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Field Guides Tour Report
East Africa Highlights: Kenya & Tanzania II 2017
Jul 1, 2017 to Jul 21, 2017
Terry Stevenson


A flock of Fischer's Lovebirds visits a water hole. These small parrots were quite common on in the Serengeti. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

Our July 2017 East Africa Highlights: Kenya & Tanzania tour took place in one of the driest seasons on record in northern Tanzania, but shortly after unusual July rains in Kenya. With global climate change, just which are the best months to visit these days comes largely down to luck, but luck, together with many years of experience in running tours in this area certainly helped this time. Just a few of our highlights were Lion, Leopard and Cheetah two days running in the Serengeti, Black Rhino - our very first day in Nairobi National Park, and of course a whole bunch of other mammals ranging from monkeys to ground-squirrels, Spotted Hyaena, elephant, zebra, giraffe, hippo, and a fabulous variety of antelopes and gazelles.

As always the birding turned out great, with well over 400 species including many glorious sunbirds, weavers, bishops and whydahs, all in breeding plumage. Thanks for joining me for this wonderful highlights tour. all in breeding plumage. And then there were the huge Southern Ground-hornbills, Martial Eagles and Kori Bustards. Delicate coursers were on the grassy plains, flamingos on the lakes, colorful turacos and barbets in the forests, and a huge variety of warblers, chats, flycatchers, starlings and waxbills occupying all other niches imaginable.

As usual we started in Nairobi National Park where we were soon watching Common Ostrich - the world's largest bird! At a couple of small dams we saw a variety of herons, egrets and ibis, plus fantastic looks at the normally skulking African Rail and some extrovert Black Crakes. In the grasslands, White-bellied Bustard were a highlight, while Speckled Mousebird, Common Bulbul, Broad-ringed White-eye, Abyssinian Thrush, Superb Starling, Bronze and Variable sunbirds, Kenya Rufous Sparrow and Speke's Weaver were all a good introduction to some of East Africa's common highland birds.

We then flew to Kilimanjaro International Airport in north Tanzania, before taking a four hour drive to Gibb's Farm on the slopes of the Crater Highlands. It was without doubt a long travel day, but we were now perfectly placed for our stay at Ngorongoro Crater and at two fine lodges in the world famous Serengeti National Park.

After a very pleasant night at 'Gibb's', we were soon walking the forest trail and finding our first Crowned and Long-crested eagles, Schalow's Turaco, Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater, Chinspot Batis, Tropical Boubou, the beautiful Black-fronted Bushshrike, Purple-throated Cuckooshrike, delicate White-tailed Blue-flycatchers, localized Gray-olive Greenbul and Brown-headed Apalises, and the the striking White-browed Robin-Chats - whose powerful songs are part of every dawn.

Heading on, it's only a short drive to the rim of Ngorongoro Crater, where we stopped to take in the amazing view before continuing to our next lodge for a two night stay. As always, a day in the crater (with a packed lunch) brings unforgettable wildlife interactions, sights and sounds - just some of the most memorable moments were flying Greater and Lesser flamingos over the sparkling alkaline lake, a variety of nesting herons, ibis and African Spoonbills at a small pool full of hippos, at least 30 Kori Bustards (some only a few feet from our vehicle), Grey Crowned-Cranes, our first Lilac-breasted Rollers, Abyssinian and Capped wheatears, Hildebrandt's Starling, both Red-billed and Yellow-billed Oxpeckers (now in their own family), endemic Rufous-tailed Weavers, our first Lion and African Elephant, and thousands of Blue Wildebeest, Thomson's Gazelle, African Buffalo and zebra.

We then continued west, stopping briefly at a Maasai village to see their cattle being let out for the day, check the layout of their houses and boma, and then a visit to their very own primary school where the children pounded out a stirring welcome song. From here we continued to another short stop - this time at Oldupai Gorge (no longer called Olduvai). Widely accepted as one of the places where 'Man was Born' we had a fascinating lecture from the resident expert archaeologist.

From Oldupai it's not long to the Serengeti - a vast, flat, seemingly endless plain. We started with two nights near the Seronera area, taking both morning and afternoon drives in our our open top 4X4 Landcruiser. Highlights were numerous, but just a few of them included more than 20 Lions (including one eating a warthog), 3 Leopards, a mother Cheetah with two young, the uncommon Serval Cat, at least 15 Spotted Hyaena, and thousands of plains game. A few of the birding highlights included the endemic Gray-breasted Francolin, Secretary-bird, Lappet-faced and White-backed vultures, Chestnut-bellied and Yellow-throated sandgrouse, Bare-faced Go-away-bird, Green Woodhoopoe, Tanzanian Red-billed Hornbill, Striped Kingfisher, Pygmy Falcon, Meyer's Parrot, Fischer's Lovebird, Magpie Shrike, Red-throated Tit, Black-lored Babbler, Silverbird, Scarlet-chested Sunbird, Swahili Sparrow, Gray-headed Social-Weaver, and gorgeous Blue-capped Cordon-bleu's and Purple Grenadiers.

We now began heading back to the east and the wonderful Tarangire National Park. But first we spent another night in the Serengeti, this time at an old favorite - Ndutu Lodge. Although the landscape was far drier than we'd ever seen before, everyone thoroughly enjoyed our visit, with a chance to catch up on a few of our earlier misses and simply enjoy repeated good looks at many of the birds and mammals we'd already seen!

The final part of our stay in Tanzania was at Tarangire, a national park very different from what we'd seen so far. No longer the open grassy plains, Tarangire is a wonderful mix of rolling hills, a huge marsh, a river, and wooded country with palms, sausage trees and giant baobabs. Right at the gate we were met by Yellow-collared Lovebirds and Ashy Starlings - both Tanzanian endemics, and then on our drives within the park we added Red-necked and Yellow-necked francolins, African Openbill, Double-banded Courser, White-bellied Go-away-bird, Southern Ground-hornbill, Gray Kestrel, Red-bellied Parrot, White Helmetshrike, Mosque Swallow, Greater Blue-eared Starling and Eastern Paradise-Whydah. Mammals included Black-backed Jackal, Banded Mongoose, at least 300 elephants, a herd of 900 - 1000 African Buffalo, more than 2000 Blue Wildebeest, and a fabulous male Lesser Kudu.

After a flight back to Nairobi (and a night there) we drove north for a one night stay at Lake Nakuru. This alkaline lake within the Great Rift Valley soon provided us with a variety of close up waterbirds, while new species in the wooded grasslands included Klaas's Cuckoo, Hemprich's Hornbill, White-fronted Bee-eater, African Black-headed Oriole, White-bellied Tit, Little Rock-Thrush, Mocking Cliffchat, Green-headed Sunbird and a Long-tailed Widowbird in breeding-plumage. New mammals included the rare Rothschild's Giraffe.

One of the main ideas behind the way we run this tour is to visit as many different habitats as possible, and so we now climbed into the Western Highlands for a three night stay at the lovely Rondo Retreat - set in beautiful gardens in Kakamega Forest. So many birds were new here, and we certainly all enjoyed a chance to be out on foot, picking up Black Goshawk, White-spotted Flufftail, Great Blue Turaco, a gorgeous Bar-tailed Trogon, Black-and-white-casqued Hornbill, Yellow-billed and Yellow-spotted barbets, Jameson's Wattle-eye, Luedher's Bushshrike, 9 species of greenbuls, Black-faced Rufous-Warbler, the endangered Turner's Eremomela, Equatorial Akalat, White-tailed Ant-Thrush, and the striking Red-headed Malimbe.

Heading back to the Rift Valley we then spent two nights in the Baringo-Bogoria area, another place of dry acacia bush, but here with a fresh water lake, dramatic lava cliffs, and a more northerly location than any of our previous stops. Almost 50 new birds were added in this area, with just a few being Blue-naped Mousebird, Jackson's Hornbill, Woodland Kingfisher, White-throated Bee-eater, Red-and-Yellow Barbet, Wahlberg's Honeyguide, Pygmy Batis, Somali Tit, Mouse-colored Penduline-tit, Pale Prinia, Bristle-crowned Starling, Kenya Violet-backed Sunbird and Green-winged Pytilia. However, perhaps most outstanding were the 'stake out' nocturnal species that our local guide had waiting for us; Spotted Thick-knee, Three-banded Courser, African Scops-Owl, Northern White-faced Owl, Grayish Eagle-Owl and Slender-tailed Nightjar were all seen amazingly well and all in daylight!

The final part of our tour took us east to Mt. Kenya, with a night at Mountain Lodge, and then south as we completed our circuit back to Nairobi. Along the way a flowering bottle brush tree at Thomson's Falls was literally full of sunbirds, with Amethyst and Tacazze being the most numerous and both being new. And then, during our night at Mountain Lodge we added many more species, as we birded from the gate to the lodge and from the roof top viewing platform. Favorites here included Scaly Francolin, African Hawk-Eagle, Rameron and Delegorgue's pigeons, Hartlaub's Turacos feeding in a fruiting tree, massive Silvery-cheeked Hornbills, Moustached Tinkerbird, Red-fronted Parrot, Black-tailed Oriole, Black-throated Apalis, Yellow-crowned Canary, and an inquisitive pair of Spectacled Weavers.

