Western Cape 12-day Trip Report March 2017

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30 MARCH – 10 APRIL

By Wian van Zyl

 

ITINERARY

Date Location Overnight
30-Mar-17 Cape TownFernwood Manor (Cape Town)
31-Mar-17 West CoastMountain Mist (Aurora)
1-Apr-17 Tanqua KarooSothemba Lodge (Tanqua Karoo)
2-Apr-17 Tanqua KarooSothemba Lodge (Tanqua Karoo)
3-Apr-17 Tanqua KarooMudlark Riverfront Lodge (Infanta)
4-Apr-17 Agulhas PlainsMudlark Riverfront Lodge (Infanta)
5-Apr-17 Agulhas PlainsKingfisher Country House (Wilderness)
6-Apr-17 WildernessKingfisher Country House (Wilderness)
7-Apr-17 WildernessSimon’ s Town Quayside Hotel (Simon’s Town)
8-Apr-17 Simon’s TownSimon’ s Town Quayside Hotel (Simon’s Town)
9-Apr-17 Simon’s TownSimon’ s Town Quayside Hotel (Simon’s Town)
10-Apr-17 Simon’s TownDeparture

Overview

This tour started along the west coast of South Africa, where the ocean and beaches meet the world-famous Fynbos plant kingdom. Here in the endemic-rich Western Cape Province of South Africa there is a lot of interesting and marvelous birding to be had. As we broke off from the west coast we made way for the interior of the province known as the Tanqua Karoo. Here the semi-arid landscape provides a surprising amount of birds and small mammals one wouldn’t expect in an area such as this. From the Tanqua Karoo we saw ourselves heading toward South Africa’s south coast, where we connected with some marvelous cranes, bustards, and larks. We managed to fit in some forest birding further north along the east coast, where we got robins, turacos, flycatchers, and kingfishers. We backtracked to Cape Town, where a scheduled pelagic trip was cancelled due to bad weather predicted for the whole weekend, so we substituted our pelagic hours with some great Cape Peninsula birding.

 

Day 1: Cape Town Birding

The day started with a pickup at Cape Town harbor, as the clients arrived from a cruise ship. They had left Argentina 23 days prior to this tour. We headed straight for Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, which is a very well-known birding destination among South African birders. We started with immediate views of Sombre Greenbul, Cape Bulbul, Cape Canary, and Cape White-eye. It warmed up quite early in the morning, but we managed some really great species as we navigated the garden. We soon found Olive Thrush, Cape Robin-Chat, Southern Double-collard Sunbird, and African Dusky Flycatcher. We continued along to the Treetop Canopy Walkway, where we connected, after quite a bit of effort, with Lemon Dove. As we entered the walkway we moved at eye level with the forest canopy and managed to get spectacular views of a roosting Spotted Eagle-Owl a mere three feet from where we were standing, just preening and relaxing. We managed to call out Chinspot Batis, both male and female, and decided to head up further into the garden after exiting the walkway. As soon as we arrived at a protea garden we managed to find, quite easily, Orange-breasted Sunbird, Malachite Sunbird (female, we’re yet to see a male), and Black Saw-Wings swooping overhead. After a further walk through the garden we managed Cape Spurfowl, Brimstone Canary, and Red-winged Starling, and constantly noticed Pied Crows soaring overhead.

After we left Kirstenbosch we headed for the Strandfontein Sewage Works, part of the False Bay Ecology Park, after lunch. We immediately connected with Barn Swallow, Western Cattle Egret, and Cape Weaver. After scanning through the first pool of water we added Cape Teal, Yellow-billed Duck, Southern Pochard, Red-knobbed Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Cape Shoveler, and Common Moorhen to the list. Working our way through the multitude of pools in Strandfontein we further managed Blacksmith Lapwing, Lesser Swamp Warbler, Little Grebe, and Red-billed and Hottentot Teal, as well as African Swamphen and a quick glimpse of Pied Kingfisher. After a scan through some waders we only found Cape Wagtail and Little Stint. But heading to another pool we further recorded Caspian, Sandwich, White-winged, and Swift Terns. Within the tern roost we also recorded Kelp, Hartlaub’s, and Grey-headed Gulls, Marsh Sandpiper, Great White Pelican, Lesser Flamingo, and Pied Avocet. Along the embankment we further noticed White Stork, Spur-winged Goose, and Ruff, as well as Wood Sandpiper. All in all a productive day with 83 species recorded.

