Complete Namibia — Set Departure Birding Trip Report November 2021

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30 October – 17 NOVEMBER 2021

By Dominic Rollinson

Complete Namibia birding tourThis female Hartlaub’s Spurfowl showed incredibly well in the Erongo Mountains.




This fantastic 19-day Complete Namibia birding tour was to replace our regular Namibia, Botswana and Victoria Falls itinerary for 2021 due to travel limitations and difficulties during the Covid pandemic. The adjusted Complete Namibia itinerary would ensure no border crossings after arrival in Namibia. The itinerary would follow a similar route while in Namibia, however the Okavango Swamps (Botswana) and Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe) would not be visited on this tour. We did however visit comparable habitats in Namibia’s Caprivi Strip which resulted in a similar suite of bird and wildlife species.

While in Namibia, searching for Namibian specials/near-endemics is high up on the agenda and we certainly did well on this tour, managing to find many of these specials including Hartlaub’s Spurfowl, Rüppell’s Korhaan, Damara Tern, Burchell’s Sandgrouse, Violet Wood Hoopoe, Rüppell’s Parrot, White-tailed Shrike, Souza’s Shrike, Rufous-bellied Tit, Gray’s, Benguela Long-billed, Karoo Long-billed, Dune and Stark’s Larks, Monteiro’s and Damara Red-billed Hornbills, Black-faced, Hartlaub’s and Bare-cheeked Babblers, Herero Chat and Sharp-tailed Starling. We also found many less range-restricted but equally important species such as Secretarybird, African Pygmy Goose, African Skimmer, White-backed Night Heron, Pallid Harrier, Augur Buzzard, Ludwig’s Bustard, Long-toed Lapwing, Lesser Jacana, Burchell’s Courser, Rock Pratincole, Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl, Pennant-winged Nightjar, Bradfield’s Swift, Pygmy Falcon, Sociable Weaver, Crimson-breasted Shrike and many others. The trip list totaled 407 bird species of which five were heard only!

Complete Namibia birding tourRüppell’s Korhaan showed beautifully in the Sossusvlei area.

Namibia is also well-known for its incredible wildlife viewing opportunities and we managed to find some great mammals, including Temminck’s Ground Pangolin, Side-striped Jackal, Honey Badger, Small Spotted Genet, Spotted Hyena, Cheetah, Lion, Leopard, (Hartmann’s) Mountain Zebra, Black and White Rhinoceros, African Elephant, African Buffalo, Sable, Giraffe, Gemsbok (Southern Oryx), Damara Dikdik and many other widespread mammal species. All in all, we recorded 46 mammal species over the 19 days of this trip.

Complete Namibia birding tourEtosha normally provides great sightings of Black Rhinoceros.

Finally, it would be amiss to not mention the incredible scenery and panoramas we experienced on this tour. The massive red dunes of Sossusvlei were visited early on in the trip, before we enjoyed the majesty of Spitzkoppe and then the vast and stark beauty of Etosha National Park, before heading northeast to the lush woodlands of the Caprivi Strip, with time spent on the mighty Zambezi River.


Detailed Report


Day 1, 30th October 2021. Windhoek birding

With Janis, Glenda and I all having arrived into Windhoek the previous evening, it meant we could start our birding right away. The morning’s birding around our lodge grounds was a great introduction to Namibian woodland birding and it wasn’t long before we had ticked off Red-billed Spurfowl, Namaqua Dove, Rosy-faced Lovebird, Grey Go-away-bird, Black-chested Prinia, Chestnut-vented Warbler, Southern Pied Babbler, Groundscraper Thrush, a family of Common Ostrich and the vividly colored Crimson-breasted Shrike. A short walk into the surrounding woodlands produced a wonderful sighting of a Pearl-spotted Owlet which was having a hard time being mobbed by Fork-tailed Drongo, Common Scimitarbill, Acacia Pied Barbet, Pririt Batis, Marico Sunbird, Burnt-necked and Yellow-bellied Eremomelas and Violet-eared Waxbill. Loud drumming from a nearby tree gave away a male Bearded Woodpecker and seedeaters were well represented with Great Sparrow, Green-winged Pytilia, Red-billed Quelea and Scaly-feathered Weavers, all seen well.

Complete Namibia birding tourCrimson-breasted Shrike is always a popular species on Namibian tours.

After lunch we decided to head into Windhoek city for some wetland birding which proved to be really productive. A stop at a dam on the outskirts of Windhoek produced African Swamphen, Common Moorhen, Red-knobbed Coot and our two main targets, Southern Pochard and Maccoa Duck. It was the local sewage works next, which was full of birds with thousands of loud and conspicuous Wattled Starlings being the most abundant species. The waterbirds were well represented by Grey and Squacco Herons, Black-crowned Night Heron, Blue-billed Teal, Little Grebe, Great White Pelican, Reed Cormorant, African Darter, Black Crake, Common and Wood Sandpipers and many Three-banded Plovers. The surrounding bush had Monteiro’s and Damara Red-billed Hornbill, White-backed Mousebird and many European Bee-eaters. En route back to our lodge in the late afternoon we came across a few White-backed and Lappet-faced Vultures both unfortunately now listed as Critically Endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)!

The evening ended perfectly when we were sat doing our bird list for the day and were distracted by a strange high-pitched call which turned out to be a Western Barn Owl as it was mobbing a Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl. The eagle-owl posed perfectly for us and we were all able to enjoy prolonged scope views.


Day 2, 31st October 2021. Windhoek to Sossusvlei

As was to be the trend for the rest of the trip, we were again up early and went for a drive in the surrounding wooded areas. The drive started well as we finally got visuals of a Barred Wren-Warbler (which would not co-operate the day before) and had brief flyby views of Ludwig’s Bustard and South African Shelduck. Further along the road we found good numbers of Desert Cisticola as well as Black-chested Snake Eagle, Black-winged Kite, Pale Chanting Goshawk (soon to be referred to as PCG!), Red-crested Korhaan, Swallow-tailed Bee-eater, African Hoopoe, Sabota Lark and many Sociable Weavers near to their massive communal nests.

After a late breakfast we set off on the long drive west to the Sossusvlei area where we would be based for two nights. The drive was a scenic one and we made sure we stopped for anything of interest which included Wahlberg’s Eagle, Lark-like Bunting, White-throated Canary, Red-headed Finch, Short-toed Rock Thrush, Chat Flycatcher and the unfortunate carcass of a Spotted Eagle-Owl. We enjoyed our lunch stop at the top of Spreegtshoogte Pass which has spectacular views out over the desert plains. In the general area we had a brief flyby Augur Buzzard and a very showy Bokmakierie.

Complete Namibia birding tourWhite-throated Canaries were common in the arid areas of Namibia.

Once down in the plains, roadside stops produced Namaqua Sandgrouse, Grey-backed Sparrow-Lark, Mountain Wheatear, African Red-eyed Bulbul and a few new interesting mammals such as Gemsbok (Southern Oryx), Springbok and a pair of Klipspringer (a rock-loving antelope). We ended the day with a beautiful sunset as we enjoyed our tasty and wholesome dinner.


