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Field Guides Tour Report
Namibia & Botswana 2015
Nov 10, 2015 to Nov 29, 2015
Terry Stevenson

A Burchell's Courser brightens up the Etosha pan. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

Our small group experienced one of our driest Namibia/Botswana tours ever -- even for two largely desert countries. But how was the birding? Well, by reading below, I'm sure you'll soon see that it was an exceptional tour, with one of our biggest-ever triplists for the region; we saw all of the possible endemics and a great selection of mammals too.

The itinerary largely followed our well-tested route. This year, we added an area near Usakos, which we first visited in 2014. We've discovered that this area has some simply magnificent birding -- and all while based at a wonderful lodge!

So to begin, we started in Windhoek with a visit to the local sewage farm, where highlights included White-backed Duck, South African Shelduck, Sacred Ibis, and Purple Swamphen around the pools, and Gray Go-away-bird, Dideric Cuckoo, White-backed Mousebird, and Crimson-breasted Gonolek in the acacia woodland. Heading southwest the following day, we picked up our first Ostrich, plus Pearl-spotted Owlet, Monteiro's Hornbill, Pririt Batis, Kalahari Scrub-Robin, Pale-winged Starling and the simply gorgeous Violet-eared Waxbill. We also saw our first mammals, with Chacma Baboon, Greater Kudu and Springbok leading the list.

Based at our lodge in the Namib Desert, we then had two days to explore the varied desert scenery -- including Sossusvlei, with the world's tallest sand dunes. Just a few of the highlights here included Black-breasted Snake-Eagle (eating a large snake), about 30 Pale Chanting-Goshawks, Ludwig's and Rueppell's bustards, Namaqua and Double-banded sandgrouse, Swallow-tailed Bee-eater, the endemic Dune Lark (right at our feet), Rufous-eared Warbler (almost landing on us), and Tractrac Chat. But most surprising of all was a very close Brown Hyaena in broad daylight -- a mega tick on any tour, and lifer for Terry who has traveled in Africa for more than 30 years!

Heading west, we then spent a night at Walvis Bay, with endemic Damara Terns and Hartlaub's Gulls flying back and forth in front of our hotel. A drive along the edge of the lagoon gave us wonderful close looks at hundreds (maybe thousands) of Greater and Lesser flamingos, migrant plovers and sandpipers, the rather localized Chestnut-banded Plover, and African Oystercatcher. The following day, a little further north at Swakopmund, we saw thousands of Cape Cormorants, some 50 Crowned Cormorants, and the cryptic and localized Gray's Lark, which we found in super-quick time.

Heading inland and north, we then went to our new location near Usakos, where it seemed as though many of the near-endemics were queuing up to be seen: White-quilled Bustard, Violet Woodhoopoe, Damara Red-billed Hornbill, Rueppell's Parrot, White-tailed Shrike, Carp's and Ashy tits, Rockrunner, Southern Pied-Babbler, and the Herero Chat, which is often very difficult to find. Nearby in the Erongo Mountains, we also had fabulous luck, with great looks at Hartlaub's Francolin, Freckled Nightjar, Rosy-faced Lovebird (hundreds), Short-toed Rock-Thrush, and the ever so cute Dassie Rat.

Continuing north, we then spent three nights in the Etosha National Park area (two in the park itself), where we had many close encounters with some of Africa's famed big game: African Elephant, Lion, Black Rhino, Burchell's Zebra, Warthog, Common Giraffe, Gemsbok, Blue Wildebeest, Impala, and Springbok to mention but a few. Birds included Red-billed Francolin, Secretary-bird, White-headed and Lappet-faced vultures, Martial Eagle, Kori Bustard, Blue Crane, Greater Painted-Snipe, Burchell's Courser, African Scops-Owl, Rufous-cheeked Nightjar, White Helmetshrike, Black-faced and Bare-cheeked babblers, Shelley's Sunbird (rare here), and Social Weavers at their huge haystack nests.

Driving further north to Hakusembe (just across the river from Angola), we stayed yet again in a lovely small lodge, finding a totally different set of new birds: Black and Rufous-bellied herons, African Cuckoo-Hawk, Wattled Lapwing, Temminck's Courser, Coppery-tailed Coucal, Marsh Owl, Giant Kingfisher, Greater Honeyguide, Gabon Boubou, and Hartlaub's Babbler.

The second part of our tour took us east and then south to the Mahango reserve and into Botswana. As usual, Mahango was fabulous, with our first Hippo, Bushbuck, Lechwe, Reedbuck and Topi. A suite of new birds included African Openbill, Goliath Heron, Wattled Crane, African Green-Pigeon, Red-faced Mousebird, and Bradfield's Hornbill. Having crossed the border, we took a short boat ride to our first stop in the Okavango panhandle, where we all enjoyed such wonderful birds as African Pygmy-Goose, White-backed Night-Heron (right at our lodge), Allen's Gallinule, African Skimmer (super looks on the nearby sand banks), Pel's Fishing-Owl (three this year!), Southern Carmine Bee-eater (about 60 at a colony right beside our boat), Retz's Helmetshrike, 'Luapula' and Chirping cisticolas, Meve's Glossy-Starling, Southern Brown-throated Weaver, and Brown Firefinch.

We then took a private charter flight over the delta for a three night stay at the luxurious Stanley's Camp. Based in the southern part of the Okavango Delta, we made morning and afternoon drives in a specially adapted 4X4 Landcruiser, getting close views of more Lions, African Elephants, Common Giraffes, Burchell's Zebras, and other plains game. We also added Spotted Hyaena and Honey Badger to our list, and spent 30 minutes only 20 feet from a Leopard lounging in a tree. The habitats here varied from woodland to open acacia country, bush with scattered palms, pools, lagoons, and dry sandveld. The birdlife was accordingly varied, and we were soon seeing Swainson's Francolin, Woolly-necked and Saddle-billed storks, Slaty Egret, Bateleur, Verreaux's Eagle-Owl, Woodland Kingfisher, Southern Ground-Hornbill, Dickinson's Kestrel, and both Red-billed and Yellow-billed oxpeckers.

Another short charter flight to Maun (for our connection to Johannesburg and home) worked perfectly, and so with many thanks to our own tour managers, local ground agents, and drivers and guides -- and all of you of course -- I'm really looking forward to our next tour in February 2016.


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 (Ostrich)

A classic shot of the Namibian desert -- now that's a sand dune! This is part of the Sossusvlei Dunes, to be precise, which contain the world's tallest dunes. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

