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Last year we were delighted to notice a hadeda ibis nesting in one of the oak tress in the Museum courtyard. Two chicks hatched and it was with great interest we watched them grow and become more adventurous, walking along the branches and exloring their home, until one day they took flight and the nest was left empty.

Happily, mother hadeda has returned to the nest this year (how that flimsy thing made of a few twigs has managed to survive the extreme southern Drakensberg weather is a miracle in itself) and we are watching and waiting to see if we have new babies this summer.

Hadeda are one one of those love 'em or hate 'em creatures and one continually hears complaints about how their raucous cries wake folk up  before sunrise. From a personal perspective, I have to say that their cries have never disturbed me and the typical ha-ha- hee-ha is for quintessential Africa. I love watching them on my lawn foraging for pest using their scythe-like beaks to penetrate even the hardest of ground in their attempts to grab tasty morsels.

Now, Of I could only train them to eat all the snails that eat mt strawberries before I am able to harvest them!