Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Black Oyster Catcher

I am always glad when I see African Black Oystercatchers (Haematopus moquini) on the beach or next to an estuary. This oystercatcher is a protected bird with a population of less than 5,000 adults. They are noisy plover-like birds with completely black plumage, red legs and a strong broad red bill used for smashing or prying open mollusks such as mussels.

The oystercatcher is unmistakable in flight with its all-dark plumage. The call is a distinctive loud piping. The nest is a bare scrape on pebbles or shingles with the female generally laying 2-4 eggs, which are incubated by both adults.
I was very chuffed with these two pics, specially the first one, as they are exactly on eye level. I was sitting on the rocks waiting for the right opportunity for a pic when this one came quite close to me. I think there must have been a nest somewhere close by as they were making a lot of noise as if they wanted to warn me off.
Info courtesy Wikipedia.

5 comments:

  1. You can be chuffed with them Jonker, they are excellent!! These are such lovely birds.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'd be chuffed too Jonker. Excellent captures. Your patience paid off. I saw signs along the coast about these protected birds but didn't get to see any.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great, great, great photo's!!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a beautiful bird! I can see that you're enjoying your photography immensely and your photos are really great! Nice work!

    ReplyDelete
  5. The first picture is so well framed and yet another photo for that special spot in the house.

    The new blog template is cool. I must change mine soon too.

    ReplyDelete