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Special Announcement

Birdwatch magazine voted Birding Africa as one of the TOP 5 most recommended bird tour companies in the world. (See for more survey details.)

Pel’s Fishing Owl on last day of Uganda birding tour!

August 14, 2014

Our Uganda birding tour ended yesterday and here is a quick photo from the last day: one of two Pel’s Fishing Owls along the Nile River, taken by Birding Africa guide Tertius Gous on a boat trip in Murchison Falls National Park.

Pel’s Fishing Owl on a Birding Africa tour to Uganda

British Birdwatching Fair 2014

August 14, 2014

It’s hard to believe it’s our 14th year at the British Birdwatching Fair at Rutland Water and this year there’ll be 5 of us. On Friday at 13h00 Callan will be giving a lecture on how to combine the wildebeest migration in Tanzania with great birding, and on Saturday afternoon embarrassing himself at the Bird Brain of Britain quiz where he’ll be representing the African Bird Club (specialist subject is Endemic Birds of Madagascar). Marje will be on the stand with Tertius Gous (just back from a Uganda tour) and Ethan Kistler (who represented us at The Biggest Week in American Birding earlier in the year). Marje’s husband Jon, a keen birder, will also be supporting us. Hope to catch up with many of you this weekend (15 – 17 August)– we’ll be in our usual spot at the entrance of Marquee 3 (28/29).

Update from the Biggest Week

May 16, 2014

Birding Africa guide Ethan Kistler stands in front of Birding Africa’s booth during The Biggest Week In American Birding – the largest birding festival in the USA! On the final day of the festival, Ethan reports that the festival has been a blast, the birding was incredible and that it’s been great to be back in his home state and see all of his birding friends. We hope to see a lot of those who attended the festival join us in Africa soon!

For more details about Birding Africa trips email us at

Visit us at The Biggest Week

May 12, 2014

For our American followers attending The Biggest Week In American Birding (until May 15), be sure to say hello to Ohio-native and Birding Africa guide, Ethan Kistler.

As Birding Africa is a festival partner, Ethan will be manning our Birding Africa booth. He’ll also be guiding festival field trips, birding the trails and give a free talk on birding South Africa.

The fair is hosted by the Black Swamp Bird Observatory in Northwest Ohio.

For more details about Birding Africa trips, please chat to Ethan at the fair, or email us at

Hottentot’s Holland Day Trip

March 5, 2014

Birding Africa guide Ethan Kistler reports back on an excellent day birding around the Hottentot’s Holland mountains, finding 95 species.

Birding the Hottentot's Holland

On this beautiful and sunny midsummer’s morning, we met in Camps Bay and headed east along the scenic ocean drive. It promised to be windy but we were keen to see our target species.

We started at Rooiels and ticked off every species we had hoped for, including Cape Rockjumper, Ground Woodpeckers and a pair of magnificent Verreaux’s Eagles.

Orange-breasted Sunbird

In Betty’s Bay, Harold Porter Botanical Gardens provided excellent views of showy birds such as Blue-mantled Crested-Flycatchers, African Paradise Flycatchers, Swee Waxbills and this Orange-breasted Sunbird.

At the Stoney Point penguin colony we saw all coastal cormorants, African Oystercatchers, Cape Gannet and a surprise Giant Kingfisher.

African penguins at Stoney Point

Finally, at Strandfontein Water Works we added flamingos, various ducks and waders and an African Fish-Eagle, boosting our trip list to 95 species.

For details about Birding Africa day trips from Cape Town, please click here.

To enquire or to book, please email Amanda Kropman or phone +27 (0)83 270 7452.

The kids of Nyungwe Bird Club

January 1, 2014

Some of you may remember last August at the British Birdfair, when Marje Hemp & Callan Cohen of Birding Africa hosted a presentation of binoculars and East African field Guides to Narcisse Ndayambaje. (Click on this blog)

Narcisse is a specialist bird guide who set up the Nyungwe Kids Birdwatching Club five years ago.

He wanted train the guides of the future, so they could make their own sustainable income. And he wanted to prompt the local community to conserve and protect their forest.

Narcisse does this out of his generosity and passion for birds and education.

On Boxing Day, Marje and Jonathan Hemp met Narcisse Ndayambaje and 18 members of the club at the Gisakura Guesthouse to find out how they were getting along.

These excited young birders arrived kitted out with their backpacks, binoculars and East African field guides and keen to go on a bird outing.

Narcisse quickly arranged with the Nyungwe Park Manager so the group could join Marje and Jonathan on a field trip to Kamiranzovu Marsh.

They hired a taxi from the local village for a great afternoon birding at Nyungwe. This is Rwanda’s world famous montane forest with 26 Albertine Rift specials.
Red-faced Woodland Warbler (c) Narcisse Ndayambaje

The kids had to come to terms with difficult words: Cinnamon Bracken Warbler, Grauer’s Rush Warbler, Ruwenzori Batis and Mountain Masked Apalis! And they recorded these sightings in their notebooks.

Guided by the ever patient Narcisse, they could observe these birds from the hide. What a great afternoon!

Thanks to the RSPB and African Bird Club who sponsored the binoculars and Nigel Redman for the East African Field guides. The club members very much appreciate these items.

Their dearest wish now is to visit other national parks in Rwanda such as Akagera and Volcanoes.

To like the bird club on Facebook, please visit

New Trip Report: Ethiopia by Michael Mills

December 10, 2013

Michael Mills reports on our jam-packed 14-day Ethiopia tour: ‘ We found 515 bird species, including every Ethiopian and Eritrean endemic. We saw more than 20 Ethiopian Wolves, plus Mountain Nyala and Gelada Baboon and soaked up the dramatic scenery of East-Africa’s dazzling Rift Valley. Join us next April, just two places are left.’

Bird highlights included Blue-winged Goose near Addis; White-cheeked Turaco at Debre Libanos, Black-winged Lovebird at Jemma Valley and the localised Ankober Serin at Gemassa Gedel.

Boran Cisticola, Half-collared Kingfisher and Yellow-throated Seedeater entertained us in the lowlands. While Arabian and Hartlaub’s Bustard, Abdim’s Stork, Lichtenstein’s Sandgrouse, Dusky Nightjar, perched Barbary Falcon and Somali Ostrich showed in around Awash.

The Rift Valley immersed us with thrilling scenery and Wondo Genet with likes such as Abyssinian Woodpecker, Thick-billed Raven, Narina Trogon, Ethiopian Oriole and Yellow-fronted Parrot, until Spot-breasted Lapwing and Abyssinian (Long-eared) Owl welcomed us in the Bale Mountains.

In the Bale Mountains Ethiopian Wolf stole the show, featuring more than 20 animals. We also watched Abyssinian Catbird, Ayres’s Hawk Eagle, Crowned Eagle, Saker Falcon, Moorland Francolin, Rouget’s Rail and Chestnut-naped Francolin.

Prince Ruspoli’s Turaco (photo) and Abyssinian Ground Hornbill excited us en route to Negelle, where we had great views of Donaldson-Smith’s Nightjar and Sidamo Lark.

En-route to Yawello, some of the most memorable birds included White-tailed Swallow and Stresemann’s (or Ethiopian) Bushcrow (photo).

Click here to continue to the trip report to find out what else they saw.

Join Michael Mills in Ethiopia from 5 to 20 April 2014. Two places left.

Email Marje Hemp or phone +27 21 531 6405 to enquire or receive the tour details.

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