SA Rare Bird News Report - 31 October 2016

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Trevor Hardaker

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Oct 31, 2016, 2:00:13 PM10/31/16
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This is the Southern African Rare Bird News Report issued at 20h00 on Monday, 31 October 2016. Information has been gleaned from various websites, email groups as well as from individual observers who have passed on their sightings. This report cannot be taken as being totally comprehensive as it is based only on information made available at the time of writing. All bird sightings reported here are reported in good faith based on information as provided by the observers. Any inaccuracies are totally unintentional and the writer cannot be held liable for these. For those who may have only joined the group recently and are interested in finding out what has been seen in the past, previous reports can be viewed at http://groups.google.co.za/group/sa-rarebirdnews

 

 

Another interesting few days in terms of rarities have passed...

 

Before starting with the actual news, this is just to let everyone know that there will be no more reports of AFRICAN SACRED IBISES from the Kruger National Park in future as, based on information received from several birders who are based there or who spend lots of time there, these birds now seem to be resident in small numbers, so are no longer considered out of range there anymore.

 

On to the news and, starting in the Western Cape, a pelagic trip out of Simon's Town yesterday turned up a single SOUTHERN ROYAL ALBATROSS and other attractions included the popular RED-NECKED PHALAROPE which remained in place at Kliphoek Salt Pans in Velddrif until at least Saturday while the SQUACCO HERON at Dolphin Beach pans was also still around today. Elsewhere, an AFRICAN JACANA was discovered on the Strand Golf Course on Saturday afternoon at the dam in front of the clubhouse while no fewer than 6 RED-BACKED MANNIKINS were recorded in a garden in Denneoord in George earlier today. This latter record probably refers to escapees though, rather than genuine vagrants.

 

 

Red-necked Phalarope at Velddrif

© Trevor Hardaker

Red-necked Phalarope at Velddrif

© Margaret Hardaker

 

 

Squacco Heron at Dolphin Beach Pans

© Ian Rijsdijk

Squacco Heron at Dolphin Beach Pans

© Steve Williams

 

 

Squacco Heron at Dolphin Beach Pans

© Trevor Hardaker

Red-backed Mannikin in George

© Brendon White

 

 

In the Northern Cape, a EURASIAN CURLEW discovered at a dam on the New Holme Guest Farm near Hanover last week was a rather interesting find for the central Karoo.

 

Down in the Eastern Cape, the COMMON REDSHANK along the Chatty River in Port Elizabeth continued to entertain visitors through the weekend and was still present there earlier today.

 

 

Eurasian Curlew at New Holme Guest Farm

© PC Ferreira

Common Redshank along the Chatty River

© Albert McLean

 

 

Common Redshank along the Chatty River

© Jorrie Jordaan

Common Redshank along the Chatty River

© Neil Ebedes

 

 

Moving up the coast into Kwazulu Natal, the rather popular BLACK-TAILED GODWIT at the Sappi wetlands in Stangers showed well until late on Saturday, but then did a disappearing act on Sunday much to the disappointment of a number of twitchers. A pelagic trip out of Durban yesterday hit the jackpot producing 4 BARAU'S PETRELS, now taking the number of individuals recorded in the subregion up to 74 that I am aware of. Also of interest, a pair of AYRES' HAWK EAGLES was reported over Empangeni on Friday while, on Saturday, a WHITE-BROWED SPARROW WEAVER was located about 10km south-west of Tugela Ferry at -28.813,30.371. This morning, a LESSER JACANA discovered on the northern edge of Eshowe Dam was also of local interest.

 

 

Black-tailed Godwit at Sappi Stanger

© Cheryl King

Black-tailed Godwit at Sappi Stanger

© Stan Culley

 

 

Black-tailed Godwit at Sappi Stanger

© David Taylor

Black-tailed Godwit at Sappi Stanger

© Margie Taylor

 

 

Black-tailed Godwit at Sappi Stanger

© Decklan Jordaan

Black-tailed Godwit at Sappi Stanger

© Dave Rimmer

 

 

White-browed Sparrow-weaver near Tugela Ferry

© Colin Summersgill

Lesser Jacana at Eshowe Dam

© Warren Latham

 

 

Comparison of two of the 4 Barau’s Petrels on the Durban pelagic trip

© David Allan

 

 

Into Gauteng where the GREEN SANDPIPER was still present this morning in the marshy area to the east of Vlei bridge at Rietvlei Nature Reserve while the SOUTHERN WHITE-FACED OWL remained on at the Field and Study Centre in Sandton throughout the weekend and the BAR-TAILED GODWIT on the northern end of the Blesbokspruit also continued to entertain over the weekend.

 

Neighbouring Mpumalanga also had a few interesting records with the GREY PLOVER at Mkhombo Dam remaining in place until at least Friday, a SLATY EGRET found at Millstream farm just outside Dullstroom on Friday, a single GREAT WHITE PELICAN reported from the southern Timbavati Private Game Reserve on Saturday and 2 LESSER FLAMINGOS located at the lower level bridge at Lower Sabie in the Kruger National Park earlier today.

 

 

Green Sandpiper at Rietvlei Nature Reserve

© Richard du Toit

Grey Plover at Mkhombo Dam

© Klaus Schmid

 

 

In Limpopo Province, the 2 CASPIAN PLOVERS at Mooiplaas waterhole in the Kruger National Park were still on view yesterday while both AFRICAN SKIMMERS were still present at Albasini Dam on Friday as well.

 

Moving up into Zimbabwe, the pair of AFRICAN SKIMMERS reported previously at Nottingham Estate near Beitbridge have now bred and currently have chicks with them, a really good sign for this species away from its recent traditional strongholds.

 

Across in Botswana, some birding around Shakawe today produced a couple of interesting birds including a LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL and a SANDERLING.

 

And finally, in Namibia, a LIZARD BUZZARD was found along the Hoanib River on Friday, well out of range for this species while, also really unexpected, an AFRICAN GOLDEN ORIOLE was reported at the Protea Hotel in Walvis Bay yesterday. At least one RED-NECKED PHALAROPE was also still around along the Paaltjies Road in Walvis Bay yesterday.

 

 

African Skimmer at Albasini Dam

© Samson Mulaudzi

African Skimmer with chick at Nottingham Estate

© Wendy Knott

 

 

Lesser Black-backed Gull at Shakawe

© Niall Perrins

Sanderling at Shakawe

© Niall Perrins

 

 

Thank you to all observers who have contributed their records. Please continue to send through any reports of odd birds as well as continued updates on the presence of rarities already previously reported, no matter how mundane you think they may be. Even if you think someone else has probably sent in a report, rather send the report yourself as well. The only way to improve this service and to make it as useful as possible to everyone is if it can be as comprehensive as possible.

 

Kind regards

Trevor

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TREVOR HARDAKER

Cape Town, South Africa

 

 

Follow our local exploits in the field at:

http://hardakerwildlife.wordpress.com/

 

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www.hardaker.co.za

 

 

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