Kgalagadi part 3: Kalahari birdlife

Pale chanting goshawk coming to land flying

The birdlife in KTP is truly awesome.  Zephne (Tam’s mom) and I would go out each morning and could happily pass three or four hours without getting bored.  I got some great shots during our visit, but my favorites are these of the pale chanting goshawk.  There was certainly no shortage of these guys in KTP, but it was only on the last day that I finally got some decent photos of them.  We were sitting at Cubitje Kwap waterhole photographing the Bateleurs that came to drink when this guy came swooping in.  Zephne and I then sat with our lenses trained on him waiting for him to fly off after his drink, and we waited, and waited, and waited.  After about 45min my back was going into spasm and Zephne was complaining about feeling dizzy after looking through the viewfinder for too long.  We were seriously contemplating getting Herman (Tam’s dad) to get out the car and throw stones at him, but Tam ensured we behaved.  Eventually Herman suggested we drive around and try get some back-lit photos, to which we agreed and made no small amount of noise repositioning the car on the other side of the waterhole.  In the process all the other birds flew off, but not this guy.  He was quite happy still standing exactly where he landed with only his head visible.  After an hour and five minutes (verified by the photo time stamps) he finally hopped up onto a rock on the edge of the waterhole, and that’s where we left him for the night.  Talk about a bird brain!

Pale chanting goshawk landing flying


Pale chanting goshawk landing backlight

Look how comfortable he looks on one leg and all.  I bet he slept there.

Pale chanting goshawk backlight




juvenile bateleur in flight


juvenile bateleur


Sandgrouse flying


sandgrouse in flight


sandgrouse flying coming in to land


sandgrouse takeoff


sandgrouse takeoff


sandgrouse landing


sandgrouse takeoff


cape turtle dove landing


caoe turtle dove landing


cape turtle dove takeoff


lappet faced vulture in kgalagadi


kori bustard in kgalagadi


doves in kgalagadi


red eyed bull bull in kgalagadi


socialble weaver in kgalagadi


black korhaan in kgalagadi


socialble weaver in kgalagadi

I wish I could say that these two photos of the lilac breasted roller landing were mine, but alas, they were taken by Zephne.  Great photos!

lilac breasted roller landing in kgalagadi


lilac breasted roller landing in kgalagadi


striped kingfisher in kgalagadi


fiscal flycatcher in kgalagadi


yellow billed hornbill in kgalagadi


black crow in kgalagadi


african hoopoe in kgalagadi


sandgrouse in kgalagadi


Crimson breasted shrike kgalagadi


crimson breasted shrike kgalagadi


lilac breasted roller


secretary bird kgalagadi


swallow tailed bee-eater landing kgalagadi


glossy starling kgalagadi


Marico flycatcher kgalagadi


scaly feathered finch


marico flycatcher


pygmy falcon