Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Post no 13 on Birds from Southern Africa.

This post is a little different, as these are photos taken by a friend Christelle Miller, while in the Kruger national park in May 2018. A few also from Mahikeng on their return from Kruger.
Thanks go to Christelle for allowing me to use these photos on my blog.
I hope that my identification is correct, please let me know if there should be any mistakes.
Giant Kingfisher (Megaceryle maxima) The largest of the kingfishers. It is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying it will seek out a new mate. It creates its nest in a hole in the ground and lays eggs which are white in colour and number between 3 to 5. The Giant Kingfisher feeds in, or around water mainly, eating aquatic life forms.  Kruger.

Brown-hooded Kingfisher (Halcyon albiventris). It is a bird about the same size as a starling. The height is about 24 cms and its weight is about 60 gms. Also monogamous unless its mate dies; and again, the nest is a hole in the ground. Preferred habitat; woodlands and riverine areas or along wetlands. Kruger.

Pied Kingfisher (Ceryle rudis) is a medium size bird living close to water...

Studies show that it has a complex behaviour. It may have several non-breeding birds as helpers, up to four. They sometimes are the young of the previous year, but they may be completely exterior to the pairing family...

Hovering in preparation for diving into the water for food.  Kruger.


Malachite Kingfisher ( Alcedo cristata). This small bird it is about 14 cms in height and its weight is about 17 gms. It feeds in, or around water, mainly on Aquatic life forms. Also monogamous unless its mate dies, and as in the first two kingfishers posted here, it nests in a hole in the ground.  Kruger.


Crested Barbet (Trachyphonus vaillantii). A small bird about 23 cms in height and its weight is about 80 gms. Its diet is mainly Invertebrates and fruits....

Another bird that is monogamous unless its mate dies. They create the nest in a hole in a tree trunk. The bird lays eggs which are white in colour and number between 2 to 5.  Garden in Mahikeng.

Marico Sunbird (Cinnyris mariquensis) female. It feeds mainly on nectar and arthropods, gleaning prey from foliage and hawking insects aerially.  As you can see here though it is also eating fruit...

The nest is built solely by the female in about 6-12 days, consisting of a compact, pear-shaped structure built of dry grass reinforced with spider web, with a side-top entrance covered by a hood of grass stems. It is usually camouflaged using dark material. 1-3 eggs are laid which are incubated solely by the female for about 13-15 days. The chicks are fed solely by the female, but once they fledge, both parents continue to feed them for weeks after. Garden in Mahikeng.

Speckled Mousebird (Colius striata).  It is a noisy species, with loud warning calls. It avoids arid regions and dense woodlands, but is quite common in other places, including suburban gardens. Often seen in groups of up to 20 birds. This species lives in flocks all year round, including the breeding season. It feeds mainly on plant matter such as fruits, buds, flowers and leaves. It also consumes nectar. It often damages orchards and plantations, eating cultivated fruits and flowers. It is monogamous and may have helpers. The nest is situated in tree or bush, at 2 to 3 metres above the ground. Garden in Mahikeng


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20 comments:

  1. Spectacular. Especially love the variety of kingfishers. We have only one species here.

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    1. Marie there are 10 species of kingfisher in Southern Africa so it is worth sitting around in the right spot and hope to see some of them. Happy day Diane

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  2. Great pics and post. Loving the info about each bird xx

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    1. Thanks Gaynor. Theyre are some lovely birds in Southerrn Africa, I need more time there:-) Hope all is well Diane

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  3. Stunning, wonderful birds! Love the photos...thank your friend!

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    1. Thanks for commenting, wil let Christelle know. Have a good day. Diane.

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  4. Fabulous birds Diane, fantastic photos! Loved looking at them.

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    1. Hi Denise glad you enjoyed them. Christelle took quite a few photos, I have them all to go through so more photos of African birds to come yet. Take care Diane

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  5. I wasn't aware there are so many different kinds of kingfishers. Love seeing your bird pics. They are fantastic!

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    1. Betty, I have no idea how many species there are in the world, but there are 10 in Southern Africa alone. Thanks for the comment. Happy day Diane

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  6. Hi Diane. The Kingfisher family of birds is rather special and I'm lucky enough to have seen some of those you post today - Giant Kingfisher in Gambia - wow it is a giant. Malachite the same and Pied Kingfisher in both Kenya and Gambia. Wonderful memories - Thank you.

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    1. Phil it sounds like you would like to take a trip back there again. I know I am hoping that we will get another chance to go there before travelling too far, is too much for the old bones. I have travelled from Algiers to Cape town in Africa through the Sahara, but I have only touched down in Kenya for plane refuelling. That was the days when we stopped twice to refuel between Rhodesia and London!!!!! Have a good week Diane

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  7. Kingfishers are such amazing birds - wow!

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    1. I love kingfishers but around here I seldom ever get to see them :-( Take care Diane

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  8. Oh wow, Diane. I just happened on your African bird blog today. Amazing images. Thanks for sharing and for the descriptions. Thanks for regularly visiting my blog, I've had a period of not blogging every day which isn't like me at all. I'm trying hard to be on there more from now on! Take care. Jo PS Remember, when you next come to SA please visit the Central berg. I would love to meet you.

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    1. Hi Jo, It would be great to meet up but very unlikely that we would get to the Drakensberg. We spend all our time with friends, staying with them and at the game reserves with them. We are always far from the Berg. Glad you like this blog. Take care Diane

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  9. There are some good looking creatures here.

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    1. Thanks for the visit and the comment. Cheers Diane

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  10. Oh I do love a kingfisher - some great examples here!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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    1. I am glad that Christelle saw so many Kingfishes, we only saw a couple while we were there. Cheers Diane

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Thanks so much for commenting, it is appreciated and it is my policy to try to answer every one even if only to say thank you.