Bird lovers flock to Thornybush

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Although the focus is, and will probably always remain on the Big Five when visiting a private nature reserve, there is much enjoyment to be gained from pursuing our feathered friends while on safari too.

Thornybush has a recorded bird list of over 280 species and is an excellent destination for bird watching.

It is a good idea to book a private game drive if you are a keen birder. Although your ranger will welcome the change, some guests become impatient with the intricacies of bird watching and are looking for Big Five action all the time.

Walking safaris are another brilliant way to tick species off your bird list, especially in the company of one of our experienced guides who will be quick to spot things you might overlook.

Night drives for birders are also available and provide an excellent opportunity to view birds, such as owls, that are either resting or holed up during the day,

November to April is the best birding season in the Lowveld as that is when the reserves are filled to capacity with migratory birds as well as non-migratory species. This time of year also falls outside of peak game viewing season, so you are more likely to be sharing the camp with likeminded bird lovers too.

The martial eagle is one of the notable birds that you may come across on your safari, along with the fork-tailed drongo, Namaqua dove and blacksmith plover, while specials such as African hawk eagles, green pigeons, painted snipes, pennant winged nightjars, little grebes, Jameson's firefinch and Temminck's courser, amongst others, could also make an appearance.

Of course, the beauty of birding is that you can do it anywhere, and Thornybush is no exception. You can still enjoy your favourite game watching activity while relaxing around the pool or walking around camp and many a memorable bird has been spotted without venturing far from these creature comforts.

Although you will have a wealth of information at your disposal from qualified game guides during you stay at Thornybush, no birder should ever leave home without a copy of their favourite reference book or bird list. One or more pairs of binoculars is a vital travelling companion too, as is a reliable camera with chargeable batteries.

Please remember to state your interest in birding when booking your accommodation at Thornybush and we will do our best to ensure that your experience is as unforgettable as the feathered species you could encounter here. 

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Thursday, 23 November 2017