African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant

  • mossie
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4 years 6 months ago #85928 by mossie
mossie created the topic: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
I got a nice surprise last week when I took the kids for a canoe trip on the Goukamma River. After spending the day on the river, we stopped at the River Deck Restaurant for the obligatory pizza (kids) and a beer (me) at around 5pm while the sun went down (Magic hour) and we watched the river flow by over the weir.



Imagine my surprise to see an African finfoot hunting around the weir and boulders. The bird was very shy, and nervous, and took off down the river when it realised it was being watched by an over-excited birder. I will never forget the bright orange/red legs as it ran, coot style down stream. I spoke to some of the rangers at the reserve, and they say this is a very unusual bird for the area, and a first for the river.

The bird was not as bright (facial markings) as expected, so it could be juvenile/ young bird, looking for a new territory.

By the way, it is a great place to visit and chill, and the food is good.


Regards,
Mossie

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4 years 6 months ago #85931 by wildtuinman
wildtuinman replied the topic: Re: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
That is a super sighting, Mossie!

I've been hunting Finfoot down there forever. Only ever saw it up here twice.

Is it the river deck enroute to Buffelsbaai?

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4 years 6 months ago #85932 by mossie
mossie replied the topic: Re: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
Exactly! Turnoff the N2 to Buffels bay, go through the tunnel and after +/-100m the restaurant is on your right.

I spend a lot of time on the rivers on the Garden Route hiking fishing etc, so I always keep my eyes open for them. But this is a first for me. Took a year to see it.

Mossie

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4 years 6 months ago #85933 by docandy
docandy replied the topic: Re: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
Fantastic sighting Mossie! Any sighting of an African Finfoot is really special! :D

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4 years 6 months ago #85934 by steveh
steveh replied the topic: Re: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
Wow, great sighting. I hope this signals the return of Finfoots to the Southern Cape.

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4 years 6 months ago #85937 by mossie
mossie replied the topic: Re: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
From what I heard from the locals, the last time a Finfoot was seen on a regular basis was a breeding pair on the Keiman's river between George and Wilderness, but that was 10 years ago!

Interestingly, one of the nature conservation guys says that there is still about 10 breeding pairs of crowned eagles around the garden route, but I have only had a glimpse of one above Keurbooms river.

Mossie

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4 years 6 months ago #85959 by dmorrey
dmorrey replied the topic: Re: African Finfoot-Garden Route- River Deck Restaurant
Great sighting mossie. Well freaken done!

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