Day 2: West Coast National Park to Aurora

We started the day out bright and early, leaving the guest house in Cape Town at 6:00. Our goal for the day was some West Coast birding en route to our next destination, Mountain Mist Guesthouse in the Cederberg Mountains. Before entering the West Coast National Park we turned off to the east on a gravel road marked “Darling Hills” and soon connected with Capped Wheatear, Red-capped Lark, Cape Sparrow, Wattled and Pied Starling, and a very vocal Bokmakierie. We decided to continue for a while along the road in hope of seeing Blue Crane, which we soon connected with up-close, feeding in a harvested field.

Watching them calling, displaying, and flying, we stood breathless as we were mesmerized by the sheer beauty and majesty of these magnificent creatures. Finally we turned around and continued to the West Coast National Park. En route, perched on the power line poles, we saw Black-winged Kite and Common and Jackal Buzzards. Not long after we entered the park we got our first glimpse of Black Harrier, which swooped down right in front of us, pulling away only at the last moment. Soon after our first harrier we managed to get optics on Cape Spurfowl, Grey-winged Francolin, and Chestnut-vented Warbler, as well as Southern Fiscal.

At Abraham’s Kraal, the only accessible fresh water in the park, we were greeted by the likes of Yellow Canary, Karoo Scrub Robin, and a puffed-up Southern Black Korhaan. Upon walking to the hide we had great views of African Spoonbill, African Sacred Ibis, Yellow-billed Duck, Cape Shoveler, and Red-knobbed Coot. Once in the hide itself we saw Lesser Swamp Warbler, Little Grebe, Cape Bunting, White-throated Canary, and Yellow Bishop. The highlight of our time spent in the hide goes, hands down, to an African Rail emerging into an open patch of reeds for a few good enough seconds to allow us to get our binoculars pointed at it and enjoy the splendor or this long-billed rallid. En route to our next hide we had great views of another Black Harrier flying low overhead to our right and were able to see the coloration and patterning perfectly.

Our second and third hides in the park produced a healthy variety of waders with the likes of Curlew and Marsh Sandpipers, Common Greenshank, Ruddy Turnstone, Little Stint, Sanderling, Grey and White-fronted Plovers and feeding Lesser Flamingos.

Then we entered Langebaan to visit the famous Verreaux’s Eagle spot at their roost in the quarry above the town. Without any disappointment the eagles showed, and we got some breathtaking views of these huge black predators of the sky. After some good views of Rock Martin and Rock Kestrel we made our way straight to the Velddrif area to hunt down Chestnut-banded Plover, which we found with relative ease in the salt pans outside Velddrif. Here we also recorded Red-necked Phalarope. As we drove on toward Mountain Mist we recorded African Darter, Great White Pelican, Lesser Flamingo, Reed Cormorant, Hartlaub’s and Grey-headed Gulls, and Cape Cormorant. On a gravel road heading to Aurora we connected with African Stonechat and some more canaries. We stopped to look for a calling Large-billed Lark but could not find it, but on the upside we managed to get magnificent views of Grey-backed Sparrow-Lark drinking at a water trough next to the road, a very fortunate find for an unintended stop. We worked our way up the mountain as the road curved left and right, soon after gaining some altitude we got Cape Sugarbird, Familiar Chat and Cape Rock-Thrush before we got to the guest house. With the last little light at the guest house we managed to get Protea Canary, Malachite Sunbird and very bad low-light views of Cape Siskin. We ended the day with 107 species.

Day 3: Mountain Mist – Tanqua Karoo

We started the day bright and early, before the sun came up, with a warm cup of tea. As soon as there was enough light outside to make out what’s going on around us, we walked up the road in the fresh morning mountain air in high hopes of getting some good species. We got Cape Bunting very early and constantly saw Cape Sugarbird and Malachite Sunbird. After some time we had great views of Cape Siskin, making everyone on tour happy that we could tick it on our trip list. Continuing up the hill we didn’t see much; it was pretty cold with the clouds hugging the escarpment and dropping down into the valley. As we walked back to the guest house we had spectacular views of Southern Double Collared Sunbird as well as Orange-breasted Sunbird, while looking at a Cape Robin-Chat on an exposed rock, preening itself. As we got back to the guest house garden we got magnificent views of a male Cape Weaver preening himself while looking at Protea Canaries feeding on the lawn. After some views of Cape Rock Thrush and Red-winged Starling we collected our luggage while looking at Grey-winged Francolin.