Day 3, 1st November 2021. Sossusvlei sightseeing and birding

We woke up before dawn and had an early breakfast as we were to spend the morning in the impressive and picturesque red dunes of Sossusvlei. Sightseeing was the main purpose of the morning (and the dunes certainly did not disappoint), however we still managed to tick off a few more important target birds along the drive to and from Sossusvlei. We spent a decent amount of time photographing the incredible landscape and even managed to get the hoped-for shot of a Gemsbok with the huge red dunes as a backdrop! Highlights of the morning (besides the red dunes) was a pair of showy and vocal Rüppell’s Korhaan on the side of the road and a large group of 30-40 Burchell’s Coursers. With the mercury rising, we decided to take it easy after our lunch before our afternoon trip out.

We began the afternoon’s birding by visiting the impressive steep-sided canyon at Sesriem which was relatively quiet however we did find an obliging pair of the incredibly cute Pygmy Falcon in the general area. From here we headed to Elim Dune in the hope of finding Dune Lark however unfortunately our luck had run out for the day. Nearby we did manage to improve our views (and photos) of Burchell’s Courser and a Southern Fiscal also showed well here.

Complete Namibia birding tourWe had great views of Pygmy Falcon near Sesriem.


Day 4, 2nd November 2021. Birding the desert and transfer to Walvis Bay

We began the morning by birding some of the dirt roads in the area which didn’t prove terribly productive but did however produce another Pygmy Falcon as well as a couple groups of calling Rüppell’s Korhaan before we enjoyed an early breakfast.

It was then the long dirt road to Walvis Bay with a couple stops en route producing Karoo Long-billed Lark and a dozen or so Ludwig’s Bustards, in singles and pairs. Closer to Walvis Bay we lucked upon a pair of extremely confiding Gray’s Larks which made for great photographic opportunities (see below).

Complete Namibia birding tourGray’s Lark was particularly friendly near to Walvis Bay.

Our afternoon around Walvis Bay was spent birding the salt works which despite the incredibly windy conditions, did produce a number of new shorebirds (waders) and other waterbirds. Highlights for the afternoon included Red-necked Phalarope, Pied Avocet, White-fronted and Chestnut-banded Plovers, Ruddy Turnstone and Caspian, Greater Crested, Common and Sandwich Terns.


Day 5, 3rd November 2021. Walvis Bay boat cruise and Walvis Bay birding

We started the morning by heading out pre-dawn to Rooibank where Dune Lark did not prove too difficult and eventually our patience was rewarded with fantastic views of Namibia’s only bird endemic. In the area we also saw Bokmakierie, Diederik Cuckoo and Pririt Batis.

After a quick breakfast we headed out on our boat cruise of Walvis Bay which is always an entertaining morning out. Great White Pelican and Afro-Australasian Fur Seals joined us on the boat for some of the journey as they enjoyed an easy fish meal and we also added many Sooty Shearwaters, a single White-chinned Petrel and a pair of African Penguins. Common Bottle-nosed Dolphins were skittish but did eventually show well and Cape and Crowned Cormorants gave good views as we left and entered the harbor.

During lunch at our accommodation, we enjoyed brief views of Orange River White-eye which flitted about the leafy garden. The afternoon was spent back in the salt works to see what other species we could add here and we were rewarded with great views of a pair of the cute Damara Tern as well the regular mix of shorebirds such as Curlew and Marsh Sandpipers, Little Stint, Common Greenshank, Bar-tailed Godwit and Common Ringed and Grey Plovers. We ended the day with a fantastic dinner overlooking the esplanade and enjoying another fine African sunset.


Day 6, 4th November 2021. Transfer to Ai-Aiba Lodge, Spitzkoppe birding en route

We left Walvis Bay early as we had a long day ahead of us with many important bird targets. Unfortunately, a quick stop at the guano platform just north of town did not produce the hoped-for Bank Cormorant however once we were through the sea mist and into the desert the birding soon picked up.

Nearby to the picturesque and impressive Spitzkoppe we found large flocks of the nomadic Stark’s Lark as well as a few Rüppell’s Korhaans. Once we were at the base of Spitzkoppe we birded the adjacent scrub and boulders and managed to find Layard’s Warbler, Dusky Sunbird, Black-chested Prinia, Pririt Batis and eventually an incredibly confiding pair of Herero Chats. The chats quietly went about feeding in the shade of a tree and allowed us to watch and photograph them at point-blank distances which was a real treat to experience.

Complete Namibia birding tourWe spent a while watching Herero Chats as they fed at Spitzkoppe.

After eventually tearing ourselves away from the chats we headed northwest to the small mining town of Uis where we had another special lark to look for. It took a lot longer than anticipated and as we were about to give up (top tip: once you give up all hope, the desired species should show itself right away) we spotted a dark figure sheltering in the shade of a bush which turned out to be our target, a Benguela Long-billed Lark.

After breathing a heavy sigh of relief, we continued on to Ai Aiba Rock Painting Lodge where we were to stay for the next two nights. The afternoon’s birding walk was rather quiet but did reveal Pearl-spotted Owlet, Double-banded Sandgrouse, Cape Bunting and the impressive rock art for which the area is well-known.

During our incredibly tasty dinner we were treated to views of Freckled Nightjar and Double-banded Sandgrouse coming to drink from the small waterhole. It was a great relaxed end to an intense and thoroughly rewarding day of birding!


Day 7, 5th November 2021. Birding the Namib Escarpment

We set out early from the lodge for a walk around the impressive granite koppies in the area. The walk started eerily quiet but once the sun came out this soon changed. Our prime target for the morning was Hartlaub’s Spurfowl and after hearing a covey calling from some nearby rocks, we managed some fine views. Unfortunately, Rockrunner only showed briefly this morning and did not pose for the camera. Other great birds included small groups of the cute White-tailed Shrike as well as Ashy Tit, Lanner Falcon, Rock Kestrel, Monteiro’s Hornbill and Pririt Batis.

During our late breakfast we watched as hordes of birds came in to drink from the bird bath, including the likes of Red-headed Finch, Lark-like Bunting, Green-winged Pytilia, White-throated Canary, African Red-eyed Bulbul and White-browed Sparrow-Weaver.

Complete Namibia birding tourWe saw a number of groups of White-tailed Shrikes in the drier bushveld areas of Namibia.

 We spent the heat of the late morning and midday in the air-conditioned car as well as some time in Omaruru which did not add much of interest, however we did come across more White-tailed Shrikes and our first Giraffe and Kudu of the trip.

Later in the afternoon we headed back into Omaruru where we had good views of feeding Rüppell’s Parrot as well as Damara Red-billed and Monteiro’s Hornbills and many attractive and noisy Rosy-faced Lovebirds. On our way home in the fading light, we came across a comical scene as a Spotted Thick-knee and Black-backed Jackal squared-up on the road, which ended with the jackal heading off into the bush.

Complete Namibia birding tourThe Rüppell’s Parrots at Omaruru were particularly co-operative.


Day 8, 6th November 2021. Transfer to Etosha

With only fleeting glimpses of Rockrunner the previous morning, we decided to try to improve our views of this Namibian near-endemic today. We headed out to the same area as yesterday morning and after a bit of work, we eventually managed good views of a bird singing it’s beautiful warbling call, as it sat up on a boulder. Other birds seen during our early morning walk included Common Scimitarbill, Monteiro’s Hornbill, White-tailed Shrike, Yellow-bellied Eremomela, Layard’s Warbler and a pair of African Hawk-Eagles.

