Tanzania, September 9th - 27th 2005

Published by Jack Stephens (jstephens62 AT comcast.net)

Participants: Jack Stephens


Photos with this report (click to enlarge)

White-bellied Go-away-bird
White-bellied Go-away-bird
White-headed Buffalo-Weaver
White-headed Buffalo-Weaver
Tawny Eagle
Tawny Eagle
Red-and-yellow Barbet
Red-and-yellow Barbet

I wake up and go outside to explore the garden. A flock of warblers is moving through the flowers, except they aren’t warblers, they are AFRICAN YELLOW WHITE-EYES. A flock of crows call in the distance. They sound odd, probably because they aren’t crows, but HADADA IBIS. The flycatcher in the tree looks familiar in silhouette, but when the light changes, it is a bird I have never seen before, AFRICAN PARADISE-FLYCATCHER.

This is the first day of our 17 day tour through northern Tanzania. My wife Ellen is still sleeping in our room, next door to our good friends Dan and Carol. In an hour our driver Geitan and our bird guide Anthony will arrive to take us out and start our safari. They are part of the core team of Birding and Beyond out of Arusha. Incredibly, while this is scheduled as a birding trip, I am the only birder in our group. Ellen, Dan, and Carol go months without even touching a pair of binoculars in the states. However, they have shown an incredible ability to rise to the avian challenge on previous trips. They are great at spotting birds, and get exited about the flashier species. They even convinced me to look at an occasional mammal.

We decided to do the standard “northern circuit” of Tanzania: Arusha National Park, Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater, and the Serengeti. One option that Birding and Beyond offers is an extension to Speke Bay Lodge on Lake Victoria, where we picked up several species .at the eastern edge of their range. We also got to see the lake fly eruption on Lake Victoria, but more about that later.
It was quite dry while we were there, which made for easy viewing of game. We probably would not have seen some of the predator hunts that we saw in the wet season. There was no concern about roads being impassable due to rain or mud. On the other hand, the birds were not singing, and the whydahs and widowbirds were in non-breeding plumage.


Sept. 12 Arrive Arusha, Maasai Safari Lodge
Sept. 13 Arusha National Park
Sept. 14 Drive to Tarangire National Park, night in Tarangire Safari Lodge
Sept. 15-16 Tarangire NP, Tarangire Sopa Lodge
Sept. 17-18 Lake Manyara, E Unoto Retreat
Sept. 19-20 Gibbs Farm
Sept. 21 Ngorongoro Crater, Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge
Sept. 22-23 Serengeti National Park, Ndutu Lodge
Sept. 24-25 Speke Bay Lodge
Sept. 26 Serengeti National Park, Ndutu Lodge
Sept. 27 Leave from Arusha

September 9th.

We fly British Airways from Seattle direct to London. It is an overnight flight; eyeshades and Ambien work better for Ellen than for me. Our seats are in the back next to the lavatories, which have a regular stream of patrons, including a few that strike up conversations. I make a mental note to avoid those seats in the future.

September 10th

After an easy pass through immigration and customs in Heathrow, we connect onto KLM to Amsterdam. KLM proves to be very picky about carry-on weight. They balk at my carry-on that has my scope and camera in it; it exceeds their limit of 10 kg. I pull the scope and camera out, check the bag, and carry them loose with my small bag which has my binocs. A short 45 minute flight has us into Amsterdam by 5PM. We make our way via the train into downtown, and then flag a cab who takes us to our B&B.

September 11th.

KLM is the only airlines that flies direct from Europe to Arusha. Since the flights are so long, and since Dan has never been to Europe, we scheduled a full day in Amsterdam on the way over. We have a great day walking the city, and take in the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh museum, the Anne Frank House, and the red light district in a day. Amsterdam is a great city for the casual American visitor; everyone speaks English, the city is accessible by foot, prices are reasonable, and there is a lot to see. Our host is an expatriate American who has lived there for years. I can see why.

