A supposedly routine trip to the peninsula turned into a great adventure! We arrived at Poortjies to launch the canoe, only to find the lock had rusted shut, not good. So back home we went to get some Q20 – if it sticks when it’s not supposed to use Q20, if it doesn’t stick when it’s supposed to use duct tape! In this case the damage was too bad and despite drowning the lock with Q20, it refused to budge. So Shirley and I decided to borrow a canoe. There are a number of canoes and various other floatation devices that are left at Poortjies, clearly not often used judging by the sand collection, often to the point where it is half buried! So we chose a suitable craft, cleared out all the sand and water, a huge job in itself, and stole off onto the water hoping that (1) it didn’t have any leaks! And (2) that the rightful owners didn’t decide that they wanted to use the canoe at that particular moment. Thankfully we made it to the peninsula without any leaks and mishaps and began our relative missions. I am not enjoying the peninsula too much at the moment, with the Sacred Ibis breeding I need to be so careful where I walk and I am unable to check on some gull nests because they are too close to the Sacred Ibis breeding aggregations. The gull nests I did check still have no eggs, but I did notice a large number of new, well-developed nests that I will return and mark soon. The one spoonbill that we saw on the last trip was there, with 3 friends, so that will be exciting if they decide to breed there, but also will add another complication to my trips there. Some of the Sacred Ibis eggs have hatched with is so wonderful! Strange squeaking noises were being emitted from the one main aggregation of nests and after some time of looking I saw the fluffy chicks. Unlike the gulls which hatch and within a day are up and running around, Sacred Ibis chicks are quite helpless and unable to do much except lie around after hatching, and days thereafter, even their head movements are limited. It is going to be so delightful to watch as these chicks grow up, and hopefully in time some will wear one of my rings!
|A selection of the birds on the peninsula: Kelp Gulls, Sacred Ibis, African Spoonbills and Egyptian Geese.|
|Spot the fluffy chicks!|
Cute little blobs!