A Field Guides Birding Tours Report

East Africa Highlights: Kenya & Tanzania 2024

March 2-22, 2024 with Terry Stevenson guiding

Field Guides Birding Tours
Secretarybirds are as unique as they are iconic among the wildlife of the sub-Saharan savannah. These long-legged and long-tailed raptors impart an elegance that belies their ferocity when subduing prey—which is often snakes. They are named for the untamed head plumes that resemble writing quills. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.

Once again, our East Africa Highlights tour ran smoothly, efficiently, and without any hitches at all. In northern Tanzania we went from Ngorongoro Crater to the Serengeti, and then east to Tarangire. Highlights included the endemics—Gray-breasted Spurfowl, Fischer's and Yellow-collared lovebirds, Ashy Starling, and Rufous-tailed Weaver. In Kenya, we went from Nairobi to Lake Nakuru, Kakamega Forest, Baringo, and the Aberdare Mountains. Specialties included Hartlaub's Turaco, Martial Eagle, Black-and-white-casqued Hornbill, Blue-headed Bee-eater, and the gorgeous Beautiful Sunbird—to mention but a few. Mammals were of course a major component of the tour, with Lion, Leopard, Cheetah, African Bush Elephant, Black Rhino, and hundreds of thousands of wildebeest all being part of the great East Africa experience.

We began the first day in Nairobi by walking the grounds of our hotel and seeing a gorgeous Hartlaub's Turaco, White-headed Barbet, and Rueppell's Robin-Chat. An afternoon visit to Nairobi National Park found us watching Helmeted Guineafowl, Dusky Turtle-Dove, a pair of Gray Crowned-Cranes with young, Marabou Stork, White-backed Vulture, Speckled Mousebird, Long-tailed Fiscal, Northern Pied-Babbler, Red-billed Oxpecker, and our first Purple Grenadiers. We also enjoyed seeing the big game, with good views of Hippo, White Rhino, Common Giraffe, African Buffalo, Hartebeest, and Impala.

From Nairobi we flew to Tanzania and headed for the delightful Gibb's Farm on the outer slopes of Ngorongoro Crater. From here we walked in the forest the following morning, finding African Cuckoo, Verreaux's Eagle-Owl, Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater, Purple-throated Cuckooshrike, Chinspot Batis, African Paradise-Flycatcher, White-tailed Blue-Flycatcher, Brown-headed Apalis, Eastern Double-collared Sunbird, Abyssinian Crimsonwing, and Peter's Twinspot. After a delicious lunch of almost all homegrown produce, we took a short drive to the rim of Ngorongoro Crater and to our lodge—perfectly based for our day in the crater starting the following morning.

Ngorongoro Crater is one of the most spectacular places on earth—the world's largest, unbroken caldera, teeming with some of Africa's most spectacular mammals. Just a few of the highlights here were our first Spotted Hyaenas, Lions, huge bull Elephants, no fewer than five endangered Black Rhino, and herds of Burchell's Zebra, Common Eland, Blue Wildebeest, and Thomson's Gazelle. It was also a great day for birding with Common Ostrich, Hildebrandt's Spurfowl, both Greater and Lesser flamingos, Kori Bustard, Hamerkop, Lappet-faced Vulture, Sulphur-breasted Bushshrike, Banded Parisoma, Hildebrandt's Starling, Speke's Weaver, Swahili Sparrow, and Rosy-throated Longclaw.

We then headed west to the Serengeti for a three night stay (at two different lodges), but first we made a stop at Olduvai Gorge—made famous by the Leakey family, who together with their team of archaeologists found many of the world's oldest known hominids. Serengeti is always a highlight of the tour, and this year was no exception with some of the most memorable sightings being Common Ostrich, Gray-breasted Spurfowl, Yellow-throated Sandgrouse, Bare-faced Go-away-bird, Chestnut-banded Plover, Double-banded Courser, Saddle-billed Stork, Secretarybird, Pearl-spotted Owlet, Green Woodhoopoe, Von der Decken's Hornbill, Lilac-breasted Roller, Fischer's Lovebird, Red-faced Crombec, Yellow-billed Oxpecker, Silverbird, Mocking Cliffchat, White-headed Buffalo-Weaver, Rufous-tailed Weaver, Black-winged Bishop, Gray-headed Silverbird, Blue-capped Cordonbleu, and Steel-blue Whydah. Mammal highlights included Black-backed Jackal, Common Genet, Banded and Eastern Dwarf mongoose, nine more Lions, no fewer than seven Cheetahs (including some right next to our vehicle!), Warthog, Hippo, Common Giraffe, and many herds of Zebra, Topi, Hartebeest, Impala, Thomson's and Grant's gazelles, and of course the vast herds of Blue Wildebeest.

The final part of our visit to Tanzania was at the beautiful Tarangire National Park, where our drives amongst the wooded savanna—scattered here and there with palm trees and giant baobabs—produced several new birds. These included Red-necked and Yellow-necked spurfowl, Black-faced Sandgrouse, White-bellied Go-away-bird, African Jacana, Black Heron, Brown Snake-Eagle, Common Scimitarbill, Southern Ground-Hornbill, Malachite and Woodland kingfishers, Pygmy Falcon, Yellow-collared Lovebird, Red-bellied Parrot, Yellow-bellied Greenbul, Ashy Starling, and Cut-throat. Special mammal sightings included yet more families of African Bush Elephants (including females with tiny babies and some huge bulls), Bush Hyrax, Common Waterbuck, and a large mix of other antelopes and gazelles.

We returned to Nairobi on the 45-minute flight with Precision Air, and then after a night at the Tamarind Tree Hotel, we began our journey north and into the Great Rift Valley. Our first stop was Limuru Pond, where a highlight was White-backed Duck. And then we took a boat trip at Lake Naivasha, where we enjoyed close opportunities to watch and photograph a variety of herons and egrets, ibises and spoonbills, cormorants, terns, and shorebirds. Giant Kingfisher was an added bonus here. One of the best birds of the whole trip was a pair of Northern White-faced Owls right at the gate to Lake Nakuru National Park, and we then followed this up with a fabulous selection of waterbirds along the shore—including large flocks of both Great White and Pink-backed pelicans.

From Nakuru we then drove north, passing through the extensive tea estates around Kericho before dropping down to Lake Victoria, where we took a short walk along the shore. Although it's busy with people, there's always plenty of new birds to look for here, and we were all soon enjoying Eastern Plantain-eater, the striking Black-headed Gonolek, Angola Swallow, Swamp Flycatcher, Red-chested Sunbird, Slender-billed, Northern Brown-throated and Black-headed weavers, and Papyrus Canary. An hour further north, we arrived at Kakamega for a very enjoyable three night stay at the delightful Rondo Retreat, right in the heart of Kakamega Forest.

After largely being confined to vehicles in Tanzania (due the presence of large mammals), we now found it a pleasure to be able to walk the forest trails at will. New monkeys included Blue and Black-cheeked White-nosed, as well as Mantled Guereza. To our already extensive bird list we added Great Blue and Ross's turacos, White-spotted Flufftail, Western Banded Snake-Eagle, Black-and-white-casqued Hornbill, Blue-headed Bee-eater, Yellow-billed, Yellow-spotted, Hairy-breasted and Gray-throated barbets, Golden-crowned Woodpecker, a displaying African Broadbill, Petit's Cuckooshrike, Brown-throated and Jameson's wattle-eyes, Luehder's Bushshrike, Sharpe's Drongo, Southern Hyliota, Dusky Tit, Turner's Eremomela, Black-collared Apalis, Black-faced Rufous Warbler, Red-tailed Bristlebill; Joyful, Shelley's, Yellow-whiskered, Ansorge's, and Cabanis's greenbuls, Green Hylia, Stuhlmann's Starling, Snowy-crowned Robin-Chat, Brown-chested Alethe, Green Sunbird, Red-headed Malimbe, Forest Weaver, and Gray-headed Nigrita.

From Kakamega we then headed east and back to the Great Rift Valley, stopping along the way in woodland near the Kerio River, where we saw the outstandingly beautiful White-crested Turaco. This was followed with two nights at the Bogoria Spa Resort, giving us a chance to spend a day not just in this area, but at nearby Lake Baringo, too. By working with local guides, we were able to find several staked-out nocturnal birds, and despite the hot weather we all enjoyed the day adding Slender-tailed Nightjar, Spotted and Water thick-knees, Black-headed Lapwing, Three-banded Courser, Grayish Eagle-Owl, Hemprich's and Jackson's hornbills, Somali Tit, Mouse-colored Penduline-Tit, Yellow-bellied Eremomela, Pale Prinia, Brown-tailed Chat, Hunter's and Shining sunbirds, and Northern Masked and Golden-backed weavers.

The final part of our tour took us to the Aberdare Mountains, just east of the Rift and to the north of Nairobi. Once again we had arranged with a local guide to show us 'his special bird' and upon arrival were soon getting great scope views of a Cape Eagle-Owl (Mackinder's or Northern). Our last night was spent at The Ark, quite an old lodge built in highland forest with a floodlit waterhole and mineral lick on the Aberdares' eastern slopes. New birds included Scaly Spurfowl, Silvery-cheeked Hornbill, Red-fronted Parrot, Mountain Yellow-Warbler, Cinnamon Bracken-Warbler, Mosque Swallow, Kikuyu White-eye, Cape Robin-Chat, and African Citril. The mammals were also outstanding with fantastic views of Slender Mongoose, nine Spotted Hyaena, an elephant, Warthog, Giant Forest Hog, African Buffalo, Bushbuck, Defassa Waterbuck, and two tiny Suni. Most special though, was a beautiful Leopard which first appeared at three a.m., then again more briefly just before we took breakfast—what a wonderful animal to finish our tour with!

