I was taking a walk around my garden to see what I could photograph for a blog post – and it walked right up to me – a Hadeda lunching on my earthworms! The amazing thing was that Hercules was walking with me and the Hadeda was completely unfazed by our very close presence and by being followed by us, me snapping away in the hope of getting at least one good photograph. The walkabout lasted for about ten minutes until we had followed her all the way from the back garden to the pond and then she decided she had had enough … either of us or of munching on earthworms, and she took flight.
I often see the Hadedas in my garden. I don’t actually like them much – they are usually in the garden in groups of two or three and they trample on the plants damaging them and mess all over the place (read: crap on the patio). And they are big birds so the mess they leave on the patio is large! Not little dove droppings, I’m talking about huge Hadeda droppings. So whilst they are not unwelcome (I love having birds in the garden), they are not exactly my favourite visitors – much like the loud noisy neighbours one tolerates once in a blue moon!
For anyone interested and not familiar with the Hadeda here is some info I found on Wikipedia:
The Hadeda or Hadeda Ibis, Bostrychia hagedash, is a ibis found in Sub-Saharan Africa. The Hadeda is a large (up to 76 cm long), dark brown ibis with a white “moustache”, glossy greenish purple wings, a large black bill with a red stripe on the upper mandible, and blackish legs. It feeds mainly on earthworms, using its long scimitar-like bill to probe soft soil. It also eats larger insects, such as the Parktown Prawn, as well as spiders and small lizards. These birds also favour snails and will feed in garden beds around residential homes. It has a distinctively loud and recognisable haa-haa-haa-de-dah call that is often heard when the birds are flying or are startled, hence the name. More info about Hadeda here: Hadeda Ibis.