A great site for Chestnut-banded Plovers on the West Coast, Veldrif

Mike Buckham and I were keen to track down some Chestnut-banded Plovers on the West Coast earlier this year. We weren’t interested in “speck on the horizon” type views, we wanted them close. Mike, via CapeBirdNet, managed to make contact with the owners of the farm and guest house, Kuifkopvisvanger, which is located on the southern shores of the berg river and is reputably a reliable spot for them.

reduced Veldrif map1

Map adapted from Google Earth

The guest farm can be contacted on 022 783 0818 and I suggest you phone ahead to make arrangements. The spot was easy to find – see map above – and we weren’t disappointed. We found at least 15 individuals and using our car as a hide we were able to get within about 10 metres of them.

Chestnut-banded Plover

Chestnut-banded Plover (male)

Chestnut-banded Plover a

Chestnut-banded Plover (male)

We noted some interesting territorial behaviour while we were snapping these pics. As mentioned, there were at least 15 individual birds, both males and females, and one particular male spent a lot of his time chasing the other males around him. He would flatten his body (perhaps to appear bigger?) and strut around like he owned the place! The shots below were through the wind screen, but you’ll get the idea.

Dont mess with meDont mess with me1Dont mess with me2

Don’t mess with me…

Chestnut-banded Plover chase

The chase…

David Winter

3 comments to A great site for Chestnut-banded Plovers on the West Coast, Veldrif

  • Johan Salzmannn

    In Vredendal we have a specie which has more black and a darker grey on the wings, with red legs. Definitely more colourfull than the photos above. Where can I get more info?

  • Hi Johan,

    What about Black-winged Stilt, Three-banded Plover (both have red legs) or Blacksmith Plover? Check on google image for pictures of these species.

    Good luck, David.

  • Max

    I take some pixs to the plover today :) near sandwich harbour in Namibia!
    Of someone interested contact me :)

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