Hella Hella Weekend Feedback

Mike Roseblade and Jane Morris organised and managed the weekend very successfully despite the threatened adverse weather. Over 120 different species were seen or heard. Some of the specials are listed later and a number of photos are attached as an album for those interested.

Twenty nine members attended the outing, arriving a various times in the afternoon during the heavy storm.

The group gathered for the briefing meeting and braai at 5:30. The braai went ahead despite the rain as the management made sure we had a covered braai and a well equipped Lapa.

Saturday morning the party was split into 2 groups exploring the upper area near reception. The drizzle dampened things to a certain extent but most persevered and continued onto the Mkomazi River bridge and were rewarded with plenty of birding activity.

The group then went to the area where the Blue Swallows are usually seen some 4 kms further up the mountain. Unfortunately the weather deteriorated and made viewing difficult. Although the Blue Swallows were not seen where they were expected, the group had excellent sightings of Yellow Bishops, Broad-tailed Warblers, Fan-tailed Widowbirds, Red-collared Widowbirds.

Despite this misadventure to seek the Blue Swallows they were seen by a number of the group on different occasions.

Afternoon birding was limited to the campsite area because of the rain.

Again the braai area was put to good use and entertainment followed.

Sunday awoke to a much brighter and sunny day. Tents had a chance to dry out! The morning was spent very successfully birding the full extent of the campsite – and it is a long well spread out shady campsite.

Specials seen or heard included: a pair of Verreaux’s Eagles; Red-winged Francolins with young; both Turacos; Buff-spotted Flufftail (heard); Red-chested, black, Jacobin, African Emerald (heard) and Diderick’s Cuckoos; Narina Trogon; Lesser Honeyguide; Olive Woodpecker (heard); Blue Swallows; Black Cuckooshrike; Broad-tailed Warbler; Blue-mantled Crested-Flycatcher; Mountain Wagtail; Olive, Orange and Grey-headed Bush-Shrikes; Yellow Bishop.

Photos for your pleasure – to give you an idea of the habitat and some of the birds photographed – not picture perfect – sorry! Click on the first picture for a slideshow.

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