Wednesday, July 9, 2014

More winter birding in Mwadui

Once again, it's time to link to Stewart Monckton's blog in Australia. Once again it's time to post about... 


This past weekend didn't deliver too many birds, but here's what we saw and I managed to capture on film. 

First, while waiting for Grant to collect me on Saturday morning, I photographed a couple of birds enjoying a bath under the sprinkler in our garden. 
 Black-eyed Bulbul in our garden
 Speckled Mousebird with Bulbul in the background

There were several other birds enjoying the sprinkling water on grass, but Grant arrived and we drove off on our birding trip.

As we left the airstrip and entered the bush, I heard the unmistakeable call of the Slate colored Bou bou. I've posted about this elusive bird before; exactly because of that elusiveness, I find it challenging to get any photos of this bird. However, this time, Grant stopped the car, I hopped up and standing on the running board, focused on the bird in a tree not far from Grant's window.
Slate-colored Bou bou 

A little further along the road, we came to the body of water where we'd seen and photographed Lesser and Common Moorhen the week before.  As always the leafless trees in the middle of the dam had many heron sitting calmly while I took photos.

Black-headed Heron

As Grant reversed from the side of this dam and joined the main bush road again, I saw a brilliant flash of color in a dry bush nearby. 
Grey-headed Kinfisher 

Driving to the much larger, New Alhamasi dam which is still full to overflowing, we stopped on the bank to view some white dots on the far side. I zoomed in on the subjects, focused and we were rewarded with...
Pink-backed Pelican (Juvenile)

Wending our way back along the haul road and onto the slimes dam wall, we once again spotted  "our" Augur Buzzard. 
 Augur Buzzard

While photographing the buzzard, I noticed a flock of mousebirds in a tree laden with berries.
The - endemic to East Africa - Blue-Naped Mousebird (Can you see the difference between this mousebird and the Speckled mousebird which I snapped in our garden?) 
Still meandering towards town, I saw a bird sitting very still in a tree near the road. Grant stopped and I had fun taking several photos of this very accommodating subject! 
 Striped Kingfisher ...
...and again! 
Driving along the airstrip, we thought we'd seen all there was to be seen for the day. However, a bird swooped and dipped across our path and flew up into a tree nearby
African Grey Hornbill
Grant decided to take a longer route home by driving past the diamond sort-house and mine dumps. As we scanned the surrounding area, we saw two bright spots of color in a nearby bush.
Grant  stopped the car and I focused. 
Or so I thought...
Somehow, although the birds were quite close and visible, my camera kept flashing a warning that the image would be blurred should I take it at that moment. Eventually one of the birds flew off and suddenly my settings clicked in and I snapped away.
After several false starts and after the mate had flown off, I managed to photograph this Little Bee-eater! You'd never guess at the noisy mining activity and huge dump trucks trundling past within twenty meters of where this bird posed!
I'm linking my post to Wild Bird Wednesday blog which you can access by clicking here



  1. just marvelous sightings! the kingfisher is wonderfully colored - and of course the last one steals the show, too, but all are so unique to me!

  2. Oh, they are all so beautiful, but like Tex wrote, the last one does indeed steal the show!! Wonderful post, Jo, as always!!

  3. What a fantastic shots! The picture of the heron is breathtaking.

  4. Your bird photos are wonderful; we love birds but don't take photos of them.

  5. You always seem to see a great collection of birds where you and Grant go out.I love the Kingfishers and that Bee eater is stunning.

  6. Arthur loves you ! All these bird pictures, how yummy !

  7. Gosh you cn spy so many different birds in a short period of time. I love the coloured Kingfisher and the Bee eater.

  8. Hello Jo, these are all awesome bird sightings.. A few of my favorite are the two kingfishers, the hornbill and the pretty Bee-eater. Wonderful post, thanks for sharing. Have a happy day!

  9. Your buzzard looks like our hawks! Wow!

  10. all your beautiful birds are new to me and so very exotic.. i can't even pick a favorite..

  11. Gorgeous birds! I love the bee-eater.

  12. All so wonderful, Jo! What a drive you had!

  13. So many beautiful birds.

  14. What wonderful photos of birds I've never seen before! Thanks for sharing them. I can sense your excitement in catching them all!

  15. I do so enjoy going birding with you.

  16. So many birds there I've never even heard of! Thanks for sharing.


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