Boston Wildlife Sightings for March

Enquiries are rolling in as to the progress of “Bossie” Boston, the Grey Crowned Crane chick, lost but rescued last month, and then sent to Hlatikulu Crane Centre, where he/she is being reared and is growing by leaps and bounds.  Taking a bath – photo by Tanya Smith. Read more about Bossie and the Cranes of Boston here:


Pete and Frances Nel of Four Gates:
March 1st – three Southern Ground Hornbills in gum trees near house; subsequently heard virtually every morning at the same locality

CREW visit to Glandrishokvlei (Myrtle Grove farm) on 15 March 2012
Rather late in the season for most vlei wildflowers, but some specials were found: Erica alopecurus Alectra thyrsoidea, Crassula vaginata, Jamesbrittenia breviflora

Barbara and David Clulow of The Willows:
One Crowned Crane chick sadly lost, but the other is doing well, growing nicely; other parent nearby as sentry.

March 12 – Large Grey Mongoose crossed the Dargle road ahead of car, 150 metres from R617
Green Wood-Hoopoes active daily; Long Crested Eagle several times:
White Storks seen often riding the thermals easily and gracefully.

Numerous wildflowers on the edges of the Norwood forest road – Pavonia columella, Clematis brachiata, Pavetta gracilifolia Otholobium caffrum,  Peucedanum capense (Wild parsley), Rhyncosia, Geranium flanaganii.  Hesperantha baurii flowering commonly at present; seen both at Glandrishok on 15 March and also at dam on Mount Shannon on 27 Feb
Crab in stream on Glandrishok (Myrtle Grove)

Bev and Bruce Astrup of Highland Glen:  Common Reedbuck grazing around house at night, mainly in vegetable garden !!!

Trevor and Cheryl Scheepers of Lapa Lapa: The raptors continue to decimate the Helmeted Guinea Fowl chicks; from 7 now down to 3 around the yard; that is when not picking off the doves.

Birding Outing near  Impendle on 15 March:
On a post near Brentwood House – a juvenile Cape Longclaw. Dusky Indigobird in Impendle Nature Reserve, and a Red-necked Spurfowl.

Neil and Gail Baxter of Mosgate: Previously, a pair of Grey Crowned Cranes with a chick; but on 22 March two chicks with adult birds at pumphouse on Elands river; chicks not yet ready to fly; 15 juvenile Spur-winged Geese.

John and Joan Stewart of Seven Streams: A Serval, which leaped up at the side of the vehicle, on “Trelyon” about 22nd March

Derek Hurlstone-Jones of The Rockeries: Eagle Owl, perched on Boston Country Club signpost at 6 pm on 28th March 2012.  Green House snake

Philip and Christeen Grant of Sitamani:

Dennis Field saw a small grey mongoose near the “Sitamani” garage in the evening of 23 March
Fly Agaric Amanita muscaria ‘fairy tale red spotted’ mushrooms and Collared Earth-star Geastrum triplex fungi out at the moment

Helichrysum cooperi is the flower of March, in abundance, Some of the other flowers out Alectra sessiliflora, Plectranthus calycina, Lobelia erinus, Stachys aethiopica, Cyanotis speciosa, Alectra sessifolia, Plectranthus calycina.

Sightings of Common Reedbuck and Duiker on several occasions

Spotted Eagle Owl hooting, one pair of Speckled Mousebirds, Cape Glossy Starlings are a few of the less common birds for “Sitamani” around at the moment

Crystelle Wilson of Gramarye:
In 2011 the conservation status of Secretarybirds has been uplifted to Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, another indication of the rapid deterioration of our grassland biomes. The atlas project has a special watch for these majestic birds on its website where people are asked to report any sightings of these majestic birds:

Secretarybirds, on the road to Impendle Nature Reserve

The SABAP2 list for Elandshoek pentad 2935_3000: Pin-tailed Whydah, Village Weaver, Cape Robin-Chat, Cape Turtle Dove, Red-eyed Dove, Hadeda Ibis, Dark-capped Bulbul, Black Saw-wing, Black-headed Heron, Cape Wagtail, Southern Greyheaded Sparrow, Amethyst Sunbird, Southern Red Bishop, Fan-tailed Widowbird, Grey Crowned Crane, Common Waxbill, African Stonechat, Spur-winged Goose, Dark-capped Yellow Warbler, Barn Swallow, Cape Crow, Cattle Egret, Pied Kingfisher, Le Vaillant’s Cisticola, Bokmakierie, Common Fiscal, Black Sparrowhawk, Fork-tailed Drongo, Greater Striped-Swallow, Red-necked Spurfowl, Egyptian Goose, Drakensberg Prinia, Southern Boubou, Reed Cormorant, White-breasted Cormorant, African Sacred Ibis, Cape Longclaw, Yellow-billed Duck, African Quailfinch, Cape Glossy Starling, African Paradise-Flycatcher, Cape Sparrow, Brown-hooded Kingfisher, Giant Kingfisher, Red-throated Wryneck, Red-chested Flufftail, African Rail, Orange-breasted Waxbill, African Black Duck, Speckled Mousebird, White Stork, African Pipit, Little Rush-Warbler, Red-billed Quelea, Helmeted Guineafowl, White-throated Swallow, Brown-throated Martin, Yellow-fronted Canary, Amur Falcon, Hamerkop, Steppe Buzzard, Sombre Greenbul, Tambourine Dove, Speckled Pigeon, Jackal Buzzard, Orange-breasted Bush-Shrike, Pale-crowned Cisticola, African Dusky Flycatcher, African Olive-Pigeon, Terrestrial Brownbul, Bar-throated Apalis, Cape Batis, Black-backed Puffback, Southern Double-collared Sunbird, Knysna Turaco, Lemon Dove, African Hoopoe, Red-winged Starling, Yellow Bishop, Black-headed Oriole, African Harrier-Hawk, Red-collared Widowbird, Malachite Sunbird, Blacksmith Lapwing, Black-winged Lapwing.

This summary was compiled by David Clulow, a member of the Lions Club of Pietermaritzburg (Host),  and has been approved by that Club as an official conservation project of the Club.

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