OSTRICH (Struthio camelus) – We saw a total of about 140 at Sossusvlei and Etosha, plus smaller numbers near Windhoek and Mahango.
Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)
WHITE-FACED WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna viduata) – At least 500 at Mahango and the Xaro area, and about 30 in the Okavango Delta.
WHITE-BACKED DUCK (Thalassornis leuconotus) – One at Windhoek Sewage Works.
COMB DUCK (Sarkidiornis melanotos) – Three at Mahango.
EGYPTIAN GOOSE (Alopochen aegyptiaca) – Common at a variety of wetland sites throughout the tour; in total we saw about 300.
SOUTH AFRICAN SHELDUCK (Tadorna cana) – Forty at Windhoek Sewage Works, and 4 at Etosha.
SPUR-WINGED GOOSE (Plectropterus gambensis) – Eight at Mahango, and 3 in the Stanley's Camp area of the Okavango Delta.
AFRICAN PYGMY-GOOSE (Nettapus auritus) – Nice looks at this very attractive small duck near Xaro, and 2 in flight near Stanley's Camp.
YELLOW-BILLED DUCK (Anas undulata) – One near Stanley's Camp.
CAPE SHOVELER (Anas smithii) – Two at Swakopmund Sewage Works, and 1 at Etosha.
RED-BILLED DUCK (Anas erythrorhyncha) – Forty at Windhoek Sewage Works, and another 40 at Etosha.
HOTTENTOT TEAL (Anas hottentota) – About a dozen at Windhoek Sewage Works.
CAPE TEAL (Anas capensis) – Three at Windhoek Sewage Works, 6 at Walvis Bay, and 10 at Etosha.
SOUTHERN POCHARD (Netta erythrophthalma) – We saw a single female and then a male at Windhoek Sewage Works.
Numididae (Guineafowl)
HELMETED GUINEAFOWL (Numida meleagris) – Common and widespread throughout the tour.
Phasianidae (Pheasants, Grouse, and Allies)
CRESTED FRANCOLIN (Francolinus sephaena) – We saw a pair in Stanley's Camp.
HARTLAUB'S FRANCOLIN (Francolinus hartlaubi) – First we had brief views of a female, but then had great scope views of a pair in the Erongo Mts.
RED-BILLED FRANCOLIN (Francolinus adspersus) – By far the most numerous francolin, with about 50 in the Usakos to Erongo Mts. area, 100+ in the Okavango Delta, and smaller numbers at widespread sites elsewhere.
SWAINSON'S FRANCOLIN (Francolinus swainsonii) – About a dozen in the Stanley's Camp area.
Podicipedidae (Grebes)
LITTLE GREBE (Tachybaptus ruficollis) – Eight at at Windhoek Sewage Works, 40 at Etosha, 3 at Hakusembe, and 2 near Stanley's Camp.
Phoenicopteridae (Flamingos)
GREATER FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus roseus) – At least 3000 were in the Walvis Bay Lagoon, and about 600 at the Swakopmund Salt Pans.
LESSER FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus minor) – About 750 in the Walvis Bay Lagoon, and 150 at the Swakopmund Salt Pans.
Ciconiidae (Storks)
AFRICAN OPENBILL (Anastomus lamelligerus) – Five at Mahango, and about 60 in the Okavango Delta.
WOOLLY-NECKED STORK (Ciconia episcopus) – We saw a single flock of 28 near Stanley's Camp in the Okavango Delta.
SADDLE-BILLED STORK (Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis) – Four adults and 2 immatures near Stanley's Camp.

The threatened Mountain Zebra is very localized, found only in southwestern Angola, Namibia, and South Africa. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

MARABOU STORK (Leptoptilos crumenifer) – Six at Etosha, about 80 at Mahango and Xaro, and a flock of 100+ at a drying pool near Stanley's Camp.
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)
GREAT CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax carbo) – About 80 in the Walvis Bay to Swakopmund area, and 10 at Etosha.
CAPE CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax capensis) – Many thousands in the Walvis Bay to Swakopmund area.
LONG-TAILED CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax africanus) – Common and widespread at a variety of fresh water wetlands throughout the tour.
CROWNED CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax coronatus) – A total of about 50 at the Walvis Bay guano platform and the Swakopmund Salt Pans.
Anhingidae (Anhingas)
AFRICAN DARTER (Anhinga rufa rufa) – Widespread in small numbers at fresh water wetlands (especially the Okavango Delta); in all we saw about 50.
Pelecanidae (Pelicans)
GREAT WHITE PELICAN (Pelecanus onocrotalus) – Six near our hotel at Walvis Bay.
PINK-BACKED PELICAN (Pelecanus rufescens) – Three singles in the Stanley's Camp area.
Scopidae (Hamerkop)
HAMERKOP (Scopus umbretta) – About 20 in the Okavango, and a few others elsewhere including 1 at Windhoek.
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
GRAY HERON (Ardea cinerea) – Small numbers were widespread at fresh water wetlands throughout the tour.
GOLIATH HERON (Ardea goliath) – Two at Mahango, and 2 at Xaro.
PURPLE HERON (Ardea purpurea) – Singles at Windhoek Sewage Works, Xaro, and near Stanley's Camp.
GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba) – Two at Mahango, and about 100 in the Okavango Delta.
INTERMEDIATE EGRET (Mesophoyx intermedia) – Two at Mahango, and 6 in the Okavango Delta.
LITTLE EGRET (Egretta garzetta) – Six at Windhoek Sewage Works, 10 at Walvis Bay, and about 30 in the Okavango area.
SLATY EGRET (Egretta vinaceigula) – Almost endemic to Botswana; we saw 1 at Xaro, and about 15 in the Stanley's Camp area.
BLACK HERON (Egretta ardesiaca) – Nice to compare with the Slaty Egrets; we saw 10 between Hakusembe and the Okavango Delta.
CATTLE EGRET (Bubulcus ibis) – Common and widespread away from the most arid areas of Namibia.
SQUACCO HERON (Ardeola ralloides) – Four at Windhoek Sewage Works, 1 at Hakusembe, 4 at Xaro, and about 20 in the Stanley's Camp area.
RUFOUS-BELLIED HERON (Ardeola rufiventris) – Seven at Hakusembe, and 3 near Stanley's Camp.
STRIATED HERON (Butorides striata) – Small numbers between Hakusembe and the Okavango Delta.
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax) – Two adults at Windhoek Sewage Works.
WHITE-BACKED NIGHT-HERON (Gorsachius leuconotus) – Great close looks at a sub-adult at Xaro.
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)
GLOSSY IBIS (Plegadis falcinellus) – Two at Windhoek Sewage Works, and 2 near Stanley's Camp.
SACRED IBIS (Threskiornis aethiopicus) – Six at Windhoek Sewage Works.

Long-toed Lapwings were one of four lapwing species we found on the tour. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

HADADA IBIS (Bostrychia hagedash) – One on a nest near Xaro.
AFRICAN SPOONBILL (Platalea alba) – One at Mahango.
Sagittariidae (Secretary-bird)
SECRETARY-BIRD (Sagittarius serpentarius) – A pair and then 2 singles at Etosha.
Pandionidae (Osprey)
OSPREY (Pandion haliaetus) – One at Mahango.
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
BLACK-SHOULDERED KITE (Elanus caeruleus) – Four in the open bushed grasslands around Windhoek, and 5 in the Okavango area.
AFRICAN CUCKOO-HAWK (Aviceda cuculoides) – One on a sand bank in the Okavango River near Hakusembe Lodge was quite a surprise, and then 2 more at Mahango even more so!
WHITE-HEADED VULTURE (Trigonoceps occipitalis) – Two at Etosha, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
LAPPET-FACED VULTURE (Torgos tracheliotos) – One near Solitaire, and 8 at Etosha.
HOODED VULTURE (Necrosyrtes monachus) – Two singles near Stanley's Camp.
WHITE-BACKED VULTURE (Gyps africanus) – Two singles in the Usakos area, 15 at Etosha, and 4 near Stanley's Camp.
BATELEUR (Terathopius ecaudatus) – Two at Etosha, 1 at Mahango, and about 8 in the Stanley's Camp area.
BLACK-BREASTED SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus pectoralis) – Great looks at an adult eating a snake near Solitaire, and then a second bird in the same area, 2 more near Usakos, and 1 in the Okavango.
BROWN SNAKE-EAGLE (Circaetus cinereus) – One south of Etosha, and 1 east of Rundu.
BAT HAWK (Macheiramphus alcinus) – Nice looks at a low circling bird at Xaro.
MARTIAL EAGLE (Polemaetus bellicosus) – Good looks at an adult (checking out baby ostrich) at Etosha, and then 2 more there, 1 near Hakusembe, and 2 near Stanley's Camp.
LONG-CRESTED EAGLE (Lophaetus occipitalis) – Two singles in the Stanley's Camp area.
WAHLBERG'S EAGLE (Hieraaetus wahlbergi) – One south of Etosha, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
TAWNY EAGLE (Aquila rapax) – Three at Etosha, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
STEPPE EAGLE (Aquila nipalensis) – Singles at Mahango and near Stanley's Camp.
AFRICAN HAWK-EAGLE (Aquila spilogaster) – Nice looks at a pair near Solitaire, then some of the group saw a single kill a kestrel in the Erongo Mts. and no less than 5 in the Okavango Delta.
LIZARD BUZZARD (Kaupifalco monogrammicus) – A loud calling bird then flew low across the road at the gate to the Mahango reserve.
PALE CHANTING-GOSHAWK (Melierax canorus) – Thirty in the Namib Desert area, and then smaller numbers (perhaps about 12) from Swakopmund to Etosha.
GABAR GOSHAWK (Micronisus gabar) – Singles near Windhoek, Sossusvlei and Etosha, and a melanistic bird at Mahango.
AFRICAN MARSH-HARRIER (Circus ranivorus) – One at Mahango.
MONTAGU'S HARRIER (Circus pygargus) – We saw a distant female at Etosha, and then 2 (including 1 feeding on a fish) near Stanley's Camp.

