It is not surprising that Laughing Doves have been the dominant birds in our garden this month: their numbers have increased over the years and they are always among the first to feed on the coarse maize seed I scatter on the lawn in the mornings. It takes about twenty minutes from the time of doing so until first one or two come down, soon to be followed by the rest of the gang that have flown ever closer to the source of the food – from the telephone cable in the back garden, to the Cape Chestnut, to the Wild Plum (perching ever lower down) until over thirty of them make short work of the maize. A few adventurous ones perch on Morrigan’s feeder to get the fine seed and some manage to hang onto the seed house for long enough to get some of the seed there.
Nesting time is far from over: the Lesser-striped Swallows completed their mud nest outside our front door – with the result we tend to use either the kitchen door or the side door to give them some peace. The White-rumped Swifts do not have any compunction about trying to usurp this nest for their own progeny and so the swallows have had to devote a lot of energy towards defending their home territory.
Careful observation of a pair of Olive Thrushes finally revealed their nesting site right next to the garden path!
Weavers have also continued building nests around the garden.
I thought I would compare this month’s bird list with that of February last year. Seven species have not been seen, while thirteen others have come to the garden that were not seen last year.
My February list is:
African Green Pigeon
Black Sunbird (Amethyst)
Cape Glossy Starling
Cape Robin (Cape Robin-chat)
Cape Turtle Dove
Greater Double-collared Sunbird
Rock Pigeon (Speckled)
Southern Masked Weaver