The drive back to Nairobi was uneventful—except for lunch at the famous Carnivore Restaurant—and then on to our hotel, where everyone had day rooms before a transfer to the airport for the international flights home. For a combination of both birds and mammals, there's nothing to match East Africa!

Our next East African Highlights: Kenya & Tanzania tour runs March 1-21, 2025.

—Terry Stevenson

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

Struthionidae (Ostriches)

COMMON OSTRICH (Struthio camelus massaicus)

Five distantly at Ngorongoro Crater, and then much closer views at Serengeti (22), Tarangire (20), Nakuru (2), and a female on a nest at Baringo.

Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)

WHITE-FACED WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna viduata)

Small numbers at Ngorongoro, Serengeti, Tarangire, Limuru Pond and Naivasha; in all we saw about 50.

FULVOUS WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna bicolor)

Six at Nairobi NP, and 2 in Ngorongoro Crater.

WHITE-BACKED DUCK (Thalassornis leuconotus)

About 20 (including a pair with young) at Limuru Pond.

EGYPTIAN GOOSE (Alopochen aegyptiaca)

Very common and widespread at wetlands throughout the tour.

SPUR-WINGED GOOSE (Plectropterus gambensis)

Three in Ngorongoro Crater, and 1 at Tarangire.

BLUE-BILLED TEAL (Spatula hottentota)

Eight in Ngorongoro Crater.

NORTHERN SHOVELER (Spatula clypeata)

Three in Ngorongoro Crater.

YELLOW-BILLED DUCK (Anas undulata)

An adult with 8 tiny juveniles were seen at Nairobi NP, and then 6 at Limuru Pond, and 4 at The Ark.

CAPE TEAL (Anas capensis)

About 15 in Ngorongoro Crater, and 6 at Lake Ndutu.

RED-BILLED DUCK (Anas erythrorhyncha)

About a dozen in Ngorongoro Crater.


We saw a single male in Ngorongoro Crater.

SOUTHERN POCHARD (Netta erythrophthalma)

Three males in Ngorongoro Crater.

Field Guides Birding Tours
We enjoyed a confiding pair of Jackson's Hornbills during our picnic lunch at Lake Barango—one of eight species of hornbill for the tour. Photo by participant Linda Rudolph.
Numididae (Guineafowl)

HELMETED GUINEAFOWL (Numida meleagris)

Common in many scattered areas of grassland and bush country; in all we saw about 280.

Phasianidae (Pheasants, Grouse, and Allies)

CRESTED FRANCOLIN (Ortygornis sephaena)

Five at Nairobi NP, 4 near Ndutu, and about a dozen at Tarangire.

COQUI FRANCOLIN (Campocolinus coqui)

We saw a single female near the Seronera area of Serengeti, and then a male at Tarangire.

HARLEQUIN QUAIL (Coturnix delegorguei)

About 10 were flushed and seen in flight in the Serengeti.

HILDEBRANDT'S SPURFOWL (Pternistis hildebrandti)

Four on the higher slopes of Ngorongoro Crater, and 1 on the crater floor.

SCALY SPURFOWL (Pternistis squamatus)

One near The Ark.

YELLOW-NECKED SPURFOWL (Pternistis leucoscepus)

We saw a total of 26 at Tarangire.

GRAY-BREASTED SPURFOWL (Pternistis rufopictus) [E]

Seven in the Serengeti Serena area, and 4 near Ndutu.

RED-NECKED SPURFOWL (Pternistis afer)

We saw about 40 at Tarangire which included a pair with 6 tiny juveniles.

Phoenicopteridae (Flamingos)

GREATER FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus roseus)

At least 300 were on the lake in Ngorongoro Crater, 500+ at Lake Ndutu, and 300+ at Lake Nakuru.

LESSER FLAMINGO (Phoeniconaias minor)

More than 100,000 were in Ngorongoro Crater, 45 at Lake Ndutu, and 2000+ at Lake Nakuru.

Podicipedidae (Grebes)

LITTLE GREBE (Tachybaptus ruficollis)

One at Limuru Pond.

Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)

ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia)

Fifty in the Arusha to Karatu area, and a dozen between Limuru and Naivasha.

SPECKLED PIGEON (Columba guinea)

Widespread in small numbers throughout the tour, with a total of about 60.

RAMERON PIGEON (Columba arquatrix)

About 25 were seen (mainly in flight) along the rim of Ngorongoro Crater.

DUSKY TURTLE-DOVE (Streptopelia lugens)

One at The Residences.

MOURNING COLLARED-DOVE (Streptopelia decipiens)

Ten at Naabi Hill in the Serengeti, and about 20 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.

RED-EYED DOVE (Streptopelia semitorquata)

One at Gibb's Farm, 2 at Kakamega, 10 at Bogoria, and about 14 in the Aberdare Mountains area.

RING-NECKED DOVE (Streptopelia capicola)

Common and widespread throughout the tour except in the Kakamega area.

LAUGHING DOVE (Spilopelia senegalensis)

Small numbers at Olduvai Gorge, Serengeti, Tarangire, and in the Kerio Valley and Baringo.

EMERALD-SPOTTED WOOD-DOVE (Turtur chalcospilos)

Three in the Serengeti, and 6 in the Bogoria–Baringo area.

NAMAQUA DOVE (Oena capensis)

Nice looks at 2 males at Olduvai Gorge, and a pair at Baringo.


One distantly at The Residences, and then much better views in the Kerio Valley.

Pteroclidae (Sandgrouse)


About 50 on the short grass plains near Ndutu.

BLACK-FACED SANDGROUSE (Pterocles decoratus)

Very common at Tarangire with at least 120 seen on along the tracks.

Otididae (Bustards)

KORI BUSTARD (Ardeotis kori)

Fabulous looks of several displaying males in Ngorongoro Crater and on the Serengeti plains; in all we saw about 16.

WHITE-BELLIED BUSTARD (Eupodotis senegalensis) [*]

Two birds were heard at Serengeti Serena Lodge.

Musophagidae (Turacos)

GREAT BLUE TURACO (Corythaeola cristata)

Fabulous looks at 4 birds in the forest near Rondo Retreat, Kakamega.

SCHALOW'S TURACO (Tauraco schalowi)

One seen and several heard at Ngorongoro Serena Lodge.

WHITE-CRESTED TURACO (Tauraco leucolophus)

Good looks at 3 of these beautiful turacos in the Kerio Valley.

HARTLAUB'S TURACO (Tauraco hartlaubi) [E]

Fabulous looks at a perched bird at The Residences, and heard at The Ark.

ROSS'S TURACO (Musophaga rossae)

We all had 1 fly over our heads a couple of times at Kakamega, and then some of the group saw 2 more there.

BARE-FACED GO-AWAY-BIRD (Crinifer personatus)

We saw a total of 28 between Serengeti Serena Lodge and Tarangire.

WHITE-BELLIED GO-AWAY-BIRD (Crinifer leucogaster)

Six at Tarangire, and about 16 in the Baringo–Bogoria area.


Great looks at a pair in a bare tree on the shores of Lake Victoria.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Another spectacular icon of African avifauna is Gray Crowned-Crane. We found them at quite a few locations, never tiring of their beauty. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)

WHITE-BROWED COUCAL (Centropus superciliosus)

Two at Ngorongoro Crater, 8 at Tarangire, and 1 at Bogoria.

BLACK COUCAL (Centropus grillii)

Nice looks at this shy species in the Serengeti grasslands; with a total of 5.

LEVAILLANT'S CUCKOO (Clamator levaillantii)

One at Gibb's Farm.

PIED CUCKOO (Clamator jacobinus)

Seen most days from Ngorongoro Crater to the Serengeti and on to Tarangire; in all we saw about 24.

DIDERIC CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx caprius)

Eleven in the Serengeti, and 5 at Tarangire.

KLAAS'S CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx klaas)

One in the Serengeti.

AFRICAN EMERALD CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx cupreus) [*]

Heard in the forest above Gibb's Farm, and at Kakamega.

RED-CHESTED CUCKOO (Cuculus solitarius)

Heard at Gibb's Farm, seen nicely at Tarangire, and then seen in flight at Kakamega.

AFRICAN CUCKOO (Cuculus gularis)

One at Gibb's Farm clearly showed the extensive yellow on the bill.

COMMON CUCKOO (Cuculus canorus)

About 8 singles in trees along the shore of the marsh at Tarangire – all appeared to be this species.

Caprimulgidae (Nightjars and Allies)

SLENDER-TAILED NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus clarus)

Thanks to our local guides at Baringo we had fabulous looks at 2 day roosting birds.

Apodidae (Swifts)

COMMON SWIFT (Apus apus)

Two at Gibb's Farm, about 50 in the Serengeti, and 2 at Bogoria.

AFRICAN SWIFT (Apus barbatus)

One of our group saw 1 at Nakuru.

LITTLE SWIFT (Apus affinis)

Common around buildings and bridges throughout the tour; in all we saw about 700.


Two at Ngorongoro, 10 in the Serengeti, and 2 at The Ark.

AFRICAN PALM SWIFT (Cypsiurus parvus)

Eight at Nairobi NP and The Residences, 2 near Gibb's, 20 at Tarangire, 6 at Kisumu, and about a dozen in the Baringo–Bogoria area.