After another scrumptious breakfast we packed up and left the escarpment and made our way north to Etosha National Park, surely one of Africa’s top game parks. We arrived during the heat of the midday and so took it easy for a little while before heading out in the late afternoon for a game drive. Despite the intense heat, we soon notched up some good birds and wildlife sightings. Some of the highlights included Red-capped, Stark’s, Sabota, Pink-billed, Spike-heeled and Rufous-naped Larks, Capped Wheatear, Ant-eating Chat, Grey-backed Sparrow-Lark, Greater Kestrel, Double-banded and Bronze-winged Coursers, Desert Cisticola and the huge Kori Bustard. As always in Etosha, there were large numbers of game around and we came across Black-backed Jackal, Plains Zebra, Giraffe, Gemsbok (Southern Oryx), Common Wildebeest, Springbok and the cute Steenbok. After our dinner we spent some time at Okaukuejo’s famous floodlit waterhole where we had six Black Rhinoceros coming down to drink and socialize and also saw Marsh and Western Barn Owl, while Rufous-cheeked Nightjars hawked insects above the water. Always a great way to end the day!


Day 9, 7th November 2021. Etosha birding and wildlife viewing

We woke up excited with the prospect of a full day enjoying the birds and wildlife of Etosha, and the day certainly did not disappoint! From Okaukuejo we headed east and ultimately arrived at Halali Camp in the late morning. Birding the open plains on the edge of the dry lake produced Rufous-eared Warbler, Great Sparrow, Red-crested and Northern Black Korhaans, Chat Flycatcher, Common Ostrich and a couple of Secretarybirds. Stops at waterholes close to the main road were productive with sightings of Cape and Red-billed Teals, Little Egret and the highlight in the form of a beautiful male Pallid Harrier, as it hunted in the surrounding plains. The game sightings on our drive were fantastic as we came across a particularly feisty Black Rhinoceros, a blood-soaked Spotted Hyena gouging on a young Springbok (with Black-backed Jackals in tow), a single Honey Badger and large numbers of commoner game such as Impala, Springbok, Red Hartebeest, Common Wildebeest and the massive African Elephant which is numerous in Etosha.

Complete Namibia birding tourThis Spotted Hyena was seen (and heard) snacking on an unfortunate Springbok.

Arriving at Halali Camp, it did not take long until we had bagged our targets which included Bare-cheeked Babbler, Violet Wood Hoopoe and Carp’s Tit. The birdlife around the camp was particularly lively where we also managed to find African Grey, Damara Red-billed, Southern Red-billed and Southern Yellow-billed Hornbills, Southern White-crowned Shrike and Marico Flycatcher. On our way back to Okaukuejo we found a kettle of vultures which comprised of mostly White-backed Vultures but also had a single White-headed Vulture.

Complete Namibia birding tourViolet Wood Hoopoes were seen feeding chicks in Halali Camp.


Day 10, 8th November 2021. Eastern Etosha birding

Today was our last full day in Etosha as we made our way from Okaukuejo to the eastern edge of the park at Mokuti Lodge (right outside the eastern park entrance). We spent some time around Okaukuejo in the early morning where we managed to track down Cape Penduline Tit while the drive east through the park produced Lappet-faced Vulture, Gabar Goshawk, Greater Kestrel, Brubru, Lesser Grey Shrike and Groundscraper Thrush.

We enjoyed a late lunch at the park’s most easterly camp, Namutoni and then enjoyed a walk around which gave us plenty of new birds including Martial Eagle, Red-necked Falcon, Burchell’s Starling, Black-backed Puffback and a Marabou Stork at the waterhole. During our walk we heard a lot of commotion coming from a nearby tree, with birds giving their excited alarm calls, upon closer inspection we found a decent-sized Southern African Rock Python curled up in the higher branches, much to the annoyance of the local birds.

After Namutoni we headed north to the Andoni Plains in the hope of finding some grassland species and any form of big cat. The cats did not play along but we did find Blue Crane, Eastern Clapper Lark and good numbers of waterbirds including Chestnut-banded and Kittlitz’s Plovers and South African Shelduck.

Late in the afternoon we headed out the park and into Mokuti Lodge where we used the last hour of daylight to track down Black-faced Babbler, Meyer’s Parrot, Crested Francolin, Orange-breasted Bushshrike and White-bellied Sunbird. After a long day in the African bush we enjoyed a great braai (barbecue) and settled in for the evening.

Complete Namibia birding tourBlack-faced Babblers showed well at Mokuti Lodge.


Day 11, 9th November 2021. Eastern Etosha birding and transfer to Rundu

As we had not yet seen any big cats, we decided to head into Etosha National Park one last time to see if we could change our luck. Our luck certainly did change when we found two Cheetahs which we were able to enjoy for a while. After this Glenda spotted some movement under a bush which turned out to be a small pride of Lions which were lazing about under trees near a waterhole (as lions do).

We had a good drive ahead of us today so after getting our big cats we left the park and headed northwest towards Rundu. The drive was mostly uneventful however we did find Bradfield’s Hornbill, Black Cuckooshrike, Scarlet-chested Sunbird and White-crested Helmetshrike during our lunch stop.

We arrived at Taranga Safari Lodge, near Rundu late in the afternoon and after unpacking we took a walk around camp to see what new species awaited us, now that we had moved significantly further east. The camp was alive with birds and it did not take long until we had a long list of trip ticks such as White-browed Robin-Chat, White-browed Scrub Robin, Red-faced Mousebird, Greater Honeyguide, Violet-backed Starling, Yellow-bellied Greenbul, Dark-capped Bulbul, African Paradise Flycatcher, Swamp Boubou, Black-collared Barbet, Little Bee-eater and many others. We spent a couple of hours waiting for the long-staying, vagrant Ross’s Turaco to show but unfortunately that would have to wait until tomorrow.


Day 12, 10th November 2021. Rundu birding and transfer through the Caprivi Strip

We got up early and headed to the Ross’s Turaco stakeout and thankfully it didn’t take long until this unmistakable violet, red and yellow turaco showed for us. The bird was very skittish but after some effort we got decent views of this vagrant which normally occurs much further north of the border. The camp was again very birdy and we further added White-browed and Coppery-tailed Coucals, Black and Jacobin Cuckoos, African Green Pigeon, Terrestrial Brownbul, Mosque Swallow and Hartlaub’s Babbler.

We had another long drive today, so we hit the road soon after breakfast and made our way east through the Caprivi Strip. We had recent information on Souza’s Shrike and made a stop to search the woodlands near Katere. We parked the car, walked into the woodlands and within a few minutes we had a very obliging Souza’s Shrike which allowed us to spend about 20 minutes watching it as it went about hunting, even impaling its prey on thorns! In the area we also had Tinkling Cisticola, Klaas’s Cuckoo, African Harrier-Hawk and calling Coqui Francolin.

Complete Namibia birding tourSouza’s Shrike was found with relative ease in the broad-leafed woodlands of the Caprivi Strip.

