Tuesday, 8 August 2017


Okay it was the first time I ever heard this word "switcheroo" used. It sounded intriguing in the context it was used, the black eagles did a switcheroo. Huh? After getting back home, I just had to look up if this was a real word, sorry Andrew, it is, switcheroo: a sudden, unexpected variation or reversal. It is colloquially used in reference to an act of swapping two objects. Wow switcheroo was even in my spell check. Well you learn a new word every day, thanks Andrew for this new word.

Tomorrow I have another hike down into the kloof to check on the repairs to stop the raw sewerage leaks that have been flowing for quite some time now into the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Gardens. Now my light hiking shoes have not fared well over the years and I did a switcheroo. See what I did there, got my old replaced by a new pair but NOOO that is not quite what switcheroo means.

I had to go to 2 different conservation meetings this afternoon at the Botanical Gardens, with representatives from the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Gardens, Botanical Society of South Africa, Wild Orchids of Southern Africa, Proteadal Conservation Association, and the Black Eagle Project, just to drop names. And it was at the first meeting when I was asking about the Black Eagle pair that are currently nesting at the gardens that the word switcheroo was used by Andrew the chief horticulturist at the Botanical Gardens.

When the Botanical Gardens was established in 1982, there was a pair of Black Eagles nesting near the waterfall. Reports of this female dated way back to early 70s with the males changing 3 times over the years. The latest male showed up in 1999 as a young 4 year old eagle. Last year no eagles nested which was a big let down and then this year the pair of black eagles showed up and started building the nest again but it was only the male building the old nest with the female starting an entire new nest further away from the waterfall. It was only by April that a switcheroo was discovered. A new young female had replaced the old 40 year old female.

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