For vibrant color and flashing movement, you can't beat a colony of Southern Carmine Bee-eaters! Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

SHIKRA (Accipiter badius) – One at Etosha.
BLACK KITE (YELLOW-BILLED) (Milvus migrans parasitus) – Two at Mahango, about 45 in the Xaro area, and 8 near Stanley's Camp.
AFRICAN FISH-EAGLE (Haliaeetus vocifer) – One in flight over Windhoek Sewage Works, about 20 at Xaro, and 40+ in the Stanley's Camp area.
COMMON BUZZARD (STEPPE) (Buteo buteo vulpinus) – One flying over Windhoek Sewage Works, 1 at Hakusembe, and 2 near Xaro.
Otididae (Bustards)
KORI BUSTARD (Ardeotis kori) – About 12 at Etosha.
LUDWIG'S BUSTARD (Neotis ludwigii) – Two singles near Solitaire.
RUEPPELL'S BUSTARD (Eupodotis rueppelii) – Great this tour, with at least 30 in the Sossusvlei and Solitaire areas, and 2 east of Swakopmund.
RED-CRESTED BUSTARD (Eupodotis ruficrista) – We saw a single male south of Etosha, and another on the way to Rundu.
WHITE-QUILLED BUSTARD (Eupodotis afraoides) – We saw a female near Usakos, and then 2 males at Etosha.
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
BLACK CRAKE (Amaurornis flavirostra) – Three at Windhoek Sewage Works, 1 at Hakusembe (across the river in Angola), and about 10 in the Okavango area.
PURPLE SWAMPHEN (AFRICAN) (Porphyrio porphyrio madagascariensis) – Some authorities now split this as African Purple Swamphen; we saw 3 at Windhoek Sewage Works, and 1 near Xaro.
ALLEN'S GALLINULE (Porphyrio alleni) – One during an afternoon boat trip at Xaro.
EURASIAN MOORHEN (Gallinula chloropus) – About 100 at Windhoek Sewage Works, 3 at Swakopmund Sewage Works, and 3 at Etosha.
RED-KNOBBED COOT (Fulica cristata) – At least 100 at Windhoek Sewage Works, and 10 at Swakopmund Sewage Works.
Gruidae (Cranes)
BLUE CRANE (Anthropoides paradiseus) – We saw 2 of these beautiful cranes at Etosha.
WATTLED CRANE (Bugeranus carunculatus) – Two distant birds, and then 3 much closer at Mahango.
Burhinidae (Thick-knees)
WATER THICK-KNEE (Burhinus vermiculatus) – Two at Mahango, and 5 in the Xaro area.
Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)
BLACK-WINGED STILT (Himantopus himantopus) – Forty at the Walvis Bay Lagoon, 7 at the Swakopmund Salt Pans, and about 20 in the Okavango area.
PIED AVOCET (Recurvirostra avosetta) – At least 300 at the Walvis Bay Lagoon were a fabulous sight, and we also saw about 50 at Swakopmund.
Haematopodidae (Oystercatchers)
AFRICAN OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus moquini) – Two at Walvis Bay.
Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER (Pluvialis squatarola) – About 20 at Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.
LONG-TOED LAPWING (Vanellus crassirostris) – Five at Mahango, and about 10 in the Xaro area.
BLACKSMITH LAPWING (Vanellus armatus) – One hundred and twenty together at Windhoek Sewage Works were by far the most, but we also saw them in virtually all areas throughout the tour.
CROWNED LAPWING (Vanellus coronatus) – About 15 at Etosha, 2 near Hakusembe, and a dozen near Stanley's Camp.
WATTLED LAPWING (Vanellus senegallus) – Three at Hakusembe, and 2 near Xaro.

The Etosha pan is vast -- measuring some 75 miles long. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

KITTLITZ'S PLOVER (Charadrius pecuarius) – Ten at Etosha.
COMMON RINGED PLOVER (Charadrius hiaticula) – About a dozen at Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.
THREE-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius tricollaris) – Common and widespread at a variety of wetlands across Namibia.
WHITE-FRONTED PLOVER (Charadrius marginatus) – At least 20 in the Walvis Bay and Swakopmund area.
CHESTNUT-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius pallidus) – Six at the Walvis Bay Lagoon.
Rostratulidae (Painted-Snipes)
GREATER PAINTED-SNIPE (Rostratula benghalensis) – Three at a waterhole at Etosha were rather unexpected.
Jacanidae (Jacanas)
AFRICAN JACANA (Actophilornis africanus) – Three at Windhoek Sewage Works, 2 (with 2 tiny juveniles) at Etosha, 12 at Hakusembe, and about 60 in the Okavango area.
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
COMMON SANDPIPER (Actitis hypoleucos) – One at Walvis Bay, and 2 in the Mahango to Xaro area.
COMMON GREENSHANK (Tringa nebularia) – About 20 at Walvis Bay, 4 at Etosha, 3 at Hakusembe, and 20 in the Okavango area.
MARSH SANDPIPER (Tringa stagnatilis) – Two at Etosha, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
WOOD SANDPIPER (Tringa glareola) – Widespread at wetlands throughout the tour; in all we saw about 100.
WHIMBREL (Numenius phaeopus) – Four at the Walvis Bay Lagoon.
BAR-TAILED GODWIT (Limosa lapponica) – Four hundred in a single flock at Walvis Bay.
RUDDY TURNSTONE (Arenaria interpres) – About a dozen between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.
RUFF (Calidris pugnax) – Widespread in small numbers; with a total of about 75.
CURLEW SANDPIPER (Calidris ferruginea) – At least 1000 at the Walvis Bay Lagoon.
SANDERLING (Calidris alba) – Twenty in the Walvis Bay area.
LITTLE STINT (Calidris minuta) – At least 200 at Walvis Bay, and 30 at Etosha.
Turnicidae (Buttonquail)
SMALL BUTTONQUAIL (Turnix sylvaticus) – We flushed 1 on a game drive from Stanley's Camp.
Glareolidae (Pratincoles and Coursers)
BURCHELL'S COURSER (Cursorius rufus) – Six and then 3 at Etosha, and most surprisingly were 5 on the dry flood plain near Hakusembe.
TEMMINCK'S COURSER (Cursorius temminckii) – One in the dry farmlands to the south of Rundu.
DOUBLE-BANDED COURSER (Smutsornis africanus) – One NE of Swakopmund, and about 20 at Etosha.
COLLARED PRATINCOLE (Glareola pratincola) – About 50 at Mahango, and 3 at Xaro.
Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
GRAY-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus) – Two at the Swakopmund Sewage Works.
HARTLAUB'S GULL (Chroicocephalus hartlaubii) – Several thousand between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.

