Morning birding day two at the Pastoral center in Machakos had a few suprises.The morning bird watching started at 6am with members of the team gathering for a five minutes briefing tips. The birding leader took members through birding checklist. The checklists for new birders here refers to things needed for bird watching, these included bird watching gadgets and equipments such binoculars, guidebooks,notebooks among others. With briefing done, were moving from one spot to the other spending atleast 10 minutes. Our number one suprise was the Spotted Thick-knee, which is locally common in dry bush, the Thick-knees were chasing away the Sacred ibis and this was spectacular scene of different bird species fighting each other. The cause of the fighting we believe was due to the feeding ground, as the Sacred ibis were moving towards the bushes where the Spotted Thick-knees were feeding. we then moved towards the nearby valley and here we recorded over 30 Species including the black kite.
When birding always have your birding essentials and accessories ready. These items help make bird watching lovely and useful and assist in bird identification. Things needed for bird watching are not limited to guidebooks but also a bird guide to direct twitchers save time in areas with a lot of thickets. Bird watching kit is therefore necessary if you want to become a better birder.
It’s a five day morning birding at the Pastoral center in Machakos county. Our day one Tuesday started by gathering followed by birding tips from the group leader. Giving tips on how told the binocular, how to use the bird guide book.
Also with telescope and a tripod stand the group had all the required essential bird watching equipment. Observing birding rules the group spotted hadadah ibis nesting, what a good start for the new birders in the team, from a distance a common bulbul was calling and looking the sky pied crowd were flying. Covering 200m distance the recorded 25 bird Species. Moving towards the valley there were 6 sacred ibis feeding on dustbin together with two pied crow. As we continue with birding looking for any migrants around since bird migration moment is here with us but the group wasn’t lucky to spot any migrant. It was time to get back and prepare for the day and as we head back the team spotted house Sparrow next to the kitchen. We’re very lucky as bronze sunbird.
During our day 1 bird watching we recorded these species common bulbul, hadadah ibis, pied crow, red cheeked Cordon blue,White browed Sparrow Weaver, cattle egret, sacred ibis, speckled pegions, African gash hawk,red eyed dove,black headed heron,bronze mannikin,bronze sunbird,red billed firefinch among others. The compound offers a very good site for bird viewing
My routine morning bird walk started at 6.30am. The weather was very conducive with no sign of early rain. My first bird species was White browed Robin chat, the bird was feeding on the ground and not so far from it was a pair of Olive thrus looking for what to feed on along the fence. The thrush are very common and can always be spotted as early as 6am. I then moved towards the cattles and the Red_billed oxpecker were already enjoying their delicacy. The cows were calm and this shows the importance these birds play to remove ticks and other unwanted parasite from the cows. It was time for my Twitcher birding binocular to be put into use a very essential bird watching equipment for birders to get the best view of the birds. Then common drongo were flying up the sky to catch the favourite insects. With my bird watching binocular I was able to view the bird in action. Then came the barn swallow petching on the electrical wireline. I have realized that these birds loves perching on the wires just after the sunrise and from a distance they seems to be enjoying the sun rays. It was such a short lovely morning bird watching time, I hope for those who had their morning bird watching event enjoyed every moment of it.
It’s time to select men’s or women’s boots for bird watching as part of your essential birding gears, as a birder you require better travelling boots that makes observation of birds enjoyable in any weather condition. There are numerous foot wears for bird watching to choose from but below are some of the features and issues to consider while making a purchase.
1. Durability, a durable birding boots save you cost of recurring purchase every now and then, and how will know that a certain boot pleasing to the eyes is durable. When buying these birding boots check on the specification stated on the product catalogues. A reputable retailer will sell customers products of high quality and what product catalogues describe on the item is likely to be true unless proper care isn’t taken on the boots. A durable product is not a replica and always ensure that what you’re about to but isn’t imitation of a genuine footwear boots.
2. Weight, bird watching requires movement from one section of a forest, garden, wetland to the other. Buying heavy birding boots will make your movement very difficult limiting the number of birds to watch. What if you’d paid a guide to assist you in a new location but you’re unable to move due to your wears, it will be unfortunate to miss opportunities of capturing new species and most probably a lifer. When buying a boot for bird watching occasion consider lighter boots. With lighter birding boots you’re able to move without any baggage dragging and distracting your outdoor activities. What happens when birding in the swamp wearing a heavy boots, chances are you’re not going to move a inch or opt to conduct your birding on the out skirts of the swamp.
3. Height, this depend on your own height, a shorter height doesn’t require tall boots, when buying birding boots for kids you need a shorter height as opposed to tall ones. Adult will require something covering their knees and this call for tall boots. Purchase a boot that will give you a good balance during movements in any weather condition. Some people prefer a height of 16-17 inches and are very comfortable with them
4. Comfort, they should be easy to put, when in birding assignment where time is limited to capture particular bird but you have boots giving you difficulty to put on, the end result will see you missing on the bird species. Comfortable are secured when walking in muddy, sandy, forest location. These boots should be easy to use when lying down taking photos, writing or when seated
5. Cost, when purchasing an item the selling price sometimes overrides other factors mentioned above and becomes the determining thing when selecting a wear. A birding boot may be cheap but very durable and effective In the field, while others may be costly but not effective when conducting bird watching there are others that are expensive but very effective. Your pocket may determine the type of boots to go for, regardless of price ensure that whatever wear you select will be worth it in the field. But sometimes a cheap boot may be unhealthy as you may end up with sore feet.
6. Availability, the foot wear should be available when needed, availability of a product not only make it pocket friendly but help save time when conducting an emergency bird counts and conservation activities. When you make an order for a boot wear from a retailer that isn’t easily available you are likely to waste time and money.
7. Color, a brighter wear will scare birds in the field, therefore ensure color friendly boots if possible a black in color. It has been observed that birds respond faster to sight than sound or smell. A dull color will not attract a bird’s attention from far as oppose to bright colors.
8. Before buying check on various customers’ review on the selected birding footwear, reviews are very helpful as you’ll will get to know experience from other birders, the bad the good and the alternative. You’ll also get proposal of best alternative to buy probably at a pocket friendly price.
9. Birding season will determine the kind of shoes to wear; heavy or light wears depend on the prevailing climatic condition. Consider the terrain for outing, the likely vegetation to encounter; thorny vegetation will necessitate a tall birding boots. In wetlands tall waterproof boots will be needed to go through the mud. You may also like our article on dangers faced by migrating birds and the reason why birds migrate
Consider birding boots with the right weight, easy to put on with excellent steadiness. Bird watching footwear shouldn’t disturb birds in the field.
Men’s footwear for birding