With a lot of ground still to be covered we did not linger here and soon pressed onto Katima Mulilo where we would be based for the next two nights. Just outside Katima Mulilo we found a huge feeding flock of Yellow-billed Kites numbering into the thousands, we spent about 30 minutes enjoying the incredible spectacle and also had a couple Lesser Spotted Eagles come in to enjoy the flying ant feast. We arrived at Caprivi Houseboat Safaris late in the afternoon but still with enough time to enjoy a sunset cruise along the Zambezi River. River cruises are always very peaceful and relaxing and the birds generally show very well and are quite approachable. Today was no different and we found a number of new birds on the cruise such as African Skimmer, African Finfoot, Malachite, Pied and Giant Kingfishers, Hadada Ibis, White-crowned Lapwing, Broad-billed Roller and Holub’s Golden Weaver.


Day 13, 11th November 2021. Katima Mulilo birding

We had the full day to explore the Katima Mulilo area and had local expert Curt to show us around and try tick off as many of our targets as possible. We started with the loud and beautiful Schalow’s Turaco which showed well around camp before making our way nearby to the Yellow-throated Leaflove stakeout which did not prove too difficult either. After a quick breakfast we birded some nearby wetlands which proved really productive and we soon added Knob-billed Duck, Blue-billed Teal, African Openbill, Rufous-bellied Heron, Hamerkop, Greater Painted-snipe, Lesser Jacana, Collared Pratincole, Eurasian Hobby, Southern Carmine Bee-eater and Plain-backed Pipit.

Complete Namibia birding tourLesser Jacanas were surprisingly numerous in the wetlands around Katima Mulilo.

After some lunch and a quick siesta, we headed back out again to explore more wetlands and surrounding bushveld and again added a whole host of new and exciting species including the likes of African Pygmy Goose, Brown and Jameson’s Firefinches, Yellow-fronted Tinkerbird, Willow Warbler, Southern Black and Spotted Flycatchers, Collared and Purple-banded Sunbirds, with Common Myna and Northern Grey-headed Sparrow seen in town. A very scruffy-looking Side-striped Jackal was also seen in the adjacent grasslands. In the late afternoon we headed out on another boat cruise. This time we went upstream and found Rock Pratincole, Village Weaver, African Wattled Lapwing, Whiskered Tern and a roosting juvenile White-backed Night Heron.

We came back in for dinner and then headed out for an incredible evening of nightjars and owls. We had no less than three male Pennant-winged Nightjars displaying around us with their bizarrely long primaries being shown off and also found Square-tailed Nightjar, African Scops Owl and African Barred Owlet, with Western Barn and Southern White-faced Owls calling but not seen. We also saw a cute and friendly Lesser Bushbaby which bound effortlessly from tree to tree.

Complete Namibia birding tourThe spectacular Pennant-winged Nightjar put on a show for us around Katima Mulilo.


Day 14, 12th November 2021. Katima Mulilo birding and transfer to Mahango area

We had one last morning to clean up on any missing species and so birded some nearby woodlands which were alive with bird activity. We hit a brilliant bird party which gave us Olive and Golden-tailed Woodpecker, Retz’s Helmetshrike, Long-billed Crombec, Green Wood Hoopoe, Chinspot Batis, Black Cuckooshrike, Kurrichane Thrush, Amethyst Sunbird and Spectacled Weaver. In the more open areas, we found Swainson’s Spurfowl, European Honey Buzzard, Grey Penduline Tit, Black-crowned Tchagra, Fan-tailed Widowbird and Flappet Lark.

After breakfast it was then the long drive back west through the Caprivi Strip to the Mahango area where we would be based for the next two nights. We arrived around mid-afternoon and then soon made our way out for the rest of the afternoon to the nearby Mahango Game Reserve. As always, the flood plain was alive with birds and animals and we quickly found Long-toed Lapwing, Wattled Crane, Yellow-billed Stork, Goliath and Squacco Herons, Bateleur, Water Thick-knee and large numbers of Red Lechwe. In the surrounding bush we found European Roller, Swallow-tailed Bee-eater, Green Wood Hoopoe, Swainson’s Spurfowl and the spectacular Crimson-breasted Shrike.


Day 15, 13th November 2021. Mahango birding

We left before dawn this morning to be back in the woodlands around Katere (where we saw Souza’s Shrike a couple of days back) to look for a few other woodland specials. Our two primary targets were Sharp-tailed Starling and Rufous-bellied Tit. It didn’t take long before a group of 3-4 Rufous-bellied Tits showed well, alongside Brown-backed Honeybird, Yellow-throated Petronia, Neddicky and Striped Kingfishers. Some further exploration of these woodlands produced more great birds including Dark Chanting Goshawk, African Cuckoo-Hawk, Coqui Francolin, Grey-headed Kingfisher, Tinkling Cisticola and a distant calling Great Spotted Cuckoo.

Complete Namibia birding tourCoqui Francolin is rather scarce in the Caprivi Strip but showed well for us.

 Having worked the area hard and still no luck with the Sharp-tailed Starlings we decided to try a new patch of woodlands which eventually delivered the goods with a single bird in amongst a small group of Greater Blue-eared Starlings. The area further yielded Green-capped Eremomela and Black-headed Oriole.

Once back at camp the rest of the afternoon was spent birding the surrounding riverine forest and floodplain which gave us Mourning Collared Dove, Greater Blue-eared Starling and Yellow-billed Oxpecker. After this we headed out on another boat cruise which was again productive and we saw White-backed Night Heron, Collared and Rock Pratincoles, Woodland Kingfisher and South African Cliff Swallow. After dinner we headed out for some nocturnal birding and found Fiery-necked and Square-tailed Nightjars and African Wood Owl.

Complete Namibia birding tourAfrican Wood Owls are always a treat to see!


Day 16, 14th November 2021. Leaving the Caprivi Strip

This was our last morning in the lush habitat of the Caprivi Strip before heading back west to the more arid zones of north-central Namibia and so we targeted any species we were likely to lose after today. The birding was a little on the slow side this morning but we did manage to find Icterine Warbler, Magpie Shrike, Banded Martin and Brown Firefinch.

Today was mostly a travel day as we made our way to Roy’s Camp, just outside of Grootfontein. The drive was fairly uneventful, although we did find a pair of Senegal Coucals which showed really well for us. We had a wander around Roy’s Camp just before dark which gave us good views of Black-faced Babbler, Common Scimitarbill, Red-billed Buffalo Weaver and Rosy-faced Lovebird.


Day 17, 15th November 2021. Transfer to Okinjima

We did a couple hours of birding before breakfast which wasn’t too busy but did get new birds in the form of Yellow-breasted Apalis and Levaillant’s Cuckoo. After breakfast we made our way south to Okinjima Game Reserve where we were based for the next two nights. En route we found a couple of low-flying Bradfield’s Swifts which we had missed up until this point of the trip.

After checking into our accommodation, we headed out on our leopard-tracking drive which proved to be a lot of fun. Okinjima has a number of radio-collared Leopards for research purposes and they have opened up this activity to guests. Every kilometer or so, our game guide would get out and set up the antenna listening for the beep of the radio signal, over the next couple of hours the signal grew louder and louder (with a huge rainstorm along the way) before our guide spotted the Leopard just a few meters from our vehicle. We then sat with the Leopard for about 30 minutes as it noisily chomped away on a Steenbok carcass. While out on our drive we also came across a number of good birds including White-tailed Shrike, African Hawk-Eagle, Double-banded Sandgrouse, Pearl-breasted Swallow, Southern Pied Babbler and a singing Rockrunner.