An adult Saddle-billed Stork keeps an eye on a couple of youngsters near Stanley's Camp. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

KELP GULL (CAPE) (Larus dominicanus vetula) – Hundreds between Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.
DAMARA TERN (Sternula balaenarum) – Nice looks at about 5 in front of our hotel at Walvis Bay.
CASPIAN TERN (Hydroprogne caspia) – About 40 at Walvis Bay.
WHISKERED TERN (Chlidonias hybrida) – We saw singles in breeding plumage at Xaro, and near Stanley's Camp.
COMMON TERN (Sterna hirundo) – About 350 at Walvis Bay and Swakopmund.
GREAT CRESTED TERN (Thalasseus bergii) – Forty in the Walvis Bay to Swakopmund area.
SANDWICH TERN (Thalasseus sandvicensis) – About 20 at Walvis Bay.
AFRICAN SKIMMER (Rynchops flavirostris) – Great looks this year at about 20 on sand banks in the Xaro area.
Pteroclidae (Sandgrouse)
NAMAQUA SANDGROUSE (Pterocles namaqua) – One hundred and fifty near Solitaire, and then about 300 at Etosha.
DOUBLE-BANDED SANDGROUSE (Pterocles bicinctus) – Two along the road in Namib Desert NP, about 40 at Halali waterhole, and 2 near Stanley's Camp.
Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)
ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) – About 10 at Windhoek.
SPECKLED PIGEON (Columba guinea) – Common and widespread throughout Namibia; with a total of about 140.
RED-EYED DOVE (Streptopelia semitorquata) – Twelve at Hakusembe, 30 at Xaro, and about 60 in the Stanley's Camp area.
RING-NECKED DOVE (Streptopelia capicola) – Very common and widespread.
LAUGHING DOVE (Streptopelia senegalensis) – Very common and widespread.
EMERALD-SPOTTED WOOD-DOVE (Turtur chalcospilos) – About 20 at Etosha, 4 at Xaro, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
NAMAQUA DOVE (Oena capensis) – Small numbers at Windhoek, Hohenstein, Etosha, Hakusembe, and Xaro.
AFRICAN GREEN-PIGEON (Treron calvus) – Two at Xaro, and 4 near Stanley's Camp.
Musophagidae (Turacos)
GRAY GO-AWAY-BIRD (Corythaixoides concolor) – Widespread in acacia country, with a total of about 110.
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)
PIED CUCKOO (Clamator jacobinus) – One at the Botswana border post.
BLACK CUCKOO (Cuculus clamosus) – One at Mahango.
AFRICAN CUCKOO (Cuculus gularis) – One at Lake Otijkoto.
KLAAS'S CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx klaas) – Heard at Mahango.
DIDERIC CUCKOO (Chrysococcyx caprius) – One at Windhoek Sewage Works.
COPPERY-TAILED COUCAL (Centropus cupreicaudus) – Five at Hakusembe, and about 40 in the Stanley's Camp area.

Southern Ground-Hornbills are the world's largest hornbills. We found these near the Stanley Camp airstrip. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

WHITE-BROWED COUCAL (Centropus superciliosus) – One near Stanley's Camp.
Strigidae (Owls)
AFRICAN SCOPS-OWL (Otus senegalensis) – One at Halali Rest Camp, Etosha.
SPOTTED EAGLE-OWL (Bubo africanus) – Two at Sossusvlei.
VERREAUX'S EAGLE-OWL (Bubo lacteus) – Nice looks at a perched bird (and then another in flight) near Stanley's Camp.
PEL'S FISHING-OWL (Scotopelia peli) – Just fabulous this year with great views of a bird in the open, then a second more hidden bird, and finally a third that flew in to a close tree as we had a sundowner - all from our base at Xaro.
PEARL-SPOTTED OWLET (Glaucidium perlatum) – Far more than usual, with a total of 13 at a variety of widespread sites in acacia country.
AFRICAN BARRED OWLET (Glaucidium capense) – Two were seen nicely at Xaro, and then 1 was heard at Stanley's Camp.
AFRICAN WOOD-OWL (Strix woodfordii) – One was flushed on a walk at Xaro.
MARSH OWL (Asio capensis) – One was flushed during our walk in the dry grasslands near Hakusembe Lodge.
Caprimulgidae (Nightjars and Allies)
RUFOUS-CHEEKED NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus rufigena) – At least 20 at the waterholes in Etosha NP.
FRECKLED NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus tristigma) – Five in the Erongo Mts.
Apodidae (Swifts)
ALPINE SWIFT (Apus melba) – About 20 at Omaruru.
BRADFIELD'S SWIFT (Apus bradfieldi) – One of our group saw 1 at our lodge near Sossusvlei, and then amazingly we had a flock of about 20 drinking from the river around our boat at Xaro - very rare in Botswana!
LITTLE SWIFT (Apus affinis) – Common and widespread, and then about 6 along the Okavango River at Xaro where they are very uncommon.
WHITE-RUMPED SWIFT (Apus caffer) – At least 3 with other swifts along the Okavango River at Xaro.
AFRICAN PALM-SWIFT (Cypsiurus parvus) – Small numbers at Windhoek, Usakos, Etosha, and in the Okavango.
Coliidae (Mousebirds)
WHITE-BACKED MOUSEBIRD (Colius colius) – We saw a total of about 60 between Windhoek, Sossusvlei and Walvis Bay.
RED-FACED MOUSEBIRD (Urocolius indicus) – Eight at Xaro.
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
MALACHITE KINGFISHER (Corythornis cristatus) – Singles at Hakusembe and near Stanley's Camp, and about 6 in the Xaro area.
WOODLAND KINGFISHER (Halcyon senegalensis) – One at Hakusembe, about 10 at Xaro, and 40+ in the Stanley's Camp area.
STRIPED KINGFISHER (Halcyon chelicuti) – About 10 on our drives from Stanley's Camp.
GIANT KINGFISHER (Megaceryle maxima) – One at Hakusembe, and about 8 between Mahango and Xaro.
PIED KINGFISHER (Ceryle rudis) – One at Lake Otijkoto, 1 at Hakusembe, and about 60 in the Okavango.
Meropidae (Bee-eaters)
WHITE-FRONTED BEE-EATER (Merops bullockoides) – About 60 at Xaro.
LITTLE BEE-EATER (Merops pusillus) – Four at Mahango, 12 at Xaro and 20+ near Stanley's Camp.
SWALLOW-TAILED BEE-EATER (Merops hirundineus) – Small numbers near Solitaire, Usakos, Etosha, and Hakusembe; in all we saw about 40.
BLUE-CHEEKED BEE-EATER (Merops persicus) – One along the river at Hakusembe, and then about 40 between Mahango and Xaro.

