Pilansberg National Park, South Africa

Post image for Pilansberg National Park, South Africa

by DaleForbes on May 29, 2011 · 2 comments

in Birding Africa

Pilansberg Game Reserve (and National Park) lies just 1.5-2hrs drive west of Johannesburg/Pretoria and has received some measure of fame through the bordering Sun City and Lost City (luxury casino, golf and resort complexes). But it is also a rather nice big-game area within easy reach of Gauteng (the province in which Johannesburg is situated). So, besides the lions, elephants, rhinos, antelope and other big-and-hairies, it is ecologically interesting, lying in an interim zone between the dryer Kalahari savannas, and the moister Lowveld Bushveld and, anywhere where you get an inter-grade between two systems, you are likely to get interesting mixtures of the communities from both. And exactly this makes birding in the Pilansberg National Park region so interesting.

Black-backed Jackal at a lion kill (Blue Wildebeest)

The typical open savannas of Pilansberg, sporting wonderful larks and other LBJs.

Springbok female (ewe) with young

Natal Francolin

Natal Francolin (Pternistes natalensis) aka suicide bird for their tendency to sprint across the road at the last minute with the sole motive of either giving the driver a heart-attack or ending up flat.

Marico Flycatcher (Bradornis pallidus) digiscoped

Red-faced Mousebirds (Urocolius indicus) - one of my favorite photos from the trip





Dabchick aka Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis) digiscoped. uncropped. unedited.

Grey Lourie aka Grey Go-away-bird (Corythaixoides concolor)

All photos taken with a Swarovski Spotting Scope STM80 HD, TLS800 adapter and a Nikon D300s DSLR.

Out of sheer laziness I have not cropped or edited any of the photos.

Happy birding,


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Rebecca Armstrong May 29, 2011 at 4:20 pm

Gorgeous photos, Dale!


DaleForbes May 29, 2011 at 6:20 pm

thanks Rebecca. I have tons of photos from that trip which I am only slowly getting around to sorting through now…


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