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Situated on the western side of the Cape Peninsula, Kommetjie and more specifically “the Kom” is a well-known and often reliable spot to find a variety of coastal species. The Kom, which consists of a rocky promontory usually, hosts all four cormorant species and a variety of migratory tern species including the Antarctic Tern. The area is also an excellent place to find some of the pelagic species off the coastline.



Bank Cormorant, Cape Cormorant, Crowned Cormorant, Arctic Tern, Antarctic Tern, Hartlaub's Gull, African Black Oystercatcher and a variety of pelagic species



The Kom consists of mostly rocky coastline with a small stretch of sandy beach. Open Ocean can be seen from a number of vantage points.



The Kom consists of a small circular walk around the rocky promontory.



1. In summer the Kom is a good place to familiarize yourself with migrant tern species including Sandwich Tern, Common Tern and occasionally Arctic Tern, which can be found together with Swift Tern in mixed flocks roosting on the rocks. In winter (April to October), the Common Tern, Sandwich Tern and Arctic Tern are replaced by small numbers of Antarctic Tern. Spring and autumn can be a little bit challenging with summer birds arriving before the departure of Antarctic Tern .The rocky promontory also holds White-breasted Cormorant, Bank Cormorant, Crowned Cormorant, Cape Cormorant, Kelp Gull and Hartlaub's Gull.

2. Birds seen in the intertidal zone include African Black Oystercatcher, Ruddy Turnstone, Common Whimbrel, Grey Plover and Common Ringed Plover. The sandy shoreline and small bay attracts small numbers of Pied Kingfisher, Three-banded Plover, White-fronted Plover and Blacksmith Lapwing.

3. The best vantage points for viewing pelagic species is on the slightly raised embankment between the Kom and the lighthouse (south of the Kom). In winter, frontal northwesters push species such as Shy Albatross, Black-browed Albatross and Atlantic Yellow-nosed Albatross, White-chinned Petrel, Northern Giant-Petrel, Southern Giant-Petrel and Subantarctic Skua towards the coast. Species such as Broad-billed Prion, Soft-plumaged Petrel and Great-winged Petrel are also present, but are seen less frequently. In summer, Sabine's Gull, Pomarine Jaeger, Parasitic Jaeger, Cory's Shearwater and Great Shearwater can be seen.



Kommetjie can be reached from Cape Town via the M3 and Ou Kaapse Weg. At the intersection between Ou Kaapse Weg and the M65, take a right towards Kommetjie. Travel approximately 7km along this road and pass a few shops on the left. Immediately after the shops on the left, look for Van Imhoff Road leading to the right. Take this road and drive down towards the sea and the parking lot on the left.

Kommetjie Website

Andrew Hester 2001.

Afton Grove

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