Complete Namibia birding tourIt took a while but we eventually managed to track down this beautiful radio-collared Leopard.

The day’s fun was however not yet over. After a scrumptious dinner, we headed out on a game drive vehicle and joined the pangolin-trackers as they listened for the beep of a radio-collared Temminck’s Ground Pangolin. After some searching, the animal showed itself and we got to spend about 20 minutes quietly following this strange animal as it went about feeding. Certainly, an experience to remember!


Day 18, 16th November 2021. Okinjima birding and wildlife viewing

Today was our last full day in Namibia and we spent the day walking and driving around the large property. Although there was not much new to be seen, we did have some great sightings of Common and Bradfield’s Swifts, Purple Roller, Yellow Canary, Shaft-tailed Whydah, Burnt-necked Eremomela, Barred Wren-Warbler, Brubru, Dusky Sunbird, Great Sparrow, Rüppell’s Parrot, Monteiro’s Hornbill, Black-faced Waxbill, Short-toed Rock Thrush and Black-chested Snake Eagle. The game viewing was impressive too with sightings of White Rhinoceros, (Hartmann’s) Mountain and Plains Zebras, Warthog, Giraffe, Kudu, Gemsbok (Southern Oryx), Damara Dikdik, Steenbok, Chacma Baboon and Black-backed Jackal.

In the evening we saw Rufous-cheeked Nightjar and Spotted Eagle-Owl as well as a Honey Badger and Small Spotted Genet, while the bow-wow call of Freckled Nightjar was heard nearby.


Day 19, 17th November 2021. Transfer to Windhoek and departure

This morning we had a nice walk and drive around some nearby koppies (small conical hills) which gave us brief sightings of Hartlaub’s Spurfowl and good views of Short-toed Rock Thrush and Swallow-tailed Bee-eater. As we were having our breakfast at the lodge a small group of Burchell’s Sandgrouse flew into the waterhole and provided nice views of a bird that we had missed up until now.

Complete Namibia birding tourOne never grows tired of seeing the delicate and beautiful Swallow-tailed Bee-eater.

Our flights home were in the late afternoon from Windhoek, so we had some time to bird around the city to see what last-minute species we could add to our list. We stopped at Avis Dam which was very birdy and provided trip ticks in the form of Orange River Francolin, African Sacred Ibis and African Spoonbill with Cape Shoveler, South African Shelduck, Blue-billed Teal, Red-knobbed Coot and Great White Pelican seen too. Soon afterwards, we had a late lunch and then headed to Windhoek Airport where we said our goodbyes after a fantastic 19 days in Namibia!


Bird ListFollowing IOC (11.2)

Birds ‘heard only’ are marked with (H) after the common name, all other species were seen.

The following notation after species names is used to show conservation status following BirdLife International: CR = Critically Endangered, EN = Endangered, VU = Vulnerable. The Namibian endemic is bolded.

