Limpopo Tourist AttractionsPolokwane Bird Sanctuary
Where? Access is from the R521 from Polokwane to Dendron, Polokwane, Limpopo
How? Call +27 (0)15 290-2331
The Polokwane Bird Sanctuary lies just north of town on the banks of the Sand River, right next to the sewerage works. Water is treated at the sewerage works before entering a sequence of ponds, and finally flowing into the Sand River. That the bird sanctuary is on slightly smelly ponds does not detract from the beauty of the sanctuary.
Because it is alive with reeds, riverine woodland, sedges and savannah woodland the place is attractive to birds. However, there is also a significant amount of non-indigenous, invasive plant life, as well as prickly pears, that has set up residence. This does not seem to hinder the bird life, except close to a couple of the bird hides where the reeds are so thick that birding is almost impossible.
The usual waterfowl, waders and rails find the acacia thickets and reeds attractive, whilst in summer months birders can see grey-backed camaroptera, yellow-bellied greenbul and various warblers.
On the eastern side of the sanctuary are shallow ponds that attract further waders as well as sandpipers, greenshank, ruff and little string, even African snipe and greater painted snipes put in an appearance, as well as African hoopoe, black crake, waxbills, lapwings, cisticola, mousebird and sunbirds.
A resident pair of African fish eagles make the visit really worth it.
There are a few picnic and braai sites and walking trails that increase the value of any visit here.
To find the bird sanctuary take the Dendron Road (R521). Just after crossing the Sand River, take a right turn diagonally opposite the petrol station. There is an entry fee per person and per vehicle.