Retiring Adventurously – Day 2 in The Wild West of Southern Africa

10 January 2015 – Bird Watching

It’s an early start after a hot but restful night.  We grab toast, cheese, Avo etc for brekkie and then it’s into the Landy for our next adventure.  Abrie takes us to a little waterhole where he hopes we will see game coming down to drink.  The men help take up camp chairs, a coolbox of drinks and snacks and then head off in the Landy saying they’ll be back for us in three hours!  What! Earl in a hide for an hour is more than he can bear – how will he cope?  I even fear that I will become bored. After settling myself in my camp chair I take out the IPad and start to make Blog notes. But not for long. Earl alerts me to a variety of bird life coming down to drink. We are in raptures.  There are myriads of the feathered creatures we love and they keep us entertained with their antics.  The time flies by and we barely notice how hot it is till almost the end.

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Male (r) and female Namaqua Doves came down to drink

Most refreshing

Most refreshing

Female Namaqua Dove

Female Namaqua Dove

Male Namaqua Dove

Namaqua doves are the only doves where males and females are different in appearance

Some red-headed finch were fraternising with the quelea.

Some red-headed finch fraternising with the quelea. Female and Male Red-heade finch and Male and female quelea share a perch

Male Red-headed finch with Red-eyed bulbul in the background

Male Red-headed finch with Red-eyed bulbul in the background

Two female red-headed finch

Two female red-headed finch

Golden-breasted bunting

Golden-breasted bunting

A beautiful bird tree with quelea and chestnut weaver (top) and shaft-tailed whydah (bottom)

A beautiful bird tree with quelea, red-headed finch,  chestnut weaver (top) and shaft-tailed whydah (bottom)

Shaft-tailed whydah - male

Shaft-tailed whydah – male

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The female is in the background

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Namaqua Sandgrouse came and went in waves

Namaqua Sandgrouse come and got in waves

We nearly fall out of the tree when an Ayres Eagle makes an appearance.  He alights on a low dead tree then flies to a taller one a  little further away.  He stays there for ages eyeing the comings and goings of the smaller birds then flies away.

Not too comfortable here

Not too comfortable here

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A clearer view from here

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If only those birds would sit still, I might be able to catch lunch!

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I think I’ll just take off

Every now and then a beautiful violet cheeked waxbill came into view but would not allow me to photograph him. Then just as I was about to give up he decided a photoshoot might be fun.

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Two in a bush!

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I know I’m gorgeous

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This is my good side

It was really hot and brewing for a thunderstorm when Abrie and his men return for us.  They have been hard at work doing what cowboys do and are pretty hot and tired too.

For lunch we indulge in Abrie’s home canned yellowtail and leftover salad before going for a cold shower and a nap. We are all up at 4 and sit on the stoep, drink tea and have a slice or two of Christmas cake while we watch the storm. As it starts to rain I go out in it to cool down. It pelts down for a while so another outing is impossible.  It becomes so cool that I even put on a jersey.

Supper is divine. Abrie prepares calamari tubes, heads and tentacles which are to die for – just like my dad used to make.  Of course it’s early to bed as there is no electricity here!

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One thought on “Retiring Adventurously – Day 2 in The Wild West of Southern Africa

  1. Helen that was outstanding. What wonderful and pretty birds. So glad to be able to see your Blog again and be on line. Thanks for that.

    Liked by 1 person

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