DRC Veld fire

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9 years 1 month ago #9241 by nkgray
nkgray created the topic: DRC Veld fire
One of the bush hazards in the DRC at this time of the year. A farmer started this fire to burn off the long grass in his cassava field, but he had not reckoned on the strength of the wind. The hut on the right in the second photo looked like it was about to be engulfed, when the wind suddenly turned and amazingly it was spared.





Of course the fire brought lots of birds to the scene to catch the thousands of grasshoppers, crickets, stick insects, etc. that flew ahead of the fire front. Out of nowhere appeared several hundred Barn Swallow. Two Yellow-billed Kite cruised overhead, apparently oblivious to the smoke and burnt grass whipped into the air.





Fork-tailed Drongo by the dozen, as well as both Broad-billed and Racket-tailed Roller, sat on every available perch awaiting their chances.




Neil

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9 years 1 month ago #9286 by Birdlover
Birdlover replied the topic: Re: DRC Veld fire
Trust a birder to find positives in a veld fire. ( <!-- s:lol: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_lol.gif" alt=":lol:" title="Laughing" /><!-- s:lol: --> No FIRE finches ? )

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9 years 1 month ago #9293 by nkgray
nkgray replied the topic: Re: DRC Veld fire
No BURNT-necked Eremomelas either <!-- s:lol: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_lol.gif" alt=":lol:" title="Laughing" /><!-- s:lol: -->

Neil

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9 years 1 month ago #9300 by Birdlover
Birdlover replied the topic: Re: DRC Veld fire

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  • Dave Shedman
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9 years 1 month ago #9430 by Dave Shedman
Dave Shedman replied the topic: Re: DRC Veld fire
Some amazing photos there!

I agree that veld fires can be a good thing sometimes. We saw our only ever Crimson Breasted Shrike in Pilanesberg National Park because it was hopping around in the burnt grass. The tour guide said it does this because the insects are easier to see in the burnt grass than in the long, living grass. Sadly I had my cheap compact digital on the wrong settings so all my shots were over exposed.



There was a veld fire in the vlei next to our house a few weeks ago but luckily it burnt out before it reached the reeds where the bishops nest. The whole of the next week it was swarming with Hadeda, Sacred Ibis, Black Headed Heron and numerous other birds taking advantage of the rich pickings. Even the Black Shouldered Kites appeared more frequently than they normally do, so whilst I'm not a fan of veld fires, I do agree that they can be very useful for birders.

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9 years 1 month ago #9431 by Dave Shedman
Dave Shedman replied the topic: Re: DRC Veld fire

nkgray wrote: No BURNT-necked Eremomelas either <!-- s:lol: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_lol.gif" alt=":lol:" title="Laughing" /><!-- s:lol: -->

Neil


Or Fiery Necked Nightjars? <!-- s:lol: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_lol.gif" alt=":lol:" title="Laughing" /><!-- s:lol: -->

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