As a final word, no matter how unusual the East African weather may be, we were all very happy with a total of 429 species of birds and 46 'large' mammals - and for a combination of both birds and mammals nowhere on earth can compare!

Thanks for joining me for this wonderful highlights tour. Our next East Africa Highlights: Kenya and Tanzania tour runs January 13 to February 2, 2018.


KEYS FOR THIS LIST
One of the following keys may be shown in brackets for individual species as appropriate: * = heard only, I = introduced, E = endemic, N = nesting, a = austral migrant, b = boreal migrant


BIRDS
Struthionidae (Ostriches)
COMMON OSTRICH (Struthio camelus massaicus) – Common in grassy plains like Nairobi NP, Ngorongoro Crater, and the Serengeti; in all we saw about 400.


We saw many Common Ostriches, including this male that put on quite a show! The pose looks awkward here, but as he displayed, he was waving his neck and wings back and forth. This image caught him with his head hidden from view. Photograph by participant Jean Rigden.

Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)
WHITE-FACED WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna viduata) – Fifty at Nakuru were the most at one site, but we also saw small numbers at Limuru Pond, Ngorongoro Crater, and near Bogoria.
FULVOUS WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna bicolor) – A flock of about 300 were along the shore of the swamp at Tarangire.
COMB DUCK (OLD WORLD) (Sarkidiornis melanotos melanotos) – One at Ngorongoro, and about 40 at Tarangire.
EGYPTIAN GOOSE (Alopochen aegyptiaca) – Common and widespread at wetlands throughout the tour.
SPUR-WINGED GOOSE (Plectropterus gambensis) – One at Ngorongoro, and 30 at Tarangire.
YELLOW-BILLED DUCK (Anas undulata) – About a dozen at Limuru Pond.
RED-BILLED DUCK (Anas erythrorhyncha) – Ten at Limuru Pond, 6 at Ngorongoro, and 40+ at Nakuru.
HOTTENTOT TEAL (Anas hottentota) – Four at Ngorongoro, and 4 at Nakuru.
CAPE TEAL (Anas capensis) – Ten at Ngorongoro, 8 at Lake Magadi in the Serengeti, and 40+ at Nakuru.
SOUTHERN POCHARD (Netta erythrophthalma) – We saw a single female at Nakuru.
Numididae (Guineafowl)
HELMETED GUINEAFOWL (Numida meleagris) – Common and widespread, with a total of about 1300.
Phasianidae (Pheasants, Grouse, and Allies)
SCALY FRANCOLIN (Pternistis squamatus) – Great looks at 2 by the roadside near Mountain Lodge.
YELLOW-NECKED FRANCOLIN (Pternistis leucoscepus) – About 10 at Tarangire included a pair with 4 young ones.
GRAY-BREASTED FRANCOLIN (Pternistis rufopictus) – One near Seronera, and then 8 in the Ndutu area. [E]
RED-NECKED FRANCOLIN (Pternistis afer) – About 35 at Tarangire.
CRESTED FRANCOLIN (Francolinus sephaena) – Twenty at Tarangire.
COQUI FRANCOLIN (Peliperdix coqui) – Great looks at an adult and 2 juveniles at Nakuru.
Podicipedidae (Grebes)
LITTLE GREBE (Tachybaptus ruficollis) – Two at Tarangire, and about 20 at Nakuru.
EARED GREBE (Podiceps nigricollis) – Two at Nakuru.
Phoenicopteridae (Flamingos)
GREATER FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus roseus) – About 100 distantly at Ngorongoro, and then much better closer looks at Lake Magadi (80), and Nakuru (450).


A tree full of Yellow-billed Storks, part of the nesting colony we saw at Lake Manyara. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

LESSER FLAMINGO (Phoeniconaias minor) – Three hundred at Ngorongoro, 150 at Lake Magadi, and 200+ at Nakuru.
Ciconiidae (Storks)
AFRICAN OPENBILL (Anastomus lamelligerus) – Great to see a single flock of about 400 at Tarangire.
WHITE STORK (Ciconia ciconia) – Surprisingly (for the time of year) we saw 16 in Ngorongoro Crater.
MARABOU STORK (Leptoptilos crumenifer) – Widespread; in all we saw about 250.
YELLOW-BILLED STORK (Mycteria ibis) – Small numbers at a variety of wetlands, and a huge breeding colony at Lake Manyara where many had nests with young right next to the main road.
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)
LONG-TAILED CORMORANT (Microcarbo africanus) – One at Ngorongoro, 1 near Eldoret, and 2 at Baringo.
GREAT CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax carbo) – A few at Tarangire, and then 350+ at Nakuru.
Anhingidae (Anhingas)
AFRICAN DARTER (Anhinga rufa rufa) – Two at Nairobi NP, 3 at Nakuru, and 8 at Baringo.
Pelecanidae (Pelicans)
GREAT WHITE PELICAN (Pelecanus onocrotalus) – At least 450 were on the southern shore of Lake Nakuru.
PINK-BACKED PELICAN (Pelecanus rufescens) – About 50 flying around with Yellow-billed Storks at Lake Manyara.
Scopidae (Hamerkop)
HAMERKOP (Scopus umbretta) – Singles at Limuru Pond and Nakuru, and about 8 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
GRAY HERON (Ardea cinerea) – Widespread at a variety of wetlands; in all we saw about 65.
BLACK-HEADED HERON (Ardea melanocephala) – Common and widespread (and not restricted to wetlands) throughout the tour; we saw a total of about 60.
PURPLE HERON (Ardea purpurea) – Nice looks at 1 at Baringo.
GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba) – Small numbers were seen at a variety of wetlands; with a total of about 30.
INTERMEDIATE EGRET (Mesophoyx intermedia) – Small numbers were were seen at a variety of scattered wetlands, with a total of about 28.
LITTLE EGRET (Egretta garzetta) – Four at Nakuru.
CATTLE EGRET (Bubulcus ibis) – Common and widespread.
SQUACCO HERON (Ardeola ralloides) – Two at Tarangire.
MADAGASCAR POND-HERON (Ardeola idae) – One flew close by us at a small marsh near Eldoret.


This handsome young Lion has a lovely expression. He was one of about 30 individuals that we saw. Photo by participant Mary Krenz.

STRIATED HERON (Butorides striata) – One at Baringo.
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax) – About 30 adults were seen at a hippo pool in Ngorongoro Crater.
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)
GLOSSY IBIS (Plegadis falcinellus) – Two hundred at Tarangire were the most together, but we also saw smaller numbers at a variety of sites; in all we saw about 250.
SACRED IBIS (Threskiornis aethiopicus) – Common and widespread.
HADADA IBIS (Bostrychia hagedash) – Most common at Tarangire and Nakuru, but pairs and small numbers were also seen at a variety of scattered sites.
AFRICAN SPOONBILL (Platalea alba) – Twenty at Ngorongoro (breeding), 6 at Limuru Pond, and 25 at Nakuru.
Sagittariidae (Secretary-bird)
SECRETARY-BIRD (Sagittarius serpentarius) – A distant bird at Nairobi NP, and then great looks at 4 in the Serengeti.
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
BLACK-SHOULDERED KITE (Elanus caeruleus) – Two at Serengeti, and 1 at Tarangire.
AFRICAN HARRIER-HAWK (Polyboroides typus) – Good close looks at a hunting immature bird at Tarangire, and then an adult in flight at Kakamega.
LAPPET-FACED VULTURE (Torgos tracheliotos) – We saw 5 of these massive vultures in the Serengeti, and 2 at Tarangire.
WHITE-BACKED VULTURE (Gyps africanus) – By far the most common vulture, with a total of about 300.
R┬čUEPPELL'S GRIFFON (Gyps rueppelli) – Three singles in the Serengeti, and 1 at Tarangire.
BATELEUR (Terathopius ecaudatus) – Fantastic looks at these striking eagles; 4 at Ngorongoro, 3 in the Serengeti, and 2 very close perched birds at Tarangire.
BLACK-BREASTED SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus pectoralis) – Two singles in the Serengeti.
BROWN SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus cinereus) – Singles at Ngorongoro, the Serengeti, Tarangire, and Nakuru.
BANDED SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus cinerascens) – Great looks at a flying bird in the Kerio Valley.
CROWNED EAGLE (Stephanoaetus coronatus) – Great looks at two singles in low flight over the forest above Gibb's Farm.
MARTIAL EAGLE (Polemaetus bellicosus) – Two single adults in the Serengeti, and 1 at Tarangire.
LONG-CRESTED EAGLE (Lophaetus occipitalis) – One over the forest near Gibb's Farm, 1 near Ndutu, and 1 in the Crater Highlands.
WAHLBERG'S EAGLE (Hieraaetus wahlbergi) – One at Tarangire, and 1 in the Kerio Valley.