Sarothruridae (Flufftails)

WHITE-SPOTTED FLUFFTAIL (Sarothrura pulchra)

Heard by all, and then seen through a gap in the undergrowth and running across the trail by three or four others – always difficult to see well!

Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)

EURASIAN MOORHEN (Gallinula chloropus)

Two at Nairobi NP, 1 at Tarangire, 2 at Limuru Pond, and 2 more at The Ark.

RED-KNOBBED COOT (Fulica cristata)

About 50 in Ngorongoro Crater, and 6 at Limuru Pond.

AFRICAN SWAMPHEN (Porphyrio madagascariensis)

One at Limuru Pond, and 1 at Bogoria.

BLACK CRAKE (Zapornia flavirostra)

One at Nairobi NP, 6 at wetlands in the Serengeti, 1 at Limuru Pond, and 4 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.

Gruidae (Cranes)

GRAY CROWNED-CRANE (Balearica regulorum)

We saw these gorgeous birds at several sites including Nairobi NP, Ngorongoro, Serengeti, Nakuru, Limuru, Kakamega, Bogoria, and near the Aberdare Mountains.

Burhinidae (Thick-knees)

SPOTTED THICK-KNEE (Burhinus capensis)

Two in some cleared farmland at Baringo.

WATER THICK-KNEE (Burhinus vermiculatus)

Two at Bogoria.

Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)

BLACK-WINGED STILT (Himantopus himantopus)

Fifteen at Ngorongoro, a dozen in the Serengeti, and another 30+ at wetlands between Limuru, Naivasha and Nakuru.

PIED AVOCET (Recurvirostra avosetta)

Three at Ngorongoro, 40 at Lake Ndutu, and about 12 at Nakuru.

Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)

COMMON RINGED PLOVER (Charadrius hiaticula)

Three at Lake Ndutu, and 8 at Nakuru.

THREE-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius tricollaris)

Small numbers at a variety of widespread wetlands; in total we saw about 18.

LONG-TOED LAPWING (Vanellus crassirostris)

Four at Nairobi NP, 12 in Ngorongoro Crater, and 4 in the Serengeti.

BLACKSMITH LAPWING (Vanellus armatus)

Common and widespread around wetlands, with a total of about 140.

SPUR-WINGED LAPWING (Vanellus spinosus)

Another wetland lapwing; this species was less common than the previous one but also widespread with a total of about 40.

BLACK-HEADED LAPWING (Vanellus tectus)

We saw a pair with a juvenile at Baringo.

CROWNED LAPWING (Vanellus coronatus)

Occurs in drier country than most other lapwings; in all we saw about 60, with most in the Serengeti.

KITTLITZ'S PLOVER (Anarhynchus pecuarius)

Two near Ndutu, and 6 at Nakuru.

CHESTNUT-BANDED PLOVER (Anarhynchus pallidus)

Great looks at this 'cute' little plover at Lake Ndutu.

Field Guides Birding Tours
This striking, black-and-white bird is Pied Kingfisher. We saw many of these throughout the tour. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Jacanidae (Jacanas)

AFRICAN JACANA (Actophilornis africanus)

Four at Tarangire, 6 at Naivasha, and 1 at Bogoria.

Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)

COMMON SANDPIPER (Actitis hypoleucos)

Small numbers at Nairobi NP, Serengeti, Tarangire, and Naivasha.

MARSH SANDPIPER (Tringa stagnatilis)

We saw singles at Ngorongoro, Lake Ndutu, and Nakuru.

WOOD SANDPIPER (Tringa glareola)

Quite common and widespread, with a total of about 75.

COMMON GREENSHANK (Tringa nebularia)

Two at Lake Ndutu, and 1 at Naivasha.

RUFF (Calidris pugnax)

About 40 in Ngorongoro Crater, and a dozen at Lake Ndutu.

CURLEW SANDPIPER (Calidris ferruginea)

Six at Lake Ndutu.

TEMMINCK'S STINT (Calidris temminckii)

One at Lake Nakuru.

LITTLE STINT (Calidris minuta)

One at a pool in the Serengeti, 20+ at Lake Ndutu, and 50+ at Nakuru.

Glareolidae (Pratincoles and Coursers)

THREE-BANDED COURSER (Rhinoptilus cinctus)

Another great find by our local guides at Baringo was a pair of these gorgeous coursers.

DOUBLE-BANDED COURSER (Smutsornis africanus)

Four in the Serengeti.

Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)

GRAY-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus)

About 10 in Ngorongoro Crater, and perhaps 200 at Nakuru.


We saw a 1st year bird at Lake Ndutu.

GULL-BILLED TERN (Gelochelidon nilotica)

Ten in Ngorongoro Crater, and 150+ at Nakuru.

WHISKERED TERN (Chlidonias hybrida)

Six in breeding-plumage at Ngorongoro Crater, 2 in non-bp at Tarangire, 1 at Nakuru, and 6 at Lake Victoria.

WHITE-WINGED TERN (Chlidonias leucopterus)

Three at Lake Naivasha.

Ciconiidae (Storks)

AFRICAN OPENBILL (Anastomus lamelligerus)

One at Nairobi NP, and 8 at Tarangire, and 2 at Lake Victoria.

ABDIM'S STORK (Ciconia abdimii)

The largest flocks were in the Ngorongoro – Serengeti area (1000+), but we also saw them near Arusha, and at Kakamega.

WHITE STORK (Ciconia ciconia)

A very poor year for this migrant stork, with just 110 in the Serengeti.

SADDLE-BILLED STORK (Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis)

One in the Serengeti.

MARABOU STORK (Leptoptilos crumenifer)

Widespread with a total of 100 at scattered sites, and 60 breeding at Bogoria.


Eleven in Ngorongoro Crater, 1 near Ndutu, and 35 at Naivasha–Nakuru.

Anhingidae (Anhingas)

AFRICAN DARTER (Anhinga rufa rufa)

Three at Nairobi NP.

Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)

LONG-TAILED CORMORANT (Microcarbo africanus)

Small numbers at Nairobi NP, Ngorongoro, the Rift Valley lakes, and at Lake Victoria; in all we saw about 45.

GREAT CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax carbo)

About 50 from the boat at Naivasha.

Pelecanidae (Pelicans)

GREAT WHITE PELICAN (Pelecanus onocrotalus)

Three in Ngorongoro Crater, and 600+ at Lake Nakuru.

PINK-BACKED PELICAN (Pelecanus rufescens)

First we saw 1 at Naivasha, and then an unusually large flock of 130 at Nakuru.

Scopidae (Hamerkop)

HAMERKOP (Scopus umbretta)

Great to see this bird so well, with super close looks at feeding birds in several areas; in all we saw about 30.

Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)

BLACK HERON (Egretta ardesiaca)

Two were perched in a tree with Western Cattle Egrets at Tarangire.

LITTLE EGRET (Egretta garzetta)

One at Ngorongoro, and 6 at Naivasha–Nakuru.

STRIATED HERON (Butorides striata)

Two singles in the Serengeti, and 2 more at Baringo.

SQUACCO HERON (Ardeola ralloides)

One at Baringo.


Common and widespread throughout the tour.

GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba)

About 30 at Naivasha, 20 at Lake Victoria, and 1 at Baringo.

YELLOW-BILLED EGRET (Ardea brachyrhyncha)

One at Nairobi NP, 6 at Ngorongoro, and 50 in the Rift Valley lakes.

GRAY HERON (Ardea cinerea)

Small numbers were widespread at many scattered wetlands throughout the tour.

PURPLE HERON (Ardea purpurea)

One flying over the reedbeds at Tarangire.

BLACK-HEADED HERON (Ardea melanocephala)

Common and widespread with a total of about 180.

GOLIATH HERON (Ardea goliath)

Nice looks at a bird from the boat at Lake Naivasha.

Field Guides Birding Tours
These perky little birds are D'Arnaud's Barbets, an East African endemic. Recent scientific analysis suggests three species may be involved, though. We saw them at Tarangire, the Kerio Valley, and in the Serengeti. Photo by participant Linda Rudolph.
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)

GLOSSY IBIS (Plegadis falcinellus)

Two at Ngorongoro, and 2 at Naivasha.

AFRICAN SACRED IBIS (Threskiornis aethiopicus)

Widespread, with a total of about 300.

HADADA IBIS (Bostrychia hagedash)

Another widespread ibis; we saw a total of about 80 of these.


Three at Ngorongoro, 1 in the Serengeti, and a dozen at Naivasha-Nakuru.

Sagittariidae (Secretarybird)

SECRETARYBIRD (Sagittarius serpentarius)

Two singles in the Serengeti, and another single at Nakuru.

Pandionidae (Osprey)

OSPREY (Pandion haliaetus)

One at Naivasha.

Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)

BLACK-WINGED KITE (Elanus caeruleus)

Seven in the Serengeti.

AFRICAN HARRIER-HAWK (Polyboroides typus)

Singles at Nairobi NP, and at the Serengeti.

LAPPET-FACED VULTURE (Torgos tracheliotos)

We saw 60 in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area, and 2 at Tarangire.

HOODED VULTURE (Necrosyrtes monachus)

Quite rare these days so were were surprised to see 35 in the Serengeti (which included a single group of 25).


The most common vulture, with a total of about 140 from Nairobi NP, Ngorongoro, Serengeti, and Tarangire.

RUEPPELL'S GRIFFON (Gyps rueppelli)

Seven in the Serengeti.

BATELEUR (Terathopius ecaudatus)

Just gorgeous and distinctive in flight; we saw a total of 7 in the Serengeti and Tarangire.

