A Winter Birding Traverse – Part 11 – Satara to Sirheni

Leaving Satara Camp we traveled north to Shingwedzi for a night en route to Sirheni.  It was early and as we reached a grassy section of the park, we were delighted to see huge numbers of Francolin and Spurfowl along the road edges.  Then suddenly we saw smaller birds and, on stopping, were very pleased to see that they were Harlequin Quails. There must have been around 30 of them spread in small groups over about a kilometre or two.  This was a real bonus as we had not seen any for many years.

At Shingwedzi, we looked for Verreaux’s Eagle Owl along the river, but without success. There were, however, many other birds in small parties and we were happy to park close to them and observe their interactions.

After a night at Shingwedzi we went further north to the very comfortable small camp at Sirheni.  The dam that the camp fronted on to has been washed away, so there was only the dry riverbed in front of us.  We spent three nights there and were visited every evening by a leopard or two, unfortunately after dark, so we did not see them, but they made a lot of noise!

Travelling north from Sirheni took us to Punda Maria, where the Flycathcer Trail was rewarding in that it brought us close to a flock of Crested Guineafowl.  Roads in the camp vicinity proved to be good for birding as well. On our second day we visited Pafuri, really enjoying the scenery and wildlife that the area had to offer.  We saw many elephants and antelope.

This was our last stop in the Kruger Park and we did not relish the idea of leaving.

To be continued….


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