SA Rare Bird News Report - 22 March 2021

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Trevor Hardaker

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Mar 22, 2021, 12:00:51 PM3/22/21
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S O U T H E R N   A F R I C A N   R A R E   B I R D   N E W S   R E P O R T

 

 

 

This is the Southern African Rare Bird News Report issued at 18h00 on Monday, 22 March 2021.

 

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.

 

None of the records included in this report have undergone any adjudication process with any of the subregion’s Rarities Committees, so inclusion in this report does not constitute any official confirmation of the particular record. Observers are still encouraged to make the necessary submissions accordingly.

 

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

 

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Let’s start off with a few scarcity reports first…

 

EUROPEAN HONEY BUZZARD:

 

·         One at Shelley Beach (KZN) this afternoon.

·         One at Thurlow (KZN) today.

·         One near Kwambonambi (KZN) at -28.566, 32.113 today.

·         One in Weltevredenpark in Johannesburg (Gauteng) yesterday.

·         One at Kgaswane Mountain Reserve near Rustenburg (North-west Province) yesterday.

·         Two in the Kgomo Kgomo area (North-west Province) yesterday.

·         One at Rhodes Memorial (Western Cape) on Saturday.

·         One inland of Ramsgate (KZN) on Thursday.

 

 

European Honey Buzzard near Ramsgate

© Tanya Wichmann

European Honey Buzzard at Kgaswane Mountain Reserve

© Bernard Tabane

 

 

European Honey Buzzard at Shelley Beach

© Lia Steen

European Honey Buzzard in Weltevredenpark

© Karin Mitton

 

 

On to the rest of the news and, starting in the Western Cape, the biggest excitement came when a RED-TAILED TROPICBIRD was found at Soetwater, near Kommetjie, on Saturday. As it turns out, it had actually already been seen in Kommetjie slightly earlier in the day, but that news was delayed in getting out unfortunately. From the time that the news broke, birders had literally an hour to get there before the bird headed off in a southerly direction and was not seen again. Twitchers continued to scour the coastline for the rest of the afternoon without any success and many were back out there yesterday morning looking only to have a message come through that what was almost certainly the same RED-TAILED TROPICBIRD was seen heading east past Rooiels just after midday yesterday, probably well over 50km away, as the Tropicbird flies, from where everyone was concentrating their search. Elsewhere, a BROWN SNAKE EAGLE was reported near Langebaanweg at -32.95, 18.113 yesterday, the GOLIATH HERON was still hanging out opposite Bokkomlaan in Velddrif yesterday and a COMMON CUCKOO was located at Roam Private Game Reserve, south of Beaufort West, on Saturday.

 

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Martine Barker

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Robert Cooper

 

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Cliff Dorse

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© John Graham

 

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Matthew Kiln

 

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Joel Radue

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Matt Prophet

 

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Michael McSweeney

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Vince Ward

 

 

John and Greta Graham enjoying the Red-tailed Tropicbird at Soetwater

© Callan Cohen

 

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird at Rooiels

© David Swanepoel

Common Cuckoo at Roam Private Game Reserve

© Don de Swardt

 

 

In the Eastern Cape, the mega SOOTY GULL continued to entertain twitchers at the Sundays River mouth today while, close by, there were also still several BLUE-CHEEKED BEE-EATERS hanging around in Colchester yesterday. Other interesting provincial records included a WHITE-BACKED VULTURE seen on Schotia Private Game Reserve, next to Addo National Park, yesterday, 2 TEMMINCK’S COURSERS found at Driekwartblou Guest House near Gariep Dam at -30.726, 25.644 on Friday and a male WHITE-WINGED WIDOWBIRD seen on the southern plains near Peasland waterhole in Addo National Park on Wednesday.

 

 

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Luke Michaelides

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Benno Klinck

 

 

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Lynette Rudman

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Elmarie Brits

 

 

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Matthew Axelrod

 

 

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Susan Schlebusch

Sooty Gull at the Sundays River mouth

© Tommie van Dyk

 

 

White-backed Vulture at Schotia Private Game Reserve

© Zane Hagermann

White-winged Widowbird in Addo National Park

© Alan Fogarty

 

 

Moving up the coast into Kwazulu Natal, there was lots of local excitement when a STRIPED CRAKE with 2 chicks was found at Kumahlala hide in Mkuze Game Reserve today while a DWARF BITTERN was also seen in the reserve at a small roadside pan near Nsumo Pan yesterday. Up at Pongola Nature Reserve, 2 DWARF BITTERNS were found at -27.349, 31.924 on Saturday and there was also a LESSER MOORHEN present there and another DWARF BITTERN was reported in Ndumo Game Reserve earlier today as well. Manyoni Private Game Reserve delivered 2 HOODED VULTURES on Thursday afternoon while the long weekend also saw reports of the continued presence of DARK CHANTING GOSHAWK, LESSER MOORHEN and AFRICAN CRAKE on the reserve. The massive popular BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER was still drawing onlookers at Mpempe Pan today and there were also 2 SOOTY FALCONS present in the gum trees at the firs traffic circle in Mbazwana on Saturday. Elsewhere, around 20 SOOTY TERNS were seen on pelagic trip out of Durban on Saturday while another SOOTY FALCON was found at Thurlow at -29.525, 30.164 yesterday as well.

 

 

Striped Crake at Mkuze Game Reserve

© Lyn van Eyssen

Striped Crake at Mkuze Game Reserve

© Darren van Eyssen

 

 

Buff-breasted Sandpiper at Mpempe Pan

© Bart Fokkens

Buff-breasted Sandpiper at Mpempe Pan

© Craig Widdows

 

 

African Crake at Manyoni Private Game Reserve

© Georg Jacobs

Lesser Moorhen at Manyoni Private Game Reserve

© Georg Jacobs

 

 

Hooded Vultures at Manyoni Private Game Reserve

© Wade Lee

Sooty Terns on Durban pelagic trip

© Pieter Verster

 

 

Sooty Falcon at Thurlow

© Hennie Jordaan

Sooty Falcon at Thurlow

© Decklan Jordaan

 

 

Into the Free State where an AFRICAN CRAKE with a chick was seen just outside Hennenman today at -27.971, 27.064 while other local records of interest included a LILAC-BREASTED ROLLER west of Bloemfontein at -29.091, 25.802 yesterday and a female RED-FOOTED FALCON south of Hoopstad at -27.876, 25.930 on Saturday.

 

Up in Limpopo, the 2 BLACK COUCALS were still at Zelati Safari Lodge this morning while the Kruger National Park held on to the STREAKY-BREASTED FLUFFTAIL still calling in the Punda Maria region this morning and also delivered a BROAD-TAILED WARBLER found near the no entry road just south and east of Babalala Picnic Site yesterday, probably only the second ever record for the Limpopo portion of the park.

 

And finally, in Mozambique, there was some excitement when 3 EURASIAN OYSTERCATCHERS were found in the Ponto Picanto Conservancy, a new conservancy being developed near Macaneta, yesterday while a single RED-FOOTED BOOBY was reported in Guinjata Bay earlier today.

 

 

Eurasian Oystercatchers at the Ponto Picanto Conservancy

© Gary Rowan

 

 

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

 

TREVOR HARDAKER

Cape Town, South Africa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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