Many, many, maaaaannnnnyyyyy years ago, when in my first year at high school, I was shanghaied into playing a part in this Gilbert and Sullivan production of Mikado…. I was to play a maiden…
Now I have to thank my lucky stars that it was not a major part, but rather one of the young maiden chorus group… now stop that laughing… I may still need to visit a shrink in years to come…
When these three ducks or Cape teal came swimming around the corner the song came back to me as if it was yesterday…. Now I know I need psychologist….
Three little maids from school are we
Pert as a school-girl well can be
filled to the brim with girlish glee
Three little maids from school……………… hell I have a shiver going down my back….
Can you that know me, picture this body playing the part of a school girl ? Dressed in a pinafore reaching the ground…. and a bonnet six foot high (slight exaggeration) on my head and a forehead of curls that were made using curling irons ?? Didn’t think so… you don’t know how I prayed for the proverbial things to drop that my high voice would become a deep thunder……
But any way here is a few other photos of the Cape Teal…
Crested Barbet (Trachyphonus vaillantii)
You can’t miss this bird with its very colourful plumage the Crested Barbet is unmistakable. This small bird has a speckled yellow and red face with a small black crest. The belly is yellow with red speckles, wings are black with white specks and it has a broad black band on its neck. Yellow head and body with black and white feathers, with red markings on the head of the body, its colour blends in so well in the bush. A coat of many colours.
But this one I’ve been trying to capture at the right time of the day.. but had to put up with bad light and all the wrong conditions that all the experts say you should not bother shooting in and captured him today at midday..
and now for the fashion show showing this years trends….
TaaDaaaaaaaa ….. Now for our first shot we show the black back with white flecks, very in fashion this season….
Notice the orange hues of the neck and darkening of the ears.. all make up should concentrate in this area for the season….
Red around the backside is very in this season so do concentrate on that and ensure your trailing tail is black with white dots….
Chew fruit this year rather than gum…. and dye the front of your hair red…
Note the red dye in the front of the head… (Red hair is in Blonde out) wear a black and white bib..
This gives one a better perspective of the black and white bib.. always wear yellow dress with red flecks or dots… very in this year Ladies…
please send full size photos of your like fashion to this site for critique from the fashion Guru…the Bulldog…
And that Ladies and Gentlemen concludes our fashion show for the day…
Kori Bustard (Ardeotis kori).
The Kori Bustard is a large bird native to Africa. It is a member of the bustard family. It may be the heaviest bird capable of flight.
The male Kori Bustard is 120 to 150 cm (3.9 to 4.9 ft.), stands 71–120 cm (2.33–3.9 ft.) tall and have a wingspan about 230 to 275 cm (7.5 to 9.02 ft.). On average, male birds weigh between 10.9–16 kg (24–35 lb.), averaging 13.5 kg (30 lb.) but exceptional birds may weigh up to 20 kg (44 lb.).
Kori Bustards spend most of their time on the ground, though can forage occasionally in low bushes and trees. Being a large and heavy bird, it avoids flying if possible. This bustard is a watchful and wary bird. This large bird has a loud, booming mating call which is often uttered just before dawn and can be heard from far away.
they are quite omnivorous birds. Insects are an important food source, with common species such as locusts, grasshoppers, dung beetles and caterpillars being most often taken. Small vertebrates may also be taken regularly, including lizards, chameleons, snakes, small mammals and bird eggs and nestlings.
The breeding season is between October and March, the males hold their heads backwards, with cheeks bulging, the crest is held erect, the bill open and they inflate their gular pouches, forming a white throat "balloon". They have polygamous breeding habits, where one male displays to attract several females and mates with them all… typical macho man…
Black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas)
It is also known as the silver-backed or red jackal, and is a species of jackal which inhabits two areas of the African continent separated by roughly 900 km.
One region includes the southern-most tip of the continent, including South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe. The other area is along the eastern coastline, including Kenya, Somalia, Djibouti and Ethiopia.
It is the oldest extant member of the genus Canis. In other words it’s one old dog…. Although the most lightly built of jackals, it is the most aggressive, having been observed to singly kill animals many times its own size, and its intra-pack relationships are more quarrelsome.
Black-backed jackals are small, fox-like canids and are the smallest of the three species called jackal. They measure 30–48 cm (12–19 in) in shoulder height and 60–90 cm (24–35 in) in length. The tail measures 26–40 cm (10–16 in) in length. Male jackals weigh 6.8-9.5 kg (15-21 lb.), while females weigh 5.4–10 kg (12-22 lb.).
Jackals usually den in holes made by other species, though they will occasionally dig their own; females will dig tunnels 1–2 metres in depth with a 1-metre-wide entrance. Black-backed jackals are monogamous and territorial animals, and with the assistance of the elder offspring, the pups are raised. This has a greater bearing on pup survival. During the mating season, they become increasingly more vocal and territorial, with dominant animals preventing same family subordinates from mating through constant harassment.
Burchell’s Coucal (Centropus burchellii)
A coucal is one of about 30 species of birds in the cuckoo family. All of them belong in the subfamily Centropodinae and the genus Centropus. Now that should give you a hint as to the Beast side of the bird…
This bird is so beautiful, shy and yet such a beast when it comes to it’s eating habits. It is well known for its haunting call, that once begun by one, is joined by all in the area Click here to get a quick version of the call.
It has a chestnut-brown back and similar wing feathers and a long tail that flops along as though it has no control over it, with marked bands in its upper parts. with a flattish head that it often pulls back as though to hide itself.
Unlike many cuckoos, coucals are not brood parasites. On the other hand they do have their own reproductive peculiarity: all members of the genus are to varying degrees sex-role reversed so that the smaller male provides most of the parental care. Typical “henpecked male syndrome”.
The Burchell’s Coucal eats any prey smaller than itself, and it’s not small, (40 cm long and approx. 180 grams) it has a particular liking for young nestlings and the eggs of other birds. It will seek out and eat off the nest whatever it can find, and for this reason I call it a beast… but then I suppose this is nature in the raw…..
The first two photos I played with, I wanted to get something which a friend of mine is going to try and paint… what do you think..??