Wildlife in and around the garden in Cape Town

large brown spide caught in a red plastic jug, probably male but I didn't investigate!

The Common Rain Spider (Palystes superciliosus). Leg span is about 90mm. Rain spiders bite if disturbed!!


egg sac suspended in the air and held by silk threads attached to leaves and twigs of surrounding plants

Egg sac of the Common Rain Spider. The female usually guards the sac for a few weeks until young eat their way out.


garden view with hard to spot egg sac hanging in the bushes

Spot the egg sac.

tiny garden bird with white eye patch,yellow chest,grey body and olive green head peeping out of a bush with orange berry in its beak. Aw, so cute.

Spot the bird in the bush? (it's a tiny Cape White Eye with an orange berry in its beak)

Two white spotted chafer beetle's having sex inside a white St Joseph's Lily flower head.

Gilding the Lily. Two White Spotted Fruit Chafer beetle's inside a St Joseph's Lily flower.

Close up colour photograph of two white spotted fruit chafer beetles having sex missionary style in a white  St Joseph's Lily flower head. Cape Town.

So,...this is how they do it!

The Gymnogene (also known as the African Harrier-Hawk) is a fairly common resident and a cunning and acrobatic predator, especially of other birds and their nests.

When the Gymnogene gets excited it raises it's neck feathers into a hood and the yellow face flushes to orange.

The following pictures show a dramatic raid by the Gymnogene on the nest of a Red Wing Starling hidden inside the head of a Yucca tree but the sharp spiked leaves of the Yucca do not deter the oncoming attack.













Red Wing Starling swoops by to deter the Gymnogene but...


...too late and the Gymnogene flies away with its prey.




The Hadeda Ibis are frequent visitors to the garden.

two hadedah



Acanthcris ruficornis (a.k.a. African Grasshopper or Garden Locust)

cricket 2

cricket locust

locust cricket


green dragonfly

Adult Green Dragonfly


green mantis african

Adult African Praying Mantis

mantis nymph on wall

African Praying Mantis Nymph.


orb spider

Nephila fenestrata, the Black-legged Nephila spider or Golden Orb spider. This is the female.

orb male and female

Female with much smaller male lower on the web opposite the brown fern leaf.



The Cape Robber Fly is a very aggressive predator of other insects.


Close up photo of Caausius moros, a pale brown stick insect

Carausius morosus. This stick-insect has six legs but is shown here with its front two legs held together.

Close up photo of Carausius moros, a pale brown stick insect on a white wall background

Very close up photo of the head and front legs of Carausius moros a pale brown stick insect

Close up of Carausius morosus
Appreciation to Mr Paul Brock of the Natural History Museum, London
for his help in correctly identifying this species of stick insect -for more details click here and here.


lizard hides in bush

Trachylepis Capensis, Cape Skink or Cape Three Lined Skink hiding up in hedge to ambush prey, or....

lizard close up

.. just a nice place to sunbathe!

basking lizard

Note the smooth shiny skin.

basking lizard

lizard on lawn

lizard close up

The Cape Skink lizard has changed its skin.

lizard walking on lawn

house gecko

Hemidactylus frenatus, Common House Gecko. The master of camouflage.

gecko close up

The ultimate "blendo" artist shedding a skin.

flower and bug

White-Spotted Fruit Chafer (Mausoleopsis amabilis) eating one of my White Gazanias!

A single plain white Gardenia flower with yellowish centre growing on pale green foliage bush.

Gardenia flower.

A pair of pink Jasmine flowers that look like trumpet heads. growing out of darg green foliage.

Pink Jasmine.

A clump of bright orange flowers growing out of dark green foliage.

Orange African Daisies.

A clump of multi pastel coloured  daisy like flowers growing out of dark green foliage abd sandy ground.

Multicoloured Bokbaai Vygies.

Two brightly coloured yellow orange and black petals and yellow centre circle flowers.


Very close up view  showing the  the centre circle aslo has tiny white markings.

Three large white flowering heads on a tall thick green stem partly reflectd in glass window showing a garden outside.

Amaryllis Mavis.

Very close up view  showing scarlet red flower petals  with red stamens and yellow anther heads.

Amaryllis Chadwick.

Clump of green foliage out of which is growing several pink flowering heads on long stems. The flowers look like bees floating  above the plant leaves.

Plectranthus neochilus - purple- (a.k.a. Smelly Spur Flower) is a "water wise" ground cover plant.

A single delicate looking pink flowering head with purple stamens.

Encore Azalia.

A single variegated pink flowering head  growing from pale green foliage.

African Geranium (Perlargonium) indigenous to South Africa.

Three flowering heads with variegated white and yellow ansd purple and white petals growing from pale green foliage of tall leaves.

Dietes Grandiflora African Iris.

A clump of variegated purple colour flowers growing on pale green foliage.

Brunfelsia pauciflora - Yesterday-Today-and-Tomorrow.

A single bright orange and yellow flowering head growing out of long pale green leaves.

Orange flower Clivia.

A clump of bright orange and yellow flowering heads growing out of pale green long leaves one of which has a large pale brown grasshopper locust on it.

Clivia with Garden Locust ...so this is what nibbles the Clivia's!!!

Close up view of a pale pink delicate looking flowering head growing out of  dark green foliage .

Pink flower lemon scented Geranium.

A single deep pink flower with pink stamen with yellow antthers

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis - China Rose or Rosemallow with orange no-spots Ladybug.

A clump of bright warm orange flowers growing out of pale green foliage that is trailing over a path.


A clump of variegated pink yellow, white yellow flowers growing out of broad leaf dark green foliage.

Plumeria Frangipani flowers.

 A clump of white flowers with yellow centre circles growing out of dark green foliage

Pyracantha saphyr orange, a highly scented shrub that produces little orange berries.

Close up view of a clump  of pale orange and yellow  flowering heads.

Sparaxis, Harlequin Flower.

Close up view of the unique pale orange and purple flower  that looks a bit like a ballerina.

Strelitzia reginae - Bird of Paradise or Crane Lily.

picture.jpg southern boubou hides in tree

The Southern Boubou (predator bird) in Purple Leaf Plum tree (see centre of picture in front of terracotta roof tiles)
as a Cape Robin swoops past trying to scare the Boubou away.

(More wildlife pictures coming soon)


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