Getting to know South Africa’s feathered friends

When conservation volunteers join us at Wildlife ACT there is a lot of talk about the “big stuff”. Lion, elephant, leopard, rhino, buffalo to name a few. This is great, and of course we all want to see the big beasts of Africa! There is a lot of time spent looking for these animals and a lot of time spent waiting for them to make an appearance – of course we have days where we see “nothing”! This is when one needs to look around and take in the beauty of the little things that surround us in South Africa.

Crested Barbet

Crested Barbet

Take birds for example… there is a saying that is very true “a birder will never be bored!” I am a keen birder and I find that no matter what I am doing or where I am, there will always be birds around to keep me entertained.

We spend many hours waiting while tracking the wild dogs. This is the perfect opportunity to grab some binoculars and admire our feathered friends. Not only looking at them but listening to them too. It is fascinating at how many bird calls one particular bird can have.

Southern Red Bishop

Southern Red Bishop

So a word of advice to our future conservation volunteers, if you are able to squeeze a pair of binoculars and a bird book into your luggage, then I highly recommend you do so!

Happy Birding!

Purple-crested Turaco

Purple-crested Turaco

Red-billed Oxpecker’s having a bath

Red-billed Oxpecker’s having a bath

African Cuckoo Hawk

African Cuckoo Hawk

White-backed Vulture

White-backed Vulture

Green-backed Heron

Green-backed Heron

Hamerkop

Hamerkop

Long-crested Eagle

Long-crested Eagle