Rare bird spotted at Rust de Winter – African Skimmer, Waterploeër, (Rynchops flavirostris)

African Skimmer, Waterploeër, (Rynchops flavirostris)

African Skimmer, Waterploeër, (Rynchops flavirostris)

African Skimmer, Waterploeër, (Rynchops flavirostris)

First rarity for me. I was blessed to see a juvenile African Skimmer at Rust de Winter on Saturday morning. Thanks to Rihann Geyser for confirming it Sunday evening and to Willem Basson for the availability of Kwandaba Lodge www.kwandaba.co.za. Kwandaba which forms the northern border of the dam, is the ideal base for birding in this area.
Birders can contact me directly for more info – Ben Fouche www.birdwatcher.co.za
Saterday morning 4 May 2013 6h45. I was realy blessed to spot the young African Skimmer. We stayed at Kwandaba lodge and decided to walk one of the two pentads covering the farm. We (myself and Tiaan Muller) arrived at the spot approximately 6h45 where I saw the bird flying up and down the shoreline. I noticed the red bill and knew that it must be a Skimmer, but also that they do not accur in the area. Fortunately I had a camera with me and took a few pictures , some of them not to far out of focus. Sunday evening , back home, when editing and browsing the pictures I realised that it must be a African Skimmer and immediately phone Rihaan Geyser, who confirmed it after I sent some picture to him.
We will be out ther on Teusday morning to see if we can spot it again and try for better pictures.
Many thanks to Willem and Tina of Kwandaba lodge. Kwandaba is a game farm bordering on the northern side of the Rust de Winter dam. Kwandaba is an exellent base for birders and guided birding trips can be arranged via BIRDWATCHER (www.birdwatcher.co.za) . Professional birders like Rihann Geyser is part of or birding events and the lodge can cater for more that 50 birders. For more information on the next birding event, contact Ben Fouche on 0825558122.
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