Nesting birds at Silvermine

For the posting and discussion of Access Issues and Closures for Areas around South Africa.
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John Alexander

Nesting birds at Silvermine

Post by John Alexander » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:08 pm

I returned to the Silvermine crag after a long absence ! Yeah, I know I should climb more for those who still remember me! I was greeted with a sign restricting climbing due to nesting birds. I turned around and climbed at the lower Silvermine crag. Is there a time limit on the nesting ? When will access be available ?


Post by Stu » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:09 pm

Yeah, it's important to make sure those (so endangered) Starlings don't get disturbed.

Nature lover

Post by Nature lover » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:09 pm

I reckon if you can take the kamikazi antics of the Starlings you earn the right to climb there but let me tell you it can be quite stimulating.


Post by Cheryl » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:10 pm

Hi John Its Peregrine Falcons and we've asked Brent to consult with SANParks about how long etc... (


Post by Brent » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:11 pm

Obviously it's Peregrin's, and not starlings. This particular pair are nesting very late in the season. SANParks have a monitor that checks on their condition, number of chicks etc, so I will try and find out from them when this closure is likely to end. I will also make sure they inform us if this happens again. In the meantime, while the signs are up, please respect the birds' right to nest in peace. cheers. (

Confused about signs

Post by Confused about signs » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:11 pm

What is the situation... I like many a climber saw a sign saying no climbing between the markers... went to the crag, and didn't see any markers, or birds for that matter. On the way out it occured to us that maybe the signpost was meant to be the marker. But surely it would have said \"No climbing at main crag\", if the whole crag was off limits... And there were signs relatively far away from the crags... so I figure the problem was at Blaze of Glory... Was/Is this the correct interpretation, because if it wasn't, then I'm sure there are others who are climbing where they shouldn't...


Post by Grigri » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:11 pm

There are nesting Peregrines at another v.popular local crag who do not seem in the least bit bothered by the climbers. They have bred sucessfully if the sqwauking heard when the adult returns to the nest is anything to go by. If you hang around after sunset the male may swoop down and give you a piece of his mind though, sunset being prime hunting time and our presence keeping the mice in hiding. It does beggar the question though as to whether there is any point to the climbing bans? Sure if the nest is right there but if itrs away from the routes?


Post by Dave » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:12 pm

Some time ago I stopped off at Muizenberg to check out the climbs there, and there was also a sign then saying \"No climbing between the markers\", but no markers. So what's the deal?


Post by han » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:12 pm

Was there this weekend. Spotted two markers. One on the hill above Blaze of Glory. The other marker towards Lower Silvermine \"Abseil\" Crag. Both marked with a red flag and visible from the car park. I am guessing these are it.


Post by Brent » Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:12 pm

Ok, after speaking with Parks, they tell me that the signs will be removed today. If you still see signs there, just ignore them. I think the birds have fledged. Nesting at Silvermine is a very good sign for these endangered hunters. Previously, there were only a few pairs, now they seem to be doing very well. Pretty much the pinnacle of flight achievement, they always enhance a visit to the crag, so we should encourage them by leaving them alone when they're nesting. Although the parent birds fear pretty much nothing (certainly not climbers), they won't nest near an actively used route (which may be near some prime nesting real estate). Also, the chicks, being much more vulnerable, are easily spooked, and have been known to jump out the nest to their deaths if harassed by the proximity of humans. I think it's pretty cool that they are around, and we should give them a bit of space for the time it takes them to raise a chick or two. Popular areas for them are Muizenberg (trad) crag, the Mine, and now Silvermine too. If anyone sees a nest of falcons (or even the more common rock kestrel), let me (or someone from Parks) know, for their benefit and ours. cheers.

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Post by ScottS » Wed May 11, 2005 5:56 pm


Sent: 11 May 2005 07:42 AM
Subject: [CapeRockNews] Nesting Black Eagles at Silvermine

There was an article in the Argus about Black Eagles nesting at
Silvermine and that hangliders and climbers have to stay away. I have
spoken to Gavin Bell at Parks Board about this and he informed me that
the eagles are nesting on the Noordhoek side of Silvermine so access to
the Silvermine Crags is not affected.

As a matter of interest he also says there are a bunch of fish eagles in
the area and the Cape Peninsula has the highest concentration of
Peregrine Falcons.

Happy cranking!

Andy Davies
MCSA Rock Subcom
At the chaaaaains boet!!



Post by biologist » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:59 pm

Your ignorance is unbelievable! Firstly, Peregrines don't hunt mice, they hunt birds. Secondly, the birds ARE disturbed by people continuously moving up and down their cliffs.... they may settle after you leave, but you are only one person. If they are disturbed regulalry, their breeding cycle could be negatively affected.