BLACK-CHESTED SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus pectoralis)

Three singles in Serengeti.

BROWN SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus cinereus)

One at Tarangire.

BANDED SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus cinerascens)

Super looks at a perched bird at the edge of Kakamega Forest.

CROWNED EAGLE (Stephanoaetus coronatus)

Fantastic looks at an adult and a young one in a nest at Rondo Retreat.

MARTIAL EAGLE (Polemaetus bellicosus)

Singles at Nairobi NP, Serengeti, and Tarangire.

LONG-CRESTED EAGLE (Lophaetus occipitalis)

One at Tarangire.

WAHLBERG'S EAGLE (Hieraaetus wahlbergi)

One on the way to Gibb's Farm.

BOOTED EAGLE (Hieraaetus pennatus)

We saw a single dark morph in the Kerio Valley.

TAWNY EAGLE (Aquila rapax)

Widespread in open country; with a total of 32.

DARK CHANTING-GOSHAWK (Melierax metabates)

Three in the Serengeti.

EASTERN CHANTING-GOSHAWK (Melierax poliopterus)

Four on the way to Gibb's Farm, 1 in the Serengeti, and 3 at Tarangire.

GABAR GOSHAWK (Micronisus gabar)

One near Naabi Hill.

WESTERN MARSH HARRIER (Circus aeruginosus)

Two in Nairobi NP, 4 in the Serengeti, and 2 at Tarangire.

AFRICAN MARSH HARRIER (Circus ranivorus)

Two in Ngorongoro Crater.

PALLID HARRIER (Circus macrourus)

Good looks at a close flying male in Ngorongoro Crater.

MONTAGU'S HARRIER (Circus pygargus)

Two males in the Serengeti.

AFRICAN GOSHAWK (Accipiter tachiro)

Two at The Residences.

BLACK KITE (Milvus migrans)

Widespread throughout the tour with a total of about 130.

AFRICAN FISH-EAGLE (Icthyophaga vocifer)

Nice looks in several areas and great to feed them from the boat at Lake Naivasha.

COMMON BUZZARD (STEPPE) (Buteo buteo vulpinus)

About 20 over the forest above Gibb's Farm, and 1 at Ngorongoro.

AUGUR BUZZARD (Buteo augur)

Widespread in small numbers, with a total of 18.

Field Guides Birding Tours
It was a good tour for the stately African Bush Elephant. We saw well over 200 of them at various locations. (We see you too, little Cattle Egret!) Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Strigidae (Owls)

NORTHERN WHITE-FACED OWL (Ptilopsis leucotis)

Wonderful to see a pair of these little known birds at the gate to Nakuru NP, could be new to that area?

GRAYISH EAGLE-OWL (Bubo cinerascens)

Thanks to our local guide another great sighting at Baringo.

CAPE EAGLE-OWL (NORTHERN) (Bubo capensis mackinderi)

Local guide Paul showed us this one at a quarry near Kiawara.

VERREAUX'S EAGLE-OWL (Ketupa lactea)

Some of the group saw 1 at Gibb's Farm.

PEARL-SPOTTED OWLET (Glaucidium perlatum)

One at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, and 3 at Ndutu.

Coliidae (Mousebirds)

SPECKLED MOUSEBIRD (Colius striatus)

Common and widespread throughout the tour.

BLUE-NAPED MOUSEBIRD (Urocolius macrourus)

One at Ngorongoro, 5 at Serengeti, and 10 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.

Upupidae (Hoopoes)

EURASIAN HOOPOE (AFRICAN) (Upupa epops africana)

This form is often split as African Hoopoe, we saw them at Serengeti, Tarangire, Naivasha, and Nakuru.

Phoeniculidae (Woodhoopoes and Scimitarbills)

GREEN WOODHOOPOE (Phoeniculus purpureus)

Four at Serengeti Serena, 4 at Tarangire, and 4 at Baringo.

COMMON SCIMITARBILL (Rhinopomastus cyanomelas)

One at Tarangire.


One at the gate to Tarangire.

Bucorvidae (Ground-Hornbills)

SOUTHERN GROUND-HORNBILL (Bucorvus leadbeateri)

Good looks at a single bird in a tree at Tarangire.

Bucerotidae (Hornbills)

CROWNED HORNBILL (Lophoceros alboterminatus)

Five together in a tree near the Lake Manyara viewpoint, and 1 at Kakamega.

HEMPRICH'S HORNBILL (Lophoceros hemprichii)

Uncommon in Kenya, so we were lucky to see a pair at Baringo.

AFRICAN GRAY HORNBILL (Lophoceros nasutus)

Small numbers at Arusha, Serengeti, Tarangire, Kerio Valley, and Baringo; in all we saw about 16.

JACKSON'S HORNBILL (Tockus jacksoni)

Six at Baringo included a very tame pair at our picnic lunch spot.


About 22 between in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, the Serengeti, and at Tarangire.

NORTHERN RED-BILLED HORNBILL (Tockus erythrorhynchus)

About 40 in the Tarangire area, and 2 in the Kerio Valley.


Four in The Ark area, and then 5 near Karatina Town.

BLACK-AND-WHITE-CASQUED HORNBILL (Bycanistes subcylindricus)

Nice looks at about 20 at Kakamega.

Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)

MALACHITE KINGFISHER (Corythornis cristatus)

One at Tarangire, and 2 at Lake Baringo.

GRAY-HEADED KINGFISHER (Halcyon leucocephala)

One on the way to Gibb's Farm, and 1 at Baringo.

WOODLAND KINGFISHER (Halcyon senegalensis)

Three at Tarangire, 6 at Lake Victoria, and 1 on the way to Bogoria.

BROWN-HOODED KINGFISHER (Halcyon albiventris)

One at Tarangire.

STRIPED KINGFISHER (Halcyon chelicuti)

Two in the Serengeti,

GIANT KINGFISHER (Megaceryle maxima)

One from the boat at Lake Naivasha.

PIED KINGFISHER (Ceryle rudis)

One at Tarangire, 20 at Naivasha, 15 at Lake Victoria, and 6 at Baringo–Bogoria.

Meropidae (Bee-eaters)

BLUE-HEADED BEE-EATER (Merops muelleri)

Brief looks at 2 single birds at Kakamega.

WHITE-FRONTED BEE-EATER (Merops bullockoides)

Four by the park gate at Nakuru.

LITTLE BEE-EATER (Merops pusillus)

About 12 in the Serengeti, and 2 in the Kerio Valley.


About a dozen at Gibb's Farm and the higher parts of Ngorongoro, 3 at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, 7 at Kakamega, and 4 at The Ark.

BLUE-CHEEKED BEE-EATER (Merops persicus)

One at Tarangire, and about 9 in the Baringo-Bogoria area.

EUROPEAN BEE-EATER (Merops apiaster)

Singles at Nairobi NP, and in the Serengeti.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Here's a shot of the group enjoying lunch and some shade at Lake Naivasha. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Coraciidae (Rollers)

EUROPEAN ROLLER (Coracias garrulus)

Three in the Serengeti.

LILAC-BREASTED ROLLER (Coracias caudatus)

These very colorful rollers were widespread in open bush country; in all we saw about 70.

RUFOUS-CROWNED ROLLER (Coracias naevius)

One at the bottom of the Central Highlands, and 1 at Tarangire.

Lybiidae (African Barbets)

YELLOW-BILLED BARBET (Trachyphonus purpuratus)

Two singles at Kakamega.

RED-AND-YELLOW BARBET (Trachyphonus erythrocephalus)

Singles on the way to Gibb's Farm, at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, at Tarangire, and in the Kerio Valley.

D'ARNAUD'S BARBET (Trachyphonus darnaudii)

About a dozen at Tarangire, and 8 in the Kerio Valley.

D'ARNAUD'S BARBET (USAMBIRO) (Trachyphonus darnaudii usambiro)

About a dozen in the Serengeti.

GRAY-THROATED BARBET (Gymnobucco bonapartei)

This is the one with the 'rhino horns'; we saw about 20 at Kakamega.

YELLOW-RUMPED TINKERBIRD (YELLOW-RUMPED) (Pogoniulus bilineatus bilineatus)

Two at The Residences, 3 at Kakamega, and 1 going in a nest hole at Thomson's Falls.

RED-FRONTED TINKERBIRD (Pogoniulus pusillus)

Three in the Serengeti, and 1 at Nakuru.

YELLOW-SPOTTED BARBET (Buccanodon duchaillui)

Three at Kakamega.

HAIRY-BREASTED BARBET (Tricholaema hirsuta)

We had good looks at this rather uncommon species at Kakamega.

RED-FRONTED BARBET (Tricholaema diademata)

Two singles at Serengeti Serena Lodge.

SPOT-FLANKED BARBET (Tricholaema lacrymosa)

Two at The Residences, and 1 along the cliffs at Baringo.

WHITE-HEADED BARBET (Lybius leucocephalus)

Four at The Residences, and 2 at Tarangire.

Picidae (Woodpeckers)

GOLDEN-CROWNED WOODPECKER (Chloropicus xantholophus)

Good looks at 1 at Kakamega.

BEARDED WOODPECKER (Chloropicus namaquus)

Two in the Serengeti, 1 at Tarangire, and 1 at Nakuru.

CARDINAL WOODPECKER (Dendropicos fuscescens)

We saw a pair at Gibb's Farm, and then 1 at Kakamega.

