- Bird

Pafuri space half 1 – 10,000 Birds


Pafuri lies within the northernmost a part of the Kruger Nationwide Park and is described as “a number of the most probably productive birding territory in South Africa” on the SANParks web site.

The White-backed Vulture was “not thought of of conservation concern till 2007, after which its menace standing has been successively elevated, turning into Critically Endangered in 2015 following extreme decline in a number of components of vary and chance of constant decline.” (HBW)

One examine discovered that birds dwelling in Botswana had elevated ranges of lead of their bloodstreams throughout searching season, presumably coming from lead bullets used on animals killed by hunters.

Different – sadly slightly widespread – causes are habitat loss because of agricultural growth and using some veterinary medication.

A barely extra stunning menace for the vultures comes from elephants. Elephants destroy the timber the vultures reside and nest in. Vultures, due to this fact, have a tendency to not nest in areas with excessive elephant populations (supply).

Dangerous developments certainly, significantly because the White-backed Vulture was discovered to be a great avian biomonitor species – if it does badly, almost certainly the surroundings as an entire will do badly, too.  

Jameson’s Firefinch is a fantastic small chicken named for what was most likely a really unhealthy individual, James Sligo Jameson.

In line with the Eponym Dictionary of Birds (Helm, 2014), “James Sligo Jameson (1856–1888) was an Irish hunter, explorer, and naturalist. He collected in … the Belgian Congo, the place he died of hemorrhagic fever at Bangala … In line with his obituary in The Occasions (8 November 1890), he witnessed a cannibal banquet within the Higher Congo and was accused by Stanley of instigating it.”

A extra detailed – and extra horrifying – description is given at birdnamesforbirds.com:

“It’s doubtless on this context that Jameson, completely satisfied that the native individuals have been cannibals, supplied a pacesetter of the group six handkerchiefs in trade for them killing and consuming a ten 12 months previous woman bought for that function. The passage by which he describes this occasion in his journal is extremely repugnant, each for its violence and its intense racism”.

This is perhaps an excellent species to be renamed.

After all, that’s the huge subject of the web site quoted above: “Chicken Names For Birds – As a result of birds don’t want eponymous or honorific widespread names”.

eBird describes Blacksmith Lapwings as “daring and courageous mother and father” as they “have been identified to launch defensive assaults on African Elephants”. Overconfident and silly, extra like …

Anyway, it virtually appears as if elephants are the largest menace to birds at Letaba – see the bit on the White-backed Vulture above …

The identify of the species derives from the repeated metallic ‘tink, tink, tink’ alarm name suggesting a blacksmith’s hammer hanging an anvil (supply). Possibly the chicken thinks it will drive the elephants away?

eBird offers a sympathetic description of the Ring-necked Dove: “A small, largely gray-brown ‘ringneck’ dove with a gentle-looking darkish eye”.

I’ve to confess that this identification is usually based mostly on location – Wikipedia additionally states that “plenty of Streptopelia species are very related in look, all having semi-collars and subdued plumage tones”. Unsure whether or not all of them have gentle-looking eyes although.

For the reason that final time it was made enjoyable of in my weblog, the Marabu Stork has not gotten any prettier.

I believe I missed discussing the Terrestrial Brownbul in my in-depth evaluation of bulbuls, as I solely looked for bulbuls, greenbuls, and finchbills amongst my picture assortment when writing that put up.

Nonetheless, because the identify “brownbul” suggests (not helped by the “terrestrial”, which sounds slightly down-to-earth too), this isn’t a chicken you’d proudly take a photograph of and ship to your mom must you get married to it. eBird calls it “a uninteresting, darkish brown, gregarious understory brownbul”.

German pals just lately despatched me a photograph of a chicken that they had not seen earlier than (they fake to be concerned with birds now in a hopeless try to impress me). I may instantly inform them it was an Egyptian Goose – an invasive species in Germany however not at Kruger.

The HBW states that “even of their native vary of Africa, they’re thought of pests because of their willingness to eat farmer’s crops and their prevalence on golf programs”. I’ve to say, destroying golf programs clearly is one thing I maintain of their favor.

It typically nonetheless amazes me how a lot scientific work is finished to show the bleeding apparent (effectively, I suppose that’s what all of the free work of Ph.D. college students is useful). For instance, this examine confirmed that Malachite Kingfishers spent extra time searching in areas with extra fish.

