On Monday, 22 members of the Hermanus Bird Club set out for the Koeberg Nature Reserve. Some got a bit lost along the way, as we took to the back roads in order to avoid the rush hour traffic, but in the end everyone arrived. The weather was not at its best, with a cut-off low pressure system threatening heavy rain and flooding, but we managed to spend a few hours birding and enjoyed a picnic lunch at the environmental centre.
From there we drove to SANCOB, the world-renowned rehabilitation centre for sick and injured seabirds. It was wonderful to see the dedicated team of volunteers who were working hard to nurse and feed a large flock of different species back to health. The rain then set in, so we could not proceed to Rietvlei and made for our accommodation at Blaauberg instead. Once settled in, we relaxed and enjoyed a wonderful meal and drinks at Craig’s apartment.
On Tuesday morning we braved the rush-hour traffic on our way to Kirstenbosch. The gardens were as beautiful as ever, but the overcast and windy conditions made for poor birding, before the rain came down and we took cover in the tearoom. From there we went to Rietvlei, and managed to see quite a few water birds before we were once again chased away by the weather. In the afternoon we did get in a very good visit to Intaka Island at Century City, and we were all amazed to learn about the wonderful environmental work that is undertaken in this reserve.
Another night of heavy rain threatened to spoil Wednesday’s events and this was indeed the case, although a few intrepid souls who missed the Rietvlei outing went there after breakfast. Renee and I, having learnt that our new IDs were ready, spent three hours queuing at the Home Affairs Office, instead. What a way to end a birding trip!!