This Verreaux's Eagle-Owl, seen at Ndutu in the Serengeti, looks like it's not quite ready for the day (or night!) to begin. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

TAWNY EAGLE (Aquila rapax) – Small numbers in the Serengeti, at Tarangire, and in the Kerio Valley.
DARK CHANTING-GOSHAWK (Melierax metabates) – Singles in the Seronera area, Kerio Valley, and at Baringo.
GABAR GOSHAWK (Micronisus gabar) – One in the Serengeti.
BLACK GOSHAWK (Accipiter melanoleucus) – Two, including fabulous views of a close perched bird in the forest at Kakamega.
BLACK KITE (Milvus migrans) – Most common around Nairobi, and a few others in the Crater Highlands.
AFRICAN FISH-EAGLE (Haliaeetus vocifer) – Two singles at Nakuru, and 1 at Baringo.
MOUNTAIN BUZZARD (Buteo oreophilus) – Nice looks at a flying bird along the rim of Ngorongoro Crater.
AUGUR BUZZARD (Buteo augur) – Widespread in small numbers, with a total of about 30.
Otididae (Bustards)
KORI BUSTARD (Ardeotis kori) – At least 30 were seen in Ngorongoro Crater, and then about another 10 on the Serengeti plains.
WHITE-BELLIED BUSTARD (Eupodotis senegalensis) – Two at Nairobi NP, 1 in the Serengeti, and 2 at Tarangire.
BLACK-BELLIED BUSTARD (Lissotis melanogaster) – We saw a single female in the Serengeti.
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
AFRICAN RAIL (Rallus caerulescens) – Fantastic close looks in Nairobi NP.
BLACK CRAKE (Zapornia flavirostra) – Widespread at a variety of marshy wetlands with reed cover.
AFRICAN SWAMPHEN (Porphyrio madagascariensis) – One at Nairobi NP.
EURASIAN MOORHEN (Gallinula chloropus) – Small numbers at Nairobi, Ngorongoro, and in the Serengeti.
RED-KNOBBED COOT (Fulica cristata) – Thirty at Ngorongoro, 40 at Limuru Pond, and 30 at Nakuru.
Sarothruridae (Flufftails)
WHITE-SPOTTED FLUFFTAIL (Sarothrura pulchra) – Fantastic looks at a male as it paused a couple of times while crossing a path in the Kakamega Forest.
Gruidae (Cranes)
GRAY CROWNED-CRANE (Balearica regulorum) – Great looks at several sites; with a total of about 60.
Burhinidae (Thick-knees)
SPOTTED THICK-KNEE (Burhinus capensis) – Two at Baringo.
Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)
BLACK-WINGED STILT (Himantopus himantopus) – About 50 at a variety of wetlands in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area, and then 30 at Nakuru.
Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)
LONG-TOED LAPWING (Vanellus crassirostris) – Six at Ngorongoro, and 20 at Tarangire.
BLACKSMITH LAPWING (Vanellus armatus) – Common and widespread around wetlands throughout the tour.
SPUR-WINGED LAPWING (Vanellus spinosus) – Another common and widespread lapwing.
CROWNED LAPWING (Vanellus coronatus) – Common in dry open grasslands.
WATTLED LAPWING (Vanellus senegallus) – Four in the farmlands to the east of Eldoret.
KITTLITZ'S PLOVER (Charadrius pecuarius) – Nice looks at Ngorongoro, Lake Magadi, and at Nakuru.
THREE-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius tricollaris) – Fairly common at Nairobi and the Serengeti; in all we saw about 30.


We saw the lovely Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse in the Serengeti and at Tarangire. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

CHESTNUT-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius pallidus) – Good looks at 2 at Lake Magadi in the Serengeti.
Jacanidae (Jacanas)
AFRICAN JACANA (Actophilornis africanus) – One at Nairobi, 10 at Limuru, and 80+ at Tarangire.
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
COMMON SANDPIPER (Actitis hypoleucos) – One in Nairobi NP was unusual at this time of year.
COMMON GREENSHANK (Tringa nebularia) – One at Nakuru.
MARSH SANDPIPER (Tringa stagnatilis) – One near Ndutu was another shorebird not normally seen in July.
Glareolidae (Pratincoles and Coursers)
TEMMINCK'S COURSER (Cursorius temminckii) – One as we drove from Ndutu to the Crater Highlands.
DOUBLE-BANDED COURSER (Smutsornis africanus) – Three at Tarangire.
THREE-BANDED COURSER (Rhinoptilus cinctus) – Super looks at this nocturnal courser at Baringo.
Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
GRAY-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus) – One at Ngorongoro, and about 30 at Nakuru.
GULL-BILLED TERN (Gelochelidon nilotica) – Six at Nakuru.
WHITE-WINGED TERN (Chlidonias leucopterus) – Two at Ngorongoro, and about 300 at Nakuru which included 1 in full breeding plumage.
WHISKERED TERN (Chlidonias hybrida) – Twenty at Ngorongoro were mostly in breeding plumage, and we then had 1 at Tarangire, and about 40 at Nakuru.
AFRICAN SKIMMER (Rynchops flavirostris) – A great surprise to see 2 at Nakuru.
Pteroclidae (Sandgrouse)
CHESTNUT-BELLIED SANDGROUSE (Pterocles exustus) – We saw a total of about 35 in the Serengeti, and 12 at Tarangire.
YELLOW-THROATED SANDGROUSE (Pterocles gutturalis) – Four, and then a pair with a juvenile in the Serengeti.
BLACK-FACED SANDGROUSE (Pterocles decoratus) – About 30 at Tarangire.


We saw a few Brown Snake-Eagles. This one sat nicely for a portrait. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)
ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) – A few at Limuru and Karatina.
SPECKLED PIGEON (Columba guinea) – Common and widespread.
RAMERON PIGEON (Columba arquatrix) – A flock of about 25 flew over us at Kakamega, and we then all had great looks at perched birds at Mountain Lodge.
DELEGORGUE'S PIGEON (Columba delegorguei) – About 40 were feeding on the salt lick at Mountain Lodge.
DUSKY TURTLE-DOVE (Streptopelia lugens) – Two singles at Ole Sereni, and about a dozen at in the Ngorongoro Crater area.
MOURNING COLLARED-DOVE (Streptopelia decipiens) – One at Naabi Hill, 4 near Ndutu, and about 40 at Baringo.
RED-EYED DOVE (Streptopelia semitorquata) – Common and widespread.
RING-NECKED DOVE (Streptopelia capicola) – Very common and widespread.
LAUGHING DOVE (Streptopelia senegalensis) – Common and widespread.
EMERALD-SPOTTED WOOD-DOVE (Turtur chalcospilos) – One at Tarangire.
TAMBOURINE DOVE (Turtur tympanistria) – Several heard at Gibb's Farm, and then great scope views of 1 at Kakamega.
NAMAQUA DOVE (Oena capensis) – Small numbers at Ngorongoro, the Serengeti, and at Tarangire.
AFRICAN GREEN-PIGEON (Treron calvus) – Nice looks in the scope at Kakamega.
Musophagidae (Turacos)
GREAT BLUE TURACO (Corythaeola cristata) – At least 9 of the huge colorful turacos were seen at Kakamega.
SCHALOW'S TURACO (Tauraco schalowi) – One in the forest above Gibb's Farm.
BLACK-BILLED TURACO (Tauraco schuettii) – Heard at Kakamega.
HARTLAUB'S TURACO (Tauraco hartlaubi) – Fantastic close looks at birds feeding in fruit trees at Mountain Lodge. [E]
BARE-FACED GO-AWAY-BIRD (Corythaixoides personatus) – About 20 in the Serengeti, and 12 at Tarangire.
WHITE-BELLIED GO-AWAY-BIRD (Corythaixoides leucogaster) – Twenty at Tarangire, and about 40 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)
BLUE-HEADED COUCAL (Centropus monachus) – One in a marsh near Kapsabet.
WHITE-BROWED COUCAL (Centropus superciliosus) – Three singles at Tarangire, and 1 near Baringo.
DIDERIC CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx caprius) – Several heard and 1 seen in the scope at Baringo.
KLAAS'S CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx klaas) – One in the grounds of our lodge at Nakuru.
AFRICAN EMERALD CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx cupreus) – Heard at Mountain Lodge.
BLACK CUCKOO (Cuculus clamosus) – One in the grounds of our lodge at Kakamega.
RED-CHESTED CUCKOO (Cuculus solitarius) – Two seen at Kakamega, and several others heard.
Strigidae (Owls)
AFRICAN SCOPS-OWL (Otus senegalensis) – Thanks to our local guide we had great looks at Baringo.