September 12th

We catch the morning flight to Arusha. I think that the weight restriction on carry-on that I ran into was due to the small size of the plane from London to Amsterdam, but no, they still have the 10 kg limit. So once again I re-shuffle my optics and check the rest. The flight is long, but anticipation grows as we cross the Mediterranean and cross over the coast in Libya. Night has fallen by the time we land in Arusha, and after negotiating our visas, immigration and picking up our bags, we quickly find our guides Anthony and Geitan and head off.

We have booked with Birding and Beyond, a company based in Arusha that specializes in birding tours. They are a smaller company, and don’t have the name recognition of some of the bigger operators. They offer custom, personalized service however, and I don’t see how we could have done better.

On the drive in from the airport Dan is chatting with Anthony and Geitan. Dan is a bit “out there”, and once he determined that they had all three been raised Roman Catholic, they were soon singing hymns in Latin and trading Sister Gertrude stories. I sigh that this is going to be a long trip.

September 13th

The first two nights we stay at Maasai Safari Lodge in Arusha. This is very small place, tucked behind a residential area on the outskirts of town. The electricity and hot water are iffy, but the rooms are pleasant and large, and there is small garden that attracts a nice variety of birds. After that first morning walk and breakfast, Anthony and Geitan arrive to take us on our first full day. We tick off VARIABLE SUNBIRD, AMYTHEST SUNDBIRD, COMMON BULBUL, and AFRICAN BLACK SWIFT, and then head off to Arusha National Park, just an hour away from town.

Many of the standard tours skip this park, which is a shame. It has a mixture of montane forest, grassland and lakes, and proved a great kick-off location for our trip. After a short drive, we enter the park and within minutes come to a clearing loaded with Giraffe, Zebra, Wildebeest, Cape Buffalo, and Warthog. It seems like a scene from the Garden of Eden. Even though we will see these species many times again, that first view is magical.

While we are watching the mammals, the birds are coming fast, including fly-by LIZARD BUZZARD and SILVERY-CHEEKED HORNBILL.

Arusha is the only park we will visit that allows walks with an armed ranger. So for $20 we are accompanied for the next two hours by Roger in his green fatigue uniform and AK-47. I think that the AK is a bit much, until we spook a Cape Buffalo just 30 yards away hunkered done in some brush. Roger says that they usually run away like this one did, but at least once he has had one run at the group. A few rounds in the air and it turned tail, but suddenly I am happy Roger and his gun are there.

We see our first AUGER BUZZARD soaring overhead, and get great views of a BROAD-BILLED ROLLER in the scope. After a visit to a waterfall and a walk through the woods, we return to the car, thank Roger, and head off. We score some good mammals, including Red Duiker, Sykes Monkey and Black-and-White Colobus Monkey. A visit to two lakes yields SOUTHERN POCHARD, HOTTENTOT TEAL (don’t you just love that name?), INTERMEDIATE EGRET, LITTLE GREBE, LONG-TAILED COMORANT, and GREAT CORMORANT.

At the end of the day we stopped by an orphanage for a visit. We had asked Anthony ahead of our trip how we could best give back to the people of Tanzania, and he had suggested this orphanage, and an elementary school that we would visit later. We brought some school supplies, soccer balls, vitamins, and candy with us, and expected to just drop it off and then leave. It turned out that they had a much more formal visit in mind. We sat down and heard about the history of the orphanage from the director, met with the assistant director, the staff member who keeps their books, and then toured the facility. It is basically a three room building with 40 children in two bedrooms, about 6 children to a double-sized bunk bed. We then sat down as the older children performed several songs and synchronized dances. There were some great singers in the group, and the songs were real toe-tappers. I was quite surprised to learn from Anthony that all the songs warned of the dangers of AIDS. After the performance it was time for us to distribute the treats, as well as some impromptu soccer practice with Dan and the children.

That evening we enjoyed an authentic African meal at Maasai Safari Lodge with our host Cornelius. He is a retired veterinarian who worked for 15 years with the game animals on the Serengeti, mainly doing research. It is hard to imagine treadmill tests on elephants, but he assures us that it can be done. You do need a really big treadmill, however.

