24 – 25 August 2013 – of owls and pipits…

Trevor had been advised that he would be receiving an Owl Award from BirdLife South Africa at a function in Johannesburg on Saturday evening, so we travelled up to Gauteng late this morning. Owl Awards are presented to people who are thought to have done something beyond the normal call of duty to further the philosophy of BirdLife South Africa which it to promote the enjoyment of and conservation of birds and their habitats in South Africa, so it was quite an honour to be receiving this award.

After landing at OR Tambo International Airport and collecting our hire car, we made our way out to Muldersdrift where the function would be taking place and also where would be staying over. What we hadn’t really thought through was that, if we had flown to Lanseria Airport instead, we would have been right where we needed to be instead of having to drive all this way – sometimes, we make some silly mistakes…:)

We arrived at the Misty Hills Country Hotel late afternoon and booked into our accommodation before cleaning up and getting ready for the function. When we got together for the welcome drinks at around 5pm, it was great to see so many other familiar faces there, many of whom we had not seen in quite some time. The function was a great event and, with so many birding friends there, ended up in a lot of socialising as well which turned into a VERY late night! A great experience all round and thank you very much to BirdLife South Africa for the honour of this award.

Trevor receives the award from the President and Vice Chairman of BLSA

Trevor receives the award from the President and Vice Chairman of BLSA

Sunday was a late start and then a very relaxed breakfast with a bunch of friends who had stayed over at the hotel. When we eventually managed to pull ourselves away from there, we decided to head over to Krugersdorp Game Reserve about 20km away where we had been told that Striped Pipit was quite easy to see. Since we had never photographed this species before, we thought we would give it a try. After all, we were right there anyway…

It didn’t take long after arriving to locate the birds and eventually, we managed to get reasonably close to them. Unfortunately, because of our very late start, the light was already a bit harsh, so we will definitely try and get back there again in the future at a better time of day for photography, but it was good to at least be able to aim the camera at a new species for a change. Once done there and, after a late lunch at a local restaurant, we made our way back to the airport to begin the journey back home. Not the greatest biodiversity weekend in the world, but fantastic from a social point of view and, sometimes, that is also important…:)

Striped Pipit

Striped Pipit

Striped Pipit

Striped Pipit

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~ by hardakerwildlife on September 29, 2013.

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