Our guide at Baringo knew where to find this Grayish Eagle-Owl, and we had a wonderful view. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

NORTHERN WHITE-FACED OWL (Ptilopsis leucotis) – Once again our local guide showed us this rather localized owl at Baringo.
CAPE EAGLE-OWL (NORTHERN) (Bubo capensis mackinderi) – Sometimes split as Mackinder's Eagle-Owl, we saw 1 near Kiawara.
GRAYISH EAGLE-OWL (Bubo cinerascens) – And yet another great find by our Baringo guide, a single bird along the cliffs.
VERREAUX'S EAGLE-OWL (Bubo lacteus) – Two at Ndutu.
PEARL-SPOTTED OWLET (Glaucidium perlatum) – One at Ndutu.
RED-CHESTED OWLET (Glaucidium tephronotum) – Heard at Kakamega.
Caprimulgidae (Nightjars and Allies)
SLENDER-TAILED NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus clarus) – Difficult this year, but we eventually found 2-3 at Baringo.
Apodidae (Swifts)
MOTTLED SWIFT (Apus aequatorialis) – About 8 in the Gibb's Farm area.
NYANZA SWIFT (Apus niansae) – Eight in the highlands near Gibb's Farm.
AFRICAN SWIFT (Apus barbatus) – One at Naabi Hill, and about 6 at Nakuru.
LITTLE SWIFT (Apus affinis) – By far the most common swift, with a total of about 120.
HORUS SWIFT (Apus horus) – Some of the group saw 4 in the Kerio Valley, and 1 at Bogoria.
WHITE-RUMPED SWIFT (Apus caffer) – Four at Baringo.
AFRICAN PALM-SWIFT (Cypsiurus parvus) – Two at Ole Sereni.
Coliidae (Mousebirds)
SPECKLED MOUSEBIRD (Colius striatus) – Very common and widespread.
BLUE-NAPED MOUSEBIRD (Urocolius macrourus) – About 30 in the Baringo area.
Trogonidae (Trogons)
BAR-TAILED TROGON (Apaloderma vittatum) – Uncommon at Kakamega these days, so we were lucky to have fabulous close looks at a male, and we then heard another bird calling the following day.
Upupidae (Hoopoes)
EURASIAN HOOPOE (AFRICAN) (Upupa epops africana) – Often split as African Hoopoe, a total of about 12 were seen in several widespread areas.
Phoeniculidae (Woodhoopoes and Scimitar-bills)
GREEN WOODHOOPOE (Phoeniculus purpureus) – Three at Serengeti Serena Lodge, and then 8 at Nakuru, and about 20 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
WHITE-HEADED WOODHOOPOE (Phoeniculus bollei) – Four in the canopy at Kakamega Forest.
Bucorvidae (Ground-Hornbills)
SOUTHERN GROUND-HORNBILL (Bucorvus leadbeateri) – Two adults and 2 immatures at Tarangire, and 1 adult at Nakuru.


We saw several tiny Pygmy Falcons. This beautiful little raptor was photographed by participant Mary Krenz.

Bucerotidae (Hornbills)
CROWNED HORNBILL (Lophoceros alboterminatus) – One in the Kerio Valley.
HEMPRICH'S HORNBILL (Lophoceros hemprichii) – Two were seen at Nakuru where they are very uncommon.
AFRICAN GRAY HORNBILL (Lophoceros nasutus) – One in the Serengeti, and 3 at Tarangire, and about 10 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
JACKSON'S HORNBILL (Tockus jacksoni) – About 10 at Baringo.
VON DER DECKEN'S HORNBILL (Tockus deckeni) – At least 22 were seen in the Serengeti woodlands.
TANZANIAN RED-BILLED HORNBILL (Tockus ruahae) – Two at our usual site in the Serengeti. [E]
NORTHERN RED-BILLED HORNBILL (Tockus erythrorhynchus) – About 40 at Tarangire, 1 in the Kerio Valley, and 2 at Baringo.
SILVERY-CHEEKED HORNBILL (Bycanistes brevis) – Fabulous looks at about 20 around Mountain Lodge.
BLACK-AND-WHITE-CASQUED HORNBILL (Bycanistes subcylindricus) – About 40 at Kakamega.
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
MALACHITE KINGFISHER (Corythornis cristatus) – Singles at Nairobi NP and Ngorongoro, and 2 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
AFRICAN PYGMY-KINGFISHER (Ispidina picta) – Super scope views at the edge of the Kakamega Forest, and a second bird in the Kerio Valley.
GRAY-HEADED KINGFISHER (Halcyon leucocephala) – Two singles at Tarangire, and 5 between the Kerio Valley and Baringo.
WOODLAND KINGFISHER (Halcyon senegalensis) – One at Bogoria.
STRIPED KINGFISHER (Halcyon chelicuti) – One in the Seronera area of Serengeti.
GIANT KINGFISHER (Megaceryle maxima) – One at Kakamega where they are very uncommon.
PIED KINGFISHER (Ceryle rudis) – Three at Nakuru, and about 10 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
Meropidae (Bee-eaters)
WHITE-FRONTED BEE-EATER (Merops bullockoides) – Thirty at Nakuru, and 1 in the Kerio Valley.
LITTLE BEE-EATER (Merops pusillus) – Small numbers at Ngorongoro, in the Serengeti, and at Tarangire.
CINNAMON-CHESTED BEE-EATER (Merops oreobates) – One at Nairobi NP, 5 at Gibb's Farm, 2 at Ngorongoro, 20 at Kakamega, and about 30 around Mountain Lodge.
WHITE-THROATED BEE-EATER (Merops albicollis) – One at Baringo.
MADAGASCAR BEE-EATER (Merops superciliosus) – About a dozen at Baringo.


We had some nice looks at colorful D'arnaud's Barbets. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

Coraciidae (Rollers)
LILAC-BREASTED ROLLER (Coracias caudatus) – Two at Ngorongoro, about 40 in the Serengeti, and 1 at Nakuru, and 4 at Baringo.
RUFOUS-CROWNED ROLLER (Coracias naevius) – Two in the Baringo area.
Lybiidae (African Barbets)
YELLOW-BILLED BARBET (Trachyphonus purpuratus) – Good looks at 4 single birds in the Kakamega Forest.
RED-AND-YELLOW BARBET (Trachyphonus erythrocephalus) – Singles in the Kerio Valley, and near Bogoria.
D'ARNAUD'S BARBET (Trachyphonus darnaudii) – Ten in the Kerio Valley, and about a dozen at Baringo.
D'ARNAUD'S BARBET (USAMBIRO) (Trachyphonus darnaudii usambiro) – Two singles in the Serengeti; several authors now split this form as Usambiro Barbet.
GRAY-THROATED BARBET (Gymnobucco bonapartei) – The one with the 'rhino horns' - we saw about 50 at Kakamega.
MOUSTACHED TINKERBIRD (Pogoniulus leucomystax) – One near Mountain Lodge.
YELLOW-RUMPED TINKERBIRD (Pogoniulus bilineatus bilineatus) – Heard throughout the day and several seen at Kakamega, and heard at Mountain Lodge.
RED-FRONTED TINKERBIRD (Pogoniulus pusillus) – Singles in the Serengeti, and at Nakuru.
YELLOW-SPOTTED BARBET (Buccanodon duchaillui) – Three in the canopy at Kakamega.
RED-FRONTED BARBET (Tricholaema diademata) – Four in the Serengeti, and 1 at Nakuru, and 1 at Baringo.
SPOT-FLANKED BARBET (Tricholaema lacrymosa) – Two at Baringo, and 1 at Bogoria.
BLACK-THROATED BARBET (Tricholaema melanocephala) – Four along the cliffs at Baringo.
WHITE-HEADED BARBET (Lybius leucocephalus) – Three at the gate to Nairobi NP.
Indicatoridae (Honeyguides)
WAHLBERG'S HONEYGUIDE (Prodotiscus regulus) – One at Baringo.
LESSER HONEYGUIDE (Indicator minor) – One at Baringo.
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
NUBIAN WOODPECKER (Campethera nubica) – A total of 11 were seen in four different widespread locations.
CARDINAL WOODPECKER (Dendropicos fuscescens) – Two near Gibb's Farm, and 3 at Baringo.
BEARDED WOODPECKER (Dendropicos namaquus) – Singles at Tarangire and Nakuru.
GOLDEN-CROWNED WOODPECKER (Dendropicos xantholophus) – Two at Kakamega.
AFRICAN GRAY WOODPECKER (Dendropicos goertae) – One in the Kerio Valley.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
PYGMY FALCON (Polihierax semitorquatus) – Singles in the Serengeti and Tarangire.


