I love Kingfishers and I recently took these pictures of a Woodland Kingfisher at Thanda Safari.

FYI: We have an exciting Birding Weekend coming up in April. If you are interested to come and do some birding and bird photography at Thanda then please contact reservations@thanda.co.za.

I will be there all weekend to answer wildlife and bird photography related questions and to give photography lessons.

#Thandasafari @thandasafari #christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography


These little birds are so colorful that they sometimes sparkle in the light like little gems.

I miss my regular photography excursions to Lake St.Lucia in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park and to Nsumo Dam at Mkuze Game Reserve where one can find Malachite Kingfishers and many other aquatic bird species.

Have a pleasant day!

#Christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography #thandasafari @thandasafari #lockdownsafari


One of my favorite pictures of one of my favorite birds – a Malachite Kingfisher – as a special Christmas treat.

Enjoy the day wherever you are!

#christiansperkaphotography @christiansperkaphotography

Kingfisher Week

I am featuring a species or family of species per week on my social media channels. Here is a summary of the last week’s posts (and some blog bonus images). I hope you enjoy some of my favorite Kingfisher pictures :-).

Malachite Kingfisher

Striped Kingfisher

Woodland Kingfisher

Brown-hooded Kingfisher

8 of 10 South African Kingfisher species

Giant Kingfisher

Pied Kingfisher

Mangrove Kingfisher

Malachite Kingfisher

Pygmy Kingfisher

Sunrise …

A little bath …


Grey-headed Kingfisher and Half-collared Kingfisher are the two South African Kingfisher species which I have no pictures of.

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The South African Kingfishers

Kingfisher Collage

After yesterday’s post about a Malachite Kingfisher on Thanda a few people have asked me about the various South African Kingfishers. So, here is a short post about them:

There are ten Kingfisher species in South Africa. Five are aquatic species and five are considered woodland Kingfishers. Up til now I took pictures of eight of these ten species. I am still missing the Half-collared Kingfisher and the Grey-headed Kingfisher.

Four of them (Woodland Kingfisher, Striped Kingfisher, Brown-hooded Kingfisher and African Pygmy Kingfisher) are regularly seen on Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve and I had one – rare – sighting of a Malachite Kingfisher. Giant Kingfishers, Mangrove Kingfishers and Pied Kingfishers are aquatic species and are therefore not resident on Thanda.

Enjoy the pictures!

Not supposed to be there! – Bird of the Day – Malachite Kingfisher

It is always very exciting to see a bird in an area where it usually does not occur. Malachite Kingfishers are one of the aquatic Kingfisher species. They live on Rivers or other large bodies of water. Finding one on Thanda Safari – Private Game Reserve was a very special treat for our bird-loving guests. Bheki (my Zulu tracker) spotted it at the waterhole near my home.

These are not my best Malachite Kingfisher images, but they are very special to me!

To view more of my Malachite Kingfisher images go to http://www.sperka.biz/sgb10

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The Malachite Kingfisher (Corythornis cristatus) is an aquatic, small Kingfisher which is widely distributed in Africa south of the Sahara. It is only 13 cm (5.1 in) in length. This species is common to reeds and aquatic vegetation near slow-moving water or ponds. The flight of the Malachite Kingfisher is rapid, with the short, rounded wings whirring until they appear a mere blur. It usually flies low over water. The call of this kingfisher is then a short shrill seek. The breeding song is a chuckling li-cha-cha-chui-chui.

Malachite Kingfisher


They are well!

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We saw the Thanda Cheetah mum today with her two cubs. Both of the cubs have grown a lot and are looking very healthy – they look like real Cheetah now 🙂 – What a sighting!

During the same game drive I got my first picture of a Pygmy Kingfisher and we had sightings of our two male Cheetah, three Lions and two Spotted Hyena feeding on a kill.

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BIRDS – Brown-hooded Kingfisher

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One of the Thanda guests was very surprised when this Brown-hooded Kingfisher did not fly off when we approach but kept sitting on its branch almost to “touching-distance”.

These small birds are usually not to tolerant to vehicle approaches, but this specimen did not care. Thanks for the great photo opportunity :-).