Best Bird of the Day (as defined by my non-birding compatriots)
WHITE-FRONTED BEE-EATER. We had stunning scope looks on our walk in Arusha NP.

Hardest to Find Bird of the Day (as defined by Anthony, based on location and time of the year) BLACK-THROATED WATTLE-EYE. Seen on our walk in the forest.
Biggest Miss of the Day (as defined by me, usually the ones Anthony saw and I didn’t) HARTLAUB’S TURACO. Anthony saw one in trees during our walk and one run across the road in Arusha NP, they were gone by the time I looked. Highlights of the day (as defined by us all) The first view of wildlife in Arusha NP. The visit to the orphanage

September 14th

We left Cornelius and drove to Tarangire National Park. The road down was good tarmac, with occasional villages and lots of bicycle traffic. On the way down Anthony spotted our only PYGMY FALCON perched along the side of the road, trying his best to look mean despite his size. We also started to see the beautiful SUPERB STARLINGS. “You will soon be tired of them” Geitan said, and his was almost right.
The entrance to Tarangire proved very birdy, with first views of ASHY STARLING, SPECKLE-FRONTED WEAVER, GREEN-WINGED PYTILIA, and RED-CHEEKED CORDON-BLEU. Anthony heard and we eventually found a PEARL-SPOTTED OWLET in a tree behind the entrance gate.

Driving in we saw our first lions, two females lounging underneath a tree just off the side of the road. After appropriate looks and photos, we started off and then realized why they appeared so satisfied. There was a freshly killed zebra just behind the tree. Since this was just off the main road, we would visit this kill several more times during our stay.

The first night we stayed in the wonderful Tarangire Safari Lodge. It is situated on a bluff overlooking the Tarangire River. When we pulled in there were herds of elephant, zebra, wildebeest, troops of baboon, along with TAWNY EAGLE, WHITE-BACKED VULTURE, RUPPELL’S GRIFFON VULTURE, and SECRETARY BIRD all soaring at eye level. We have another Garden of Eden moment.
At the end of the day we pass the zebra kill. There is a rib cage and parts of hindquarters left, but no vultures to my surprise.

That night we sleep in a tent with a permanent roof, queen-sized bed, and our own toilet and shower. We loved the experience of feeling closer to the bush, and loved our stay at Tarangire Safari Lodge. The food was great, the staff friendly and the views superb. That night I am awakened to the sound of warthogs outside our tent. Very cool.

Best Bird YELLOW-COLLARED LOVEBIRD. “They look like little jewels.”
Hardest Bird CUT-THROAT FINCH. Two found at Tarangire entrance.
Highlight: Lions at the kill

September 15th

We spend the day driving around the park. The zebra kill now has a large group of WHITE-BACKED and LAPPET-FACED VULTURES. New birds come fast and furious, including the common VON DER DEKEN’S HORNBILL, RED-BILLED HORNBILL, AFRICAN PIED WAGTAIL, YELLOW-THROATED SPURFOWL, RED-THROATED SPURFOWL, RUFOUS-TAILED WEAVER, and LITTLE BEE-EATER. A visit to a river bed with some standing water yields BLACK CRAKE, PIED KINGFISHER, ARROW-MARKED BABBLER and a BEARDED WOODPECKER.

We see many elephants. At one point a herd walks right by our parked car, and a juvenile reaches up with its trunk and almost touches the tourists in the car behind us. A female with a baby stops to scratch against a tree, so close we can hear the scratching. Geitan says that sometimes they scratch and the tree falls down.

We pass a Vervet Monkey spread-eagle in a tree, revealing sky-blue scrotum and a cherry-red phallus. Very amusing. We also find a group of Pygmy Mongoose in their termite mound nest, extremely cute little guys.

That night we move to the Tarangire Sopa Lodge. As we drive in we see our only RED-HEADED WEAVER, while SPECKLED PIGEONS coo from the rooftops.

