Tag Archive: Seaview Lion Park

The Pearl Emperor – Charaxes varanes varanes

From the Genus, Charaxes – Emperors, comes this absolutely stunning Pearl Emperor.  The Charaxes species are generally brightly colours in shades of orange and red or iridescent blue. They are aggressive and territorial and will chase or push other butterflies away from food sources. The larva are usually green. The pupae are also green, sometimes with white stripes or streaks, rounded with more or less pointed head.
The Pearl Emperor, however, has orange and pearly-white wings and very conspicuous against foliage. The underside colour us quite variable, often golden brown, but can look like the picture below with almost a greenish-brown-silver look to it. The wings’ veins are also green in colour. These are relatively big butterflys with males from around 65mm – 70mm and females from 70mm – 90mm.
The distribution of the Pearl Emperor is Eastern Cape from Mossel Bay to Kwazulu Natal and Mpumalanga, Limpopo and North West provinces.
Their habitats include: forest edges, flatlands and the coast. They fly all year round in warmer areas with a week peak in September to November and a stronger peak from January to June.
Their larval foodplant consist of: Allophylus africanusAllophylus dregeanusAllophylus natalensis and also Cardiospermum halicacabum. This shot was taken at “The Island” reserve, near Seaview Lion Park, outside Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. Most of this information was supplied from Steve Woodhalls book “Field Guide to Butterflies of South Africa“.

Pearl Emperor - Charaxes varanes varanes

A shot with the wings open of the same butterfly.

Pearl Emperor - Charaxes varanes varanes

Black Headed Oriole

The Black-headed Oriole or Oriolus larvatus is an African bird. Its a beautiful bird with a bright yellow body, black head and pinkish coloured beak. It lives mostly in sub-Saharan Africa from Sudan and Ethiopia in the north to South Africa in the south. It’s habitat is mainly in forests and bushy areas. The Black-headed Oriole is a Southern African bird which is part of the Oriolidae bird family group. The Oriole’s diet consists of fruit, insects, nectar and berries. This picture was take at ‘The Island’ near Seaview Lion Park outside Port Elizabeth Eastern Cape in South Africa.

Black Headed Oriole

Another Black-Headed Oriole, this time photographed by Zane Hobson with a Canon 7D with 100-400mm Lens of Port Elizabeth.

Black Headed Oriole

A Google Map on the location of The Island

View The Island 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