Fri 18 March-Monte Casino Bird Park

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We had a free morning in Johannesburg today so went on an adventure out to Monte Casino Bird Park. We arrived at the public parking to realise they don’t take credit card and we hadn’t been to an ATM yet to arm ourselves with Rand. Luckily the boom gate girl took pity on us and let us in with instructions to pay on the way out.

It was just like any other mall/casino bar a few odd things:

  • A sign for the GUN SAFE
  • Being searched on the way in for weapons and guns

The Macaws were great photo specimens as they stayed relatively still and we could get quite close with our cameras.

They got a little bit friendly and decided to chase John around on foot. Wary of their strong beaks we tried our best to keep our distance till their handlers moved them back to their poles.

Armed with my zoom lens and Dave’s extender John got some great detailed shots. Having not been this close before I never realised the white face with black lines is actually white skin and small, strategically placed black feathers.

There was a vide variety of birds like this blue crane and some not so pretty like the one below.

Some of their prized new arrivals – white cockatoos made us feel like we hadn’t travelled very far at all. We also spotted lorikeets, galahs, black cockatoos.

There was an enclosed aviary with heaps of different birds flying around. This parrot flew on me as soon as I entered and happily sat on my head for a ride around, even under a fake waterfall for at least 20 mins. Some of the birds were quite spectacularly coloured liked these brightly coloured ibis.

There were heaps of other animals there aswell like the tortoise, lots of snakes.


The ever cut Meercats…

and a few lizards

We had fun, and could have spent all day taking photos of some of the birds. We have heaps more pics that we can bore everyone with later.

The 2nd half of the day we headed over to the Microsoft office in Johannesburg and gave our presentation on natural disasters to a small crowd on a Friday afternoon right before beer o’clock. Many thanks to Dave, Kath and Gareth for being most gracious hosts and making the presentation possible.