Best Bird: RED-AND-YELLOW BARBET. Just a stunning bird. It rightfully belongs on the cover of the Stevenson field guide
Hardest Bird: OVAMBO SPARROWHAWK. One flew in a perched overhead, a lucky find.
Missed Bird: ABYSSINIAN SCIMITARBILL. One was perched in dense scrub near our car. Anthony and I have one of those “It is right THERE” moments when in flies off.
Highlight: “Blue-balled Monkey”

September 16th

Another day in Tarangire. We head to a marsh, and pick up or first views
HAMMERKOP, COLLARD PRATINCOLE, AND COMB DUCK. Over 80 elephants are out in the marsh feeding. RED-BILLED BUFFALO-WEAVERS and PALM SWIFTS are common, along with a few WHITE-HEADED BUFFALO-WEAVER and SLATE-COLORED BOUBOUS. Raptors are everywhere, including EASTERN CHANTING-GOSHAWK, BATLEUR EAGLES, BROWN SNAKE-EAGLE and BLACK-THROATED SNAKE-EAGLE. This day is somewhat quieter than the day before, and we come to appreciate the peacefulness as well as the excitement of the bush.

Best Bird: MARTIAL EAGLE. An impressive raptor, seen both soaring and perched
Hardest Bird: LESSER KESTRAL. Declining and endangered, one seen perched.
Missed Bird: RED-FRONTED TINKERBIRD. Seen by Anthony briefly, then flew.
Highlight: AFRICAN HAWK-EAGLE. A pair was chasing a francolin. One hit it, the feathers flew, but the francolin escaped.

September 17th

We drive today from Tarangire to Lake Manyara. On the way we pass the zebra kill,
and there is now little left but a backbone and some scraps. We also see our second set of lions, this time a group of three with a wildebeest kill in the bushes. We stop at the
Tarangire Safari Lodge for lunch on the way out. The food is great (Mexican, no less),
and we pick up YELLOW-BELLIED GREENBUL and COQUI FRONCOLIN for good measure.

The road to Arusha leads us to the turnoff to Lake Manyara, and Anthony says this used to be one of the worst roads in the country. Then the Japanese came in, and now there is glass smooth blacktop all the way to the entrance gate to Ngorongoro Crater. The Japanese offered to continue on all the way to Lake Victoria, but the Tanzanians thought that such a road across the Serengeti would only bring more people, faster driving, and more disruption to the animals. They consciously choose less development, even when someone else was paying the tab. Interesting. The contrast was stark as we left the Japanese road and headed in on the rough dirt track to E Unoto Retreat, just outside of Lake Manyara NP. We passed through some of the most desolate terrain we would see on the whole trip, bare dirt and rock with hardly any vegetation. We started to kid that someone should put a model Mars rover out there, it looked that barren. We did pick up some good birds however, including FISHER’S SPARROW-LARK and SOMALI SHORT-TOED LARK. I was starting to worry, but just as we got to the lodge the landscape turned green. The E Unoto Retreat is nestled up against the Rift Valley escarpment. It is owned by an American, but managed by the Maasai. We spend the remainder of the day looking around the environs of the lodge, picking up VIOLET-BACKED STARLING, BRONZE

Best Bird: SADDLE-BILLED STORK. Killer views in Tarangire just as we were leaving
Hardest Bird: GRAY KESTRAL. Seen perched in Tarangire.
Biggest Miss: RED-FRONTED BARBET. Seen by Anthony as we drove up to E Unoto and not relocated
BLUE-NAPED MOUSEBIRD. Seen by Anthony several times on our walk, but always as fly-bys at a distance.

September 18th

We spend the day in Lake Manyara National Park. Because of the ground water here, it is relatively lush forest, the habitat is much closer to Arusha NP than Tarangire. As we toured the visitor’s center while Geitan handled the paperwork for entry, we were shocked by what we read in the guestbook at the visitor’s center. Several tourists who had exchanged their currency for Tanzania shillings were denied entry to the park; they take only US dollars!

