Sunday, 2 December 2012

**UPDATED** Outing report- 2nd December 2012 Winklespruit Beach

Scanning the mudflats at the Lovu River mouth
(Photo Andy Ruffle)

Attendees: Stan & Val Culley, Caryl Lowe, Andy Ruffle, Bob & Hazel van Rooyen, Ron Whitham, Barry Willis & Sue Hansbury. (9 attendees)

This was the club's first visit to Winklespruit Beach, located at the mouth of the Lovu River. It was chosen, by the committee, as a closer and more accessible possible alternative to Bayhead Nature Reserve.
We began the morning with a walk along the main beach towards the river mouth. White-fronted Plover scurried across the sand; Little Stint, Ruddy Turnstone and Three-banded Plover worked the tidal zone and a flock of Swift Terns were seen roosting at the mouth.
Our next stop was a municipal picnic area, on the banks of the river, with good views of the mouth and mudflats.

View of the river mouth from the picnic area
(Photo Andy Ruffle)

Here, we picked up Common Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, Common Ringed Plover, Common Tern, Pink-backed Pelican, African Spoonbill, Woolly-necked Stork and more. This was also the perfect spot for breakfast and is also suitable for a braai on future visits.

Four Pink-backed Pelican fly up the Lovu River
(Photo Andy Ruffle)

Our final stop was to check out a lovely view point along the Msimbazi River at Karridene. Here we found two Bar-tailed Godwit, Water Thick-knee and Green-backed Heron amongst others.
The day certainly proved to be a viable alternative to Bayhead, with some interesting sightings and who knows what might turn up in this area.
A special thanks goes to, local birder, Barry Swaddle who suggested the area and advised on the best spots to visit.

UPDATE:- Whilst editing her photos from Winklespruit, Hazel noticed this Swift Tern had been hooked. Unfortunately, this is not an uncommon occurance- see our previous post here.

Swift Tern with a fishing hook caught in it's beak
(Photo Hazel van Rooyen)

Birds recorded: Barn Swallow, Red-winged Starling, Lesser Striped Swallow, House Sparrow, Cape White-eye, White-fronted Plover, Little Stint, Red-eyed Dove, White-breasted Cormorant, Woolly-necked Stork, Grey-headed Gull, Swift Tern, Hadeda Ibis, Yellow-billed Kite, Common Myna, Ruddy Turnstone, Three-banded Plover, Pied Kingfisher, Grey Heron, Sombre Greenbul, Southern Red Bishop, Egyptian Goose, African Spoonbill, Blacksmith Lapwing, African Green-Pigeon, Common Tern, Dark-capped Bulbul, Common Sandpiper, Pink-backed Pelican, Little Egret, Common Ringed Plover, Common Greenshank, Yellow Weaver, Bronze Mannikin, Spectacled Weaver, Burchell's Coucal, Yellow-bellied Greenbul, Southern Black Tit, Village Weaver, Yellow-billed Duck, Black-bellied Starling, Little Swift, White-throated Swallow, African Pied Wagtail, Lesser Swamp-Warbler, Violet-backed Starling, Tawny-flanked Prinia, Black-headed Heron, Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird, Diderick Cuckoo, Cardinal Woodpecker, Black-collared Barbet, Bar-tailed Godwit, Water Thick-knee, Southern Grey-headed Sparrow, Fan-tailed Widowbird, Green-backed Heron, Rattling Cisticola, African Fish-Eagle. (60 species)

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