MOUNTAIN GRAY WOODPECKER (Dendropicos spodocephalus rhodeogaster)

One at the Naabi Hill picnic site, and 2 at Naivasha.

NUBIAN WOODPECKER (Campethera nubica)

Singles in the Serengeti, Tarangire, the Kerio Valley, and Baringo.

Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)

PYGMY FALCON (Polihierax semitorquatus)

A pair and 2 singles at Tarangire.

EURASIAN KESTREL (Falco tinnunculus)

About 60 in the Serengeti, and 3 at Tarangire.

GREATER KESTREL (Falco rupicoloides)

One near Naabi Hill.

GRAY KESTREL (Falco ardosiaceus)

Singles in the Serengeti and Tarangire.

PEREGRINE FALCON (Falco peregrinus)

One south of Naivasha, and 2 at Iten.

Psittaculidae (Old World Parrots)

FISCHER'S LOVEBIRD (Agapornis fischeri) [E]

About 40 in the Serengeti.

YELLOW-COLLARED LOVEBIRD (Agapornis personatus) [E]

We saw a total of about 110 at Tarangire.

Psittacidae (New World and African Parrots)

RED-FRONTED PARROT (Poicephalus gulielmi)

A total of 9 flew over The Ark.

MEYER'S PARROT (Poicephalus meyeri)

Five in the Serengeti, and 1 at Bogoria.

RED-BELLIED PARROT (Poicephalus rufiventris)

Also known as African Orange-bellied Parrot, we saw 3 at Tarangire.

Calyptomenidae (African and Green Broadbills)

AFRICAN BROADBILL (Smithornis capensis)

Great looks at a displaying bird at Kakamega.

Campephagidae (Cuckooshrikes)

PETIT'S CUCKOOSHRIKE (Campephaga petiti)

We saw a single male at Kakamega.


Two single males in the forest above Gibb's Farm, and one of our group saw a female at Kakamega.

Oriolidae (Old World Orioles)


One at Tarangire, 2 at Nakuru, 2 in the Kerio Valley, and 1 at Bogoria.

Platysteiridae (Wattle-eyes and Batises)

BROWN-THROATED WATTLE-EYE (Platysteira cyanea)

We saw a total of 6 at Kakamega.

JAMESON'S WATTLE-EYE (Platysteira jamesoni)

A couple of our group saw 1 in the Kakamega undergrowth.

CHINSPOT BATIS (Batis molitor)

Widespread in small numbers, with a total of 10.

Field Guides Birding Tours
While common and widespread througout the tour, this Superb Starling has a little more to offer in the looks department than the more familiar European Starling. Photo by participant Linda Rudolph.
Malaconotidae (Bushshrikes and Allies)

BRUBRU (Nilaus afer)

Singles at Olduvai Gorge, Naabi Hill. and Baringo.

NORTHERN PUFFBACK (Dryoscopus gambensis)

We saw a pair in the Kerio Valley.

BLACK-BACKED PUFFBACK (Dryoscopus cubla)

Two singles near Gibb's Farm.

BLACK-CROWNED TCHAGRA (Tchagra senegalus)

Two singles near Gibb's Farm.

BROWN-CROWNED TCHAGRA (Tchagra australis)

Three in the Serengeti.

LUEHDER'S BUSHSHRIKE (Laniarius luehderi)

Two and then a single at Kakamega.

TROPICAL BOUBOU (Laniarius major)

Widespread in small numbers, with a total of 22.

BLACK-HEADED GONOLEK (Laniarius erythrogaster)

We saw these striking birds at Lake Victoria (1) and then in the Kerio Valley (2).

SLATE-COLORED BOUBOU (Laniarius funebris)

Fourteen in the Serengeti, and singles at Baringo and Bogoria.

GRAY-GREEN BUSHSHRIKE (Telophorus bocagei)

Four at Kakamega.

SULPHUR-BREASTED BUSHSHRIKE (Telophorus sulfureopectus)

Good looks at this colorful bushshrike at Ngorongoro.

Dicruridae (Drongos)

SHARPE'S DRONGO (Dicrurus sharpei)

Recently split from square-tailed Drongo, we saw about 10 at Kakamega.

FORK-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus adsimilis)

Widespread in bush country and open woodland; in all we saw about 45.

Monarchidae (Monarch Flycatchers)


Four in the Gibb's-Ngorongoro area, 1 at Serengeti, 4 at Naivasha-Nakuru, 2 in Kerio Valley, and a gorgeous white-plumaged bird at Baringo.

Laniidae (Shrikes)

ISABELLINE SHRIKE (Lanius isabellinus)

One at Nairobi NP.

GRAY-BACKED FISCAL (Lanius excubitoroides)

About 50 in the Serengeti, and 2 at Nakuru.

LONG-TAILED FISCAL (Lanius cabanisi)

Six at Nairobi NP, 8 along the way to Gibb's Farm, 2 in the Serengeti, and 7 at Tarangire.

MAGPIE SHRIKE (Lanius melanoleucus)

Sixteen in the Serengeti woodlands, and 20 at Tarangire.

MACKINNON'S SHRIKE (Lanius mackinnoni)

Some of the group saw 1 at Rondo Retreat.

NORTHERN FISCAL (Lanius humeralis)

Widespread and often seen on roadside wires, we saw a total of about 45.

WHITE-RUMPED SHRIKE (Eurocephalus ruppelli)

Very common in the Serengeti and at Tarangire, we saw a total of about 140.

Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)

HOUSE CROW (Corvus splendens) [I]

We saw about 100 between Arusha and Karatu.

CAPE CROW (Corvus capensis)

One in the Serengeti, and about 20 in the high country mainly around Naivasha.

PIED CROW (Corvus albus)

Common and widespread with a total of about 380.

FAN-TAILED RAVEN (Corvus rhipidurus)

One, zipping along the top of the escarpment at Iten.

WHITE-NECKED RAVEN (Corvus albicollis)

One on the roof of our lodge at Ngorongoro Crater.

Hyliotidae (Hyliotas)

SOUTHERN HYLIOTA (Hyliota australis)

Now in the new family Hyliotidae, some of our group saw 1 in the high canopy at Kakamega.

Stenostiridae (Fairy Flycatchers)

AFRICAN BLUE FLYCATCHER (Elminia longicauda)

At least 8 at Kakamega.


Three at Gibb's Farm and in the forest above there.

Paridae (Tits, Chickadees, and Titmice)

DUSKY TIT (Melaniparus funereus)

We saw a flock of 6 at Kakamega.

SOMALI TIT (Melaniparus thruppi)

Nice looks at 1 along the cliffs at Baringo.

RED-THROATED TIT (Melaniparus fringillinus) [E]

Some of the group saw 1 at Naabi Hill.

Remizidae (Penduline-Tits)

MOUSE-COLORED PENDULINE-TIT (Anthoscopus musculus)

We saw a pair at Baringo.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Great views of large (and small!) mammals are a hightlight of the tour, and we make an effort to see as many species as possible. We had three big cats this year, including an amazing seven Cheetahs, mostly in the Naabi Hill area. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Alaudidae (Larks)

FISCHER'S SPARROW-LARK (Eremopterix leucopareia)

About 160 (mainly along dusty tracks) in the Serengeti.

FAWN-COLORED LARK (FOXY) (Calendulauda africanoides intercedens)

One at the bottom of the Crater Highlands.

RUFOUS-NAPED LARK (Mirafra africana)

Two at Nairobi NP. 10 in Ngorongoro Crater, and about 70 in the Serengeti.

FLAPPET LARK (Mirafra rufocinnamomea)

One in the Serengeti.

RED-CAPPED LARK (Calandrella cinerea)

Three in Ngorongoro Crater.

Macrosphenidae (African Warblers)

WHITE-BROWED CROMBEC (Sylvietta leucophrys)

Nice looks at 1 in the tangled vines at Kakamega.

RED-FACED CROMBEC (Sylvietta whytii)

Two at Olduvai Gorge, 3 in the Serengeti, and 1 at Nakuru.

Cisticolidae (Cisticolas and Allies)

YELLOW-BELLIED EREMOMELA (Eremomela icteropygialis)

One at Baringo.

TURNER'S EREMOMELA (Eremomela turneri)

Some of our group saw 1 in the canopy at Kakamega.

WHITE-CHINNED PRINIA (Schistolais leucopogon)

Six in the Kakamega undergrowth.

BLACK-COLLARED APALIS (Oreolais pulcher)

Four at Kakamega.

GRAY WREN-WARBLER (Calamonastes simplex)

Two at Baringo.

GREEN-BACKED CAMAROPTERA (GRAY-BACKED) (Camaroptera brachyura brevicaudata)

Widespread in small numbers; in all we saw about 30.

OLIVE-GREEN CAMAROPTERA (Camaroptera chloronota)

One at Kakamega.

BUFF-BELLIED WARBLER (Phyllolais pulchella)

One in the acacias at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, and 1 at Baringo.


Heard at Nairobi NP, and then seen at Gibb's Farm, in the Serengeti, and at Nakuru.

BROWN-HEADED APALIS (Apalis alticola)

Four in the forest above Gibb's Farm.

TAWNY-FLANKED PRINIA (Prinia subflava)

One at Lake Victoria.

PALE PRINIA (Prinia somalica)

One at Baringo.

RED-FRONTED PRINIA (Prinia rufifrons)

One at Baringo (at times with the Pale Prinia).


We saw this super skulker in the undergrowth at Kakamega (both a male and then a female the following day).


Four in the Gibb's Farm area, and 2 at The Ark.

