23 April 2022

Soggy and wet

09 April 2022 - Glen Austin Pan

Although it was a gloomy drizzly day, I spent around an hour and a half at Glen Austin Pan - checking again for emerging Bullfrog's after a good amount of late summer/early autumn rain. No luck, but this site always seems to produce one or two interesting species.

The first was a Hamerkop which I have not recorded here before

Hamerkop (Scopus umbretta)

Followed by Squacco Heron which is an occasional visitor rather than common resident. I also heard Orange River Francolin and Crimson-breasted Shrike, but no chance of any images - but two good records for the Pentad!

Reed Cormorant (Microcarbo africanus) and Squacco Heron (Ardeola ralloides)

It is the start of Autumn, yet Red-knobbed Coot's are courting and sitting on nests. I believe they are taking advantage of the late rains to raise more young

Red-knobbed Coot (Fulica cristata)

A Lesser Swamp Warbler was inquisitive and I managed to get a few pics out in the open

Lesser Swamp Warbler (Acrocephalus gracilirostris)

I saw two pairs of White-backed Ducks, both with recently fledged ducklings - I love these Ducks and they can be quite cryptic

White-backed Duck (Thalassornis leuconotus) - 1st pair

White-backed Duck (Thalassornis leuconotus) - 2nd pair

Blending in

In amongst the other waterfowl, a few Southern Pochard's were close enough to get papped

Male Southern Pochard (Netta erythrophthalma)

Female Southern Pochard (Netta erythrophthalma)

The water levels should remain fairly high into winter and that may bode well in attracting other uncommon or occasional visitors - I will continue to visit at least once a month

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