CLARENS NEWS: 20 September 2012

News from the woodpecker nest under the Leaning Tower of MTN is that all is well, and that Grizelda (the one-winged Guinea Fowl) is assiduously sticking by her task as egg-minder while Woody and Doris Woodpecker take a break on the beaches of Cape Town.   Postcards from Woody confirm that his titanium pecker is the centre of attention amongst the bird set of Clifton, much to the annoyance of Doris.   (Readers will recall that Woody came to the attention of Clarens bird watchers when he attempted to bore a hole in the village’s newest tree, Cellicia Emteenus Africanus, and bent his beak irreparably on its metallic trunk; following an outpouring of public concern, Woody was given a shiny new pecker and found love in the wings of Doris, a shy but fertile lady woodpecker).   More news of the African Pied Crow (identity withheld until next-of-kin are advised), which swallowed a cell phone and triggered a national emergency by burping ABBA ringtones across the country from 5000 metres (Clarens News 14 September):  He flew north in a desperate attempt to escape the fury of more conventional (but jealous) songbirds, and was reported shot down by a ground-to-crow missile in the Middle East.   Swedish music promoters are apparently offering a large reward for the remains of the not-so-smart phone and plan to erect a monument to the Unknown Crow in central Stockholm.   Finally, mystery surrounds the whereabouts of a large clutch of Guinea Fowl eggs last seen on the edge of the Clarens Town Dam.   Local sources suggest the complicity of a duck in the egg-jacking.   More will be revealed in coming weeks as the mystery deepens.The Twitcher