RED-FACED CISTICOLA (Cisticola erythrops)

Four in the forest above Gibb's Farm.

SINGING CISTICOLA (Cisticola cantans)

One at The Residences.

CHUBB'S CISTICOLA (Cisticola chubbi) [*]

Heard at the edge of the forest at Kakamega.

HUNTER'S CISTICOLA (Cisticola hunteri) [E]

Two at Limuru Pond, and 8 around The Ark.

RATTLING CISTICOLA (Cisticola chiniana)

Widespread in most areas of acacia bush; in all we saw about 140.

WINDING CISTICOLA (Cisticola marginatus)

Seen in marshes or wet grasslands at Nairobi NP, Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire, and at Kisumu.

CROAKING CISTICOLA (Cisticola natalensis)

Four in the Serengeti grasslands.

PECTORAL-PATCH CISTICOLA (Cisticola brunnescens)

About 35 in the Serengeti grasslands.

Acrocephalidae (Reed Warblers and Allies)


One from the raised walkway at The Ark.

LESSER SWAMP WARBLER (Acrocephalus gracilirostris) [*]

Heard in Ngorongoro Crater.

Locustellidae (Grassbirds and Allies)

CINNAMON BRACKEN-WARBLER (Bradypterus cinnamomeus)

This real skulker was seen briefly at The Ark.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Of the five species of lapwing we saw, two of them are found in drier habitats, including Crowned Lapwing, seen here. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)

WHITE-HEADED SAWWING (Psalidoprocne albiceps)

About 20 at Kakamega, and 4 in the Kerio Valley.

BLACK SAWWING (Psalidoprocne pristoptera)

We saw a single male at Kakamega.

PLAIN MARTIN (Riparia paludicola)

Six at Nairobi NP, and 8 at Limuru Pond.

ROCK MARTIN (Ptyonoprogne fuligula)

Fairly common in all areas except Kakamega; in all we saw about 70.

BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica)

Common and widespread throughout the tour with a total of about 1000.

ANGOLA SWALLOW (Hirundo angolensis)

Good looks (and comparisons with Barn Swallows) at Lake Victoria.

WIRE-TAILED SWALLOW (Hirundo smithii)

One at Ndutu, and 2 at Bogoria.

WESTERN HOUSE-MARTIN (Delichon urbicum)

About 30 over the cliffs at Baringo.

RED-RUMPED SWALLOW (Cecropis daurica)

Widespread in small numbers with a total of about 25.

LESSER STRIPED SWALLOW (Cecropis abyssinica)

Another widespread swallow; we saw about 40 at a variety of scattered sites.

MOSQUE SWALLOW (Cecropis senegalensis)

Four at The Ark.

Pycnonotidae (Bulbuls)

SLENDER-BILLED GREENBUL (Stelgidillas gracilirostris)

Two at Kakamega.

RED-TAILED BRISTLEBILL (Bleda syndactylus)

Good looks at 2 singles in the Kakamega undergrowth.

JOYFUL GREENBUL (Chlorocichla laetissima)

These joyful songsters were seen in small numbers throughout Kakamega Forest.

YELLOW-BELLIED GREENBUL (Chlorocichla flaviventris)

One at the Sopa Lodge, Tarangire.

HONEYGUIDE GREENBUL (Baeopogon indicator)

Two singles for some of our group at Kakamega.

SHELLEY'S GREENBUL (KAKAMEGA) (Arizelocichla masukuensis kakamegae)

One at Kakamega; this form 'kakamegae' is often split as Kakamega Greenbul.

EASTERN MOUNTAIN GREENBUL (OLIVE-BREASTED) (Arizelocichla nigriceps kikuyuensis)

Three at The Ark.

EASTERN MOUNTAIN GREENBUL (MOUNTAIN) (Arizelocichla nigriceps nigriceps)

Two in the forest above Gibb's Farm.

YELLOW-WHISKERED GREENBUL (Eurillas latirostris)

Many heard and 2 or 3 seen at Kakamega.

ANSORGE'S GREENBUL (Eurillas ansorgei)

Three singles at Kakamega.

CABANIS'S GREENBUL (Phyllastrephus cabanisi)

Two in the dense undergrowth at Kakamega.

COMMON BULBUL (DARK-CAPPED) (Pycnonotus barbatus tricolor)

Seen daily throughout the tour; in all we saw about 180.

Phylloscopidae (Leaf Warblers)

WILLOW WARBLER (Phylloscopus trochilus)

Four at Ngorongoro, 1 at Serengeti, 2 at Naivasha-Nakuru, and 4 at Kakamega.

BROWN WOODLAND-WARBLER (Phylloscopus umbrovirens)

One at the view point overlooking Ngorongoro Crater.

UGANDA WOODLAND-WARBLER (Phylloscopus budongoensis)

Several heard and 1 seen at Kakamega.

Hyliidae (Hylias)

GREEN HYLIA (Hylia prasina)

Nice looks at 1 at Kakamega.

Sylviidae (Sylviid Warblers and Allies)

EURASIAN BLACKCAP (Sylvia atricapilla)

Three in the Gibb's-Ngorongoro area.

BANDED PARISOMA (Curruca boehmi)

One at Naabi Hill, Serengeti.

Zosteropidae (White-eyes, Yuhinas, and Allies)

PALE WHITE-EYE (Zosterops flavilateralis)

Two at Gibb's Farm, and 8 at the bottom of the Crater Highlands.

MBULU WHITE-EYE (Zosterops mbuluensis) [E]

Six along the rim of Ngorongoro Crater.

KIKUYU WHITE-EYE (Zosterops kikuyuensis) [E]

One at The Residences, and 1 (for a some of our group) at The Ark.

NORTHERN YELLOW WHITE-EYE (Zosterops senegalensis)

One of our group saw a single at Nakuru, and then we all saw about 6 at Kakamega.

Pellorneidae (Ground Babblers and Allies)

SCALY-BREASTED ILLADOPSIS (Illadopsis albipectus) [*]

Two heard at Kakamega.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Giant Forest Hogs are among the largest members of the pig family. We saw seven of these beasts at The Ark. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.
Leiothrichidae (Laughingthrushes and Allies)

RUFOUS CHATTERER (Argya rubiginosa)

Six at Baringo.

BLACK-LORED BABBLER (Turdoides sharpei)

Five at Naabi Hill, and 4 at Naivasha.

NORTHERN PIED-BABBLER (Turdoides hypoleuca) [E]

Five in Nairobi NP, and small flocks totaling 18 at Tarangire.

Buphagidae (Oxpeckers)

RED-BILLED OXPECKER (Buphagus erythrorynchus)

More widespread than the following species with a total of about 110.

YELLOW-BILLED OXPECKER (Buphagus africanus)

Eight in the Serengeti, and about 40 on a herd of African Buffalo at Tarangire.

Sturnidae (Starlings)

WATTLED STARLING (Creatophora cinerea)

Widespread, and often with herds of big game; in all we saw about 2700.

VIOLET-BACKED STARLING (Cinnyricinclus leucogaster)

Six at Kakamega, and 1 at Kiawara.

RED-WINGED STARLING (Onychognathus morio)

Widespread in small numbers, with a total of about 60.

WALLER'S STARLING (Onychognathus walleri)

Three flew by us at the Ngorongoro Crater view point.

STUHLMANN'S STARLING (Poeoptera stuhlmanni)

About a 20 at Kakamega.

HILDEBRANDT'S STARLING (Lamprotornis hildebrandti) [E]

Good looks several times at Ngorongoro and in the Serengeti; in all we saw about 90.

RUEPPELL'S STARLING (Lamprotornis purpuroptera)

About 18 in the Serengeti, 2 at Nakuru, and 30+ in the Kerio Valley-Bogoria-Baringo area.

ASHY STARLING (Lamprotornis unicolor) [E]

This rather localized Tanzanian endemic was common at Tarangire.

SUPERB STARLING (Lamprotornis superbus)

Common and widespread in most areas throughout the tour.

GREATER BLUE-EARED STARLING (Lamprotornis chalybaeus)

Eight at Nakuru.

Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)

WHITE-TAILED ANT-THRUSH (Neocossyphus poensis)

A few of us saw 1 on a trail in Kakamega Forest.

ABYSSINIAN THRUSH (ABYSSINIAN) (Turdus abyssinicus abyssinicus)

Six at The Residences, 4 at Thomson's Falls, and 6 at The Ark.

AFRICAN THRUSH (Turdus pelios)

Two at Nakuru, and 1 at Kakamega.

Muscicapidae (Old World Flycatchers)


Two at Gibb's Farm, 2 at Ngorongoro, and 1 at Thomson's Falls.

SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa striata)

One at the bottom of the Crater Highlands.

SWAMP FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa aquatica)

Six in the papyrus along the shores of Lake Victoria.

AFRICAN GRAY FLYCATCHER (Bradornis microrhynchus)

About 8 at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, 3 in the Serengeti, 1 at Nakuru, and 6 at Baringo–Bogoria.

GRAY TIT-FLYCATCHER (Fraseria plumbea) [*]

Heard at the edge of Kakamega Forest.

SILVERBIRD (Melaenornis semipartitus)

We saw these attractive birds in the Serengeti (6), and Tarangire (2).

NORTHERN BLACK-FLYCATCHER (Melaenornis edolioides)

Two in the Kerio Valley.

WHITE-EYED SLATY-FLYCATCHER (Melaenornis fischeri)

Widespread in the high country, with a total of about 40.

RED-BACKED SCRUB-ROBIN (Cercotrichas leucophrys)

One at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, 1 at Serengeti, and 2 at Baringo.