The wonderful Bateleur was seen a number of times. We had nice looks at a few perched birds at Tarangire. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

GREATER KESTREL (Falco rupicoloides) – One near Ndutu.
GRAY KESTREL (Falco ardosiaceus) – One in darting flight in the Serengeti, and then good looks at a perched bird at Tarangire.
LANNER FALCON (Falco biarmicus) – One along the cliffs at Baringo.
Psittaculidae (Old World Parrots)
FISCHER'S LOVEBIRD (Agapornis fischeri) – Very common in the Serengeti; in all we saw about 500. [E]
YELLOW-COLLARED LOVEBIRD (Agapornis personatus) – At least 250 at Tarangire. [E]
Psittacidae (New World and African Parrots)
RED-FRONTED PARROT (Poicephalus gulielmi) – Two and then 3 flying over Mountain Lodge.
MEYER'S PARROT (Poicephalus meyeri) – About 20 in the Serengeti.
RED-BELLIED PARROT (Poicephalus rufiventris) – More commonly known as African Orange-bellied Parrot, we saw 6 at Tarangire.
Platysteiridae (Wattle-eyes and Batises)
BROWN-THROATED WATTLE-EYE (Platysteira cyanea) – First a male, and then a pair with a juvenile, all at Kakamega.
JAMESON'S WATTLE-EYE (Platysteira jamesoni) – Two single birds in the Kakamega undergrowth.
CHINSPOT BATIS (Batis molitor) – Small numbers at Gibb's Farm, Ndutu, Nakuru, and Mountain Lodge.
BLACK-HEADED BATIS (Batis minor) – We saw a single calling male in the Kerio Valley.
PYGMY BATIS (Batis perkeo) – One at Baringo.
Vangidae (Vangas, Helmetshrikes, and Allies)
WHITE HELMETSHRIKE (Prionops plumatus) – Six at Tarangire.
Malaconotidae (Bushshrikes and Allies)
BRUBRU (Nilaus afer) – Three singles in the Serengeti, and 2 at Baringo.
BLACK-BACKED PUFFBACK (Dryoscopus cubla) – Six in the Gibb's Farm area.
LUEHDER'S BUSHSHRIKE (Laniarius luehderi) – Three singles at Kakamega.
TROPICAL BOUBOU (Laniarius major) – Two at Gibb's Farm, 1 at Ngorongoro, and 4 at Nakuru, and heard at Mountain Lodge.
BLACK-HEADED GONOLEK (Laniarius erythrogaster) – Very nice to see these striking birds in the Kerio Valley.
SLATE-COLORED BOUBOU (Laniarius funebris) – One at Oldupai Gorge, 3 in the Serengeti, and 2 at Baringo.


Burchell's Zebras are common, and we saw many, including these two having a dust bath. Photo by participant Becky Bradley.

GRAY-GREEN BUSHSHRIKE (Telophorus bocagei) – Several heard, and then we finally all got good looks at a pair at Kakamega.
BLACK-FRONTED BUSHSHRIKE (Telophorus nigrifrons) – Nice looks at 1 in the forest above Gibb's Farm.
Campephagidae (Cuckooshrikes)
BLACK CUCKOOSHRIKE (Campephaga flava) – Two at Kakamega.
PETIT'S CUCKOOSHRIKE (Campephaga petiti) – A pair at Kakamega.
PURPLE-THROATED CUCKOOSHRIKE (Campephaga quiscalina) – Two single males in the forest above Gibb's Farm.
Laniidae (Shrikes)
GRAY-BACKED FISCAL (Lanius excubitoroides) – About 40 in the Serengeti, and 12 at Nakuru.
LONG-TAILED FISCAL (Lanius cabanisi) – Forty in Nairobi NP, and 20 at Tarangire.
TAITA FISCAL (Lanius dorsalis) – One near Oldupai Gorge, and 1 near Ndutu.
MACKINNON'S SHRIKE (Lanius mackinnoni) – At least 4 at Kakamega.
NORTHERN FISCAL (Lanius humeralis) – Common and widespread.
MAGPIE SHRIKE (Corvinella melanoleuca) – We saw about 70 in the wooded areas of the Serengeti, and about 50 at Tarangire.
WHITE-RUMPED SHRIKE (Eurocephalus ruppelli) – More commonly known as Northern White-crowned Shrike, we saw about 250 in the Serengeti, and 50 at Tarangire, and 4 at Baringo.
Oriolidae (Old World Orioles)
WESTERN BLACK-HEADED ORIOLE (Oriolus brachyrynchus) – Heard at Kakamega.
AFRICAN BLACK-HEADED ORIOLE (Oriolus larvatus) – One at Nakuru.
BLACK-TAILED ORIOLE (Oriolus percivali) – Three at Mountain Lodge.
Dicruridae (Drongos)
SQUARE-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus ludwigii) – About 10 in the interior of Kakamega Forest.
FORK-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus adsimilis) – Widespread in bush country and more open areas than the previous species; in all we saw about 90.


We saw quite a few Black-headed Herons, including this one standing in the grassland. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

Monarchidae (Monarch Flycatchers)
AFRICAN PARADISE-FLYCATCHER (Terpsiphone viridis) – Six at Nairobi NP, 2 at Kakamega, and 1 at Baringo.
Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)
CAPE CROW (Corvus capensis) – Small numbers in the high country; with a total of about 40.
PIED CROW (Corvus albus) – Common and widespread.
FAN-TAILED RAVEN (Corvus rhipidurus) – Six at Iten, and 1 at Baringo.
WHITE-NECKED RAVEN (Corvus albicollis) – Two along the rim of Ngorongoro Crater, and 2 at Tarangire.
Alaudidae (Larks)
FISCHER'S SPARROW-LARK (Eremopterix leucopareia) – Hundreds in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the Serengeti.
PINK-BREASTED LARK (Calendulauda poecilosterna) – One at Baringo.
RUFOUS-NAPED LARK (Mirafra africana) – Two in Ngorongoro Crater, and 5 at Nakuru.
RED-CAPPED LARK (Calandrella cinerea) – Very common at Ngorongoro and the Serengeti.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)
PLAIN MARTIN (Riparia paludicola) – Thirty at Limuru Pond, and 4 at Bogoria.
ROCK MARTIN (Ptyonoprogne fuligula) – Common and widespread.
ANGOLA SWALLOW (Hirundo angolensis) – About 40 at Kakamega.
WIRE-TAILED SWALLOW (Hirundo smithii) – Two at Ngorongoro, and 4 at Baringo.
RED-RUMPED SWALLOW (Cecropis daurica) – Fairly common and widespread, with a total of about 110.
LESSER STRIPED-SWALLOW (Cecropis abyssinica) – Another swallow that was fairly widespread; in all we saw about 55.
MOSQUE SWALLOW (Cecropis senegalensis) – Twelve at Tarangire.
WHITE-HEADED SAWWING (Psalidoprocne albiceps) – About 30 at Kakamega.
BLACK SAWWING (Psalidoprocne pristoptera) – Widespread around forest in the high country.
GRAY-RUMPED SWALLOW (Pseudhirundo griseopyga) – Two in open farmland east of Eldoret.
Stenostiridae (Fairy Flycatchers)
AFRICAN BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Elminia longicauda) – One at Kakamega.
WHITE-TAILED BLUE-FLYCATCHER (Elminia albicauda) – Nice looks at 3 single birds in the Gibb's Farm area.


Yellow-necked Francolin was seen at Tarangire. Photo by participant Mary Krenz.

