Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Weekend Birding Mwadui

As promised earlier this week, I'm putting up the birds we saw this weekend. Although there were no lifers, I managed to get a really clear photo for the first time of a cuckoo that's been eluding me for months here in Mwadui. 

We saw several sunbirds (different ones co-existing and flitting between the Wild Dagga blooms together) and I photographed a pair of LBJ's but these are all pending the kind identification by birder friend, Jez who hasn't sent replies yet.

Meanwhile, I asked Grant to stop just into the bush where we saw a Little Bee-Eater. Although I have posted about this bird before today, I was just so thrilled at the clear photo I'd taken that I wanted to post it  here.
Little Bee - Eater

Another common bird which we come across regularly on our bird outings, is the Fork-tailed Drongo. Last week I focused on one sitting on a branch with its characteristic feature, a forked tail, beautifully displayed.
Fork-tailed Drongo

Although I've posted about this cuckoo before here as well, this day, I zoomed in on one sitting quite a fair distance away on the top of a tree.

 Diderick Cuckoo

We spotted a largish bird on the top of a tree, also quite a fair distance from the road. Thinking it might be a raptor (they have the habit of being F A R away when you want to photograph them) I zoomed in and saw that it was a Red-eyed Dove. I took the photo but when I downloaded it, I was thrilled to see that I had captured it in full cry. 

A Red-eyed Dove with its pouting breast which shows that it is calling

When I bought my new camera in South Africa in January, it came with a Canon rechargeable battery. The retailer didn't have stock of genuine batteries and as I don't like to use generic parts in my camera, I didn't buy a spare. We'd already turned around to come home, when I noticed the red warning light for the battery beginning to flicker on my LED screen. I turned the camera off quickly and quipped that I hoped I would not see a "special" on the way home. 

As we rode along the haul road, Grant's phone rang and he stopped to answer it. As I always do when he is busy with office business, I wound down the window and stared into the bush nearby. While doing this,  I noticed a largish black-and-white bird sitting in a shrub. We have many crows here, but because they're often seen on tree tops or on power lines, I gingerly turned on my camera and zoomed in on the subject.  I was greatly excited to see that I was focusing on a cuckoo that I'd been trying to photograph this whole summer in Tanzania. Every time I did, the bird was too far away and the images were fuzzy. Today I snapped away quickly, praying that my battery would hold out just for me to get these images. Fortunately it did and I got them.


 Jacobin Cuckoo

So this was technically a lifer which I'd seen before but not managed to record! 

For more beautiful bird posts around the world, please click here

I hope you're all having a wonderful week.  


  1. Bee eaters are always beautiful and make for great pics. I wish we had some around here

  2. HI Jo You were fortunate your battery was OK for the last shot. Also good to have a spare battery. The other birds shots are great.

  3. Jo, your birds are all gorgeous. Great sightings, I would love to see the Little Bee-eater..Have a happy day!

  4. All of these birds are new to me. Beauitful shots. The Bee-eater sure is pretty. and Love the Jocobin Cuckoo.

  5. Wow. You have such lovely photographs of birds. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Interesting birds. The bee-eater is gorgeous.

  7. The birds are beautiful, Jo, and you got some great shots of them.

  8. Such gorgeous photo's! :)


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