[Tweeters] Birding in Zambia
h2ouzel at comcast.net
Mon May 12 21:01:07 PDT 2014
My wife and I spent most of April visiting our son, his wife, and two grandsons, 8 & 11, in Lusaka, Zambia. I usually walked from their house early in the morning about 1/2 mile to a small wetland that can have some good birds. The kids were out of school for two weeks and we made two weekend trips. The first was a three day weekend, a 3 hour drive, to a Chongwe Lodge on an island in the lower Zambezi R. Did some birding from shore and on boat rides around the island and to banks on Zimbabwe side where large flocks of White-fronted Bee-eaters nested. Saw the Water Thicknee and Green-backed Heron. Also saw a lot of hippos, crocodiles and elephants. The next was a four day weekend when we flew in small chartered planes to northern Zambia to area of Kasanka NP and Bangweulu Wetlands where the Shoebill can be found. One day we spent over 4 hours being poled in narrow, long boats thru and over floating vegetation by thickets of papyrus. Our guide was Frank Willems, ecologist for the NP, who also guided David Attenborough and a BBC crew when they filmed a nesting Shoebill. We saw a lot of birds and finally saw 3 Shoebills in flight after 2 hours. Then about 20 minutes later we found one in shallow water near a papyrus stand. It was about 1/4 mile away, but still able to get reasonable photos. The following link should take you to a Picasa Album with bird photos I took on the trip. To get more info about the Bangweulu Wetlands and Kasanka NP Google “Kasanka Trust Zambia” and click on a link to Bangweulu. For the stay in Zambia I recorded 125 species of which 42 were Life birds.
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