The second BDI bird ringing course at the New Holme Lodge, in the KhoiSan Karoo Conservancy, has been completed. Eight attendees had an exciting week of ringing new species, enjoying birding, going on a night drive, and tasting excellent meals! Some special birds seen included Osprey, Jacobin Cuckoo and Melodious Lark. (Cover photo: Little Stint)
The total number of birds caught was nearly 500 birds of an amazing 30 species. The top species caught was the Southern Red Bishop (162), followed by Cape Sparrow (119), and Southern Masked-Weaver (98). The weavers were actively breeding, with most females having brood patches. The bishops were preparing to breed, with lots of activity.
On our way to New Holme, we visited Rietaar farm where we were able to ring some Barn Owl chicks (5 of 9 nestlings were large enough for ringing). At New Holme we also ringed 3 Hoopoe chicks from a tree hole cavity – at least 2 more chicks could not be reached. A family of Common Fiscals, including 4 juveniles, was caught in the mistnets.
Wattled Starlings were seen in the fields, but not near the homestead where most ringing was done. But we did catch some Pied Starlings and the resident pair of Cape Glossy Starlings.
A day of ringing in the karoo veld did not produce many birds because of high winds. We also experienced some unseasonal thunder showers with lots of rain on one or two afternoons, but still had exceptional numbers of birds when it wasn’t raining.
We visited neighbouring farm, Mielefontein, where we caught a good number of birds. The potential is great, with many interesting species seen, including 3 Painted Snipe.
To join a ringing course, see dates and contact person here.
Table of ringing totals, KhoiSan Karoo Conservancy, 30 October to 6 November 2022
|Sp no||Species||Ringed+Retrapped||Rietaar||Mieliefontein||New Holme||Retraps|
|502||Greater Striped Swallow||5||5|
|544||African Red-eyed Bulbul||2||2|
|737||Cape Glossy Starling||2||2|
|746||African Pied Starling||8||8||3|
|808||Southern Red Bishop||162||6||156||13|
|4142||Southern Greyheaded Sparrow||6||1||5|
Thanks to all the staff at New Holme Lodge for hosting us so well!
Well done to Karis who can now be upgraded from trainee to ringer!
The next BDI bird ringing course will be held at Botuin, Vanrhynsdorp, in February 2023. We plan to hold the next BDI bird ringing course at New Holme is planned for 1 to 7 September 2023 (details of all future ringing courses in Events).