Manyara offered our first view of hippos, with first views of BLACK-WINGED STILT, GREY-CROWNED CRANE and our only view of PALM-NUT VULTURE and BLACK HERON. At a picnic spot, a tame RED-AND-YELLOW BARBET kept us company, while CLIFF CHAT pairs worked the surrounding trees.

Best Birds: SILVERY-CHEEKED HORNBILL. The casque on the bill is quite impressive
RED-AND-YELLOW BARBET. A bird that never disappoints.
Hardest Birds: CRESTED GUINEAFOWL. A pair was located near the entrance to the park
PETER’S TWINSPOT. A single male off the side of the road in Manyara
Highlight: Manyara’s famous tree lions. Two females were found in a tree, affording good looks and photos

September 19th

We leave E Unoto Retreat and stop at a Maasai primary school for the distribution of our remaining supplies. Again we are received by the director and have a tour of the school before we distribute our gifts. The children seemed so happy with their new pencils; we reflected on this moment when we stopped by the toy department in Harrod’s in London on the way back. Our society seems like wretched excess in comparison.

We stop in town for a spot where Anthony has previously seen VERREAUX’S EAGLE-OWL. We walk through yellow acacia woodland, and get good looks at AFRICAN GOSHAWK and OPEN-BILLED STORK, but no owl. We spend about an hour, and I am ready to throw in the towel, when the owl flies right by us and lands in a tree. I get good photos with my camera, but I now wish I had gone back to the car for the scope for and digiscoping camera and gotten a shot that way. We then drove to Gibbs Farm on the slope of the Ngorongoro crater. The farm has been there for decades and has wonderful gardens, great staff and fabulous views of the valley below. The parking lot had a tree filled with BRONZE SUNBIRDS and occasional COLLARED SUNBIRDS. SPECKLED MOUSEBIRDS were plentiful, as were BAGLAFECHT’S WEAVERS (two races). We loved Gibbs Farm.

Highlight: All the children in the school holding up their pencils and cheering.

September 20th

We took a walk into the Ngorongoro Conversation Area behind Gibb’s Farm large organic vegetable garden. We could not go in early, because the elephants and buffalo come down from elevation to the surrounding forest in the night, and it is not safe to bump into one in dense forest.

The walk was somewhat quiet. We did have soaring a MOUNTAIN BUZZARD and BAT HAWK, along with a GREY-CAPPED WARBLER. Finally we saw what Anthony was looking for, a brief but stunning view of SCHLOW’S TURACO. It is emerald green above and deep scarlet below, and it just stopped me in my tracks.

Missed Bird: MOUSTACHED TINKERBIRD, heard by Anthony but not seen.
Highlight: Gibbs Farm gardens, food, and staff.

September 21st

That morning Anthony and I met early to bird the gardens. We had numerous OLIVE THRUSHES at ground level, and in the canopy were CARDINAL WOODPECKER, BLACKCAP and WHITE-TAILED BLUE-FLYCATCHER. Moving down to the gardens we found migrating EURASIAN BEE-EATERS along with TAMBORINE DOVE, BLUE-SPOTTED WOOD-DOVE, and a flock of AFRICAN CITRIL.
We then gathered ourselves together and left Gibbs Farm for the Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge. As we gained elevation we encountered CINNAMON-CHESTED BEE-EATERS, a specialty of the area. After checking into the Sopa lodge we descended into the crater. Ngorongoro crater is a wonderful area, but it is heavily visited and at times we felt like we were in an animal park. We picked up some good birds including YELLOW-BILLED KITE at a picnic spot. The lake in the crater was almost dry, but a small stream of water was enough to bring in PIED AVOCET, GREATER FLAMINGO, CAPE TEAL and YELLOW-BILLED DUCK. We also got to see COMMON OSTRICH mating, which involves quite a bit of wing waving and neck gyrations on the male’s part.