Common Name Scientific Name
Ostriches (Struthionidae)
Common Ostrich Struthio camelus
Guineafowl (Numididae)
Helmeted Guineafowl Numida meleagris
Crested Guineafowl Guttera pucherani
Pheasants & Allies (Phasianidae)
Coqui Francolin Peliperdix coqui
Orange River Francolin Scleroptila gutturalis
Crested Francolin Dendroperdix sephaena
Hartlaub’s Spurfowl Pternistis hartlaubi
Red-billed Spurfowl Pternistis adspersus
Swainson’s Spurfowl Pternistis swainsonii
Ducks, Geese, Swans (Anatidae)
White-faced Whistling Duck Dendrocygna viduata
Spur-winged Goose Plectropterus gambensis
Knob-billed Duck Sarkidiornis melanotos
Egyptian Goose Alopochen aegyptiaca
South African Shelduck Tadorna cana
African Pygmy Goose Nettapus auritus
Hottentot Teal Spatula hottentota
Cape Shoveler Spatula smithii
Cape Teal Anas capensis
Red-billed Teal Anas erythrorhyncha
Southern Pochard Netta erythrophthalma
Maccoa Duck – VU Oxyura maccoa
Nightjars (Caprimulgidae)
Rufous-cheeked Nightjar Caprimulgus rufigena
Fiery-necked Nightjar Caprimulgus pectoralis
Freckled Nightjar Caprimulgus tristigma
Square-tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus fossii
Pennant-winged Nightjar Caprimulgus vexillarius
Swifts (Apodidae)
African Palm Swift Cypsiurus parvus
Alpine Swift Tachymarptis melba
Common Swift Apus apus
Bradfield’s Swift Apus bradfieldi
Little Swift Apus affinis
White-rumped Swift Apus caffer
Turacos (Musophagidae)
Schalow’s Turaco Tauraco schalowi
Ross’s Turaco Musophaga rossae
Grey Go-away-bird Corythaixoides concolor
Bustards (Otididae)
Kori Bustard Ardeotis kori
Ludwig’s Bustard – EN Neotis ludwigii
Rüppell’s Korhaan Eupodotis rueppelii
Red-crested Korhaan Lophotis ruficrista
Northern Black Korhaan Afrotis afraoides
Cuckoos (Cuculidae)
Senegal Coucal Centropus senegalensis
Coppery-tailed Coucal Centropus cupreicaudus
White-browed Coucal Centropus superciliosus
Great Spotted Cuckoo (H) Clamator glandarius
Levaillant’s Cuckoo Clamator levaillantii
Jacobin Cuckoo Clamator jacobinus
Diederik Cuckoo Chrysococcyx caprius
Klaas’s Cuckoo Chrysococcyx klaas
Black Cuckoo Cuculus clamosus
Red-chested Cuckoo (H) Cuculus solitarius
Sandgrouse (Pteroclidae)
Namaqua Sandgrouse Pterocles namaqua
Double-banded Sandgrouse Pterocles bicinctus
Burchell’s Sandgrouse Pterocles burchelli
Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)
Rock Dove Columba livia
Speckled Pigeon Columba guinea
Mourning Collared Dove Streptopelia decipiens
Red-eyed Dove Streptopelia semitorquata
Ring-necked Dove Streptopelia capicola
Laughing Dove Spilopelia senegalensis
Emerald-spotted Wood Dove Turtur chalcospilos
Namaqua Dove Oena capensis
African Green Pigeon Treron calvus
Finfoots (Heliornithidae)
African Finfoot Podica senegalensis
Rails, Crakes & Coots (Rallidae)
Black Crake Amaurornis flavirostra
African Swamphen Porphyrio madagascariensis
Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus
Red-knobbed Coot Fulica cristata
Cranes (Gruidae)
Wattled Crane – VU Grus carunculata
Blue Crane – VU Grus paradisea
Grebes (Podicipedidae)
Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis
Black-necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis
Flamingos (Phoenicopteridae)
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus
Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor
Stone-curlews, Thick-knees (Burhinidae)
Water Thick-knee Burhinus vermiculatus
Spotted Thick-knee Burhinus capensis
Oystercatchers (Haematopodidae)
African Oystercatcher Haematopus moquini
Stilts, Avocets (Recurvirostridae)
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta
Plovers (Charadriidae)
Long-toed Lapwing Vanellus crassirostris
Blacksmith Lapwing Vanellus armatus
White-crowned Lapwing Vanellus albiceps
Crowned Lapwing Vanellus coronatus
African Wattled Lapwing Vanellus senegallus
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola
Common Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
Kittlitz’s Plover Charadrius pecuarius
Three-banded Plover Charadrius tricollaris
White-fronted Plover Charadrius marginatus
Chestnut-banded Plover Charadrius pallidus
Painted-snipes (Rostratulidae)
Greater Painted-snipe Rostratula benghalensis
Jacanas (Jacanidae)
Lesser Jacana Microparra capensis
African Jacana Actophilornis africanus
Sandpipers, Snipes (Scolopacidae)
Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres
Ruff Calidris pugnax
Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea
Sanderling Calidris alba
Little Stint Calidris minuta
Red-necked Phalarope Phalaropus lobatus
Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos
Marsh Sandpiper Tringa stagnatilis
Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola
Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Coursers, Pratincoles (Glareolidae)
Burchell’s Courser Cursorius rufus
Double-banded Courser Rhinoptilus africanus
Bronze-winged Courser Rhinoptilus chalcopterus
Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola
Rock Pratincole Glareola nuchalis
Gulls, Terns, Skimmers (Laridae)
African Skimmer Rynchops flavirostris
Grey-headed Gull Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus
Hartlaub’s Gull Chroicocephalus hartlaubii
Kelp Gull Larus dominicanus
Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia
Greater Crested Tern Thalasseus bergii
Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis
Damara Tern – VU Sternula balaenarum
Common Tern Sterna hirundo
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida
Penguins (Spheniscidae)
African Penguin – EN Spheniscus demersus
Petrels, Shearwaters, Diving Petrels (Procellariidae)
White-chinned Petrel – VU Procellaria aequinoctialis
Sooty Shearwater Ardenna grisea
Storks (Ciconiidae)
Yellow-billed Stork Mycteria ibis
African Openbill Anastomus lamelligerus
Marabou Stork Leptoptilos crumenifer
Gannets, Boobies (Sulidae)
Cape Gannet – EN Morus capensis
Cormorants, Shags (Phalacrocoracidae)
Reed Cormorant Microcarbo africanus
Crowned Cormorant Microcarbo coronatus
White-breasted Cormorant Phalacrocorax lucidus
Cape Cormorant – EN Phalacrocorax capensis
Anhingas, Darters (Anhingidae)
African Darter Anhinga rufa
Ibises, Spoonbills (Threskiornithidae)
African Sacred Ibis Threskiornis aethiopicus
Hadada Ibis Bostrychia hagedash
Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
African Spoonbill Platalea alba
Herons, Bitterns (Ardeidae)
White-backed Night Heron Gorsachius leuconotus
Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
Striated Heron Butorides striata
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
Rufous-bellied Heron Ardeola rufiventris
Western Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea
Black-headed Heron Ardea melanocephala
Goliath Heron Ardea goliath
Purple Heron Ardea purpurea
Great Egret Ardea alba
Intermediate Egret Ardea intermedia
Little Egret Egretta garzetta
Hamerkop (Scopidae)
Hamerkop Scopus umbretta
Pelicans (Pelecanidae)
Great White Pelican Pelecanus onocrotalus
Secretarybird (Sagittariidae)
Secretarybird – VU Sagittarius serpentarius
Kites, Hawks, Eagles (Accipitridae)
Black-winged Kite Elanus caeruleus
African Harrier-Hawk Polyboroides typus
European Honey Buzzard Pernis apivorus
African Cuckoo-Hawk Aviceda cuculoides
White-backed Vulture – CR Gyps africanus
White-headed Vulture – CR Trigonoceps occipitalis
Lappet-faced Vulture – EN Torgos tracheliotos
Black-chested Snake Eagle Circaetus pectoralis
Bateleur Terathopius ecaudatus
Martial Eagle – VU Polemaetus bellicosus
Lesser Spotted Eagle Clanga pomarina
Wahlberg’s Eagle Hieraaetus wahlbergi
Tawny Eagle – VU Aquila rapax
African Hawk-Eagle Aquila spilogaster
Gabar Goshawk Micronisus gabar
Dark Chanting Goshawk Melierax metabates
Pale Chanting Goshawk Melierax canorus
Pallid Harrier Circus macrourus
Yellow-billed Kite Milvus aegyptius
African Fish Eagle Haliaeetus vocifer
Common Buzzard Buteo buteo
Augur Buzzard Buteo augur
Barn Owls (Tytonidae)
Western Barn Owl Tyto alba
Owls (Strigidae)
African Scops Owl Otus senegalensis
Southern White-faced Owl (H) Ptilopsis granti
Spotted Eagle-Owl Bubo africanus
Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl Bubo lacteus
African Wood Owl Strix woodfordii
Pearl-spotted Owlet Glaucidium perlatum
African Barred Owlet Glaucidium capense
Marsh Owl Asio capensis
Mousebirds (Coliidae)
White-backed Mousebird Colius colius
Red-faced Mousebird Urocolius indicus
Hoopoes (Upupidae)
African Hoopoe Upupa africana
Wood Hoopoes (Phoeniculidae)
Green Wood Hoopoe Phoeniculus purpureus
Violet Wood Hoopoe Phoeniculus damarensis
Common Scimitarbill Rhinopomastus cyanomelas
Hornbills (Bucerotidae)
Damara Red-billed Hornbill Tockus damarensis
Southern Red-billed Hornbill Tockus rufirostris
Monteiro’s Hornbill Tockus monteiri
Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill Tockus leucomelas
Bradfield’s Hornbill Lophoceros bradfieldi
African Grey Hornbill Lophoceros nasutus
Trumpeter Hornbill Bycanistes bucinator
Rollers (Coraciidae)
Purple Roller Coracias naevius
Lilac-breasted Roller Coracias caudatus
European Roller Coracias garrulus
Broad-billed Roller Eurystomus glaucurus
Kingfishers (Alcedinidae)
Grey-headed Kingfisher Halcyon leucocephala
Brown-hooded Kingfisher Halcyon albiventris
Striped Kingfisher Halcyon chelicuti
Woodland Kingfisher Halcyon senegalensis
Malachite Kingfisher Corythornis cristatus
Giant Kingfisher Megaceryle maxima
Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis
Bee-eaters (Meropidae)
Swallow-tailed Bee-eater Merops hirundineus
Little Bee-eater Merops pusillus
White-fronted Bee-eater Merops bullockoides
Blue-cheeked Bee-eater Merops persicus
European Bee-eater Merops apiaster
Southern Carmine Bee-eater Merops nubicoides
African Barbets (Lybiidae)
Yellow-fronted Tinkerbird Pogoniulus chrysoconus
Acacia Pied Barbet Tricholaema leucomelas
Black-collared Barbet Lybius torquatus
Crested Barbet Trachyphonus vaillantii
Honeyguides (Indicatoridae)
Brown-backed Honeybird Prodotiscus regulus
Lesser Honeyguide Indicator minor
Greater Honeyguide Indicator indicator
Woodpeckers (Picidae)
Golden-tailed Woodpecker Campethera abingoni
Bearded Woodpecker Chloropicus namaquus
Cardinal Woodpecker Dendropicos fuscescens
Olive Woodpecker Dendropicos griseocephalus
Caracaras, Falcons (Falconidae)
Pygmy Falcon Polihierax semitorquatus
Rock Kestrel Falco rupicolus
Greater Kestrel Falco rupicoloides
Red-necked Falcon Falco chicquera
Eurasian Hobby Falco subbuteo
Lanner Falcon Falco biarmicus
African & New World Parrots (Psittacidae)
Meyer’s Parrot Poicephalus meyeri
Rüppell’s Parrot Poicephalus rueppellii
Old World Parrots (Psittaculidae)
Rosy-faced Lovebird Agapornis roseicollis
Wattle-eyes, Batises (Platysteiridae)
Chinspot Batis Batis molitor
Pririt Batis Batis pririt
White-tailed Shrike Lanioturdus torquatus
Bushshrikes (Malaconotidae)
Orange-breasted Bushshrike Chlorophoneus sulfureopectus
Bokmakierie Telophorus zeylonus
Brown-crowned Tchagra Tchagra australis
Black-crowned Tchagra Tchagra senegalus
Black-backed Puffback Dryoscopus cubla
Tropical Boubou Laniarius major
Swamp Boubou Laniarius bicolor
Crimson-breasted Shrike Laniarius atrococcineus
Brubru Nilaus afer
Vangas & Allies (Vangidae)
White-crested Helmetshrike Prionops plumatus
Retz’s Helmetshrike Prionops retzii
Cuckooshrikes (Campephagidae)
Black Cuckooshrike Campephaga flava
Shrikes (Laniidae)
Magpie Shrike Urolestes melanoleucus
Southern White-crowned Shrike Eurocephalus anguitimens
Souza’s Shrike Lanius souzae
Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio
Lesser Grey Shrike Lanius minor
Southern Fiscal Lanius collaris
Figbirds, Orioles, Turnagra (Oriolidae)
Black-headed Oriole Oriolus larvatus
Drongos (Dicruridae)
Fork-tailed Drongo Dicrurus adsimilis
Monarchs (Monarchidae)
African Paradise Flycatcher Terpsiphone viridis
Crows, Jays (Corvidae)
Cape Crow Corvus capensis
Pied Crow Corvus albus
Tits, Chickadees (Paridae)
Southern Black Tit Melaniparus niger
Carp’s Tit Melaniparus carpi
Rufous-bellied Tit Melaniparus rufiventris
Ashy Tit Melaniparus cinerascens
Penduline Tits (Remizidae)
Grey Penduline Tit Anthoscopus caroli
Cape Penduline Tit Anthoscopus minutus
Larks (Alaudidae)
Spike-heeled Lark Chersomanes albofasciata
Gray’s Lark Ammomanopsis grayi
Karoo Long-billed Lark Certhilauda subcoronata
Benguela Long-billed Lark Certhilauda benguelensis
Grey-backed Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix verticalis
Sabota Lark Calendulauda sabota
Fawn-colored Lark Calendulauda africanoides
Dune Lark (Endemic) Calendulauda erythrochlamys
Eastern Clapper Lark Mirafra fasciolata
Rufous-naped Lark Mirafra africana
Flappet Lark Mirafra rufocinnamomea
Stark’s Lark Spizocorys starki
Pink-billed Lark Spizocorys conirostris
Red-capped Lark Calandrella cinerea
Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae)
African Red-eyed Bulbul Pycnonotus nigricans
Dark-capped Bulbul Pycnonotus tricolor
Yellow-bellied Greenbul Chlorocichla flaviventris
Yellow-throated Leaflove Atimastillas flavicollis
Terrestrial Brownbul Phyllastrephus terrestris
Swallows, Martins (Hirundinidae)
Banded Martin Riparia cincta
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
White-throated Swallow Hirundo albigularis
Wire-tailed Swallow Hirundo smithii
Pearl-breasted Swallow Hirundo dimidiata
Rock Martin Ptyonoprogne fuligula
Greater Striped Swallow Cecropis cucullata
Lesser Striped Swallow Cecropis abyssinica
Red-breasted Swallow Cecropis semirufa
Mosque Swallow Cecropis senegalensis
South African Cliff Swallow Petrochelidon spilodera
Crombecs, African Warblers (Macrosphenidae)
Rockrunner Achaetops pycnopygius
Long-billed Crombec Sylvietta rufescens
Leaf Warblers & Allies (Phylloscopidae)
Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus
Reed Warblers & Allies (Acrocephalidae)
Greater Swamp Warbler (H) Acrocephalus rufescens
Lesser Swamp Warbler Acrocephalus gracilirostris
African Reed Warbler Acrocephalus baeticatus
Icterine Warbler Hippolais icterina
Grassbirds & Allies (Locustellidae)
Little Rush Warbler (H) Bradypterus baboecala
Cisticolas & Allies (Cisticolidae)
Rattling Cisticola Cisticola chiniana
Tinkling Cisticola Cisticola rufilatus
Chirping Cisticola (H) Cisticola pipiens
Neddicky Cisticola fulvicapilla
Zitting Cisticola Cisticola juncidis
Desert Cisticola Cisticola aridulus
Tawny-flanked Prinia Prinia subflava
Black-chested Prinia Prinia flavicans
Yellow-breasted Apalis Apalis flavida
Rufous-eared Warbler Malcorus pectoralis
Grey-backed Camaroptera Camaroptera brevicaudata
Barred Wren-Warbler Calamonastes fasciolatus
Yellow-bellied Eremomela Eremomela icteropygialis
Green-capped Eremomela Eremomela scotops
Burnt-necked Eremomela Eremomela usticollis
Laughingthrushes & Allies (Leiothrichidae)
Bare-cheeked Babbler Turdoides gymnogenys
Arrow-marked Babbler Turdoides jardineii
Southern Pied Babbler Turdoides bicolor
Black-faced Babbler Turdoides melanops
Hartlaub’s Babbler Turdoides hartlaubii
Sylviid Babblers (Sylviidae)
Chestnut-vented Warbler Sylvia subcoerulea
Layard’s Warbler Sylvia layardi
White-eyes (Zosteropidae)
Orange River White-eye Zosterops pallidus
Southern Yellow White-eye Zosterops anderssoni
Starlings, Rhabdornis (Sturnidae)
Wattled Starling Creatophora cinerea
Cape Starling Lamprotornis nitens
Greater Blue-eared Starling Lamprotornis chalybaeus
Meves’s Starling Lamprotornis mevesii
Burchell’s Starling Lamprotornis australis
Sharp-tailed Starling Lamprotornis acuticaudus
Violet-backed Starling Cinnyricinclus leucogaster
Pale-winged Starling Onychognathus nabouroup
Oxpeckers (Buphagidae)
Yellow-billed Oxpecker Buphagus africanus
Red-billed Oxpecker Buphagus erythrorynchus
Thrushes (Turdidae)
Groundscraper Thrush Turdus litsitsirupa
Kurrichane Thrush Turdus libonyana
Chats, Old World Flycatchers (Muscicapidae)
Kalahari Scrub Robin Cercotrichas paena
White-browed Scrub Robin Cercotrichas leucophrys
Southern Black Flycatcher Melaenornis pammelaina
Pale Flycatcher Melaenornis pallidus
Chat Flycatcher Melaenornis infuscatus
Marico Flycatcher Melaenornis mariquensis
Spotted Flycatcher Muscicapa striata
Ashy Flycatcher Muscicapa caerulescens
White-browed Robin-Chat Cossypha heuglini
Short-toed Rock Thrush Monticola brevipes
Tractrac Chat Emarginata tractrac
Ant-eating Chat Myrmecocichla formicivora
Mountain Wheatear Myrmecocichla monticola
Capped Wheatear Oenanthe pileata
Familiar Chat Oenanthe familiaris
Herero Chat Namibornis herero
Sunbirds (Nectariniidae)
Collared Sunbird Hedydipna collaris
Amethyst Sunbird Chalcomitra amethystina
Scarlet-chested Sunbird Chalcomitra senegalensis
Marico Sunbird Cinnyris mariquensis
Purple-banded Sunbird Cinnyris bifasciatus
White-bellied Sunbird Cinnyris talatala
Dusky Sunbird Cinnyris fuscus
Old World Sparrows, Snowfinches (Passeridae)
House Sparrow Passer domesticus
Great Sparrow Passer motitensis
Cape Sparrow Passer melanurus
Northern Grey-headed Sparrow Passer griseus
Southern Grey-headed Sparrow Passer diffusus
Yellow-throated Bush Sparrow Gymnoris superciliaris
Weavers, Widowbirds (Ploceidae)
Red-billed Buffalo Weaver Bubalornis niger
White-browed Sparrow-Weaver Plocepasser mahali
Sociable Weaver Philetairus socius
Scaly-feathered Weaver Sporopipes squamifrons
Thick-billed Weaver Amblyospiza albifrons
Spectacled Weaver Ploceus ocularis
Holub’s Golden Weaver Ploceus xanthops
Lesser Masked Weaver Ploceus intermedius
Southern Masked Weaver Ploceus velatus
Village Weaver Ploceus cucullatus
Red-billed Quelea Quelea quelea
Yellow-crowned Bishop Euplectes afer
Southern Red Bishop Euplectes orix
Fan-tailed Widowbird Euplectes axillaris
Waxbills, Munias & Allies (Estrildidae)
Green-winged Pytilia Pytilia melba
Red-headed Finch Amadina erythrocephala
Brown Firefinch Lagonosticta nitidula
Red-billed Firefinch Lagonosticta senegala
Jameson’s Firefinch Lagonosticta rhodopareia
Blue Waxbill Uraeginthus angolensis
Violet-eared Waxbill Uraeginthus granatinus
Common Waxbill Estrilda astrild
Black-faced Waxbill Estrilda erythronotos
Bronze Mannikin Lonchura cucullata
Indigobirds, Whydahs (Viduidae)
Village Indigobird Vidua chalybeata
Pin-tailed Whydah Vidua macroura
Shaft-tailed Whydah Vidua regia
Long-tailed Paradise Whydah Vidua paradisaea
Wagtails, Pipits (Motacillidae)
Cape Wagtail Motacilla capensis
African Pied Wagtail Motacilla aguimp
African Pipit Anthus cinnamomeus
Plain-backed Pipit Anthus leucophrys
Finches, Euphonias (Fringillidae)
Black-throated Canary Crithagra atrogularis
Yellow-fronted Canary Crithagra mozambica
Yellow Canary Crithagra flaviventris
White-throated Canary Crithagra albogularis
Buntings (Emberizidae)
Lark-like Bunting Emberiza impetuani
Cinnamon-breasted Bunting Emberiza tahapisi
Cape Bunting Emberiza capensis
Golden-breasted Bunting Emberiza flaviventris



