Tag Archives: hlatikulu

Kamberg & Hlatikulu Sightings – January 2017

Kamberg January 2017 – By Pam Kleiman

I enjoyed watching numerous White Storks around the district

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White Stork

The first of the Common Moorhen chicks seen on the small dam on Connington farm

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Common Moorhen

A little Dark-capped Yellow Warbler drying off after a bath

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Long-crested Eagle. I have yet to discover where these birds nest.

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Long-crested Eagle

IMG 7585 Great excitement as I drove out from the farm on the 10th. Sitting on the Escom wires were three Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters. This is a bird rarely seen in the KZN Midlands.

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Blue-cheaked Bee-eater

A Spotted Flycatcher I saw purely by chance as it darted out of dense foliage to catch an insect

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Spotted Flycatcher

A rather intense stare from a Cape Weaver

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Cape Weaver

IMG 7962 This month I started seeing Amur Falcons around the area. Amazing to think that these small birds migrate all the way from northern China every year

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Amur Falcon

IMG 7970 A male Southern Red Bishop showing off his beautiful Summer plumage

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Southern Red Bishop (male)

A few butterflies in the garden

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Small patches of the beautiful Hesperantha coccinea seen along the banks of a crystal clear stream.

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Hesperantha coccinea

Hlatikulu Conservancy January 2017 – By Pam Kleiman

On my rounds recording the birds for SABAP2 I so enjoy being able to take photos of what I see in order to share them on this forum. I do hope you enjoy rambling with me!

Bar-throated Apalis, a species I only ever see in one spot along the road from Mooi River to Hlatikulu

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Bar-throated Apalis

An unexpected find in a swampy area covered in tall grasses – Cuckoo Finch

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Cuckoo Finch

A little bird that has coined the nickname “Bumble-bee bird” for obvious reasons. A male Yellow-crowned Bishop

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Yellow-crowned Bishop (male)

I was rather surprised to find a pair of Ostriches along the road to the Crane sanctuary.

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Ostrich (male and female)

Western Osprey another favourite species seen occasionally on our dams in Summer

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Western Osprey

A short parade by a Red-necked Spurfowl on the road in front of my vehicle

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Red-necked Spurfowl

A small group of young Cape Longclaws were fluffed-up against the wind on a high, grassy slope

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Cape Longclaw

I don’t see too many mammals on my travels, but do see the occasional Dassie / Rock hyrax

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Dassie / Rock Hyrax

Brunsvigia natalensis – a solitary plant at the side of the road

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Brunsvigia natalensis

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Brunsvigia natalensis

A summer flowering aloe just past it’s prime

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Aloe

One of the few orchids I have seen this month. I think this is Satyrium longicauda

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Satyrium longicauda

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Satyrium longicauda

Vlei Orchid – ? Satyrium hallackii

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Vlei Orchid – ? Satyrium hallackii

Kamberg Wildlife Sightings – October 2016

Submissions by Pamela Kleiman of Connington Farm

KAMBERG

Although most days were still pretty chilly, it was good to get out and see how the veld had greened up, to see the Spring flowers starting and to see some of the migrant birds returning

A view looking down the D450 valley

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I enjoyed seeing the first of the Spring flowers. In low lying wet areas there were sheets of Tulbachia natalensis

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Tulbachia natalensis

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Tulbachia natalensis

Dierama sp.

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A small farm dam covered in pink water lilies

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I was focusing on a flight of different swallows one day when I noticed one that was flying very slowly. I zoomed in on it only to discover it was a Bearded Vulture flying very high over my cottage on Connington farm!

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Bearded Vulture

Some of the other special birds I managed to photograph were :-

The first pair of Pin-tailed Whydahs I had seen for the season

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Pin-tailed Whydah (male and female)

A Secretarybird very close to home

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Secretarybird

On a very cold and damp morning there were 4 young Southern Bald Ibis sitting in a tree

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Southern Bald Ibis (young)

 

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Southern Bald Ibis (young)

This African Harrier-hawk landed right next to the road as I drove past

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African Harrier-hawk (Gymnogene)

Two Red-necked Spurfowl came out of a swampy area – a first for me in KZN

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Red-necked Spurfowl

HLATIKULU

Not an awful lot to report for this area, but it was good to see the Banded Martin had returned and to see a couple of African Bald Ibis close to the side of the road in the Hlatikulu reserve.

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Banded Martin

Southern Bald Ibis – I was interested to see the comparison of the adults and the young birds (shown in the Kamberg report above)

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Southern Bald Ibis (adult)

 

 

Field mushrooms

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Ajuga ophrydis

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Kamberg Wildlife Sightings – August 2016

Pamela Kleiman – Connington Farm

A very quiet month as far as creatures and plants go, however, being an atlasser it was great to see the start of the migrant birds coming into the area.