After calling it a day, we left the lake and headed back to the lodge. We soon came across a group of cars by the side of the road, usually a good sign. Sure enough, there was a Cheetah with a kill. We had been warned that too many cars could stress the animal and put it off its kill, so we just looked briefly and then headed off. Anthony spotted something in the distance, and urged Geitan to hurry up. After a kilometer or more, we find that he had spotted a pair of Rhinoceros, mother and baby, who gave us somewhat distant but satisfying views. We were lucky, in that rhinos had not been seen in the crater in four days. Flushed with success, we continued back, saw a small group of cars around a tree, and got a good look at our only Leopard of the trip. Ngorongoro lives up to its reputation!

Best Bird: GRAY-CROWNED CRANE, close in and in good light.
Highlight: Cheetah, Rhino, Leopard, 1-2-3, all in 40 minutes

September 22nd

Anthony and I birded the Sopa lodge grounds that morning, and picked up some good birds including GOLDEN-WINGED SUNBIRD, TACAZZE SUNBIRD, WHITE-NAPED RAVEN, and STREAKY SEEDEATER. We left the Sopa Lodge after breakfast for one last tour through the crater. We watched a pride of 11 Lions try unsuccessfully to stalk a mixed heard of Zebra and Wildebeest. Most appeared to be juveniles, and didn’t seem to know quite what to do. After lunch in the crater, we pressed on for the long, dusty, bumpy, hot drive to Ndutu Lodge on the eastern fringe of the Serengeti. Did I mention it was dusty? More than once I wished for Japanese engineers that afternoon.

Best Bird: AFRICAN WOOD-HOOPOE, at a picnic spot in the crater
Hardest Birds: CINNAMON BRACHEN-WARBLER, on the grounds of Sopa Lodge. A notorious skulker.
CHESTNUT-BANDED PLOVER, with chicks on the lake in the crater on our second visit
Biggest Miss: AFRICAN QUAILFINCH, seen by Anthony as we drove by in the crater.

September 23rd

After settling into Ndutu Lodge the night before, we enjoyed looks at the FISHCER’S LOVEBIRD and GREY-BREASTED SPURFOWL that would come to their water pool outside the dining room. The drive that day was somewhat quiet bird-wise; the lake behind Ndutu Lodge was dry, but we still managed good looks at SECRETARY BIRD and EASTERN CHANTING GOSHAWK.

Unlike Ngorongoro, we were entirely alone near Ndutu when we spotted a Cheetah stalking a lone immature Impala. The cat and the antelope stared at each other while the cat moved very slowly forward. When he finally charged, the Impala ran towards us, into trees and away. The Cheetah walked over to the road, plopped down in front of us to recover from the chase. After awhile he moved off the road so we could continue, allowing very close views. Two kilometers later we spotted a second Cheetah stalking a head of Grant’s Gazelle. She was able to hide and let them approach her. After an hour when she finally charged, she was on one gazelle in literally 2-3 seconds. She dragged her kill to some clumps of grass where she started to feed, all the while keeping a watchful eye for any predators that might come to take her prize away. Watching this hunt was one of the most memorable parts of the trip. It occurred to me later that an all-out birding group probably would have not stopped and spent the time to watch the drama.

Best Bird: BLACK-LORED BABBLER, my 300th bird of the trip
Memorable Moment: Cheetah hunt

September 24th

This day we had a gruelling drive across the Serengeti to Speke Bay Lodge, a total of 10 hours in the van. The western Serengeti was more scenic than the eastern half, with more trees, hills and rivers. Anthony and Geitan managed to find a WATER THICK-KNEE and STRIATED HERON along the river edge. Anthony’s sharp eyes picked up a YELLOW-THROATED LONGCLAW hidden in the grass as we bounced along. We were happy to reach the western entrance to the park, pull onto tarmac road and make our way to Speke Bay Lodge on the shores of Lake Victoria.