We then made our way down the mountain to get to the Tanqua Karoo. Navigating a pass we saw Cape Siskin, Rock Martin, Verreaux’s Eagle, and Rock Kestrel. After a hearty brunch in the tiny town of Aurora we made our way towards the Tanqua Karoo, recording South African Shelduck, Black-winged Stilt, Jackal Buzzard, Black-winged Kite, Capped Wheatear, Namaqua Dove, and African Pipit en route. Once we hit the Tanqua Karoo we connected with Pale Chanting Goshawk and Familiar Chat almost instantly. It was a pretty hot day, and the rest of the birding was fairly slow and hard work, as birding in the Karoo can frequently be. After a good amount of futile attempts we dipped on Cinnamon-breasted Warbler and Fairy Flycatcher but managed to record Mountain Wheatear, Pririt Batis, and Streaky-headed Seedeater. The day ended with 66 species, including a few new ones added to the list.

Day 4: Full day Tanqua Birding

Today started with us climbing out the hill behind Sothemba lodge in search of the ever “rock-skulking” Cinnamon-breasted Warbler. We unfortunately did not get to see it and after quite some time decided to head out as to not miss out on other Karoo specials. Before we left the valley we had close up views of Mountain Wheatear and Familiar Chat. As soon as we got into the vast openness of the Karoo we soon connected with Yellow Canary, Black-chested Snake-Eagle, Pale Chanting Goshawk, Karoo Chat and Karoo Prinia. We stopped among some acacia thickets and managed to call out Pririt Batis, Namaqua Warbler and Fairy Flycatcher. We stopped at a vegetated area close to a dry stream and got spectacular views of Karoo Eremomela. We continued along the road and at one point got Rufous-eared Warbler, Karoo Lark and, finally, Large-billed Lark in the same area.

After a short drive we connected with quite a few Short-clawed Larks and managed to sit with them for a while. As we came around a bend we got a pair of Karoo Korhaan right next to the road, slowly making their way away from us. After a good drive, during which we tried to help a broken-down vehicle, we reached Tanqua Karoo National Park. We spent time looking for Ludwig’s Bustard to no avail but managed to get Namaqua Sandgrouse and very-close views of Red-faced Mousebird. On our way back to the lodge, birding as we drove, we saw South African Shelduck, Three-banded Plover, Rock and Brown-throated Martin, and Karoo Scrub Robin. Today was a windy and hot day, and, all things considered, the birds that did show themselves provided some good sightings. We ended the day with 46 species and a few mammals to add to our lists, as we also saw gemsbok, springbok, and steenbok.

Day 5: Tanqua Karoo to Agulhas Plains

Today saw us spending the better not quite two hours, as the day started, looking for Cinnamon-breasted Warbler. Sadly we never managed to locate an individual, not even a reply on playback. Bur we had Red-chested Flufftail calling from the valley floor in the riverbed. As soon as we left the valley to leave the Karoo behind and focus on the Agulhas Plains we saw Karoo Chat, Pale Chanting Goshawk, and Fairy Flycatcher. En route to Agulhas we recorded White Stork, African Sacred Ibis, Hadada Ibis, White-necked Raven, and Rock and Brown-throated Martins. As soon as we got into the rolling hills of Agulhas we connected with Jackal Buzzard, African Fish Eagle, Blue Crane, Secretarybird, and a glimpse of Denham’s Bustard flying overhead. Continued on our drive we soon got Cape Vultures, feeing on what seemed to be a sheep carcass, Karoo Korhaan, and Hamerkop. As soon as we arrived at the lodge and checked in we had a walk around the garden to see what we could find and quickly managed Cape Weaver, Cape Robin-Chat, Fiscal Flycatcher, Red-eyed Dove, and a very curious Bar-throated Apalis. We had a drive for the rest of our daylight birding hours and managed to get a closer and more decent view of Denham’s Bustard and had reasonable looks at Long-billed and African Pipit, while Capped Wheatear kept us entertained. We had quite a bit of traveling behind us today, but surprisingly we managed to record 74 species for the day, as well as springbok, bontebok, and yellow mongoose for the mammal list.

