The Cape Bird Club Beginners’ Course Outing to False Bay Ecology Park

A Birding Paradise

There’s a place that was once a sewage farm,

But now the ponds are settled and calm,

And filled with wild and wonderful birds;

A perfect place for Avian Nerds

As you travel along the many dirt roads,

Look out for crabs and occasional toads.

Perhaps you’ll find a mongoose or buck

There will certainly be a yellow-billed duck.

The pelicans swim the swallows they fly

And maybe you’ll hear the fish eagle cry.

There are stilts and avocets, teal and coots.

A purple swamp-hen chews on roots.

And as well as all these waterfowl

You may even spot the eagle-owl.

The long claw with its orange throat

Sings out with a meowing note.

 In rain, in shine, no matter what

You’re bound to see a helovalot.

Come join us at the Ecology Park

We’ll show you more than just a lark.

Today members of The Cape Bird Club took the delegates from Heather’s Beginners’Course on an outing to The False Bay Ecology Park where they put their newly acquired birding skills to the test.  The rain had stopped and the skies were clear – we saw a beautiful rainbow – but the roads were somewhat muddy.  Nothing could dampen the enthusiasm of the beginners though and the ‘guides’ were just too thrilled to show off this amazing place.  We loaded the cars with each one having a window seat and each car set off to separately find the 27 target birds plus anything else that might show up.   When we stopped to compare notes the vibe of excitement was tangible as the beginners shared what they had seen.   Personally I never get tired of seeing the flamingos doing their amazing ballet in the shallows or impersonating ducks in deeper water.   It was hugely rewarding to share my passion with others.

False Bay Ecology Park is next door to Zeekoeivlei.

False Bay Ecology Park is next door to Zeekoeivlei – Strandfontein Beach in the Background

Red-knobbed Coot swim among the flamingos

Red-knobbed Coot swim among the flamingos

Close up

Close up

Red-knobbed Coot

Red-knobbed Coot by Earl

Purple Swamhen

Purple Swamphen

Red-billed teal and Cape Shoveller with head hidden on the right

Red-billed teal and Cape Shoveller with head hidden on the right by Earl

Cape Teal

Cape Teal by Earl

Pelican with white-breased cormorants

Pelican with white-breasted cormorants

Preening

Preening

Jay's Picture

Jay’s Picture

Swimming

Swimming

Black-crowned Night Heron

Black-crowned Night Heron

Pied Avocets

Pied Avocets

A Sleepy Spotted Eagle-owl

A Sleepy Spotted Eagle-owl

Taken with eyes open at another time

Taken with eyes open at another time – wouldn’t open his eyes for us today.

African Black Oyster-catchers

African Black Oyster-catchers – same place but better than the pics I took today

Moorhen

Moorhen taken at another time

Little Grebe

Little Grebe – we saw lots – but this picture taken at another time

Cattle Egret in Breeding Plumage - taken by Earl

Cattle Egret in Breeding Plumage – taken by Earl

Black-necked grebe

Black-necked grebe – on of the many we saw today.

Mongoose taken by Jay

Mongoose taken by Jay

Common Waxbill taken by Jay

Common Waxbill taken by Jay

Longclaw taken by Jay

Cape Longclaw taken by Jay

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