Herds of African Elephants are common across our tour route; we saw nearly 140 animals in total! Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

EUROPEAN BEE-EATER (Merops apiaster) – Widespread in small numbers; with a total of about 60.
SOUTHERN CARMINE BEE-EATER (Merops nubicoides) – We saw these gorgeous bee-eaters at Mahango, Xaro and near Stanley's Camp, but most impressive was the colony we saw from the Xaro boat near Shakawe.
Coraciidae (Rollers)
LILAC-BREASTED ROLLER (Coracias caudatus) – One just east of Etosha NP, and then daily to Rundu and on to the Okavango Delta; in all we saw about 55.
RUFOUS-CROWNED ROLLER (Coracias naevius) – Widespread in acacia country; with a total of about 12.
BROAD-BILLED ROLLER (Eurystomus glaucurus) – About a dozen in the Okavango area.
Upupidae (Hoopoes)
EURASIAN HOOPOE (AFRICAN) (Upupa epops africana) – Fairly common in northern Namibia and Botswana; with a total of about 30.
Phoeniculidae (Woodhoopoes and Scimitar-bills)
GREEN WOODHOOPOE (Phoeniculus purpureus) – Common from Hakusembe to the Okavango Delta; in all we saw about 40.
VIOLET WOODHOOPOE (VIOLET) (Phoeniculus damarensis damarensis) – Two at Okombahe, and 9 in the Halali area.
COMMON SCIMITAR-BILL (Rhinopomastus cyanomelas) – Singles at Okombahe and Hohenstein, and 4 at Etosha.
Bucorvidae (Ground-Hornbills)
SOUTHERN GROUND-HORNBILL (Bucorvus leadbeateri) – Good looks at 3 near Stanley's Airstrip.
Bucerotidae (Hornbills)
MONTEIRO'S HORNBILL (Tockus monteiri) – One near Windhoek, and about 20 in the Usakos to Hohenstein area.
SOUTHERN RED-BILLED HORNBILL (Tockus rufirostris) – Four in the eastern part of Etosha, and 12 near Stanley's Camp.
DAMARA RED-BILLED HORNBILL (Tockus damarensis) – Nice looks at 2 at Okombahe, and 2 at Usakos.
SOUTHERN YELLOW-BILLED HORNBILL (Tockus leucomelas) – Common from Okombahe to Etosha and north to Rundu, and then just 3 in the Okavango area.
BRADFIELD'S HORNBILL (Tockus bradfieldi) – Great looks at this rather localised species at Mahango.
AFRICAN GRAY HORNBILL (Tockus nasutus) – One near Usakos, about a dozen at Etosha, and 20 in the Okavango area.
Lybiidae (African Barbets)
CRESTED BARBET (Trachyphonus vaillantii) – Two at Xaro, and 4 near Stanley's Camp.
PIED BARBET (Tricholaema leucomelas) – Small numbers were widespread in acacia country.
BLACK-COLLARED BARBET (Lybius torquatus) – Ten at Xaro, and 4 near Stanley's Camp.
Indicatoridae (Honeyguides)
LESSER HONEYGUIDE (Indicator minor) – One at Okombahe.
GREATER HONEYGUIDE (Indicator indicator) – An immature at Hakusembe.
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
BENNETT'S WOODPECKER (Campethera bennettii) – Three at Xaro, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
GOLDEN-TAILED WOODPECKER (Campethera abingoni) – One at Mushara, and then about 4 at Xaro.
CARDINAL WOODPECKER (Dendropicos fuscescens) – Singles near Windhoek and Usakos, and 4 at Xaro.
BEARDED WOODPECKER (Dendropicos namaquus) – Two near Usakos, and 1 at Mahango.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
EURASIAN KESTREL (Falco tinnunculus) – We saw the resident form 'rupicolus' (often split as Rock Kestrel) near Solitaire (6) and Usakos (4), and then about a dozen of the migrant nominate form at Mahango.
GREATER KESTREL (Falco rupicoloides) – Eight in the Sossusvlei area, 1 near Swakopmund, and 3 at Etosha.
DICKINSON'S KESTREL (Falco dickinsoni) – Eight in the Stanley's Camp area.

The view from our new lodge at Usakos was mighty nice -- as were the many near-endemics that seemed to line up to be seen there. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

RED-NECKED FALCON (Falco chicquera) – Fabulous looks at 1 near Stanley's Camp.
LANNER FALCON (Falco biarmicus) – An adult near Windhoek, and an immature at Mahango.
Psittaculidae (Old World Parrots)
ROSY-FACED LOVEBIRD (Agapornis roseicollis) – About 20 at our lodge near Solitaire, and 100+ in the Erongo Mts.
Psittacidae (New World and African Parrots)
MEYER'S PARROT (Poicephalus meyeri) – Two at Xaro, and about a dozen near Stanley's Camp.
RUEPPELL'S PARROT (Poicephalus rueppellii) – We saw a single bird in a river bed near Usakos.
Platysteiridae (Wattle-eyes and Batises)
WHITE-TAILED SHRIKE (Lanioturdus torquatus) – Wonderful looks at these great looking birds on the way to Solitaire, at Usakos, and in the Erongo Mts.
CHINSPOT BATIS (Batis molitor) – Two near Stanley's Camp.
PRIRIT BATIS (Batis pririt) – Small numbers were widespread in acacia country throughout the early part of the tour; in all we saw about 14.
Vangidae (Vangas, Helmetshrikes, and Allies)
WHITE HELMETSHRIKE (Prionops plumatus) – One at Mushara.
RETZ'S HELMETSHRIKE (Prionops retzii) – Good looks at 3 at Xaro.
Malaconotidae (Bushshrikes and Allies)
BRUBRU (Nilaus afer) – Widespread at a variety of scattered sites in acacia country.
BLACK-BACKED PUFFBACK (Dryoscopus cubla) – Pairs at Okombahe, Etosha, and about 6 in the Stanley's Camp area.
BLACK-CROWNED TCHAGRA (Tchagra senegalus) – Two near Stanley's Camp.
BROWN-CROWNED TCHAGRA (Tchagra australis) – One at Uris, 2 at Etosha, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
GABON BOUBOU (Laniarius bicolor) – Also known as Swamp Boubou, we saw about 25 between Hakusembe and Xaro.
CRIMSON-BREASTED GONOLEK (Laniarius atrococcineus) – These striking bushshrikes were common in acacia country throughout the tour.
SULPHUR-BREASTED BUSHSHRIKE (Telophorus sulfureopectus) – Two at Xaro.
Laniidae (Shrikes)
RED-BACKED SHRIKE (Lanius collurio) – First seen at Etosha, then then becoming progressively more common until the end of the tour; in all we saw about 110.
LESSER GRAY SHRIKE (Lanius minor) – Three at Etosha, 1 at Hakusembe, and 15 in the Stanley's Camp area.
SOUTHERN FISCAL (SOUTHERN) (Lanius collaris subcoronatus) – This distinctive form is sometimes split at Latakoo Fiscal; we saw about 16 at scattered sites between Sossusvlei and Etosha.
MAGPIE SHRIKE (Corvinella melanoleuca) – About 15 at Mahango, and 20 in the Stanley's Camp area.
WHITE-CROWNED SHRIKE (Eurocephalus anguitimens) – Four near Usakos, 10 at Etosha, and 3 at Uris.
Oriolidae (Old World Orioles)
AFRICAN BLACK-HEADED ORIOLE (Oriolus larvatus) – Two at Stanley's Camp.
Dicruridae (Drongos)
FORK-TAILED DRONGO (Dicrurus adsimilis) – Common and widespread throughout the tour.
Monarchidae (Monarch Flycatchers)
AFRICAN PARADISE-FLYCATCHER (Terpsiphone viridis) – Fairly widespread in well wooded areas; we saw a total of about 15.
Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)
CAPE CROW (Corvus capensis) – Two at Solitaire, and 8 at Etosha.
PIED CROW (Corvus albus) – Widespread in Namibia, with a total of about 40.
Alaudidae (Larks)

An African "moonbird"? Guide Terry Stevenson captured this shot of an African Openbill silhouetted against the full moon.

