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CAPE ROCK-JUMPER & VERREAUX'S EAGLE AT AURORA

Posted on the 14th August 2009

(Margaret Maciver forwarded this report:) I spent the long weekend at Mountain Mist Nature Reserve, high on a mountain top above the town of Aurora, up the West Coast.
After 12 or 13 years of searching this area and hoping, I finally found one male Cape Rock-jumper! He was singing his heart out, for no more than five minutes, then he disappeared and I couldn't find him again the rest of the weekend.
The pair of Black Eagles who have a nest somewhere in this mountain range were very obvious all weekend, and on Sunday morning, I was treated to a display by one Eagle who turned four or five complete somersaults in the sky above me. Head over heels complete flips while I was frantically trying to get photos! I got one blurry one which shows him in the middle of his forward flip, in a vertical position, bill pointing at the ground! About 7 years ago I was fortunate enough to see the whole pendulum display by this pair and Lucia Rodrigues tells me this somersaulting is part of this display.

Plenty of Protea Canaries, Cape Rock-Thrushes, Cape Siskins, Cape Grassbirds, Grey-backed Cisticolas, and two Booted Eagles, one pale morph and one dark morph.

However, most of these faded into insignificance after seeing the Rock-jumper. Its always seemed such a good place for them, but my Sunday bird is the first actual record now for this reserve. The Cedarberg isn't too far away, perhaps he came from there!

 

Verreaux's Eagle
Cape Rock-Jumper

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