Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Last birding in Mwadui

This is the last post about our birding in Mwadui. It was actually the very last day we were in Mwadui - Grant had handed over to the new Contracts Manager, and came home. We got into the car and went out to the bush, birding...

The first bird we saw was a Steel Blue Whydah. It wasn't a lifer as we'd seen it the year before. But boy, it was special! 

Steel blue Whydah
I couldn't avoid the blade of grass between my camera and the Steel Blue Whydah

Eventually the bird flew up into a tree and I managed a better photo! 
Southern Red Bishop
Grey-headed Kingfisher
Laughing Dove
Blue-capped Cordon-bleu (Male) 

While watching and photographing the Cordon-Bleu above, I heard a constant tap-tap-tapping. Focusing on the direction of the sound, I saw a woodpecker hard at work. 
Cardinal Woodpecker
Several blurry photos later (because of the rapid movement of the woodpecker's head against the tree trunk) I managed a beautifully clear shot
We were thrilled to have a last look at the Variable Sunbird

A Spurwing Goose perched high up in a dead tree bids us a final farewell! 

Just further along the road we stopped to view a pretty LBJ (Little Brown Job) singing lustily in a tree nearby. 

...perhaps Rattling Cisticola

On the way back to the mine, we stopped to watch and listen to an LBJ perched high on a branch near the road. 
A Rattling Cisticola

As we approached the airstrip, Grant pointed to a large bird on the side of the road. It was a Bateleur and it was eating something. Although I took several photos, we never established what its meal was. 
Bateleur (Male) enjoying his dinner
And then he was off! 

Driving along the mine haul road, I noticed a raptor on a slag heap eating something. Grant stopped and I took several photos. I'm sorry about the quality;  I have no explanation or excuse...
Yellow-billed Kite eating a feathery meal - probably a juvenile waterbird
Here it looks like a bird's claw in the kite's mouth

As we drove through the boom gate and back home for the last time (after birding!)
we spotted the resident Heron

I'm linking my post to Wild Bird Wednesday which you can access here

One of the first things I had to get used to when we moved to Tanzania in 2012 - apart from the horrors of being thrown into the deep-end to manage the expat Guest House - was that we'd never see beautiful birds such as we'd had in Kenya. Two months later, friend Wessel took us into the bush one Sunday afternoon. I had my camera with me and I remember almost pouncing on a d'Arnaud's Barbet to take a photo. 

And the rest is history...

Bird for bird and critter for critter, we saw more bird-and wildlife in Mwadui, on the mine and in the surrounding bush than we'd seen in Kenya or South Africa. 

As this post is aired, Grant and I will be on our bike and doing  tour to the Cape. Rina is looking after the house and of course, five cats and two doggies. 

Happy Wednesday to you all! 


  1. love the tail on the first bird! wow! loved seeing all of these exotics.

  2. Incredible, beautiful birds and such great captures!! Hope you're having a great bike trip!! Thanks for sharing!!!

  3. Well that sure was a marvelous birding send off with all you saw. Have a wonder bike tour.

  4. Beautiful birds! And now you are off on another adventure!

  5. You saw so many different birds in your last outing. They were all out to say goodbye. You are so right you have captured so many birds and critters while living in Tanzania. Enjoy your bike ride, way to go granny.

  6. This is a wonderful final selection of birds from TZ. I know you will miss them. Keep safe on that bike and come back with many photos.

  7. Hello Jo, what a great variety of birds and photos. It is hard to pick a favorite, I love all the birds.. I wish you happy and safe travels..

  8. love the LBJ and i know you miss these birds

  9. Tremendously great last shots of a lovely place, indeed!

  10. How lucky you are to have those beauties nearby. Those thorns, however, look extremely nasty. The Heron is a favourite of mine... I'm lucky enough to have an old family crest which (officially) shows either a Heron or Stork; I like to think it's a Heron.


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