday morning illustrated that breeding season is in full swing and we were fortunate to see both Black-crowned Night-Herons and Purple Herons with their young. A pair of Lesser Swamp Warblers was also busy building a nest in the reeds right outside one of the windows.

Some of the participants were very excited to find species such as Spotted Eagle-Owl, African Paradise-Flycatcher and African Purple Swamphens and a Peregrine Falcon also swept through the skies once. We decided that next time we'll do a count while doing the course as it would be very interesting to see how many species could be found over the duration of the course. Birding here is truly wonderful and it enhances the effective presentation of the course beautifully.

I was most impressed with the number of younger people that attended this course. Over the last few months we had seen a healthy increase in younger participants and one hopes that this tendency increases dramatically. Also interesting that the types of questions being asked by younger participants make for much harder work as conservation related issues dominate their discussions. As usual I used the PowerPoint talk on the the penguin nesting boxes being produced by the Dyer Island Conservation Trust as a case-study and members of the group spontaneously proposed that they put money together to sponsor one of these boxes. They also decided that the certificate that will be received for this should go to Intaka Island and we hope to deliver this soon. It is really encouraging that something like this can happen.

Several people could not attend the course over this period and some participants also stated that they know of friends who would like to take part. The next course at Intaka Island will be presented over the weekend of 15 and 16 February 2014 and registrations for this have opened. Other confirmed courses during the next few months will be at George on 23 and 24 January, Plettenberg Bay on 30 and 31 January, Hermanus on 21 and 22 February and in the Cape Agulhas region on 27 and 28 February. All registration can be done through Elaine at or 082 455 8402.

We include a few photographs below.

























Not too happy about this sighting


























No current posts. Be the first to post a comment