Another trip highlight was the excellent forest birding along the garden route, around Wilderness, Knysna, and Nature’s Valley to the east. We stayed for three nights at the excellent Kingfisher Country House, where each day begins with a superb breakfast and some great birds just inches away. A selection of bird feeders have obviously been in place for quite some years, attracting forest specialities in for excellent views. Picture the scene:
The undisputed highlight for me was the Knysna Turaco, with at least three birds coming in to munch on breadcrumbs… not a bad looking bird!
Other forest specials included Black-bellied Starling and Chorister Robin-chat:
And then there’s an array of commoner birds, including dapper Swee Waxbills:
… iridiscent Amethyst Sunbirds (as well as Southern and Greater Double-collared Sunbirds and a Gray Sunbird, on the western extreme of its range)…
… handsome Olive Thrushes…
… and atypically showy Terrestrial Brownbuls, much trickier to see well elsewhere.
Also noted on the breakfast table itself were homemade quiches, frittata, filled potato skins and muffins, and an excellent selection of cereals, sausages, bacon, eggs, coffee and fruit juice. Given this little lot, it was very difficult to tear ourselves away to go birding elsewhere… and not just because we’d eaten too much!