Climbing those cliffs (especially in a National Park) is not your right, its a privalege. So, have a little respect for the birds that actually belong on the there :x .


Post by Socialist » Thu Oct 20, 2005 9:55 am

While I dont disagree with the \"biologist\" that we need to make allowance for the lesser spotted pelegrine, ignorance all depends on what you are into. It is a bit hypocritical to say that people have no right to be there, they have just as much right as the birds (we are all animals none greater or lesser) but we need to make allowance for each other, which in this case means trying to avoid them and let them settle during nesting period. Climbers are into nature and I doubt anybody is going to chase them around with a stick, consider how often that bird needs to protect its fledglings from real predators and I would think that a climber in the distance would merely cause it to fluff its feathers. How ignorant am I?



Post by Jay » Thu Oct 20, 2005 9:57 am

Ignorance is what gets us banned from crags. I'm surpised that climbers are still allowed to climb in certain areas.

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Post by Q20 » Thu Oct 20, 2005 10:18 am

After checking me olde diary we were last at Silvermine Main on 6 Oct. There were markers at the top of the crag, but it is difficult to tell where you are not meant to climb. As it turned out the Falcons seemed to be nesting just left of Cool Hand Luke as in previous years.

Anyone know what the current situation is??

It seems to me the best idea would be to have a sign at the top of the crag if the whole area is off limits, so you don't waste your lime walking down, but have markers at the crag itself indicating which sections are off limits. My 3.785 cents worth.

And for the biologist we saw the the adults bring in one rodent and one lizard in the short time we where there, so clearly they don't just hunt birds :wink:

Final final point, I have also come across falcons nesting at the Palace, Montagu, above the routes furthest right. Perhaps this needs monitoring too.
One life, one body. Use them well.

non nature girl

fly spray

Post by non nature girl » Sun Oct 30, 2005 10:24 am

Dear non nature girl,
Your posting was deleted, its not quite the answer/statement anyone is looking for.
Climb ZA

non nature girl

eff u

Post by non nature girl » Mon Oct 31, 2005 4:59 pm

dear climb za,
thanks for deleting my post. I'll be taking my rat poison to the crags and leaving it in little 'climb za' cups. I also intend on spraypainting the words \"UFCK CLIMB ZA\" at th stance of pitch 2 on Jacobs ladder.

ps hypocracy stinks

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Re: eff u

Post by ClimbZA » Mon Oct 31, 2005 7:22 pm

non nature girl wrote:dear climb za,
thanks for deleting my post. I'll be taking my rat poison to the crags and leaving it in little 'climb za' cups. I also intend on spraypainting the words "UFCK CLIMB ZA" at th stance of pitch 2 on Jacobs ladder.

ps hypocracy stinks
Hi Non Nature Girl,
Thanks for being so helpful, I've put your post in below. Please, if anyone finds this information useful let us know.

"I've found if there annoying birds nests on climbs,it works best to take a can of fly spray and spray the chicks. It's really fun watching them get the shakes from the strichnine.The added bonus is that other annoying bird will eat the convulsing pests and in turn, they will also get poisoned. This should be done at silvermine where the birds are trying to muscle in on climbers turf. I found a great rat poison that looks and smells like birdseed. If this fails, pellet guns are good, or, if u'v just finished making a hot plate of slap chips at the crag, just throw the hot oil on the babies. This has the added bonus of actually being quite tasty for the dogs to eat."



Post by Dingo » Mon Oct 31, 2005 7:32 pm

dude, thats whack!!! Funniest sh*t I've read in a long time, especially the 'slap chips' part.I've never heard of making chips at the crag.I'm in agreement with 'non nature girl' that you guys shouldnt decide what stays and what goes. even if she was just joking [which clearly she must have been - and with solid dark humour] it is valid for a public forum as humour is part of being human.Personally, from watching how the webmaster [read \"dictator\"] of Rockaddiction used to decide on everything,it made people pretty peeved. Those birds are a bleeding nuisance, especially when they dive bomb you.It's cool that someone found something funny to say instead of 'ye olde mountain club campfire and biccies answer'. You okes must lighten up.

Derek Marshall

Post by Derek Marshall » Tue Nov 01, 2005 8:31 am

the origional is really funny

But the folks at put in way effort into keeping this page alive & should be spared the disrespect of the other coments.


Post by Mick » Sun Nov 27, 2005 7:15 pm

It would probably help if the 'markers' they put up were clearly visible and easy to understand. If this is going to be a yearly occurance it might be worthwile in investing in some decent signs. I went for a climb at blaze of glory last weekend and saw the warning sign but no markers. Unless the signs are the markers? If i can see where not to climb i wont climb there until the birds are done doing what they do, otherwise its all pretty confusing really.

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