The Hadada Ibis is a ’large, bulky, grey-brown species of Ibis with an iridescent green-purple gloss on the wings, “a bicoloured black-and-red bill and a white streak across the cheek under the eye.’ Picture: Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
The Hadada Ibis is a ’large, bulky, grey-brown species of Ibis with an iridescent green-purple gloss on the wings, “a bicoloured black-and-red bill and a white streak across the cheek under the eye.’ Picture: Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

La de da Hadeda: SA’s love-hate relationship with the 'flying vuvuzela'

By Dominic Naidoo Time of article published Nov 28, 2021

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It's official! Love them or hate them, few things bring South Africans together like our beloved Hadeda Ibis.

After less than two hours of being published on Facebook, the article, titled “La de da Hadeda: Cool Facts about South Africa's favourite bird”, received over 500 likes, 220 comments and 250 shares and got over 53 000 reads.

The comments section on FaceBook seemed to be evenly matched with some people declaring their affection toward the screaming flyers with others sharing their utter disdain for the iridescent sleep snatchers.

The top comment came from Mvuzo Mjongile who observed that “surprisingly, they love the soft life, (in the) suburbs, almost non-existent in townships.” I suspect the green; manicured lawns have something to do with that.

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Robynne Hastie said that “we have a family of Hadedas living in our tree. Been with us for years and every morning and night they wait at our back door for dog pellets. They love them. They are our pets and the dogs and cats leave them alone. They are not noisy like the geese that sit on the roof of the house next door. Those are noisy buggers!” Your dogs and cats leave them alone because of their incredibly powerful peck! How do you think they’re able to poke holes in our gardens searching for tasty grubs?

Appreciating their company, we have Netta Kruger who shared that when she hears them, it's time to start her day. She sees the little holes they left in her garden and enjoys the young fledglings whose calls haven’t fully developed as yet. She enjoys having them in her garden.

Gardener Gloria Halland said that “they are great for gardens. Eat all the cutworms and snails. Aerate lawns with their beaks. And all for free!:” Organic pest control?

A pair of fledgling hadedas. Picture: Handout/Supplied

Olivia Smith unashamedly gives her resident Hadedas old pasta saying that “the noise is most irritating, surprisingly they are very clever, they love rice and get very cross if we only have bread available, they also love pasta so if we have leftover that's gone bad, they are happy to have it.” At least no food gets wasted.

Colleen Daniels’ 5-year-old grandson once told her that the “Addidaa” pooped on his head at school. I think that’s a sign of good luck!

And finally, we have Ester Claassen: “Shame, they are scared of heights, that's why they scream so loud.”

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