So five days into January — the month where the month is always a whole lot bigger than the budget — and well my Big Birding Year has kicked off.
Now for some experienced birders they probably already have year list that is longer than my life list, but due to the fact that I have gone back to work and am birding a lot less, I don’t think I have done too bad.
So far my Big Little Bird List for 2017 is 34 Birds — remember I have seen more birds but this is the list I have both SEEN and PHOTOGRAPHED.
What I love about birding the community that exists within it — a common interest that unites people that may never otherwise connect with each other. On Monday morning, the last morning of my one week holiday, I decided to head down the coast to TC Robertson Nature Reserve in Scottburgh. Now on the side note as much as I love this amazing little reserve — I am always on edge every time I walk around it as there is apparently a lot of black mambas in the reserve. Now I can tolerate a lot in nature, but I confess I have a serious snake phobia — like not just a little scared of them, I really fear them. Other than that this is an amazing reserve that happens to boast two bird hides, and a place where I always get some great rapture sightings.
When I arrived I birded for a while by myself and noticed that a car had arrived with someone that seemed to be birding in it. We ended up on the same trail and eventually we ended up birding for a few hours together. As a new birder this was awesome — as this guy had so much more knowledge than me. We spent the time trying to find the elusive Narina Trogan (which I have seen once), we think we may have spotted it flying into a tree but it was too fast to confirm it.
The spotting of the day had to be the Yellow Billed Kite on the shore of the river and taking off. Yes I know what a lot of you might be saying: ‘common bird’, but I think what allows us to keep the wonder of nature and birding alive is when we move beyond ticks on a list — and slow down to enjoy what nature presents in front of us. Towards the end of the day the sound of the Fish Eagle calling high above the river was heard — of of the iconic sounds that makes Africa such a special place.
So until next time stay strong!