Cape Spurfowl – Pternistis capensis

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Cape Spurfowl

I have recently returned from a trip to South Africa and specifically Cape Town, an exciting and interesting place for all sorts of reasons. The wildlife opportunities are immense and varied with a vast variety of birdlife. One bird that I found interesting and very approachable was the Cape Spurfowl or Cape Francolin Pternistis capensis. From a distance this chicken-size bird appeares all dark but in good light and close up you can appreciate the beautiful vermiculated markings in each feather.

I was struck that this may in some way have influenced African native dress because it is very remeniscent of native patterns in both clothing and decoration. I had seen a small group of birds feeding together and decided to go back later in the day when the sun was lower in the sky. I quickly located the “covey” and defying my age, lay myself down on the ground to get down to the birds level.

The Spurfowl continued to feed and quickly become oblivious, or uncaring of my presence. Suddenly one of the birds shook it’s feathers and gave me a magnificent photo opportunity. The result was the image above which shows the vermiculated pattern on the feathers perfectly.

Charles Fleming

Charles Fleming

Charles Fleming is a wildlife photographer and nature blogger based in South West England. His blog "Wildlife in a Suburban Garden" has more than 1400 entries and a link to galleries where you can view more than 4000 images from the UK and the rest of the world featuring photographs of more than 500 species. "My aim is to try and put my readers and viewers intimately close to the subject and to share the thrill of watching and photographing birds and wildlife at close quarters".

Charles Fleming

Charles Fleming

Charles Fleming is a wildlife photographer and nature blogger based in South West England. His blog "Wildlife in a Suburban Garden" has more than 1400 entries and a link to galleries where you can view more than 4000 images from the UK and the rest of the world featuring photographs of more than 500 species. "My aim is to try and put my readers and viewers intimately close to the subject and to share the thrill of watching and photographing birds and wildlife at close quarters".

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Ken_Billington

Charles, congratulations on your success in our recent “Best Photo of the Week” competition https://focusingonwildlife.com/news/best-photo-of-the-week-ended-31-jan-2013/

Margarita Steinhardt

Charles, what a stunning shot or a ‘common looking’ bird! I saw them in Cape Town as well, but never imagined they could look so magnificent.

Daniel Vago

Lovely picture!

Ken Billington

Outstanding shot of this well-dressed fowl.

Ken Billington

Outstanding shot of this well-dressed fowl.

Ken_Billington

Charles, welcome back from your epic trip to South Africa. If this photo of the Cape Spurfowl is anything to go by, you must have captured some outstanding shots on your vacation.