SPECIAL MIGRATORY VISITORS: The European honey buzzard (Pernis apivorus) is a summer visitor to Southern Africa, migrating all the way from Europe, Russia and Asia where they breed. They are shy, solitary birds which prefer the dense cover of trees while they forage for wasp larvae and other insects, small vertebrates and nestling birds. Every year, a few of this species are admitted with fractures, electrocutions and trichomoniasis - a disease caused by a protozoa that is often found in the doves and pigeons which many raptors predate on.
We have always been interested in this seldom seen species and are delighted to be of assistance to Caroline Howes who is doing her PhD entitled “The demography and ecology of the European Honey-buzzard in Southern Africa”. Each bird is weighed, measured, photographed and has blood samples taken. It is interesting to note the colour variations between the sexes and ages of the buzzards. Next, a specially numbered and sized ring is fitted which is registered with SAFRING of the FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town. Each bird is then fitted with a satellite telemetry tracking device which enables its movements to be recorded and mapped.
The bird in the photographs was treated for electrocution after having a brief altercation with overhead power lines. It is incredible to watch their journey as they fly over Africa into Europe and back to their natal breeding ground. We treat indigenous wildlife free of charge, relying on the community for donations and support.
____________________________________________________ : Melissa Whitecross
#keepingitwild #makingadifference #birdsofinstagram #birdstagram #europeanhoneybuzzard #EHB #donations #donationsneeded #wildlife #wildlifeonearth #wildlifevet #wildlifephoto #wildliferehab #wildliferescue #picoftheday #animalphoto #animalphotography #animallover #animalrehab #animaladdicts #vet #vetstagram #vetsofinstagram #thisisafrica #patientoftheday
Johannesburg Wildlife Veterinary Hospital