Paridae (Tits, Chickadees, and Titmice)
WHITE-BELLIED TIT (Melaniparus albiventris) – Singles at Nakuru and in the Kerio Valley.
DUSKY TIT (Melaniparus funereus) – Two small flocks in the canopy at Kakamega.
SOMALI TIT (Melaniparus thruppi) – Two along the cliffs at Baringo.
RED-THROATED TIT (Melaniparus fringillinus) – A pair and then a single bird in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. [E]
Remizidae (Penduline-Tits)
MOUSE-COLORED PENDULINE-TIT (Anthoscopus musculus) – Two at Baringo.
Pycnonotidae (Bulbuls)
SLENDER-BILLED GREENBUL (Stelgidillas gracilirostris) – Five at Kakamega, and 1 at Mountain Lodge.
RED-TAILED BRISTLEBILL (Bleda syndactylus) – Some of the group saw 1 briefly on a trail at Kakamega.
SHELLEY'S GREENBUL (KAKAMEGA) (Arizelocichla masukuensis kakamegae) – Sometimes split as Kakamega Greenbul; we had nice looks at 1 in the mid-levels at Kakamega Forest.
EASTERN MOUNTAIN-GREENBUL (MOUNTAIN) (Arizelocichla nigriceps nigriceps) – One in the forest above Gibb's Farm.
JOYFUL GREENBUL (Chlorocichla laetissima) – About 20 of these joyful songsters at Kakamega.
ANSORGE'S GREENBUL (Eurillas ansorgei) – Four at Kakamega.
PLAIN GREENBUL (Eurillas curvirostris) – One at Kakamega.
YELLOW-WHISKERED GREENBUL (Eurillas latirostris) – Common at Kakamega.
LITTLE GREENBUL (Eurillas virens) – Everyone heard, and a few of the group saw 1 at Kakamega.
GRAY-OLIVE GREENBUL (Phyllastrephus cerviniventris) – We had a very responsive bird in the forest at Gibb's Farm.
CABANIS'S GREENBUL (Phyllastrephus cabanisi) – Two in the Kakamega undergrowth.
COMMON BULBUL (DARK-CAPPED) (Pycnonotus barbatus tricolor) – Very common and widespread.
Macrosphenidae (African Warblers)
NORTHERN CROMBEC (Sylvietta brachyura) – Two at Baringo.
RED-FACED CROMBEC (Sylvietta whytii) – Two at Ngorongoro, 1 at Nakuru, and 1 in the Kerio Valley.
Phylloscopidae (Leaf Warblers)
UGANDA WOODLAND-WARBLER (Phylloscopus budongoensis) – Many heard, and 1 finally seen in Kakamega Forest.
Acrocephalidae (Reed-Warblers and Allies)
LESSER SWAMP-WARBLER (Acrocephalus gracilirostris) – One at Nairobi, 1 at Ngorongoro, and 2 at Kapsabet.
Locustellidae (Grassbirds and Allies)
LITTLE RUSH-WARBLER (Bradypterus baboecala) – Heard in the marshes at Kapsabet.
Cisticolidae (Cisticolas and Allies)
BLACK-COLLARED APALIS (Apalis pulchra) – Nice looks at 2 in the Kakamega undergrowth.
BAR-THROATED APALIS (BAR-THROATED) (Apalis thoracica griseiceps) – Three near Gibb's Farm.
BLACK-THROATED APALIS (Apalis jacksoni) – One from the roof at Mountain Lodge.


In addition to many birds, we saw some wonderful examples of African mammals, including this lounging White Rhino family. Note the crowd of Red-billed Oxpeckers standing on the adults. Photo by participant Mary Krenz.

YELLOW-BREASTED APALIS (Apalis flavida) – One at Nairobi NP, 2 at Gibb's Farm, and 2 at Nakuru.
YELLOW-BREASTED APALIS (BROWN-TAILED) (Apalis flavida viridiceps) – Sometimes split from the previous 'species', we saw 4 along the cliffs at Baringo.
BUFF-THROATED APALIS (Apalis rufogularis) – Heard in the high canopy at Kakamega.
GRAY APALIS (Apalis cinerea) – One at Mountain Lodge.
BROWN-HEADED APALIS (Apalis alticola) – Two in the forest above Gibb's Farm.
GREEN-BACKED CAMAROPTERA (GRAY-BACKED) (Camaroptera brachyura brevicaudata) – Common and widespread.
OLIVE-GREEN CAMAROPTERA (Camaroptera chloronota) – Three seen (and several more heard) at Kakamega.
RED-FRONTED WARBLER (Urorhipis rufifrons) – Six at Baringo.
GRAY WREN-WARBLER (Calamonastes simplex) – Two singles at Baringo.
WHITE-CHINNED PRINIA (Schistolais leucopogon) – About 6 at Kakamega.
RED-FACED CISTICOLA (Cisticola erythrops) – One near Gibb's Farm.
CHUBB'S CISTICOLA (Cisticola chubbi) – A few in the dense undergrowth at Kakamega.
HUNTER'S CISTICOLA (Cisticola hunteri) – Heard at Mountain Lodge. [E]
RATTLING CISTICOLA (Cisticola chiniana) – Small numbers at Serengeti, Nakuru, and Baringo.
WINDING CISTICOLA (Cisticola galactotes) – Singles at Nairobi NP, and in the Serengeti.
STOUT CISTICOLA (Cisticola robustus) – About 10 in the clearing at Kakamega.
GRAY-CAPPED WARBLER (Eminia lepida) – Heard at Kakamega and Mountain Lodge.
BLACK-FACED RUFOUS-WARBLER (Bathmocercus rufus) – Nice looks at a pair along a trail in Kakamega Forest.
BUFF-BELLIED WARBLER (Phyllolais pulchella) – Small numbers in a variety of acacia country; in all we saw about 12.
PALE PRINIA (Prinia somalica) – One at Baringo.


We saw 9 species of hornbill, including this Tanzanian Red-billed Hornbill. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

BANDED PRINIA (BLACK-FACED) (Prinia bairdii melanops) – We saw this attractive prinia at Kakamega.
YELLOW-BELLIED EREMOMELA (Eremomela icteropygialis) – One at Baringo.
TURNER'S EREMOMELA (Eremomela turneri) – We saw 2 of these endangered birds at Kakamega Forest.
Sylviidae (Sylviid Warblers)
AFRICAN HILL BABBLER (Sylvia abyssinica) – Heard at Mountain Lodge.
BANDED WARBLER (Sylvia boehmi) – Two in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.
Zosteropidae (White-eyes, Yuhinas, and Allies)
AFRICAN YELLOW WHITE-EYE (Zosterops senegalensis) – One at Kakamega.
BROAD-RINGED WHITE-EYE (Zosterops poliogastrus) – One at Nairobi NP, 6 at Gibb's Farm, and about 20 at Mountain Lodge.
WHITE-BREASTED WHITE-EYE (Zosterops abyssinicus) – More commonly known as Abyssinian White-eye, we saw 6 at Nairobi NP.
Pellorneidae (Ground Babblers and Allies)
SCALY-BREASTED ILLADOPSIS (Illadopsis albipectus) – Two at Kakamega.
Leiothrichidae (Laughingthrushes and Allies)
RUFOUS CHATTERER (Turdoides rubiginosa) – Three in the Kerio Valley.
BLACK-LORED BABBLER (Turdoides sharpei) – Three in the Seronera area of Serengeti.
NORTHERN PIED-BABBLER (Turdoides hypoleuca) – One in Nairobi NP, and about 20 at Tarangire. [E]
ARROW-MARKED BABBLER (Turdoides jardineii) – Six at Ngorongoro, and about 20 near Ndutu.
Muscicapidae (Old World Flycatchers)
DUSKY-BROWN FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa adusta) – One at Gibb's Farm, and 2 at Mountain Lodge; more commonly known as African Dusky Flycatcher.
GRAYISH FLYCATCHER (Bradornis microrhynchus) – Small numbers in acacia woodland; in all we saw about 30.
SILVERBIRD (Melaenornis semipartitus) – We saw 5 of these attractive 'flycatchers' in the Serengeti.
NORTHERN BLACK-FLYCATCHER (Melaenornis edolioides) – Four in the Kerio Valley.
WHITE-EYED SLATY-FLYCATCHER (Melaenornis fischeri) – Fairly common at forest edge in the highlands; in all we saw about 45.
RED-BACKED SCRUB-ROBIN (Cercotrichas leucophrys) – About a dozen in the Ngorongoro and Serengeti areas.
CAPE ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha caffra) – One near Karatina.
BLUE-SHOULDERED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha cyanocampter) – Heard at Kakamega.
GRAY-WINGED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha polioptera) – Heard and seen in flight at Kakamega.
WHITE-BROWED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha heuglini) – Seen nicely in the gardens at Gibb's Farm and Nakuru.
SNOWY-CROWNED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha niveicapilla) – Heard by all and seen by some of the group at Kakamega.
SPOTTED MORNING-THRUSH (Cichladusa guttata) – Two at Baringo.
BROWN-CHESTED ALETHE (Pseudalethe poliocephala) – Nice look at this undergrowth skulker at Kakamega.
EQUATORIAL AKALAT (Sheppardia aequatorialis) – We saw a single immature bird along a forest trail at Kakamega.
LITTLE ROCK-THRUSH (Monticola rufocinereus) – An adult and a juvenile at Nakuru.
AFRICAN STONECHAT (Saxicola torquatus) – A male was seen in a tea estate at Kakamega.
NORTHERN ANTEATER-CHAT (Myrmecocichla aethiops) – Fairly common at Ngorongoro and Nakuru; in all we saw about 50.
MOCKING CLIFF-CHAT (Thamnolaea cinnamomeiventris) – Three at Nakuru, 1 at Iten, and 1 at Baringo.