Early in the month I was pleased to see quite a large group of Cape Vultures near the Connington road from Rosetta. They seemed to be feeding on something small hidden under some willow trees in a small gully where they were joined by a Yellow-billed Kite and some Pied Crows.

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Cape Vulture

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Cape Vultures

There have been a lot of young Jackal Buzzards around, some of them with very confusing colour variations

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Jackal Buzzard

Down my end of the valley I usually only see Southern Red Bishops so was nice to see some Yellow Bishops for a change – still in their Winter plumage

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Yellow Bishop

Cape Longclaw one of my favourites – just love their kitten-like mewing call

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Cape Longclaw

The first signs of Spring

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Halleria lucida

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Buddleja salvifolia with its gorgeous scent

Two early migrants, Yellow-billed Kite and White-throated Swallow

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Yellow-billed Kite

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White-throated Swallow

A first record for pentad 2915_2950 was a Squacco Heron

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Squacco Heron

Egyptian Geese and Common Moorhen in amongst the water lilies

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Egyptian Geese in the foreground and Common Moorhen in the background

The male Village Weavers are suddenly in full summer plumage and looking so dapper

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Village Weaver (male)

Hlatikulu Conservancy Area by Pamela Kleiman

The mountains were looking splendid in their covering of snow earlier in the month.

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A lucky close sighting of a pair of Oribi

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Oribi (female)

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The male Oribi silhouetted against the snowy ‘berg

A few early flowers after the fire season

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I unexpectedly found this pair of Denham’s Bustards on a recently burnt hill

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Denham’s Bustard

A pair of Ground Woodpeckers flew out of holes in the road cutting as I drove past

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Ground Woodpeckers

I have come across Sentinel Rock Thrush in a few places now

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Sentinel Rock Thrush (female)

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Sentinel Rock Thrush (male)

I often see Buff-streaked Chats I the area

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Buff-streaked Chat (male)

It’s not too often I get to see a Red-throated Wryneck out in the open, let alone get a reasonable photo of one!

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Red-throated Wryneck

Kamberg Wildlife Sightings – July 2016

Pamela Kleiman of Connington Farm

 

 

The month started off with freezing weather and frost to the top of the Oaks the first weekend. After some lovely rain a few weeks later – we recorded 74mms – it was time to burn the veld

 

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We were surprised when the farm dogs found a very young Duiker in the farm hedge. Fortunately it managed to escape and ran into the fields where we later saw a pair of Duiker – he trying to mate and she just not interested.

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The only other mammals seen on the farm were a striped Mouse – ? Xeric four-striped Grass Mouse ?

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the occasional Reedbuck and Jackal called most early evenings

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Not too many insects around, but I did manage to capture a single African White butterfly female.

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Early in the month I took a trip to the western area of the conservancy and was happy to discover the Cape Vulture roosting site near Kamberg.

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Some of the special birds I encountered:

Drakensberg Prinia,

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Drakensberg Prinia

Southern Black Tit that was very active in the garden this month.

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Southern Black Tit

A Fork-tailed Drongo that was trying to devour a mouse it had caught – a very unusual sighting.

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Fork-tailed Drongo

During the last week of the month the Yellow-billed Egrets started appearing.

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Yellow-billed Egret

Purple Heron eyeballing a cow

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Purple Heron

A Dark-capped Bulbul discovering the suet I had just put out in my new bird feeder – available from the RNR Conservancy stand at the Rosetta Market.

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Dark-capped Bulbul

As an Atlasser based on Connington Farm in the Kamberg Conservancy, I get around to various areas in the district. I discovered the Hlatikhulu Conservancy sign the other day so have decided to add my bit. Unfortunately I am not sure of the boundaries of this conservancy, so I have only incorporated sightings near and west of the sign.

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Some of the species I saw were Jackal Buzzard, Southern Red Bishop, a group of about 10 Pin-tailed Whydahs, a distant male Mocking Cliff-chat, Sentinel Rock-thrush,

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Male Sentinel Rock-thrush

Red-capped Lark,

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Red-capped Lark

Male Anteating Chat showing his white shoulder,

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Anteating Chat

2 Secretarybirds in 2 different areas, this is a photograph of a young Secretarybird with a damaged wing,

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Young Secretarybird with a damaged wing

Pied Kingfisher,

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Pied Kingfisher

African Sacred Ibis, Egyptian Goose, Black-headed Heron, African Stonechat, Pied Starling, Buff-streaked Chat, Cape Vulture and a Barn Owl that must have died an awful death.

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Barn Owl

It had just caught a few wing feathers on the barb of a barb-wired fence and was unable to free itself.

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Barn Owl caught in a fence

As it is midwinter and very dry I look forward to Spring and Summer to discover other gems in this area.