Songs and Chirps, Flights and Feathers
As we watch the owlets in Johannesburg learn to fly and prepare for a life on their own, its seems appropriate that we take some time to notice our other feathered friends that glide gracefully through the air. As faithful followers of the cams, we find ourselves keeping a watchful eye out for the magnificent soaring predatory birds such as the Verreaux/Giant Eagle Owl or the Fish Eagle.
If you watch closely you may see guinea fowl scurry past the water hole as if they are late for an appointment. The ring necked dove/cape turtle dove flaps in noisily and wanders around the edge of the water hole as if he is wondering how he got there and why. Each species seems to have its own personality, some regal and proud, others timid and very seldom seen in the open. The Egyptian Geese announce themselves upon arrival with loud honks and splashes as they skid to a splashing flop into the waterhole. The list is endless of the birds we hear and never see on the cams. The chirps, whistles, happy tunes and sometimes mournful sounds create a sound similar to an orchestra tuning up for a concert.
What better way to appreciate these remarkable creatures than to take a day and honor their presence?
BirdLife South Africa, a conservation group, is promoting a day of bird watching on November 27th. While most of us aren't in South Africa to participate, Africam has decided to have a slightly different day of bird watching. For 24 hours, beginning at 12:00 am/00:00 CAT, the cams will be on the lookout for all the bird life that surrounds the waterholes. While zooming in on elephants and other animals that pass by the cams, our eyes will watch closely for any birds that visit as well. What is your assignment? We would like you to take snippets of the birds you see on the cams, identify them and post them for others to enjoy. There will be a forum on the Africam site dedicated to the pictures you take, and posting them on Facebook will be encouraged as well. At the end of the day we'll tally up how many species we have seen, heard or caught flying by and we believe you will be very surprised at how many flapping visitors live around the area. We'll remind you as the day draws near, and in the meantime take a look and listen to our own bird data base to prepare for the day. It will be great if you capture a picture of a bird we've not seen before! So study up on those birds and join us on November 27th to expand our horizon into the world of feathers and songs.
Check out the owlets, they'll soon be gone! http://www.africam.com/wildlife/lc_player_kim.php?sub=nn&ch=popup&sh=owl-1
Bird data base: http://www.africam.com/wildlife/soundsafricambirds