Within the language of a scientific paper, that is phrased as “Fish density turned out to be crucial ecological parameter”. Sounds a bit extra spectacular, I suppose.

In case you are a slightly silly or inexperienced Gray Go-Away Chicken, you might be more likely to construct your nest in mistletoe. A examine discovered that the survival for nests in mistletoe was 22.1% in contrast with 90.5% for nests in different substrates over the 50-day nesting interval.

Properly, truly the examine does probably not name these mistletoe nesters silly – that may be a bit too unkind, apparently – however slightly states that “nesting in mistletoe could also be maladaptive”. By some means this looks like a great second to say the Darwin Awards however so far as I do know, they’re solely given to people, to not animals.

Apparently, in some areas the place Cattle Egrets don’t primarily affiliate with cattle however with different animals, their identify within the native language modifications accordingly. So, you’d have a “Hippopotamus Egret”, a “Rhinoceros Egret” or an “Elephant Chicken” (supply).

There are about 16 chicken species referred to as robin-chats. To me, the hyphen nonetheless in some way appears to recommend that these birds are constructed from components of two totally different birds, which is clearly nonsense … It is a White-throated Robin-Chat.

At Pafuri, the Pink-backed Shrike was most likely the species that regarded closest to some species I’m acquainted with from Shanghai.

Additionally, I discovered that the phrase “shrike” is from Outdated English scric,  scríc, “shriek”, a reference to the shrill name of the chicken (supply: Oxford English Dictionary).

I suppose that is the wind, not a extremely individualistic coiffure.

Retz’s Helmetshrike is among the 8 helmetshrikes throughout the bigger household of Vangidae – apparently, a household that advanced from a single Madagascar-based species.

Typical for the great world of ornithology, it’s not a shrike. And I don’t see a lot of a helmet both.

The individual the Retz’s Helmetshrike is known as for – the Swedish anatomist Anders Retzius – has come below disrepute as he believed in humankind being derived from totally different races. He additionally laid the groundwork for some pseudoscience – phrenology – “the examine of the conformation of the cranium as indicative of psychological schools and traits of character” (Brittanica).

Subsequently, in 2015, the Swedish Society for Anthropology and Geography stopped awarding the Anders Retzius Medal (supply). Why a poor chicken nonetheless has to put on his identify shouldn’t be instantly apparent to me.

In higher pictures than this one, the Jap Nicator truly appears fairly fascinating.

My excuse comes from a web site on South African birds: “Shy and skulking, the Jap Nicator is extra typically heard than seen and is certainly not the form of chicken that can sit out within the open for all to see and {photograph}. … It normally goes unnoticed within the habitat it frequents”

That may be very totally different from the Rufous-crowned Curler, a showboat with a choice for sitting conspicuously within the open. It’s the heaviest among the many rollers in Africa.

Someplace within the outbacks of the Periodical System of Birds, there’s a household named Malaconotidae (Bushshrikes and Allies), which incorporates the genus Tchagra and therein the species Brown-crowned Tchagra.

Strive to not combine this species up with the phrase chacra – in keeping with this presumably extremely scientific web site, “The seven chakras are the principle vitality facilities of the physique. You’ve most likely heard individuals discuss ‘unblocking’ their chakras, which refers to the concept when all of our chakras are open, vitality can run via them freely, and concord exists between the bodily physique, thoughts, and spirit.”

To make clear: Tchagra = Chicken species = Can’t be unblocked. Chakra = Power Middle of the Physique = Could be unblocked. Mixing these two up is harmful for you and probably for the chicken.

On zooniverse.com, I discovered the next transient entry (with out extra context): “It is a #starling, both Burchell’s Starling or Meves’s Starling.”

That got here as a aid as had issues figuring out the pictures under. I believe these two could also be Meves’s Starling

… whereas I’m not certain in any respect about these ones.

By the way, each are named after European scientists – one after the German ornithologist Friedrich Wilhelm Meves, the opposite after the English naturalist William John Burchell. The Wikipedia biography of the latter accommodates the marginally grisly assertion “Burchell died in Fulham in 1863, ending his personal life by hanging himself in a small outhouse in his backyard, after a non-fatal suicide try by taking pictures”.

After all, Pafuri additionally has the same old ineffective non-birds that distract birders from what issues. As it’s customary in my weblog, I’ll politely keep away from commenting on their many deficiencies in comparison with the avian world.



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