CAPE ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha caffra)

One at Thomson's Falls, and 3 at The Ark.

RUEPPELL'S ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha semirufa)

One at The Residences.

WHITE-BROWED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha heuglini)

Six in the Gibb's Farm-Ngorongoro area, and 4 at Nakuru.

SNOWY-CROWNED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha niveicapilla)

Good looks at a single along a trail in Kakamega Forest.

SPOTTED MORNING-THRUSH (Cichladusa guttata)

One in the bush country near Lake Manyara.

Field Guides Birding Tours
This chunky and unusually plumaged waxbill is Peter's Twinspot. We had a pair of them at Gibb's Farm, on the outer slopes of Ngorongoro Crater. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.

WHITE-STARRED ROBIN (Pogonocichla stellata)

One of our group saw a single at The Residences.

BROWN-CHESTED ALETHE (Chamaetylas poliocephala)

Two singles along trails at Kakamega.

WHINCHAT (Saxicola rubetra)

Singles at Ngorongoro, Serengeti, and Nakuru.

AFRICAN STONECHAT (Saxicola torquatus)

We saw a pair at the edge of the tea estate at Kakamega.

MOCKING CLIFF-CHAT (Thamnolaea cinnamomeiventris)

One at Serengeti Serena, and 1 at Nakuru.

NORTHERN ANTEATER-CHAT (Myrmecocichla aethiops)

Three at Ngorongoro, 10 in the Serengeti, and 30 at Nakuru.

NORTHERN WHEATEAR (Oenanthe oenanthe)

Nice looks at a male at Nakuru.

CAPPED WHEATEAR (Oenanthe pileata)

Two in Ngorongoro Crater, and about a dozen in the Ngorongoro–Serengeti area.

FAMILIAR CHAT (Oenanthe familiaris)

BROWN-TAILED CHAT (Oenanthe scotocerca)

We saw a pair along the cliffs at Baringo.

ABYSSINIAN WHEATEAR (Oenanthe lugubris schalowi)

We saw 3 of the distinctive form 'schalowi' in Ngorongoro Crater; this 'race' is often split as Schalow's Wheatear.

Nectariniidae (Sunbirds and Spiderhunters)


We saw a female at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, and a male at Baringo.

GREEN SUNBIRD (Anthreptes rectirostris)

A male, high on a dead tree branch at Kakamega was seen be some of our group.

COLLARED SUNBIRD (Hedydipna collaris)

Eight at The Residences, and 6 around Gibb's Farm.

GREEN-HEADED SUNBIRD (Cyanomitra verticalis)

Two singles at Kakamega.

OLIVE SUNBIRD (Cyanomitra olivacea)

One at Kakamega.

AMETHYST SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra amethystina)

Two males at Gibb's Farm, and 1 at Kakamega.

SCARLET-CHESTED SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra senegalensis)

Two at The Residences, 2 at Olduvai Gorge, 3 in the Serengeti, 10 in the Naivasha-Nakuru area, and 2 in the Kerio Valley.

HUNTER'S SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra hunteri)

Three at Baringo.

TACAZZE SUNBIRD (Nectarinia tacazze)

Nice looks at a single male at Thomson's Falls.

BRONZE SUNBIRD (Nectarinia kilimensis)

Three at The Residences, 4 in the Gibb's Farm area, and 8 at Kakamega.


Four at The Residences, and 2 at Kakamega.


About a dozen in the Gibb's Farm-Ngorongoro area, 6 at Thomson's Falls, and 10 at The Ark.

BEAUTIFUL SUNBIRD (Cinnyris pulchellus)

We saw these striking sunbirds at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, Serengeti, Naivasha, and in the Baringo-Bogoria area.

MARICO SUNBIRD (Cinnyris mariquensis)

Small numbers at Serengeti and Tarangire; in all we saw about 10.

RED-CHESTED SUNBIRD (Cinnyris erythrocercus)

Super looks at yet another striking sunbird; we saw these on the shore of Lake Victoria.

SHINING SUNBIRD (Cinnyris habessinicus)

A rare visitor this far south, but we saw 2 males at Baringo.

VARIABLE SUNBIRD (Cinnyris venustus)

Quite common around Nairobi and in the Crater Highlands, and 4 at Kakamega.

Ploceidae (Weavers and Allies)

WHITE-BILLED BUFFALO-WEAVER (Bubalornis albirostris)

About 8 pairs were nesting in the grounds of our lodge at Bogoria.


We saw 2 on the way to Gibb's Farm.

WHITE-HEADED BUFFALO-WEAVER (Dinemellia dinemelli)

Common in parts of the Serengeti and Tarangire; with a total of about 90.

SPECKLE-FRONTED WEAVER (Sporopipes frontalis)

One at Olduvai Gorge, about 20 at the Seronera Visitor Center, 20 at Tarangire, and 2 at Baringo.


Small numbers at Nairobi and Tarangire, and more common (60+) at Baringo-Bogoria.

Field Guides Birding Tours
We caught up with the distinctive Purple Grenadier (another attractive waxbill), at several locations, including Nairobi National Park and the Serengeti. Photo by participant Linda Rudolph.

RUFOUS-TAILED WEAVER (Histurgops ruficauda) [E]

Common from Ngorongoro to Serengeti and on to Tarangire; in all we saw about 350.

GRAY-HEADED SOCIAL-WEAVER (Pseudonigrita arnaudi)

Six in the Serengeti.

RED-HEADED MALIMBE (Malimbus rubricollis)

Nice looks at 1 at Kakamega.

RED-HEADED WEAVER (Anaplectes rubriceps)

One at Naabi Hill, 3 at Naivasha-Nakuru, and 1 at Baringo.

BAGLAFECHT WEAVER (Ploceus baglafecht)

Small numbers in many highland areas; with a total of about 90.

SLENDER-BILLED WEAVER (Ploceus pelzelni)

We saw a pair feeding on a papyrus head at Lake Victoria.

BLACK-NECKED WEAVER (Ploceus nigricollis)

We saw a single male at Kakamega.

SPECTACLED WEAVER (Ploceus ocularis)

Singles at Nairobi and Gibb's Farm.

HOLUB'S GOLDEN-WEAVER (Ploceus xanthops)

Four at The Residences, and 2 at Thomson's Falls.


About 6 at Lake Victoria.

NORTHERN MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus taeniopterus)

Great looks at this very localized weaver nest building at Bogoria.

LESSER MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus intermedius)

Five in the Serengeti, and 10 at Baringo.

VITELLINE MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus vitellinus)

Six at Olduvai Gorge, and 2 in the Serengeti.

SPEKE'S WEAVER (Ploceus spekei)

Common from Ngorongoro to the Serengeti (140+), and 6 at Nakuru.

VIEILLOT'S BLACK WEAVER (Ploceus nigerrimus)

At least 30 were nest building in the grounds of Rondo Retreat.

VILLAGE WEAVER (Ploceus cucullatus)

Widespread in small numbers; with a total of about 100.

BLACK-HEADED WEAVER (Ploceus melanocephalus)

About 20 along the shores of Lake Victoria.

GOLDEN-BACKED WEAVER (Ploceus jacksoni)

These very attractive weavers were breeding at Bogoria Spa Resort (6), and a single was seen at Baringo.

FOREST WEAVER (Ploceus bicolor)

Six at Kakamega.

BROWN-CAPPED WEAVER (Ploceus insignis)

We saw a single female at Kakamega.

SOUTHERN RED BISHOP (Euplectes orix)

One on the way to Gibb's Farm, and 1 at Tarangire.

BLACK-WINGED BISHOP (Euplectes hordeaceus)

One in the Serengeti.

FAN-TAILED WIDOWBIRD (Euplectes axillaris)

About 60 in the marshy grasslands in Ngorongoro Crater, and 4 in the Serengeti.

GROSBEAK WEAVER (Amblyospiza albifrons)

Five at The Residences, and 10 at their nests at Gibb's Farm.

Estrildidae (Waxbills and Allies)

GRAY-HEADED SILVERBILL (Spermestes griseicapilla)

Six in the Seronera area of the Serengeti.

BRONZE MANNIKIN (Spermestes cucullata)

Three at The Residences, and about 10 at Bogoria.

BLACK-AND-WHITE MANNIKIN (BLACK-AND-WHITE) (Spermestes bicolor poensis)

Eight at Kakamega.

BLACK-AND-WHITE MANNIKIN (RED-BACKED) (Spermestes bicolor nigriceps)

One at The Residences, and 2 at Gibb's Farm.

YELLOW-BELLIED WAXBILL (Coccopygia quartinia)

Four on the rim of Ngorongoro Crater.

ABYSSINIAN CRIMSONWING (Cryptospiza salvadorii)

Two in the forest above Gibb's Farm.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Our tour concludes with a stay at The Ark, in the Aberdare Mountains north of Nairobi. Among the features at this lodge is a floodlit waterhole that allows us to see what's visiting at night. Photo by participant Linda Rudolph.

WHITE-BREASTED NIGRITA (Nigrita fusconotus)

One at Kakamega.

GRAY-HEADED NIGRITA (Nigrita canicapillus)

One at Kakamega

BLACK-FACED WAXBILL (Brunhilda erythronotos)

One at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, and 3 in the Serengeti.

CRIMSON-RUMPED WAXBILL (Estrilda rhodopyga)

Three on the way to Gibb's Farm, and 3 in the Serengeti.

