The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds here in England report that a pair of purple herons, which are thought to be the first of their type to nest in the UK, appear to have to bred successfully on the Dungeness peninsula in Kent.They usually breed in southern Europe and visit Britain in small numbers each year.


This reminded me as I watched, in silence, Ghana defeating the US of A in Rustenburg that in November 2006 I commented:

“Four million swallows that migrate annually to South Africa are to have their habitate polluted by unnecessary development. The burghers of Durban are about to construct a new international airport on this sensitive site. A study compiled by the Pietermaritzburg-based Institute of Natural Resources, a nongovernmental organisation says," 224 species of birds were recorded at the site. The presence of barn swallows is the primary environmental concern counting against the development of Durban International Airport. More than a million barn swallows are roosting, with up to 2-million of the birds calculated last year. These would undoubtedly represent a safety issue for aircraft. It warns noise pollution will be a significant consequence for areas such as Mount Moreland and Herrwood."

The absence of Swifts, Swallows and House Martins in our summer skies is palpably noticeable. 5 years ago dozens of pairs of summer visitors wheeled and swooped in the evening sky – last night while I sat in the garden I spotted 5 birds and two of those were sparrows – I could think of an appropriate place for those bloody vuvuzalas – up the rear of those short sighted Durban authorities.

History Note: Rustenburg [ Town of Rest ].

 On 10 February 1859, the local Dutch Reformed Church community was established. One of the oldest Boer settlements in the north, the town was the home of Paul Kruger, 6th President of the South African Republic,



  1. Hello Laird,Because of the changes made by Microsoft I have to now post this message in sections. It seems we are only allowed to tweet.

  2. The new International airport has opened, sad but a fact. As for the vuvuzelas, beyond annoying and invasive in more ways than one!. A friend who now lives in the U.k. said he can’t ever recall the vuvuzela being a feature in SA soccer

  3. The Vuvuzela is an instrument belonging to a small group of rural Africans. It has never been a national instrument and this is the first year that I have seen it used in such a way. I think this is just another one of Fifas marketing tricks to make money from.The Vuvuzela is

  4. a toneless, noisy irritating piece of plastic crap! Ecuse my bluntness

  5. When do developers ever worry about Wild Life, especially in S.Africa were Human life is cheap

  6. A Swallow is a variety of bird that spends summer in England and returns to africa to breed.- its breeding ground in southern africa has been destroyed by indiscrininate property developers.

Comments are closed.