Day 6: De Hoop- and De Mond Nature Reserves

Today saw us leaving our lodge at the break of dawn, aiming for De Hoop Nature Reserve first. En route we recorded a few groups of Denham’s Bustard and managed to get pretty close views of them; there were groups of Blue Crane scattered everywhere, and we also saw Fork-tailed Drongo, African Spoonbill, Black-winged Stilt, and Crowned Lapwing. Before reaching the reserve we had great views of two bat-eared foxes running around and foraging in the field, Forest Buzzard perched on a power line pole, and a calling Cape Grassbird. Once we were inside the reserve we tried really hard to connect with Cape Clapper Lark, but to no avail. Winding down the road before reaching the restaurant we connected with Bokmakierie, Fiscal Flycatcher, and Cape Sugarbird. At the restaurant we were soon entertained by Speckled and Red-faced Mousebirds and Southern Boubou feeding in the huge fig trees. We tried for Southern Tchagra around the camping area and got a feeding adult with a fair amount of ease. After some great photos of Great Crested Grebe we walked towards the chalets in search of Knysna Woodpecker, but after a hard try and over an hour of searching we had to give up empty-handed.

We then left De Hoop to head for De Mond Nature Reserve. En route we encountered Agulhas Long-billed Lark, Rock Kestrel, Black-winged Kite, and Yellow-billed Ducks feeding in an open field. After paying a visit to the southernmost tip of Africa, where we saw African Oystercatcher, we entered De Mond and nearly immediately had spectacular views of Knysna Woodpecker hopping from snag to snag in a tree above us. From the boardwalk that meanders along the estuary the tide was slightly pulled back and the exposed mud flats offered Grey, Common Ringed, and White-fronted Plovers, Whimbrel, Bar-tailed Godwit, Little Egret, and a flying Caspian Tern. We scanned the beach on the opposite side and further recorded Sandwich– and Swift Terns.

Before entering the lodge on our way back we got great, though crepuscular views of Spotted Eagle-Owl, ending a day of great birding with a total of 81 species for the day and fun times. We also managed to get good views of bontebok, yellow mongoose, and springbok.

Day 7: Agulhas Plains to Wilderness

Having recorded all the specials we were targeting in the area, we decided to leave the Agulhas Plains at daybreak to make our way to Wilderness in the Garden Route National Park for some forest birding. As we left and drove through the fields we recorded Blue Crane, Denham’s Bustard, Karoo Korhaan, Agulhas Long-billed Lark, and Bokmakierie. While crossing the Breede River on a pontoon for the second time we observed African Black Duck as the pontoon was hauled, by hand, across the river to the other side. After having had a flat tire yesterday we made our way to the nearest town to get it fixed, as we had no spare. But unfortunately en route we managed to somehow get another flat and were stuck without being able to move anywhere. While we were waiting for help we recorded Cape Grassbird, Yellow Bishop, Cape Weaver, and Agulhas Long-billed and Red-capped Larks. Soon we were on the road again, in high hopes of what Wilderness had to offer.

As soon as we checked in at the Kingfisher Country House we recorded Greater Double-collared, Southern Double-collared, Amethyst, and Grey Sunbirds at the feeders, with Swee and Common Waxbills and Forest Canary feeding at the seed trays. While watching these birds we noticed Chorister Robin-Chat running by and Olive Thrush coming in to investigate what all the commotion was about. Fork-tailed Drongos came right in close for something to eat, and Helmeted Guineafowls were busy on the lawn.

We then headed for the “Half-collared Kingfisher” forest trail to see what we could find, and here we recorded Terrestrial Brownbul, Cape Batis, Sombre Greenbul, and some very vocal Knysna Turacos in the canopy above us. But the beautifully sunny and windless day quickly turned into a dark grey mass of wind and rain in the distance, and the birding slowed down. But at the Rondevlei bird hide we were able to further record Common Moorhen, Red-knobbed Coot, African Darter, Great Crested and Little Grebes, African Snipe, Little Stint, and Pied Kingfisher. The day ended off well when we got really close to a few really nice species, recording 83 species amidst all the tire trouble and travel delays. We also managed to record a few more Springbok, Bontebok, and Yellow and Large Grey Mongooses.

