Weaver news

Trip to KwaZulu-Natal, 25 April - 9 May, 2015

2015-05-11 (637)

Ringing at Lake Teza,
Ali (left) and Daniel (far right) with bird club members

Although a holiday trip, some ringing was done in Zululand, Boston and Hattingspruit. A total of 160 birds of 43 species were caught (ringed or recaptured).

Zululand, 26-28 April
In Zululand, ringing was conducted at Lake Teza, a garden near the Sappi nursery north of KwaMbonambi, and at Thulazihleka Pan in Richards Bay. Ali Halajian from the University of Limpopo collected ecto-parasites from all the birds we caught in Zululand. Daniel Oschadleus completed his training as a ringer during this time. The most caught species at the Zululand sites were: Eastern Golden Weaver (14) and Yellow-eyed Canary (8) at Teza, Village Weaver (18) and Lesser Masked Weaver (13) at Thulazihleka Pan, and House Sparrow (5) in the garden. The most interesting bird caught in the garden was a Golden-rumped Tinker Barbet, and some recaptures of different species ringed there in 2014. Bird club members visited the ringing sessions.

Boston, 3 May
In Boston, ringing was done on 1 morning on the farm of Crystelle Wilson, editor of KZN Birds. A blog report, with photos, may be read here.

phown 16313
Village Weaver (non-breeding) and nest

Hattingspruit, 6-8 May
Not many birds were ringed here, but some interesting species included a Hoopoe and 3 Arrow-marked Babblers. Two Village Weavers were ringed and no Southern Masked Weavers although the latter were present - the Village Weaver seems to be increasing in Hattingspruit. Also a Spectacled Weaver was recorded in the garden for the first time, although it breeds in nearby Dundee.

Lots of weaver nests were found and submitted to PHOWN, PHOtos of Weaver Nests. Most nests were old and deserted, but weavers were seen at some colonies, eg at the Estcourt Ultra Shell (E side of N3) flocks of Village weavers were coming and going to the plane trees which contained 75 old nests. Quite a few other Virtual Museum records were also submitted, from bats to butterflies.

Thanks to all who hosted me! - Tony and Monika Roberts, Crystelle Wilson, and the Fouches.