RUFOUS-NAPED LARK (Mirafra africana) – Two near Stanley's Camp.
SABOTA LARK (BRADFIELD'S) (Calendulauda sabota naevia) – Six in the Solitaire area, 2 at Hohenstein, and about 30 at Etosha.
DUNE LARK (Calendulauda erythrochlamys) – Great really close looks at 2 in the dunes at Sossusvlei.
GRAY'S LARK (Ammomanopsis grayi) – Wonderful to find these cryptic larks in super quick time north of Swakopmund.
SPIKE-HEELED LARK (Chersomanes albofasciata) – About 25 at Etosha.
KAROO LONG-BILLED LARK (Certhilauda subcoronata) – Nice looks at 2 in the Namib Desert.
GRAY-BACKED SPARROW-LARK (Eremopterix verticalis) – About 80 near Sossusvlei, and then 300+ at Etosha.
RED-CAPPED LARK (Calandrella cinerea) – Ten at Swakopmund, 100 at Etosha, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)
PLAIN MARTIN (Riparia paludicola) – Two at Hakusembe, and about 15 along the river at Xaro.
BANDED MARTIN (Riparia cincta) – Four at Etosha, and 3 at Mahango.
ROCK MARTIN (Ptyonoprogne fuligula) – Common in areas with cliffs and around towns in Namibia.
BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica) – Common and widespread.
WHITE-THROATED SWALLOW (Hirundo albigularis) – About 6 at the Windhoek Sewage Ponds.
WIRE-TAILED SWALLOW (Hirundo smithii) – Four at Hakusembe, and 2 at Xaro.
PEARL-BREASTED SWALLOW (Hirundo dimidiata) – One flew over us at Hohenstein.
GREATER STRIPED-SWALLOW (Cecropis cucullata) – Ten at Windhoek, and 2 near Usakos.
LESSER STRIPED-SWALLOW (Cecropis abyssinica) – Nice looks at this attractive swallow at Etosha, Hakusembe, and Xaro.
RUFOUS-CHESTED SWALLOW (Cecropis semirufa) – One at Namutoni, Etosha.
Paridae (Tits, Chickadees, and Titmice)
SOUTHERN BLACK-TIT (Melaniparus niger) – Two at Xaro.
CARP'S TIT (Melaniparus carpi) – About 6 in the Usakos to Okombahe area.
ASHY TIT (Melaniparus cinerascens) – One at Hohenstein.
Pycnonotidae (Bulbuls)
YELLOW-BELLIED GREENBUL (Chlorocichla flaviventris) – One at the Botswana border, and 1 at Xaro.
COMMON BULBUL (DARK-CAPPED) (Pycnonotus barbatus tricolor) – Common from Hakusembe and then easterly to the Okavango Delta.
BLACK-FRONTED BULBUL (Pycnonotus nigricans) – More commonly known as Red-eyed Bulbul; they were very common throughout Namibia, and a few at Xaro.
Macrosphenidae (African Warblers)
CAPE CROMBEC (Sylvietta rufescens) – Small numbers in acacia country at Windhoek, Sossusvlei, Hohenstein, and Etosha.
ROCKRUNNER (Achaetops pycnopygius) – Great looks at this unusual endemic at Hohenstein and in the Erongo Mts.
Phylloscopidae (Leaf-Warblers)
WILLOW WARBLER (Phylloscopus trochilus) – Small numbers from Etosha until the end of the tour.
Acrocephalidae (Reed-Warblers and Allies)
AFRICAN REED-WARBLER (Acrocephalus baeticatus) – About 20 at the Windhoek Sewage Works.

An African Fish-Eagle grabs for a meal. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

GREATER SWAMP-WARBLER (Acrocephalus rufescens) – Two at Xaro.
Cisticolidae (Cisticolas and Allies)
YELLOW-BREASTED APALIS (Apalis flavida) – One at Etosha.
GREEN-BACKED CAMAROPTERA (GRAY-BACKED) (Camaroptera brachyura brevicaudata) – About 10 in the Usakos to Hohenstein area, and 4 at Etosha.
BARRED WREN-WARBLER (Calamonastes fasciolatus) – One showed nicely at Hohenstein.
RUFOUS-EARED WARBLER (Malcorus pectoralis) – Two in low bushes to the west of Solitaire.
RATTLING CISTICOLA (Cisticola chiniana) – Small numbers were widespread in acacia country throughout the tour, but they were most common around Stanley's Camp.
WINDING CISTICOLA (LUAPULA) (Cisticola galactotes luapula) – Often split as Luapula Cisticola; we saw 2 in the burnt reeds near Xaro.
CHIRPING CISTICOLA (Cisticola pipiens) – Two near Xaro, and at least 6 near Stanley's Camp.
ZITTING CISTICOLA (Cisticola juncidis) – Singles at Hakusembe and near Stanley's Camp.
DESERT CISTICOLA (Cisticola aridulus) – Three at Etosha.
TAWNY-FLANKED PRINIA (Prinia subflava) – Three in the Xaro area.
BLACK-CHESTED PRINIA (Prinia flavicans) – We saw birds in nice breeding plumage at Windhoek, the Namib Desert, Usakos, and at Etosha.
YELLOW-BELLIED EREMOMELA (Eremomela icteropygialis) – Small numbers were widespread in acacia country; in all we saw about 20.
BURNT-NECK EREMOMELA (Eremomela usticollis) – Three at Windhoek Sewage Works.
Sylviidae (Sylviid Warblers)
RUFOUS-VENTED WARBLER (Sylvia subcaerulea) – Also known as Rufous-vented Tit-Babbler; they were common in acacia country from Windhoek to Etosha.
Zosteropidae (White-eyes, Yuhinas, and Allies)
AFRICAN YELLOW WHITE-EYE (Zosterops senegalensis) – One at Hakusembe, and 2 at Mahango.
ORANGE RIVER WHITE-EYE (Zosterops pallidus) – Two at Walvis Bay.
Leiothrichidae (Laughingthrushes and Allies)
HARTLAUB'S BABBLER (Turdoides hartlaubii) – We saw a total of about 140 between Hakusembe, Mahango, and in the Okavango area.
BLACK-FACED BABBLER (Turdoides melanops) – We saw 5 of these localised birds at Mushara.
SOUTHERN PIED-BABBLER (Turdoides bicolor) – Six at Okombahe, 3 at Etosha, and 3 at Mahango.
ARROW-MARKED BABBLER (Turdoides jardineii) – About a dozen at Xaro, and 40+ in the Stanley's Camp area.
BARE-CHEEKED BABBLER (Turdoides gymnogenys) – We saw this localised endemic at Halali (3), and Uris (5).
Muscicapidae (Old World Flycatchers)
CHAT FLYCATCHER (Bradornis infuscatus) – Eight in the Namib Desert.
MARIQUA FLYCATCHER (Bradornis mariquensis) – Small numbers in acacia country.
SOUTHERN BLACK-FLYCATCHER (Melaenornis pammelaina) – Two at Hakusembe.
SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa striata) – Widespread in small numbers.
ASHY FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa caerulescens) – A pair were nesting at Stanley's Camp.