Day 8: Full day Wilderness Birding

Cold temperatures, misty rain, and a slight breeze made birding really tough as we started out around the guest house’s gardens and the surrounding roads. We still managed to find Chorister Robin-Chat, Forest Canary, Knysna Turaco, Sombre Greenbul, and Greater Double-collared Sunbird while we walked, crawled, and crept up onto birds, but we found it very difficult to get decent views. Eventually we managed to pick up Olive Thrush, Cape Batis, Speckled Mousebird, Brimstone Canary, and Cape Spurfowl.

After a hearty breakfast we immediately headed for “The Big Tree”, which is an over-800-years-old Outeniqua Yellowwood. We connected with Brown-hooded Kingfisher and Black-bellied Starling en route. There is a magnificent indigenous forest surrounding the tree, and usually the birding there is spectacular. But once again, due to bad weather we really struggled getting what we wanted. We finally managed to get a great look at Grey Cuckooshrike, a far-off glimpse at Olive Woodpecker, and short bursts of Narina Trogon at least three times but sadly nothing good enough to make it a “tickable” species.

After a lengthy walk in the forest without great success we decided to head to another forest section, where we recorded Lemon Dove, Chorister Robin-Chat, Blue-mantle Crested Flycatcher, African Paradise Flycatcher, and Green Wood Hoopoe. We spent the rest of the day in the forest, looking for anything of interest, and eventually managed to record Malachite and Giant Kingfishers, Collared Sunbird once more, and a very amazing sighting of a pair of African Wood Owls perched above us as the sun went down, just before we exited the forest. With a bad-weather day we nevertheless recorded 61 species, which was quite good considering the conditions we had to bird in.

Day 9: Wilderness to Cape Town

With a long travel day ahead we decided to be out before sunrise for an early birding session before breakfast. We left for Victoria Bay to try to track down Knysna Warbler and White-starred Robin. After spending quite a bit of time searching and calling we managed to get a few quick views of the robin, but no Knysna Warblers were anywhere to be found. Sp we made our way to once more to the “Half Collared Kingfisher” trail to see what we could track down. Upon entering the forest we got views of Terrestrial Brownbul, Cape White-eye, Olive Thrush, and Blue-mantled Crested Flycatcher. We tried calling out Knysna Warbler, but to no avail, and went for the river crossing to get to an open clearing, where we recorded Knysna Turaco, Reed Cormorant, Lemon Dove, and Bar-throated Apalis. After crossing the river to the other side of the trail we recorded Cape Batis, Fork-tailed Drongo, Yellow-throated Woodland Warbler, African Dusky Flycatcher, and Sombre Greenbul. We headed straight back for breakfast and in the way had great views of Chorister Robin-Chat, Forest Canary, Cape Weaver, Knysna Turaco (again), and Cape Spurfowl.

Later we left Wilderness to head back to Cape Town for our last few days, which were supposed to include a pelagic trip. But unfortunately it got canceled due to the Western Cape’s very unpredictable weather. En route to Cape Town we managed to record African Sacred Ibis, Blue Crane, Jackal Buzzard, Rock Kestrel, Black-winged Kite, and Red-winged Starling. The wind was at gale force by the time we arrived in Simon’s Town, and we only managed to record Kelp and Hartlaub’s Gulls, Grey Heron, and Cape Cormorant. We decided to have a relaxed few hours before sunset, as the wind was going to hinder any productive birding. We ended the day with 60 species, which is good considering that close to six hours of our day was spent driving to Cape Town.

Day 10: Cape Town – Rooiels – Sir Lowry’s Pass

With some bad wind predicted for the day we went out to see what we could find and started off with a small village on the Cape Peninsula, called Rooiels, which is quite a reliable spot for Cape Rockjumper. Without sadly any luck on the rockjumper we were nevertheless entertained by Orange-breasted and Southern Double-collared Sunbird, Karoo Prinia, Rock Kestrel, Cape Rock Thrush, Rock Martin, Fiscal Flycatcher, and Red-winged Starling, while Kelp and Hartlaub’s Gulls flew by on the ocean side of the burnt mountain village. After a few hours without luck we went to Stony Point to have a look at African Penguins, Cape, Bank, White-breasted, and Crowned Cormorants. Here we also saw Cape Wagtail and Egyptian Geese. We decided to head along to Sir Lowry’s Pass, which is another spot known to harbor Cape Rockjumper.

