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    Birding in Knysna


Our suggestions for great birding spots in Knysna

Knysna' incredible diversity makes it awesome birding country: the Knysna Lagoon is one of the largest estuaries in South Africa; the town is surrounded by indigenous forests with their yellowwoods, stinkwoods, and other tree species; we have kilometre after kilometre of sandy beaches and rocky shores; and the Outeniqua Mountains stand sentinel behind them all.

Even our leafy, lagoon-side suburbs provide many opportunities for twitchers, and we've recorded some excellent sightings right here in our garden!

Specials in our area include:

  • Knysna warbler
  • Knysna woodpecker
  • Victorin’s warbler
  • Knysna loerie
  • Narina trogon
  • Orange-breasted sunbird
  • Cape sugarbird
  • Chorister robin-chat
  • Emerald cuckoo
  • Red-chested flufftail
  • Buff-spotted flufftail
  • African finfoot
  • White-backed night-heron
  • African cuckoo hawk  
  • African hobby.

 We suggest the following venues: 

Woodbourne Pan

At Woodbourne Pan you could find: pied avocet, African spoonbill, marsh sandpiper, curlew sandpiper, ruff, common greenshank, Kittlitz’s plover, common sandpiper, African snipe, African rail, black crake, caspian tern, African fish eagle, etc. (Woodbourne Pan is situated on the left of George Rex Drive, at the turnoff to Leisure Island)

» Google Maps

Steenbok Nature Park

Steenbok Nature Park is situated on Leisure Island, near the Knysna Heads. Here you might find: common whimbrel, grey plover, common ringed plover, sandwich tern, common tern, African fish eagle, osprey, giant eagle owl, greater double collared sunbird, black sunbird, grey heron, blackheaded heron, African spoonbill.

» Google Maps


The Kranshoek area offers both fynbos and forest biomes. In the fynbos you'll find: Cape sugarbird, orange-breasted sunbird, amethyst sunbird, southern double-collared sunbird, greater double-collared sunbird, malachite sunbird, Victorin's warbler, Cape grassbird. In the forest: narina trogon, blue-mantled flycatcher, black-bellied starling, etc. (Access via the Harkerville forest; turn off the N2 at the Sasol garage, 24 km east of Knysna).

» Google Maps

Radical Raptors

Visit this rehabilitation centre at The Heath on the N2, about 20 km east of Knysna. It aims to foster awareness of raptors, and provides rescue, rehabilitation and release of birds of prey. Trained birds that can’t be released are used in regular flying displays - most days at 11:00, 1:00, and 3:00.


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