A rosy sunset marks the end of a day's birding around Stanley's Camp. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

GRAY TIT-FLYCATCHER (Myioparus plumbeus) – One for some of the group at Xaro.
KALAHARI SCRUB-ROBIN (Cercotrichas paena) – Nice looks at 1 near Windhoek.
RED-BACKED SCRUB-ROBIN (Cercotrichas leucophrys) – About 10 in the Usakos to Hohenstein area, and then a couple near Stanley's Camp.
HERERO CHAT (Namibornis herero) – Great looks at this difficult endemic at Hohenstein
WHITE-BROWED ROBIN-CHAT (Cossypha heuglini) – One at Hakusembe, 2 at Xaro, and 1 at Stanley's Camp.
SHORT-TOED ROCK-THRUSH (Monticola brevipes) – One at Guisis, and 2 in the Erongo Mts.
SOUTHERN ANTEATER-CHAT (Myrmecocichla formicivora) – About 10 to the south of Etosha.
TRACTRAC CHAT (Cercomela tractrac) – Six in the Namib Desert, and 2 near Swakopmund.
FAMILIAR CHAT (Cercomela familiaris) – About 30 in the Namib Desert, 10 in the Erongo Mts. area, and 4 at Etosha.
MOUNTAIN WHEATEAR (Oenanthe monticola) – Twenty in the Namib Desert, and 1 in the Erongo Mts.
CAPPED WHEATEAR (Oenanthe pileata) – One near Stanley's Camp.
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
GROUNDSCRAPER THRUSH (Psophocichla litsitsirupa) – Small numbers at Guisis, the Erongo Mts, Etosha, and at Hakusembe.
KURRICHANE THRUSH (Turdus libonyana) – Two adults and an immature at Hakusembe.
Sturnidae (Starlings)
WATTLED STARLING (Creatophora cinerea) – About 500 at the Windhoek Sewage Ponds, and 1 near Stanley's Camp.
CAPE GLOSSY-STARLING (Lamprotornis nitens) – Fairly common throughout most of Namibia; in all we saw about 80.
MEVES'S GLOSSY-STARLING (Lamprotornis mevesii) – Common at Mahango, Xaro, and in the Stanley's Camp area.
BURCHELL'S GLOSSY-STARLING (Lamprotornis australis) – One near Windhoek, 8 at Okombahe, about 20 at Mahango, and 50+ in the Okavango Delta.
VIOLET-BACKED STARLING (Cinnyricinclus leucogaster) – One at Hohenstein, and 3 at Xaro.
PALE-WINGED STARLING (Onychognathus nabouroup) – Common in arid country from Windhoek to the Namib Desert NP, and in the Erongo Mts.
Buphagidae (Oxpeckers)
RED-BILLED OXPECKER (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) – About 12 in the Stanley's Camp area.
YELLOW-BILLED OXPECKER (Buphagus africanus) – Two in flight at Xaro, and then at least 40 in the Stanley's Camp area.
Nectariniidae (Sunbirds and Spiderhunters)
COLLARED SUNBIRD (Hedydipna collaris) – One at Hakusembe, and 4 at Xaro.
AMETHYST SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra amethystina) – We saw single males at Namutoni, Hakusembe, and Xaro.
SCARLET-CHESTED SUNBIRD (Chalcomitra senegalensis) – One at Windhoek, and 4 at Hakusembe.
MARIQUA SUNBIRD (Cinnyris mariquensis) – The most widespread sunbird with a total of about 30.
SHELLEY'S SUNBIRD (Cinnyris shelleyi) – Quite a bit west of its usual range, we had great looks at a male at Namutoni, Etosha.
WHITE-BREASTED SUNBIRD (Cinnyris talatala) – Fairly common from Etosha to Mahango, and then south to the Okavango Delta; we saw a total of about 45.
DUSKY SUNBIRD (Cinnyris fuscus) – The most common sunbird in the arid country from Sossusvlei to Etosha.
Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)

On a hot day, is there anything better than a nap? Clearly, this Leopard doesn't think so! Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

CAPE WAGTAIL (Motacilla capensis) – Common from Windhoek to Swakopmund.
AFRICAN PIED WAGTAIL (Motacilla aguimp) – About 8 at various sites along the Okavango River.
AFRICAN PIPIT (Anthus cinnamomeus) – Two at Windhoek Sewage Works, and about 12 at Etosha.
LONG-BILLED PIPIT (Anthus similis) – One south of Guisis.
PLAIN-BACKED PIPIT (Anthus leucophrys) – One near Stanley's Camp.
BUFFY PIPIT (Anthus vaalensis) – Three near Stanley's Camp.
RED-THROATED PIPIT (Anthus cervinus) – Extremely rare in southern Africa; 1 was at Okaukuejo, Etosha.
Emberizidae (Buntings and New World Sparrows)
LARK-LIKE BUNTING (Emberiza impetuani) – About 100 at Guisis, and 10 at Hohenstein.
CINNAMON-BREASTED BUNTING (Emberiza tahapisi) – Six in the Erongo Mts.
CAPE BUNTING (Emberiza capensis) – About 10 in the Erongo Mts.
GOLDEN-BREASTED BUNTING (Emberiza flaviventris) – Singles at Hohenstein, Etosha, and Xaro.
Fringillidae (Finches, Euphonias, and Allies)
BLACK-THROATED CANARY (Serinus atrogularis) – Fairly common at a variety of sites from Windhoek to Etosha.
YELLOW CANARY (Serinus flaviventris) – One at Guisis, and 1 near Solitaire.
WHITE-THROATED CANARY (Serinus albogularis) – One briefly in the Namib Desert, and 1 seen well at Hohenstein.
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus) – Common around Windhoek and Solitaire.
GREAT RUFOUS SPARROW (Passer motitensis) – One at Guisis, a dozen at Hohenstein, and about 60 at Etosha.
CAPE SPARROW (Passer melanurus) – Common from Solitaire to Swakopmund and Hohenstein.
SOUTHERN GRAY-HEADED SPARROW (Passer diffusus) – Widespread in small numbers; with a total of about 250.
YELLOW-THROATED PETRONIA (Petronia superciliaris) – One near Stanley's Camp.
Ploceidae (Weavers and Allies)
RED-BILLED BUFFALO-WEAVER (Bubalornis niger) – About 12 at Okombahe, and 60+ in the Stanley's Camp area.
SCALY WEAVER (Sporopipes squamifrons) – More commonly known as Scaly-feathered Finch; we saw about 30 between Windhoek and the Namib Desert area.
WHITE-BROWED SPARROW-WEAVER (Plocepasser mahali) – Small numbers were widespread in acacia bush country.
SOCIAL WEAVER (Philetairus socius) – About 150 in the Namib Desert, and 40 at Etosha - and their incredible nests!
RED-HEADED WEAVER (Anaplectes rubriceps) – One at Mushara, and 2 at Mahango.
SPECTACLED WEAVER (Ploceus ocularis) – Three at Xaro.
HOLUB'S GOLDEN-WEAVER (Ploceus xanthops) – Small numbers at Hakusembe, Xaro, and near Stanley's Camp.