This Purple Heron was the only one we saw, but we had a very good look as it posed for us at Lake Baringo. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

BROWN-TAILED CHAT (Cercomela scotocerca) – Four along the cliffs at Baringo.
ABYSSINIAN WHEATEAR (Oenanthe lugubris schalowi) – Sometimes split as Schalow's Wheatear, we saw about 8 at Ngorongoro Crater.
CAPPED WHEATEAR (Oenanthe pileata) – About 90 in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area.
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
WHITE-TAILED ANT-THRUSH (Neocossyphus poensis) – One at Kakamega.
ABYSSINIAN THRUSH (ABYSSINIAN) (Turdus abyssinicus abyssinicus) – Small numbers were widespread in the highlands, with a total of about 40.
AFRICAN THRUSH (Turdus pelios) – One at Kakamega.
Sturnidae (Starlings)
WATTLED STARLING (Creatophora cinerea) – We saw a total of about 140 in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area.
VIOLET-BACKED STARLING (Cinnyricinclus leucogaster) – Four at Kakamega.
RED-WINGED STARLING (Onychognathus morio) – Six at Ngorongoro Crater, and 2 at Thomson's Falls.
BRISTLE-CROWNED STARLING (Onychognathus salvadorii) – Nice looks at this 'northern species' at Baringo.
STUHLMANN'S STARLING (Poeoptera stuhlmanni) – About 15 at Kakamega.
HILDEBRANDT'S STARLING (Lamprotornis hildebrandti) – Common at Ngorongoro Crater and in the Serengeti. [E]
R┬čUEPPELL'S STARLING (Lamprotornis purpuroptera) – Common in the Serengeti and at Baringo and Bogoria; with a total of about 120.
ASHY STARLING (Lamprotornis unicolor) – About 80 at Tarangire. [E]
SUPERB STARLING (Lamprotornis superbus) – Very common and widespread.
GREATER BLUE-EARED STARLING (Lamprotornis chalybaeus) – Two at Tarangire, 50 at Nakuru, and 30 in the Kerio Valley.
Buphagidae (Oxpeckers)
RED-BILLED OXPECKER (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) – Common throughout the tour in areas with big game.
YELLOW-BILLED OXPECKER (Buphagus africanus) – Common in areas with big game - especially giraffe and buffalo.
Nectariniidae (Sunbirds and Spiderhunters)
KENYA VIOLET-BACKED SUNBIRD (Anthreptes orientalis) – About 6 at Baringo.
GREEN SUNBIRD (Anthreptes rectirostris) – We scoped a single male at Kakamega.


Yellow-billed Oxpeckers were common. These two are stting on the back of an African Buffalo. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

COLLARED SUNBIRD (Hedydipna collaris) – Two at Gibb's Farm, 8 at Kakamega, and 1 at Mountain Lodge.
GREEN-HEADED SUNBIRD (Cyanomitra verticalis) – Singles at four different sites in Kenya.
WESTERN OLIVE SUNBIRD (Cyanomitra obscura) – Two singles at Kakamega.
AMETHYST SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra amethystina) – About 30 on a bottle-brush tree at Thomson's Falls.
SCARLET-CHESTED SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra senegalensis) – Fairly common and widespread, with a total of about 40.
HUNTER'S SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra hunteri) – Three singles at Baringo.
TACAZZE SUNBIRD (Nectarinia tacazze) – We saw about 10 fabulous males on the Bottle-brush tree at Thomson's Falls.
BRONZE SUNBIRD (Nectarinia kilimensis) – Widespread in small numbers.
GOLDEN-WINGED SUNBIRD (Drepanorhynchus reichenowi) – One at Ngorongoro.
NORTHERN DOUBLE-COLLARED SUNBIRD (Cinnyris reichenowi) – Three at Kakamega.
EASTERN DOUBLE-COLLARED SUNBIRD (Cinnyris mediocris) – Small numbers at Ngorongoro, Thomson's Falls, and Mountain Lodge. [E]
BEAUTIFUL SUNBIRD (Cinnyris pulchellus) – Four in non-breeding plumage in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and then about 20 including some fabulous males at Baringo.
MARIQUA SUNBIRD (Cinnyris mariquensis) – Three in the Serengeti.
VARIABLE SUNBIRD (Cinnyris venustus) – Widespread in small numbers, with a total of about 40.
Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)
CAPE WAGTAIL (Motacilla capensis) – Two at Mountain Lodge.
MOUNTAIN WAGTAIL (Motacilla clara) – One along the stream at Kakamega.
AFRICAN PIED WAGTAIL (Motacilla aguimp) – Common and widespread.
AFRICAN PIPIT (Anthus cinnamomeus) – Small numbers in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area.
YELLOW-THROATED LONGCLAW (Macronyx croceus) – One at Nakuru.
Fringillidae (Finches, Euphonias, and Allies)
YELLOW-CROWNED CANARY (Serinus flavivertex) – Two at Mountain Lodge.
SOUTHERN CITRIL (Serinus hypostictus) – Two at Ngorongoro, 2 at Kakamega, and 1 at Kapsabet.
REICHENOW'S SEEDEATER (Serinus reichenowi) – Twenty at Nairobi, and 1 in the Kerio Valley.
WHITE-BELLIED CANARY (Serinus dorsostriatus) – Fairly common in the Serengeti.
BRIMSTONE CANARY (Serinus sulphuratus) – Three singles at Nakuru.
STREAKY SEEDEATER (Serinus striolatus) – Widespread in small numbers, with a total of about 30.
THICK-BILLED SEEDEATER (Serinus burtoni) – Two at Gibb's Farm, and 1 along the rim of Ngorongoro Crater.
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus) – Small numbers were seen in a couple of gas stations.
KENYA RUFOUS SPARROW (Passer rufocinctus) – Small numbers in acacia bush country like Nairobi NP, the Serengeti, and at Nakuru; in all we saw about 70. [E]
NORTHERN GRAY-HEADED SPARROW (Passer griseus) – Widespread in small numbers.
PARROT-BILLED SPARROW (Passer gongonensis) – Two at Baringo.
SWAHILI SPARROW (Passer suahelicus) – About a dozen in the Seronera area.
CHESTNUT SPARROW (Passer eminibey) – A pair in the Serengeti included a male in breeding plumage.
YELLOW-SPOTTED PETRONIA (Petronia pyrgita) – Widespread in small numbers.


Rothschild's Giraffe is rare, but we were able to see 18 at Lake Nakuru. Photo by paticipant Mary Krenz.

Ploceidae (Weavers and Allies)
WHITE-BILLED BUFFALO-WEAVER (Bubalornis albirostris) – Two at Baringo.
RED-BILLED BUFFALO-WEAVER (Bubalornis niger) – Fairly common in the Serengeti, with a total of about 90.
WHITE-HEADED BUFFALO-WEAVER (Dinemellia dinemelli) – About 120 in the Serengeti, and 4 at Baringo.
SPECKLE-FRONTED WEAVER (Sporopipes frontalis) – Small numbers at Naabi Hill, Serengeti, Tarangire, and Baringo.
WHITE-BROWED SPARROW-WEAVER (Plocepasser mahali) – Thirty in Nairobi, about 40 in the Kerio Valley, and 50+ at Baringo-Bogoria.
RUFOUS-TAILED WEAVER (Histurgops ruficauda) – The only genus endemic to East Africa. We saw about 150 in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area. [E]
GRAY-HEADED SOCIAL-WEAVER (Pseudonigrita arnaudi) – About 50 were around their nests at the Seronera area park HQ.
RED-HEADED MALIMBE (Malimbus rubricollis) – Good looks at a pair as they worked along branches like nuthatches at Kakamega.
RED-HEADED WEAVER (Anaplectes rubriceps) – Singles at Naabi Hill and Serengeti Serena.
BAGLAFECHT WEAVER (Ploceus baglafecht) – Common and widespread.
LITTLE WEAVER (Ploceus luteolus) – One in the Kerio Valley, and 2 at Baringo.
BLACK-NECKED WEAVER (Ploceus nigricollis) – Seven (mainly at forest edge) at Kakamega.
SPECTACLED WEAVER (Ploceus ocularis) – We saw a pair at the entrance to Mountain Lodge.
BLACK-BILLED WEAVER (Ploceus melanogaster) – A pair at Kakamega.
HOLUB'S GOLDEN-WEAVER (Ploceus xanthops) – Two in a marsh near Kapsabet.
NORTHERN MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus taeniopterus) – We saw 4 of these very localized weavers at Lake Baringo - the only site in Kenya.
LESSER MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus intermedius) – One at Naabi Hill.
VITELLINE MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus vitellinus) – One near Ndutu, and then about 10 at Baringo which included several males in breeding plumage.
SPEKE'S WEAVER (Ploceus spekei) – Fairly widespread in the highlands, with a total of about 250.
VIEILLOT'S WEAVER (Ploceus nigerrimus) – About 40 were nesting in the grounds of Rondo Retreat.


The imposing Kori Bustard was common on the plains of Ngorongoro and the Serengeti. Photo by participant Jean Rigden.

