Gyps coprotheres  Cape Vulture  Kransaasvoël
Cape Vulture
Dinaka, Jan 2019

A breeding resident. Foraging birds range widely across the southern half of the Waterberg but, as the map shows, there is a dearth of records from the northern half, this perhaps a consequence of food being less accessible to the birds in more rugged and more wooded terrain in the north. The Waterberg Cape Vultures are based at the large breeding colony on the Groothoek cliffs in Marakele National Park. It is one of the most significant breeding sites for this endangered endemic in South Africa and the number of breeding pairs ('active nests') here has been systematically monitored annually for the past 38 years by Patrick Benson. In 1983 there were 916 active nests in the colony; their numbers declined over the next two decades to a low of 579 in 2003; thereafter numbers increased again to reach 849 nests in 2017. These vultures also use cliffs elsewhere along the Sandriviersberg as roosts but they do not breed at these sites. This charismatic vulture is one of the flagship species of the Waterberg.
Cape Vulture
Grootfontein, Jan 2018
Cape Vultures on cliff
Dinaka, Jan 2018

A regularly used roost site, up to 100 birds using it.
Cape Vultures on cliff
Marakele, Nov 2017

Looking over the breeding cliffs at Marakele National Park - this is the largest breeding colony of this species; 700 - 900 pairs nest here annually, this about a quarter of the global population. The birds breed in winter, laying in Apr and young fledging in Sep-Oct.

Cape Vulture
Zuikerboschfontein, Dec 2017

Adult, its yellow eye distinguishes it from the smaller, brown-eyed White-backed Vulture.

Cape Vulture flock

Swaershoek, Jan 2018

100+ birds in a thermal

tuis       home      bird list      next