CUT-THROAT (Amadina fasciata)

We saw pair along a track at Tarangire.

PURPLE GRENADIER (Granatina ianthinogaster)

Two at Nairobi NP, 2 at Olduvai Gorge, and 3 in the Serengeti.

RED-CHEEKED CORDONBLEU (Uraeginthus bengalus)

Fairly widespread in small numbers; in all we saw about 70.

BLUE-CAPPED CORDONBLEU (Uraeginthus cyanocephalus)

Great looks at 4 of these attractive and localized cordonbleus at the bottom of the Crater Highlands.

PETERS'S TWINSPOT (Hypargos niveoguttatus)

Some of the group saw 1 (or both) of a pair at Gibb's Farm.

RED-BILLED FIREFINCH (Lagonosticta senegala)

Six in Nairobi NP, and 2 at Bogoria.

Viduidae (Indigobirds)

PIN-TAILED WHYDAH (Vidua macroura)

We saw about a dozen (mostly males in breeding plumage) in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area.


Three males in breeding plumage on the way to Gibb's Farm.

STEEL-BLUE WHYDAH (Vidua hypocherina)

Two at Olduvai Gorge, and 1 in the Serengeti.

Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)

HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus)

Not numerous in East Africa, but we saw a few (mostly in gas stations) during our tour.

KENYA RUFOUS SPARROW (Passer rufocinctus)

Two at the Residences, 2 at Ngorongoro, and 6 in the Serengeti.

PARROT-BILLED SPARROW (Passer gongonensis)

One at Bogoria.

SWAHILI SPARROW (Passer suahelicus)

We saw a total of about 120 in the Ngorongoro-Serengeti area.

Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)

CAPE WAGTAIL (Motacilla capensis)

Two at The Ark.

MOUNTAIN WAGTAIL (Motacilla clara)

Two along the stream at Kakamega.


Two at Nairobi NP, 4 at Ngorongoro, 10 at Serengeti, and 6 at Baringo.

AFRICAN PIED WAGTAIL (Motacilla aguimp)

Fairly widespread throughout the tour; in all we saw about 60.

PLAIN-BACKED PIPIT (Anthus leucophrys)

Two at Ngorongoro, and 1 in the Serengeti (plus many seen in flight as we drove across the grasslands).


Two in the Serengeti.


One at Nairobi NP, and 2 in Ngorongoro Crater.

Fringillidae (Finches, Euphonias, and Allies)

AFRICAN CITRIL (Crithagra citrinelloides kikuyensis)

One at The Ark.

SOUTHERN CITRIL (Crithagra hyposticta)

About 6 at the edge of Kakamega Forest.

PAPYRUS CANARY (Crithagra koliensis)

One at Lake Victoria.

REICHENOW'S SEEDEATER (Crithagra reichenowi)

Two on the way to Gibb's Farm, and 2 in the Kerio Valley.

WHITE-BELLIED CANARY (Crithagra dorsostriata)

About 10 between Olduvai Gorge and the Serengeti.

STREAKY SEEDEATER (Crithagra striolata)

Singles in the Ngorongoro area, 1 at Thomson's Falls, and 4 at The Ark.

THICK-BILLED SEEDEATER (Crithagra burtoni)

Four at The Ark, and 1 at Ngorongoro.

Emberizidae (Old World Buntings)

GOLDEN-BREASTED BUNTING (Emberiza flaviventris)

Six at the bottom of the Crater Highlands.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Common Giraffes are one of two species of giraffe we observed on tour (the other being Rothschild's Giraffe). We caught up with these remarkable animals at several locations, seeing about 100 of them in total. Photo by group member Linda Rudolph.



One at Ndutu.

BLUE MONKEY (Cercopithecus mitis)

Widespread in Kakamega Forest; with a total of about 65.


We saw 6 of these attractive monkeys at Kakamega.

BLACK-FACED VERVET MONKEY (Cercopithecus aethiops)

Widespread, with a total of about 180.

OLIVE BABOON (Papio anubis)

Another widespread primate; in total we saw about 300.

MANTLED GUEREZA (Colobus guereza)

Nice looks at these beautiful monkeys at Kakamega; with a total of about 60.

CAPE HARE (Lepus capensis)

One in Ngorongoro Crater.


Singles near Gibb's Farm, Tarangire, Baringo, and Bogoria.

OCHRE BUSH SQUIRREL (Paraxerus ochraceus)

One at The Residences, and 6 at Tarangire.

RED-LEGGED SUN SQUIRREL (Heliosciurus rufobrachium)

Three singles at Kakamega.

BLACK-BACKED JACKAL (Canis mesomelas)

One at Ndutu.

COMMON JACKAL (Canis aureus)

Two in Ngorongoro Crater.


Two in the roof at Ndutu Lodge.

SLENDER MONGOOSE (Herpestes sanguineus)

Quick looks at 2 or 3 singles running across tracks at Ngorongoro and in the Serengeti, and then great looks at 3 at The Ark.

BANDED MONGOOSE (Mungos mungo)

About 35 in the Serengeti, and 20+ at Tarangire.


About 10 in the Serengeti, and 40 at Tarangire; particularly fond of sitting on termite hills.

SPOTTED HYAENA (Crocuta crocuta)

Seven in Ngorongoro Crater, 8 in the Serengeti, and 9 at The Ark.

LEOPARD (Panthera pardus)

Just great to see one so close at The Ark; first at 3 o'clock in the morning after the watchman pressed the animal alert buzzer, and then again just before breakfast.

LION (Panthera leo)

First we saw a pair in Ngorongoro Crater, and then another 9 in the Serengeti, and finally 2 at Tarangire.

CHEETAH (Acinonyx jubatus)

Just amazing this tour, with a total of 7 mainly in the Naabi Hill area.

AFRICAN BUSH ELEPHANT (Loxodonta africana)

One on the way to Gibb's Farm, about 30 in Ngorongoro Crater, 140 in the Serengeti, at least another 100 at Tarangire, and 1 at The Ark.

ROCK HYRAX (Procavia capensis)

About 20 at Nakuru, and 6 at Baringo.

BUSH (YELLOW-SPOTTED) HYRAX (Heterohyrax brucei)

Sixty at Tarangire.

TREE HYRAX (Dendrohyrax arboreus)

One at The Residences.

BURCHELL'S ZEBRA (Equus burchelli)

Very common at Ngorongoro, Serengeti, and Tarangire where we saw a total of about 3200. We also has smaller numbers near Naivasha and on the way to The Ark.

BLACK RHINOCEROS (Diceros bicornis)

Five in Ngorongoro Crater.

WHITE RHINOCEROS (Ceratotherium simum) [I]

Five at Nairobi NP (including 3 super close), and 4 at Nakuru.

WARTHOG (Phacochoerus aethiopicus)

We saw a total of about 70 in several widespread open grasslands and bush country areas.

GIANT FOREST HOG (Hylochoerus meinertzhageni)

Great looks at 7 of these huge rather localized hogs at The Ark.

HIPPOPOTAMUS (Hippopotamus amphibius)

Thirty at Nairobi NP, 25 at Ngorongoro, 140+ in the Serengeti, 3 at Naivasha, and 1 at Baringo.

COMMON GIRAFFE (Giraffa camelopardalis)

Twenty-five at Nairobi NP, and about 70 between Ngorongoro, Serengeti and Tarangire.

ROTHSCHILD'S GIRAFFE (Giraffa rothschildi)

Five at Nakuru.

BUSHBUCK (Tragelaphus scriptus)

Two at Tarangire, and a dozen at The Ark.

COMMON ELAND (Taurotragus oryx)

Thirty at Ngorongoro, 90 in the Serengeti, and a dozen at Tarangire.

AFRICAN BUFFALO (Syncerus caffer)

Widespread in most areas except for Kakamega Forest; in all we saw about 1400.

COMMON WATERBUCK (Kobus ellipsiprymnus)

Eighteen at Tarangire.


One with a tiny baby on the rim of Ngorongoro Crater, and about 40 in the Naivasha-Nakuru area.

TOPI (Damaliscus lunatus)

About 50 in the Serengeti.

HARTEBEEST (KONGONI) (Alcelaphus buselaphus)

Also known as Coke's Hartebeest; we saw 30 at Nairobi NP, and 35 in the Serengeti.

BLUE WILDEBEEST (Connochaetes taurinus)

About 200 in Ngorongoro Crater, and several hundred thousand on the Serengeti plains – just a wonderful sight!

SUNI (Neotragus moschatus)

Two at The Ark.

KIRK'S DIK-DIK (Modoqua kirki)

We saw a total of about 60 in Serengeti and Tarangire.

IMPALA (Aepyceros malampus)

Common and widespread, with a total of about 900.

THOMSON'S GAZELLE (Gazella thomsoni)

About 1000 in Ngorongoro Crater, and 4500+ at Serengeti.

GRANT'S GAZELLE (Gazella granti)

Two hundred in Ngorongoro Crater, and 500+ at Serengeti.


Reptiles on the tour included;

Mwanza Rock Agama: small numbers at the bottom of the Crater Highlands, Olduvai Gorge, and in the Serengeti.

Red-headed Rock Agama: about a dozen between Naabi Hill, Tarangire, and Baringo-Bogoria.

Tropical House Gecko: seen at Kakamega and Bogoria.

Flap-necked Chameleon: 1 in the Serengeti.

Leopard Tortoise: 1 in the Serengeti, and 2 at Tarangire.

Nile Crocodile: 4 in Nairobi NP.

Totals for the tour: 453 bird taxa and 45 mammal taxa