VILLAGE WEAVER (Ploceus cucullatus) – About 20 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.
BLACK-HEADED WEAVER (Ploceus melanocephalus) – Ten, around their nests near Kapsabet.
GOLDEN-BACKED WEAVER (Ploceus jacksoni) – We saw these very attractive weavers in the Kerio Valley and at Baringo.
FOREST WEAVER (Ploceus bicolor) – About 20 at Kakamega.
BROWN-CAPPED WEAVER (Ploceus insignis) – Another very attractive weaver; we saw 3 at Kakamega.
CARDINAL QUELEA (Quelea cardinalis) – Four in breeding plumage at Bogoria.
RED-BILLED QUELEA (Quelea quelea) – About 300 (with many in breeding plumage) at Bogoria.
NORTHERN RED BISHOP (Euplectes franciscanus) – Extremely localized in East Africa, so we were lucky to see 10 gorgeous males near Bogoria.
WHITE-WINGED WIDOWBIRD (Euplectes albonotatus) – Six at Nairobi NP.
YELLOW-MANTLED WIDOWBIRD (YELLOW-SHOULDERED) (Euplectes macroura macrocercus) – We saw a single male in the clearing at Kakamega.
FAN-TAILED WIDOWBIRD (Euplectes axillaris) – Two in Ngorongoro Crater, and about 25 in the Kapsabet and Eldoret areas.
LONG-TAILED WIDOWBIRD (Euplectes progne) – One in breeding plumage at Nakuru.
JACKSON'S WIDOWBIRD (Euplectes jacksoni) – Another East african endemic; we saw about 8 in breeding plumage near Eldoret. [E]
GROSBEAK WEAVER (Amblyospiza albifrons) – Three near Kapsabet.
Estrildidae (Waxbills and Allies)
GRAY-HEADED NIGRITA (Nigrita canicapillus) – One at Kakamega.
WHITE-BREASTED NIGRITA (Nigrita fusconotus) – One at Kakamega.
BLACK-FACED WAXBILL (Estrilda erythronotos) – Two singles in the Serengeti.
RED-CHEEKED CORDONBLEU (Uraeginthus bengalus) – About 40 at Nakuru, and 6 at Baringo.
BLUE-CAPPED CORDONBLEU (Uraeginthus cyanocephalus) – We saw a total of nearly 50 of these gorgeous waxbills in the Serengeti and Tarangire areas.
PURPLE GRENADIER (Granatina ianthinogaster) – Five in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area.
GREEN-WINGED PYTILIA (Pytilia melba) – Another gorgeous waxbill; we had good looks at a male at Baringo.
RED-BILLED FIREFINCH (Lagonosticta senegala) – Small numbers were at a variety of widely scattered sites.
BRONZE MANNIKIN (Spermestes cucullata) – Small numbers at Nairobi, Kakamega, and Kapsabet.
Viduidae (Indigobirds)
PIN-TAILED WHYDAH (Vidua macroura) – First seen at Nakuru, and then at Kakamega, and Baringo; included at least 3 males in breeding plumage.
EASTERN PARADISE-WHYDAH (Vidua paradisaea) – Despite the exceptionally dry weather we saw a pair (with the male in full breeding plumage) at Tarangire.
VILLAGE INDIGOBIRD (Vidua chalybeata) – We saw a single male at Baringo.

MAMMALS
YELLOW-WINGED BAT (Lavia frons) – Two in the Serengeti, and 4 at Baringo.
BLUE MONKEY (Cercopithecus mitis) – Common at Kakamega, with a total of about 60.
SYKES MONKEY (Cercopithecus albogularis) – About 25 at Mountain Lodge.
BLACK-CHEEKED WHITE-NOSED MONKEY (Cercopithecus ascanius) – Eight at Kakamega.
BLACK-FACED VERVET MONKEY (Cercopithecus aethiops) – Fairly common and widespread, with a total of about 180.


Participant Becky Bradley captured this image of a crowd of Hippos.

OLIVE BABOON (Papio anubis) – Common and widespread.
MANTLED GUEREZA (Colobus guereza) – We saw these attractive monkeys at Kakamega (40) and Mountain Lodge (6).
CAPE HARE (Lepus capensis) – One at Baringo.
UNSTRIPED GROUND SQUIRREL (Xerus rutilus) – One near Bogoria.
OCHRE BUSH SQUIRREL (Paraxerus ochraceus) – Seen near Ndutu, Kerio Valley, and Bogoria.
RED-LEGGED SUN SQUIRREL (Heliosciurus rufobrachium) – About 12 at Kakamega.
BLACK-BACKED JACKAL (Canis mesomelas) – Two in the Serengeti.
COMMON JACKAL (Canis aureus) – Two singles in the Serengeti.
COMMON (SMALL-SPOTTED) GENET (Genetta genetta) – Three in the roof of Ndutu Lodge.
BANDED MONGOOSE (Mungos mungo) – About 50 at Tarangire.
EASTERN DWARF MONGOOSE (Helogale hirtula) – Twenty in the Serengeti, and a dozen at Tarangire.
SPOTTED HYAENA (Crocuta crocuta) – We saw a total of about 20 in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area, and then one of our group saw 2 at Bogoria.
SERVAL (Felis serval) – Great to see this uncommon and beautiful cat in the Serengeti grasslands.
LEOPARD (Panthera pardus) – Three, including one laying in a beautiful granite kopje in the Serengeti.
LION (Panthera leo) – Many close encounters in Ngorongoro and the Serengeti - in all we saw about 30.
CHEETAH (Acinonyx jubatus) – Great this tour, with a female and 2 half grown young, and then 2 other singles.
AFRICAN ELEPHANT (Loxodonta africana) – Two big males at Ngorongoro, about 50 near Ndutu, and 300+ at Tarangire.
ROCK HYRAX (Procavia capensis) – Small numbers at Serengeti, Tarangire, and Nakuru.
BUSH (YELLOW-SPOTTED) HYRAX (Heterohyrax brucei) – Ten in the Serengeti, and about 50 at Tarangire.
BURCHELL'S ZEBRA (Equus burchelli) – Very common and widespread in grassland areas; with a total of about 5000.
BLACK RHINOCEROS (Diceros bicornis) – One in Nairobi NP, and 2 (distantly) in Ngorongoro Crater.
WHITE RHINOCEROS (Ceratotherium simum) – Two in Nairobi NP, and 5 at Nakuru. [I]
WARTHOG (Phacochoerus aethiopicus) – Common and widespread away from forest.
HIPPOPOTAMUS (Hippopotamus amphibius) – Most common in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area, but we also saw smaller numbers elsewhere; in all we saw about 450.
COMMON GIRAFFE (Giraffa camelopardalis) – Common in Nairobi NP, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and in the Serengeti.
ROTHSCHILD'S GIRAFFE (Giraffa rothschildi) – Eighteen at Nakuru.
BUSHBUCK (Tragelaphus scriptus) – One in Ngorongoro Crater, and about 10 at Mountain Lodge.
LESSER KUDU (Tragelaphus imberbis) – We saw a single running male at Tarangire.
COMMON ELAND (Taurotragus oryx) – Widespread in parks with open grassland; in all we saw about 120.
AFRICAN BUFFALO (Syncerus caffer) – Very common in grassland areas, with a single herd of 900-1000 at Tarangire being most impressive.


The beautiful Serval is uncommon, and we were quite lucky to see this one. Photo by participant Becky Bradley.

BUSH (GRAY) DUIKER (Sylvicapra grimmia) – One in Nairobi NP.
COMMON WATERBUCK (Kobus ellipsiprymnus) – Six at Tarangire.
DEFASSA WATERBUCK (Kobus defassa) – Six in the Serengeti, 10 at Nakuru, and 4 at Mountain Lodge.
BOHOR REEDBUCK (Redunca redunca) – Nine in Nairobi NP, 1 in the Serengeti, 4 at Tarangire.
TOPI (Damaliscus lunatus) – About 40 in the Serengeti.
HARTEBEEST (KONGONI) (Alcelaphus buselaphus) – One hundred at Nairobi NP, and about 30 in the Serengeti.
BLUE WILDEBEEST (Connochaetes taurinus) – Many thousands in Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti were a most memorable sight - especially when seen in long lines as they wandered this classic African landscape.
KIRK'S DIK-DIK (Modoqua kirki) – Common in the wooded areas of the Serengeti.
IMPALA (Aepyceros malampus) – Very common and widespread away from forest.
THOMSON'S GAZELLE (Gazella thomsoni) – The most numerous antelope in open grasslands, with many thousands in the Serengeti.
GRANT'S GAZELLE (Gazella granti) – Another very common antelope of the open African grasslands.


ADDITIONAL COMMENTS

Reptiles seen on the tour included;

Nile Crocodile; 1 at Nairobi NP.

Mwanza Rock Agama; several in the Serengeti.

Red-headed Rock Agama; about a dozen in the Baringo-Bogoria area.

Green Tree Agama; 1 at Ngorongoro, and 1 in the Serengeti.

Striped Skink; several at Lake Nakuru.

Leopard Tortoise; 1 at Bogoria.

Water Monitor; 1 at Lake Baringo.


Totals for the tour: 429 bird taxa and 46 mammal taxa