Weaver news

Ringing and PHOWNing in Hopefield

2012-02-26 (192)

On 25 Feb 2012 Doug Harebottle and I ringed on the Sout River in Hopefield for the West Coast Bird Club. Angus & Gill Stewart had found a weaver roosting site in advance of our visit, and this meant Cape Weavers were the top ringed species. In total 56 birds were caught:
1 Little Bittern
1 White-backed Mousebird
3 Malachite Kingfisher
7 Lesser Swamp Warbler
4 Levaillant's Cisticola
1 Karoo Prinia
1 Common Fiscal
9 Southern Double-collared Sunbird
22 Cape Weaver
7 Southern Masked Weaver
Cape Weaver adult males retain white or cream eyes in winter (see here) but the bill is dark and the head dull coloured rather than bright yellow. Adult females in winter are duller below, the eye is brown or sometimes pale, and the bill horn coloured. The male in the photo is in normal winter plaumge but the bill is already turning black - other males had dark bills.

In the evening the West Coast Bird Club hosted a braai at Windstone farm, where Doug and I gave talks on SABAP2 and PHOWN.

On the way back to Cape Town several weaver colonies were found - interestingly most of these Cape Weaver and Southern Red Bishop colonies had the respective species present at the colonies although there was no current breeding (records VM 1963 to VM 1967).

Thanks to Gill & Angus Stewart for hosting Doug and Dieter's families for a wonderful weekend!

More photos on facebook.