The First of the Swallows, 05 October 2019. Copyright 2019 Forgotten Fields. All rights reserved.

© 2019 Forgotten Fields
Taken Friday, a Greater Striped Swallow (Cecropis cucullata), usually the first of the swallow species to return to South Africa in spring (September to November). Extraordinarily fleet in the air, they are near impossible to photograph!

A Sunbird in the Blossoms

A Sunbird in the Blossoms, 26 September 2019. Copyright 2019 Forgotten Fields. All rights reserved.

© 2019 Forgotten Fields

The South African spring brings blossoms and sunbirds to the garden. Surprisingly forgiving of my intrusion, they permit me to come within less than a metre (four feet) of their presence, allowing me to capture photographs like this one.

This is a Southern Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris chalybeus) male, named for the bright red and blue (not obvious here) bands upon its chest. Its Afrikaans name, Klein-rooibandsuikerbekkie1, translates to “little-redbandsugarbeak”.

  1. Pronounced [cleyn–Roowaybunt–soykeRbecky] with a trilled [RRR].