Detailed List of Retreats

Getting To Know The Birds, Trees And Wild Flowers At The BRC: 160 Birds of a feather

Teacher: Chris Dalzell and Steve Davis
Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
Dates: Friday 01 February 2019 - Sunday 03 February 2019

chris dalzell psteve davisJoin Chris and Steve for an enjoyable weekend of identifying some of the BRC’s 160 species of birds (including the summer residents, the rare Blue Swallow, Knysna Turaco and Emerald Cuckoo) and getting to know the indigenous trees and many of the wild flowers that grow there. You will also have a chance to be part of the indigenous forest by planting your own tree. The weekend includes learning how to identify the most common trees in KwaZulu Natal, how to dig and plant a tree, how to maintain it, and what butterflies and birds are attracted to these trees for nectar or fruit. Walk the verdant hills and meadows among the wild flowers, close to where the Blue Swallows nest, and enjoy the rare orchids, tree ferns and yellowwoods, pink watsonias in their summer flurry and the orange Christmas Bells. Included will be talks, chi kung, meditation and some quiet time communing with nature. Bring your binoculars and a sunhat.

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Chris Dalzell was Curator of the Durban Botanical Gardens where he was in charge of special collections. He has studied, lectured and travelled internationally, collecting plant specimens from USA, Canada, Brazil, S.E. Asia, Australia and New Zealand.  For many years he guided the South African exhibition at the international Chelsea Flower Show where his stall was consistently awarded Gold and Silver-Gilt Medals. He was appointed Assistant Director for the development of Gardens by the Bay in Singapore. He currently runs his own landscaping business Chris Dalzell Landscapes.

Steve Davis has been watcing birds since moving to South Africa in 1975, and has travelled in most parts of southern Africa and many countries around the world. He has presented numerous talks and courses on birds, served on the BirdLife Port Natal Committee and is a member of the KwaZulu-Natal Rare Birds Committee. He has written two books with his late friend, Roy Cowgill - one on the birds of Durban reserves and one on shorebirds identification. He is a keen wildlife enthusiast, having expanded his interests to butterflies, dragonflies, trees and flowers. Steve is a Chemical Engineer by profession, having gained a M.Sc.Eng (Chem) at the University of Natal, Durban, and is currently Research and Development Manager at the Sugar Milling Research Institute in Durban.