Yesterday as we drove around a very green, lush & fantastic looking NNP we might have been excused some double takes as strange objects paraded about the short-grass plain that is now the dominant habitat in the park…
Kori bustards: we must have seen at least 10 of them (all in one area -a sort
of lekking ground). Several magnificent males paced about, necks puffed out, tails spread, wings down.
Meanwhile, in true female fashion, these birds remained singularly unimpressed with all the pomp & continued grooming as though nothing was happening…….
In 10 years of observations in the park I never saw Kori bustards until the burn of 2007 & thesubsequent drought, which has turned the park from rich & undergrazed grassland savannah to short-grass plain….
NNP has 4 sp. of bustard – Kori, White bellied, Black bellied & Hartlaub’s.
These are White bellied, whose far carrying cry “Kwa kaaa ka Kwa kaaa ka”is
is one of the characteristic sounds of the plains…..this is the very beautiful female. The male below.