Category Archives: Birds

Patiently waiting for Skewy to lay another egg.

When you visit HESC for one of our daily tours, you will pass by two very vibrant and often very vocal birds, named Gumpie and Skewy. They are a breeding pair of Southern Ground Hornbills that have been part of the HESC family for the past eight years. Skewy (the female), hatched on the 15th October 2006, and Gumpie (the male), hatched on 16th November 2003. However they arrived at the same…
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A Blue Crane love story – two eggs have just been laid!

We have such exciting news from HESC, this monday morning! Donsie the female blue crane at HESC, has officially laid two eggs, for the first time.  John and Donsie are our breeding pair of blue cranes at HESC, that visitors can see as they arrive at the centre, as they are close to the entrance. They share their home with Bokkie Bok and Maroela, the duikers. There are 15 crane…
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Merlin the Owl moves into his Forever Home at HESC

Merlin the one-winged owl, has had a few months of recovery in the HESC animal hospital, but finally, he was able to move into his own new private abode, and he seems to be settling in well. This brave owl was found close to HESC on 21st March 2018, with a badly broken wing, and brought to us for treatment. We recognised him straight away, as one of the owlets…
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Update: Donsie the Blue Crane

Donsie the Bluecrane, has been with us at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) for a while now. She was attacked by a bird of prey and broke her wing. Despite valuable efforts of everyone involved, Donsie’s rehabilitation did not go as planned. Along with this, a sore developed on her leg which struggled to heal and worsened her overall condition. The decision was made to keep Donsie at HESC as…
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Hornbills at HESC – In love or not?

Visiting the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) will leave you silent and in awe of the amazing animals of this country. From a dashing cheetah, glaring with intent, to a rhino silently resting under a tree, have all found a home at HESC. Even Gumpie, the resident Ground Hornbill, is at home here. Gumpie and his mate, named Skewie – named after her skew beak – were given to HESC…
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