- For all the pentads in the Quarter Degree Cell 2 data cards were completed - except 9 (11 cards - this pentad is counted daily as I move around town).
- In the full QDGC 176 different species were counted in the previous atlas project (then the QDGC was counted as a whole and 68 data cards were submitted over the period 1987-1991). Up to now I've counted 172 unique species with a few out of range species that still have to be vetted. 27 data cards were submitted for SABAP2.
- For each of the different pentads the count is: Zuurplaat - 88 unique species, Strydpoort-Winplaats - 75, Jakkalsfontein - 76, Badfontein - 107, Betjeskraal - 88, Waaiplaats - 89, Gryskoppan - 63, Ackermanskraal - 92, Aliwal-Dorp - 119.
- In the last round of counts (the last month) the migratory birds had already left for winter - counts were remarkably lower than in summer counts.
- Some of the interesting species (not necessarily "new" species) observed in these 9 pentads are the following: Goliath Heron, Southern Pochard, African Marsh Harrier, Swainson's Spurfowl, Crested Barbet, Willow Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Fairy Flycatcher, Kimberley Pipit, Red-backed Shrike, Red-billed Firefinch, Brimstone Canary (Unvetted records are not included in this list).
One of the aims of SABAP2 is to research the influence of climate changes over the past 20 years on the distribution of different bird species. After the first 11 months some species were found in this area that were not previously found here - the Swainson's Spurfowl is an example. It is too early in the research yet to make an unqualified deduction that this species has expanded it's range in a southwesterly direction. Early indications are that a range expansion may have occured as these species were not previously observed this far south. (It was observed more than once in the Smithfield area as well).
The project is not yet under way for a full year, and a lot of counting must still be done in the next few years. To participate in the atlas project is really satisfying for me as birder. I also want to thank the many farmers in the area that allow me to enter their properties and roam about freely to participate in this project of the Animal Demographic Unit (ADU at UCT), BirdLife South Africa (BLSA) and the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI). Together with these organisations and hundreds of other atlasers countrywide, we make a contribution to the conservation of birdlife and their habitat.