Tag Archive: Port Elizabeth

Citrus Swallowtail Butterfly

From the family Papilionidae, subfamily Papilioninae and genus Papilio come the Swallowtail butterflies. Papilio is the largest genus in the family and it has species all over the world. Dispite the name, swallowtails are often tailless. The Citrus Swallowtail Butterfly is common throughout South Africa, particularly in wooded areas and gardens. This Citrus Swallowtail was shot at Addo Elephant National Park in the Eastern Cape of South Africa.

Citrus Swallowtail Butterfly

The Treasure Flower Gazania

The Gazania, or Treasure Flower belongs to the family Asteraceae. It is a plant native to Southern Africa although one can find this plant species naturalised in Australia, New Zealand, and California. They are widely cultivated as ornamental garden plants. This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and birds and is also drought-tolerant. It needs; Water regularly; do not overwater. This picture was taken at van Stadens Flower Reserve, just outside Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape of South Africa.

Gazzania

Malachite Sunbird

The Malachite Sunbird, Nectarinia famosa is a small nectivorous bird found in the southern part of the Southern African region. The sunbirds are a group of small birds, and are placed within the family Nectariniidae, which is found across Africa, the Middle East and into South-east Asia. The breeding male Malachite Sunbird, which has very long central tail feathers, is 25cm long, and the shorter-tailed female 15 cm. The adult male is metallic green when breeding, with blackish green wings with small yellow pectoral patches. In non-breeding plumage, the males upperparts are brown apart from the green wings and tail, the latter retaining the elongated feathers. The underparts in are yellow, flecked with green. The female has brown upperparts and dull yellow underparts with some indistinct streaking on the breast. Her tail is square-ended. The juvenile resembles the female. This large sunbird is found in hilly fynbos (including protea stands as well as areas with aloes) and cool montane and coastal scrub. It also occurs in parks and gardens. It is resident, but may move downhill in winter. This species, like most sunbirds, feed mainly on nectar, although they will also take insects. This Malachite Sunbirds photo was taken at Schoenmakers Kop outside Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape of South Africa.

Malachite Sunbird

Female Scarlet Chested Sunbird

The male Scarlet Chested Sunbird (Chalcomitra Senegalensis) is easily identified by its mainly black body and scarlet breast, its green crown and throat. The female is dark greyish-olive in colour. Its breast is more darker and mottled than the Amethyst Sunbird. The Scarlet Chested Sunbird’s diet consists mainly of nectar, insects and spiders. The Afrikaans name for this bird is the Rooiborssuikerbekkie. This specimen was photoed at Thunzi Bush Lodge outside Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape of South Africa

Female Scarlet Chested Sunbird

Map to Thunzi Bush Lodge

View Thunzi Bush Lodge in a larger map

Spotted Thick Knee

The Spotted Thick-knee is commonly known as the Dikkop in South Africa. It’s scientific name is Burhinus Capensis. It is a common resident in any open country area, including parks and fields. They are often found in pairs and are masters of camouflage. They can remain absolutely still such that they will not be noticed, but will fly immediately when a predator or a threat is too close. Their diet consists mainly of termites, locusts, beetles, other bugs and sometimes small reptiles. This picture was taken at a place called The Island near Seaview Lion Park, outside Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape.

Spotted Thick Knee

Spotted Thick Knee

Spotted Thick KneeSpotted Thick Knee

A Google Map on the location of The Island

View The Island in a larger map

Old Style African Elephant

On game drive through Lalibela Game Reserve we came upon a small herd of African Elephants – Loxodonta Africana. They seemed not to care too much that we were there watching them, but one of them kept giving us one of those ‘Keep your distance’ looks every now and again. We did just that, and the herd was on its way. The elephant is part of the Big 5. Lalibela Game Reserve is located about 90km outside Port Elizabeth of the road to Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. I posted this photo in sepia, because I was thrilled about the way it came out.

African Elephant

Red Eyed Dove Preening

The Red Eyed Dove or Streptopelia semitorquata is slightly larger and darker than the Cape Turtle Dove. Its habitat ranges from Bushes to gardens to parks. The Red-eyed Dove is a pigeon which is a widespread resident breeding bird in Africa south of the Sahara. It is a common, if not abundant, species in most habitats. The Red-eyed Dove is a largish, stocky pigeon, typically 34cm in length. Its back, wings and tail are pale brown. When flying, it shows blackish flight feathers. The head and underparts are dark vinous-pink, shading to pale grey on the face. There is a black hind neck patch edged with white. The legs and a patch of bare skin around the eye are red. Red-eyed Doves eat grass seeds, grains and other vegetation. They often forage on the ground. In this photo, the dove is preening itself next to it mate. This picture was taken at a place called The Island on the outskirts of Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

Red Eyed Dove Preening

Lightning Strike

We recently had a pretty awesome thunder storm here in Port Elizabeth. This is something that does not occur that often in this area. This was a lucky shot I took after taking multiple shots in the one direction for over an hour.
Did You Know?
1. If you have wet clothes on, lightning will do you less harm
2. Lightning hits the Empire State Building (NY, USA) about 23 times a year
3. About 71% of all people struck by lightning survive. The fatal cases are usually the result of cardiac arrest. However, those who survive often suffer from serious health and psychological problems like loss of memory or sensitivity, insomnia, impaired hearing, or constant pain.
4. The chance to be killed by lightning is 1 in 2,000.000.

Lightning Strike