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The ‘Flock at Sea’ – Birding in the Southern Ocean

roncorylus

Birdlife South Africa (BLSA) certainly pulled off a major coup with the 2017 Flock at Sea. Around 1950 lucky birders took part in what must have been the most spectacular birding event ever held in the Southern African region. We had four nights at sea and three full days of birding, ending this morning when we returned to Cape Town and docked at 7:00 am.

Map Our approximate route

Our vessel was the MSC ‘Sinfonia’ and, because there were sufficient birders on board, BLSA had control over where we went.  This enabled us to seek out ocean eddies and up-welling currents (not that we always found them) and, thereby, find good concentrations of foraging seabirds.  For me it was really exciting as I managed to see a total of 25 seabirds, 12 of which were lifers!  The bird of the cruise was undoubtedly the Light-mantled Albatross, previously only seen by 2…

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