I am back at last and yet again I apologise for the inordinately long delays between these ramblings.
But I do have good news !! This blog is about birding is it not ? So now we can actually show you that we actually do bird-watch !!
I need to start by thanking Roger MacDonald for his permission to use these fantastic images and to also say how amazing the quality of his pictures is. Roger – thanks a tonne.
These images all come from the trip we did to Catapu in November of 2014. When I arrived there, with JNV, I was delighted to find a bunch of the other visitors were friends of mine and all avid birders. This situation works to everyone’s benefit because in forest birding the more eyes the better.
Left to right – JNV, Roger, CVC and IR. Alison is missing and I am behind the lens !
We went birding in the forests of Catapu and Coutada 12.
And now – at last – some birds.
As the name suggests a common little bird but gorgeous just the same.
The common Guineafowl of forests. On Catapu they are amazingly tame and confident.
Another common bird but very difficult to photograph.
The next one is also quite common along the eastern littoral and the major rivers but it too is notoriously difficult to capture with a camera.
In years past it was known as the Yellow-spotted Nicator and the jury is still out on whether it is closer to the shrikes or the bulbuls.
Yet again the next two are also not uncommon but getting pics of this quality in dense forest is astounding.
I just love the glint in her eye as she watches her mate displaying below.
This next one, a Batis, used to be called the Mocambique Batis. It is normally very high on the list that birders dream of seeing.
You need to be lucky, skilled and patient to capture an image like that! I wonder why its other name is Yellowbill ?
Can you hear him saying “And just who the hell are you ?”
Next up is probably one if the most difficult birds to photograph that there is. Well done Roger.
Getting that iridescence right is no mean feat.
One of the most spectacular sights is the breeding display of the Mangrove Kingfisher. Normally a bird of coastal Mangroves (funny that) it moves to inland forests to breed.
Simply coming into the bird bath at the lodge was this enigmatic and very difficult to see fellow
Yet another Batis of the eastern littoral that is much sought after by birders.
This next chap behaved way out of character by leaving the dense undergrowth and hopping out onto the road !
The rapid and energetic behaviour of this next one makes it another very difficult one to get.
Well I guess it would be very remiss of me to leave out a snap of something dear to my heart and frequently a subject of many past ramblings on this site.
That was taken in the tree behind lodge 25 I think ? Stunning !
Well last but not least we have some extremely special images of significant ornithological importance !
This bee-eater has been controversial for some decade with some experts denying its existence in the southern African region. That is south of the Cunene and Zambezi rivers. These photographs finally prove they are here AND breeding !
How cool is that for a closing hit !?
Cheers for now