Total seen 402
Total heard only 5
Total recorded 407


Mammal List

Common Name Scientific Name
Dogs, Wolves, Foxes (Canidae)
Black-backed Jackal Canis mesomelas
Side-striped Jackal Canis adustus
Cats (Felidae)
Lion Panthera leo
Cheetah Acinonyx jubatus
Leopard Panthera pardus
Mongooses (Herpestidae)
Yellow Mongoose Mungos mungo
Common Slender Mongoose Herpestes sanguineus
Banded Mongoose Herpestes flavescens
Mustelids (Mustelidae)
Honey Badger Mellivora capensis
Hyaenas, Aardwolf (Hyaenidae)
Spotted Hyaena Crocuta crocuta
Eared Seals (Otariidae)
Afro-Australasian Fur Seal Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus
Genets, Binturong, Civets (Viverridae)
Common Genet Genetta genetta
Bovids (Bovidae)
Impala Aepyceros melampus
Red Hartebeest Alcelaphus buselaphus caama
Springbok Antidorcas marsupialis
Common Wildebeest Connochaetes taurinus
Common Reedbuck Redunca fulvorufula
Sable Antelope Hippotragus niger
Waterbuck Kobus ellipsiprymnus
Southern Lechwe Kobus leche
Kirk’s Dik-dik Madoqua kirkii
Gemsbok (Southern Oryx) Oryx gazella
Steenbok Raphicerus campestris
Common Duiker Sylvicapra grimmia
Klipspringer Oretragus oreotragus
African Buffalo Syncerus caffer
Common Eland Tragelaphus oryx
Bushbuck Tragelaphus scriptus
Sitatunga Tragelaphus spekii
Greater Kudu Tragelaphus strepsiceros
Giraffes, Okapis (Giraffidae)
Giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis
Hippopotamuses (Hippopotamidae)
Hippopotamus Hippopotamus amphibius
Hogs, Pigs (Suidae)
Common Warthog Phacochoerus africanus
Hyraxes (Procaviidae)
Rock Hyrax Procavia capensis
Rabbits, Hares (Leporidae)
Cape Scrub Hare Lepus saxatilis
Pangolins (Manidae)
Temminck’s Ground Pangolin Manis temminckii
Horses, Asses, Zebras (Equidae)
Plains Zebra Equus quagga
Mountain Zebra (Hartmann’s) Equus zebra hartmannae
Rhinoceroses (Rhinocerotidae)
Black Rhinoceros Diceros bicornis
White Rhinoceros Ceratotherium simum
Old World Monkeys (Cercopithecidae)
Vervet Monkey Chlorocebus pygerythrus
Chacma Baboon Papio ursinus
Elephants (Elephantidae)
African Elephant Loxodonta africana
Squirrels, Chipmunks, Marmots, Prairie Dogs (Sciuridae)
Smith’s Bush Squirrel Paraxerus cepapi
South African Ground Squirrel Xerus inauris
Dolphins (Delphinidae)  
Common Bottle-nosed Dolphin Tursiops truncatus


Total seen 46


Reptile List

Common Name Scientific Name
Land Tortoises (Testudinidae)
Leopard Tortoise Geochelone pardalis
Pythons (Pythonidae)
Southern African Rock Python Python natalensis
Skinks (Scincidae)
Ovambo Tree Skink Trachylepis binotata
Wahlberg’s Striped Skink Trachylepis wahlbergii
Monitors (Varanidae)
Nile Monitor Varanus niloticus
Agamas (Agamidae)
Namib Rock Agama Agama planiceps
Etosha Spiny Agama Agama etoshae
Chameleons (Chamaeleonidae)
Flap-necked Chameleon Chamaeleo dilepsis
Crocodiles (Crocodylidae)
Nile Crocodile Crocodylus niloticus


Total seen 9



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