We had fabulous luck with Pel's Fishing-Owls this year, with a total of three seen. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

SOUTHERN BROWN-THROATED WEAVER (Ploceus xanthopterus) – About 8 in the Xaro area (including 2 on the bird feeder at Drotsky's Camp).
SOUTHERN MASKED-WEAVER (Ploceus velatus) – Very common and widespread.
RED-BILLED QUELEA (Quelea quelea) – We saw small flocks near Windhoek, at Etosha, Hakusembe, and in the Okavango Delta.
SOUTHERN RED BISHOP (Euplectes orix) – Two at Windhoek Sewage Works.
FAN-TAILED WIDOWBIRD (Euplectes axillaris) – Three on a boat trip from Xaro.
GROSBEAK WEAVER (Amblyospiza albifrons) – One at Mahango, and 1 at Xaro.
Estrildidae (Waxbills and Allies)
COMMON WAXBILL (Estrilda astrild) – Two at Windhoek, 2 in the Erongo Mts. and 4 at Xaro.
BLACK-FACED WAXBILL (Estrilda erythronotos) – Two at Windhoek, and 2 near Usakos.
SOUTHERN CORDONBLEU (Uraeginthus angolensis) – Small numbers in acacia country; with a total of about 40.
VIOLET-EARED WAXBILL (Granatina granatina) – We saw these gorgeous waxbills at Windhoek, Sossusvlei, Usakos, Hohenstein, and Etosha - our most ever!
GREEN-WINGED PYTILIA (Pytilia melba) – Another great looking waxbill; we saw about 60 in a variety of dry acacia bush country.
RED-BILLED FIREFINCH (Lagonosticta senegala) – A single male at Windhoek.
BROWN FIREFINCH (Lagonosticta nitidula) – Two at Drotsky's, and 1 at Stanley's Camp.
RED-HEADED FINCH (Amadina erythrocephala) – Six at Etosha, 3 at Erongo Mts. and about 80 at Etosha.
Viduidae (Indigobirds)
PIN-TAILED WHYDAH (Vidua macroura) – We saw a male and 3 females near Stanley's Camp.
SHAFT-TAILED WHYDAH (Vidua regia) – Seen at Windhoek, Hohenstein and near Stanley's Camp, but all were in transitional plumage.

PETERS' EPAULETED FRUIT BAT (Epomophorus crypturus) – We saw about 40 at Etosha, and 10 at Stanley's Camp.
BLACK-FACED VERVET MONKEY (Cercopithecus aethiops) – About 30 from Mahango to Xaro, and 20 at Stanley's Camp.
CHACMA BABOON (Papio ursinus) – Common and widespread (mainly in rocky areas) throughout the tour; in all we saw about 280.
SCRUB HARE (Lepus saxatalis) – Two at Etosha.
CAPE GROUND SQUIRREL (Xerus inaurius) – Small numbers around Solitaire, in the Erongo Mts. and at Etosha.
TREE SQUIRREL (Paraxerus cepapi) – About 30 in the wooded areas of Etosha, and 75 in the Okavango region.
DASSIE RAT (Petromus typicus) – One at the Tropic of Capricorn, and about 10 in the Erongo Mts.
BLACK-BACKED JACKAL (Canis mesomelas) – One near Sossusvlei, and about 40 at Etosha.
BAT-EARED FOX (Otocyon megalotis) – Great to see 2 of these mainly nocturnal foxes one afternoon at Etosha.
RATEL (HONEY BADGER) (Mellivora capensis) – Amazing this tour, with singles at Etosha, and then twice in the Stanley's Camp area.

The Leopard wasn't the only one enjoying a nap; this quartet of Lions was part of a group of 17(!!) having a snooze. Photo by guide Terry Stevenson.

SLENDER MONGOOSE (Herpestes sanguineus) – One at Etosha.
BANDED MONGOOSE (Mungos mungo) – Two small groups along the road south of Rundu.
YELLOW MONGOOSE (Cynictis penicillata) – Singles at Okombahe and Etosha.
SPOTTED HYAENA (Crocuta crocuta) – Two singles near Stanley's Camp.
BROWN HYAENA (Hyaena brunnea) – Undoubtedly a major highlight of the tour; while on foot looking for sandgrouse we saw 1 cross the road just south of Solitaire. It then stopped and turned to look at us on three occasions before back-tracking across the road. So rare to see this uncommon nocturnal mammal in daylight and also only 40 mtrs. away!
WILD CAT (Felis silvestris) – One in the Usakos area.
LEOPARD (Panthera pardus) – Fantastic close looks at a female lounging in a tree near Stanley's Camp.
LION (Panthera leo) – Several wonderful encounters this tour; first we had a huge male at Etosha, and then 6 others there, and finally a pride of 17 near Stanley's Camp.
AFRICAN ELEPHANT (Loxodonta africana) – Great looks at huge bulls, and many family groups at Etosha, Mahango, and in the Okavango Delta; in all we saw about 140.
ROCK HYRAX (Procavia capensis) – About a dozen in the Namib Desert, and then about 150 in the Erongo Mts.
MOUNTAIN ZEBRA (Equus zebra) – Amazing numbers this year, with at least 250 in the Namib Desert.
BURCHELL'S ZEBRA (Equus burchelli) – Two hundred and fifty at Etosha, 300 at Mahango, and about 75 at the Okavango Delta.
BLACK RHINOCEROS (Diceros bicornis) – Five came to the Okaukuejo waterhole at night, and then 4 more in the Halali area.
WARTHOG (Phacochoerus aethiopicus) – Very common from Etosha north and in to the Okavango Delta.
HIPPOPOTAMUS (Hippopotamus amphibius) – About 40 at Mahango, 10 at Xaro, and 50+ in a pool near Stanley's Camp.
COMMON GIRAFFE (Giraffa camelopardalis) – First seen at Hohenstein, and then commonly throughout Etosha, Mahango, and the Okavango Delta.
BUSHBUCK (Tragelaphus scriptus) – About 15 at Mahango, and 4 at Stanley's Camp.
GREATER KUDU (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) – Six south of Windhoek, 8 in the Usakos area, 60 at Etosha, and about 25 in the Okavango area.
COMMON ELAND (Taurotragus oryx) – About 10 at Uris.
AFRICAN BUFFALO (Syncerus caffer) – Sixty at Mahango, and about 500 in the Stanley's Camp area (which included a herd of 400).
LECHWE (Kobus leche) – About 40 at Mahango, and 10 near Stanley's Camp.
REEDBUCK (Redunca arundinum) – Thirty at Mahango, and 5 near Stanley's Camp.
GEMSBOK (Oryx gazella) – About 150 in the Sossusvlei and Namib Desert area, 2 near Usakos, and about 60 at Etosha.
TOPI (Damaliscus lunatus) – Two at Mahango, and 7 near Stanley's Camp.
HARTEBEEST (KONGONI) (Alcelaphus buselaphus) – Also known as Red Hartebeest; we saw about 30 in the Stanley's Camp area.
BLUE WILDEBEEST (Connochaetes taurinus) – Six near Sossusvlei, 80+ at Etosha, and about 60 near Stanley's Camp.
STEENBOK (Raphicerus campestris) – Small numbers near Windhoek, Usakos, and at Etosha.
KIRK'S DIK-DIK (Modoqua kirki) – Three at our camp in the Erongo Mts.
IMPALA (Aepyceros malampus) – About 100 at Etosha, 60 at Mahango, and 200+ in the Stanley's Camp area.
SPRINGBOK (Antidorcas marsupialis) – Widespread in the arid country from south of Windhoek to Sossusvlei, and then north to Usakos and Etosha.


Reptiles seen on the tour included;

Rock Python; 1 at Etosha.

Namib Rock Agama; widespread in small numbers.

Water Monitor; 1 near Stanley's Camp.

Nile Crocodile; about 250 at Mahango and Xaro.

Leopard Tortoise; 1 near Stanley's Camp.

Totals for the tour: 357 bird taxa and 40 mammal taxa