Karoo specials and Capetown birding.

  • Dave Shedman
  • Dave Shedman's Avatar Topic Author
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #40919 by Dave Shedman
Dave Shedman created the topic: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.
Mariana and I are going down to Capetown in March for a family wedding and have decided to drive down rather than fly down, so that we can do some birding on the way and while we're there.

We're thinking of spending a day and a night in the Karoo National Park and were wondering what birding is like there and if there are any specials we might look out for whilst there. Although Mariana was born in the Klein Karoo and raised in Capetown, neither of us has any real knowledge of what birding is like in the area. Any advice would be appreciated.

We should have about two to three days available to go birding around Capetown before we return so we would appreciate advice on good birding spots anywhere within an hour's drive of Capetown. We would particularly like to add some shore / seabirds to our list (not many of those here in Gauteng!) but probably can't afford a pelagic trip. And again, if there are any special species in the area that are not found anywhere else, we would appreciate a heads up on where to find them.

Security is important for us and I know I've heard bad things on this forum about Paarl Bird Sanctuary, so places considered safe would be good. Also, we now have a more suitable vehicle for birding, having traded in the tiny little Kia Picanto and my battered old Fiesta for a Toyota Avanza. OK, not a 4x4 but it has higher ground clearnce than both our previous cars, so dirt roads shouldn't pose too great a problem, at least if they're dry.

All advice gratefully received.

Ô¿Ô

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Duncan
  • Duncan's Avatar
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #40945 by Duncan
Duncan replied the topic: Re: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.
Graeme I would say stopping at the Karoo NP will be well worth your while having recently been there for the second time. I have reasonable knowledge of what you might be looking for and of the locations in the Cape. It my be worth your while for us to get together and have a discussion about it and perhaps do some bird at the same time.

Regards Duncan

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Dave Shedman
  • Dave Shedman's Avatar Topic Author
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #40984 by Dave Shedman
Dave Shedman replied the topic: Re: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.

Duncan wrote: do some bird

<!-- s:shock: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_eek.gif" alt=":shock:" title="Shocked" /><!-- s:shock: --> <!-- s:shock: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_eek.gif" alt=":shock:" title="Shocked" /><!-- s:shock: --> <!-- s:shock: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_eek.gif" alt=":shock:" title="Shocked" /><!-- s:shock: -->

Where I come from that means do some prison time!

Sounds like a great idea though, if you stick an 'ing' on the end of it. E-mail me when you have some free time and we can meet up and discuss all the ins and outs of Karoo birding.

Thanks

Ô¿Ô

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • arty
  • arty's Avatar
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #40992 by arty
arty replied the topic: Re: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.
Hi Dave
Just spent two weeks down there in cape town, a must is langebaan [west coast national park] i spent two days in the park and picked up some aswesome specials, black harrier,steppe buzzard,karoo prinia, cape bunting,and loads of waterbirds.kirstenbosch gardens was also good although i only went there to get the cape sugar bird,and the top of sir lowery's pass for cape rock jumper.various terns and hautliebs gull at any of the beaches.also velddrif on the main road has an extensive wetland.otherwise i found the cape birding to be quite disappointing for different species numbers, although the specials they have are great.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Dave Shedman
  • Dave Shedman's Avatar Topic Author
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #40993 by Dave Shedman
Dave Shedman replied the topic: Re: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.
Thanks Warren, useful information.

I just checked out Langebaan and it seems a bit too far away as we'll be staying in Capetown with Mariana's sister (I think the area is called Kenilworth) and it looks like it will be more than an hour's drive each way. Neither of us is keen on birding trips where there is as much time spent driving as watching birds (we're not as young and energetic as we used to be!). It would be well worth the trip if we could afford a night's accommodation but we're already paying for two nights in the Karoo National Park on the way down and one night in Colesberg on the way back so, sadly, another night's accommodation is out of the question.

I think we're entering Capetown via Sir Lowry's Pass (we did last time we drove down) so we'll be sure to look out for the Rockjumper if we get a chance to stop somewhere there. Species numbers are not important to us, we'd just like to get some of the ones we don't find up here so we'll certainly check out the other places you mentioned. We got Cape Sugarbird on our last trip there, three years ago when we weren't seriously birding, but I'd like to get some photos of it this time as we saw it just as we were leaving our guest house in Mossel Bay last time and all the cameras were packed away by then. Same with the Cape Bulbul, saw it but didn't get any photos. Was Kirstenbosch gardens good for Cape Sugarbird, were they easy to find in the gardens? Any other interesting species there?

Ô¿Ô

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • arty
  • arty's Avatar
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #41004 by arty
arty replied the topic: Re: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.
Hi Dave
Langebaan was 87 km,s from Seapoint where i was staying yes it is about 1 hours drive but really worth while it is not a huge reserve in comparison with what we have up here but i have 12 lifers and still have not finished editing.Kirstenbosch was ok,i got some good pics of the sugar bird as well as lemon dove,orange breasted sunbird and lessor double collared not much else unfortunatly although it was our last day and i was rather tired of lugging the equipment around and the walk in the gardens is pretty tough but worth the visit. I also found it to be be a tad expensive as a south african when i only pay 20 bucks to get into WSBG. I think it was 45.00 each cannot be sure the wife dealt with that while i was on the jazz.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • arty
  • arty's Avatar
  • Visitor
  • Visitor
6 years 10 months ago #41005 by arty
arty replied the topic: Re: Karoo specials and Capetown birding.
sorry i meant to tell you it is the west coast national park which is about 30 km's before langebaan.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

Powered by Kunena Forum