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Shorebird Species

Spotted Thick-knee Plover

Cape Thick-knee Burhinus capensis

Kathy Calf
Animal Demography Unit

The Cape Thick-knee (also known as Spotted Dikkop) is found in open flat habitats in southern Africa. It is generally sedentary; however birds from high rainfall areas, such as Zimbabwe, emigrate during the summer rains, and it is likely that these move to areas such as the central Kalahari basin.

Cape Thick-knee start breeding in August and the last chicks may fledge in May. In addition, a pair may have more than one successful breeding attempt, some have been recoreded rearing chicks successfully from four different nests. If nests or chicks are lost, further attempts to breed may occur. They lay two eggs in a scrape in the sand, lined with vegetation. Nests are usually in the open under or near tall trees. The eggs take about a month to hatch and the chicks between five and six weeks to fledge.

Cape Thick-knee
Photo Kathy Calf
Cape Thick-knee
 
Cape Thick-knee chicks
Photo Kathy Calf
Cape Thick-knee chicks