Upon arriving at Sir Lowry’s Pass we managed to get a very showy Victorin’s Warbler, while a few White-necked Ravens were soaring overhead. We hiked up the hillside in hope of bumping into Ground Woodpecker and the rockjumper. As soon as we got to the top and scanned one last time, sure enough a male Cape Rockjumper was showing beautifully and gave us a great, lengthy sighting as he jumped from boulder to boulder, looking for something to eat and not paying us any attention. On our way down we got views of Peregrine Falcon flying by and of Jackal Buzzard, and just before leaving found a Striped Flufftail responding to playback, but we couldn’t manage a visual of the bird. Other records throughout the day included African Sacred Ibis, Red-winged Starling, Greater Crested and Sandwich Terns, Little Egret, Hottentot Teal, and Cape Teal. We also had great views of klipspringer as well as a few rock hyraxes running around in between the penguins. We recorded 53 species for the day, which we were quite happy with, as the wind and weather hindered any expectations of great totals.

Day 11: Cape Peninsula Birding

Today was more of a clean-up day than anything else. We focused mainly on three species and we managed to get most of the birds found on the peninsula. We started heading to the De Hel hiking trail before day break with the very difficult task of finding Knysna Warbler. This species only is vocal from around August and is usually found fiddling around in the leaf litter among the thickest of thickets on the forest floor. It is basically impossible to track it down when they’re not calling. Unfortunately we dipped on these guys, even though we were in a pretty reliable spot for them; the time of year was just wrong. We did manage to get Cape Robin-Chat, African Goshawk, Southern Double-collared Sunbird, African Dusky Flycatcher, and Sombre Greenbul.

The second species we were targeting for the day was Ground Woodpecker. These birds are quite challenging to find on the Cape Peninsula, even in their known breeding sights. En route to Rooiels, to go find these woodpeckers, we managed to see Black-winged Kite, Rock Kestrel, Rock Martin, Cape Wagtail, and Cape Rock Thrush. At the Rooiels site itself we managed Cape Siskin, Cape Rockjumper (finally!), and Karoo Prinia. The woodpecker, however, eluded us.

Our third main target for the day was Blue-mantled Crested Flycatcher, which had only been seen by one of the clients at Wilderness. For this species we went to Harold Porter National Botanical Garden. Here we recorded Cape Batis, Lemon Dove, Cape Bulbul, Familiar Chat, and Cape White-eye. Unfortunately we didn’t manage any Blue-mantel Crested Flycatcher, as it is more common this far south in the summer months.

We ended the day on the Cape of Good Hope in a last few attempts to look for Ground Woodpecker but never got to see it. But here we further recorded Kelp and Hartlaub’s Gulls, Cape and White-breasted Cormorants, Bokmakierie, Caspian and Greater Crested Terns, Red-winged Starling, Speckled Pigeon, and Southern Fiscal before ending the day back at our hotel in Simon’s Town. We managed to record 43 species for the day, while mainly having focused on a select few species. We also got to see klipspringer, Southern African vlei rat, and rock hyrax.

Day 12: Departure

We only needed to be at Cape Town International Airport around 11:00. This gave us some time to head toward Cape Point’s gate to look for Ground Woodpecker. We never managed to see the woodpecker but recorded Cape Grassbird, Grey-backed Cisticola, Karoo Prinia, Southern Boubou, White-necked Raven, Pied Crow, Black-headed Heron flying overhead, Speckled Pigeon, and Cape Wagtail at the entrance gate. It was extremely cold and misty, which hindered good visibility. After a few hours we made our way back to the hotel for breakfast before loading the luggage and heading to the airport for our flights.

In conclusion, it was a successful trip, when one considers that we managed to find 220 species in total, of which three were heard only, and 59 of the 220 were either country endemics or regional-endemics. The weather was good some days and bad on others, and we faced some technical difficulties as the trip went by (two flat tires). We managed to get great bird species and dipped on others and were quite disappointed by the cancellation of the pelagic trip, but one can’t control the weather. I’m confident that we would have gotten very close to 300 species (or even have surpassed that) if we had a few better-weather days and if the pelagic hadn’t been cancelled. We also recorded 21 mammal species, which isn’t half bad, as the Western Cape doesn’t offer the great number of larger mammals that one would get in the eastern parts of South Africa. So another trip ended into the Western Cape, which often offers tough but very rewarding birding.

 

Please see the downloadable PDF above with the full species lists included.