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Jeffreys Bay - Bird Watching

Jeffrey’s Bay is situated in the heart of the Eastern Cape and along the famous Garden Route (which officially stretches from Storms River to Mossel Bay). This entire area is known for its vast proliferation of birds and its sheer variety of avian species. Whether or not you are a keen bird watcher, you will no doubt be delighted by the colourful chirpers that soar overhead or perch themselves in the boughs and brushes in and around Jeffrey’s Bay.

One of the most significant advantages that Jeffrey’s Bay has in terms of its birdlife is the great variety of habitats available to them. There is dense forest, low bushveld, open grasslands, unspoiled coastline and dune vegetation in which the many different kinds of birds can live and nest. These are common conditions throughout the Eastern Cape and it is, therefore, not surprising that there are well over 450 different bird species that have been identified here thus far.

Another major factor influencing the presence of so many avian species is the mild climate. Jeffrey’s Bay and the Eastern Cape seldom get very cold or very hot. Winter lows average at about 7 to 10 degrees Celsius and summer highs are around 30 degrees Celsius. Of course, these conditions are not only pleasant enough to sustain the birds, but are also great for bird watchers wanting to station themselves in the outdoors in keen anticipation of viewing some of the feathered beauties.

Jeffrey’s Bay and its surrounding areas are not only home to many bird species, but also to some rare and fascinating ones.

African Dawn Bird and Wildlife Sanctuary & Rehabilitation Centre is situated 28 kilometres from the heart of Jeffrey’s Bay. This centre is fabulous for the entire family as it is not only home to an exquisite array of birds, but also to crocodiles, monkeys and different species of buck. In addition, there is a restaurant, bar, function area, picnic area, barbecue facilities, hiking trails, game drives and ample camping accommodation.

Other popular spots for bird watching around Jeffrey’s Bay include:

• The Sunday's River Estuary
• The Van Staden’s Wild Flower Reserve
• Thunzi Nature Reserve
• The Zwartkops Trust

In these places, the following species of birds are commonly spotted:

• Different species of wader birds
• Different migratory water birds
• Forest Canary
• Orange-breasted Sunbird
• Southern Boubou
• Black-headed Oriole
• Dark-backed Weaver
• Cape Cormorant
• Cape Gannet
• Roseate Tern
• Swift Tern
• Tambourine Dove
• Olive Woodpecker
• Caspian tern
• Thick-billed Weaver
• Knysna Turaco
• Black Crake
• African Black Duck
• Cape Sugarbird
• Cape Siskin
• Cape Grassbird
• Yellow Bishop
• Amythest
• Giant Kingfisher
• Le Vaillants Cisticola
• Greater Double-collared
• Southern Double-collared
• Herons
• Karoo Scrub-robin
• Bar-throated Apalis
• Karoo Prinia
• Cape Robin-chat
• White-breasted Cormorant
• Cape Bulbul
• Malachite
• Reed Cormorant
• Common Tern
• Damara Tern
• Pied Kingfisher