Best Bird: YELLOW-BILLED STORK. One fishing in the Grumeti River
Most Difficult Bird: AFRICAN GOLDEN WEAVER. One perched, also river-side.
Biggest Miss: Probable African Cuckoo, seen flying dead away from us in the car, but not a good enough view to identify
Highlight: Two female lion with four cubs and kill, just off the road in the Serengeti

September 25th

I was starting to question the wisdom of the long drive to Speke Bay after the previous day’s drive. Getting up the next day however, the new birds just started rolling in, and then it seemed like a capital idea. Anthony and I quickly had both RED-CHESTED and SCARLET- CHESTED SUNBIRDS, along with BLACK-HEADED GONOLEKS, SLENDER-BILLED WEAVER, and SWAMP FLYCATCHER. On the shore of the lake were numerous GLOSSY ISIS, HADADA IBIS, RUFF, PIED KINGFISHER and WATTLED LAPWING. I managed to find one TEMMICK’S STINT in a group of LITTLE STINTS, while GREY-HEADED GULLS could be seen with the scope in the distance. I managed to find a few GULL-BILLED TERNS and WHITE-WINGED TERNS amongst the flocks of WHISKERED TERNS. Anthony is surprised to learn that we have Gull-billed Tern in the US.

Anthony and I bird the grounds of the lodge and in addition to SPOTTED THICK-KNEE he is pleased to pick up a HEULGIN’S COURSER. The courser hunkers down and allows me to approach if I move very slowly (“Like a cheetah” Anthony jokes) and I get great photos.

That afternoon Anthony comes to get me, he says we are going out looking for nightjars. “But it is daylight, shouldn’t we wait for dusk?” I ask. “No, we look for them on the ground” Anthony replies. So we stand under some trees, looking at the leaf-litter not 20 feet away with our binoculars. Apparently this makes them easier to see. Within a few minutes we pick up both SQUARE-TAILED and SLENDER-TAILED NIGHTJARS, and I learn a new birding technique.

We happen to be at Lake Victoria during the five days a year that the lake flies are mating. Within 100 yard of the shore, the bushes are literally covered with mosquito-sized flies. They don’t bite, but as you walk by they swarm and fly into your eyes, ears, and nose. Clouds of them look like dense fog in the distance. We are there on day 2 and 3 of the flies, and as some die there are piles of dead flies underneath the walkway lights at Speke Bay. The ANGOLA SWALLOWS are working as hard as they can to take their toll on the flies, but there are so many that it hardly makes a dent.

The flies are an annoyance, but also quite a spectacle of nature. I try to imagine the number of flies if they are covering the whole of Lake Victoria, and my brain can’t handle numbers that quickly become astronomical.

Memorable Moment: Lake Victoria lake fly eruption

September 26th

Originally we were going to spend this day in Speke Bay and then fly back to Arusha on the 27th for the evening KLM flight back. Speke Bay was full however, so we drive back to Ndutu Lodge and spend the night there. On the way out I was concerned about all the driving, but it turned out wonderfully. For those two days we got to relive parts of our safari as a perfect ending to a great trip.

The drive back to Ndutu Lodge was not as long as on the way out, probably because we were birding a bit less. We still managed to pick up good species, including early migrant EURASIAN SWIFTS and a BLACK-BILLED BARBET at riverside that Anthony was quite pleased to find. We find WHITE-HEADED VULTURE perched and soaring.

That night at Ndutu Lodge, I hear an owl hooting at dusk. I try to find it, but it stops, and I decide to respect the signs warning guests of the lodge not to go wandering into the bush.

Best Birds: SOUTHERN GROUND-HORNBILL. A small group just off the road
AFRICAN HOOPOE. Very impressive, even for non-birders
Hardest Bird: BLACK-BILLED BARBET. Riverside in the western Serengeti

September 27th

Our last day in Africa. We are ready to go home to our families, but sad to leave. We pass our last lion of the trip, a lone female surveying the Serengeti from a kopje. We drive back via the Ngorongoro crater rim, and have a lovely lunch at Gibbs Farm. Our last baobab tree is on the descent of the rift valley escarpment down to Lake Manyara, and my last lifer is a MOTTLED SWIFT flying nearby. Anthony and Geitan have thoughtfully arranged for us to have a shower and changed of clothes in a tented camp in Manyara before the long trip home. I still have the image of the camp with its manicured lawn, the yellow acacia trees with AFRICAN GREY HORNBILLS flying through the branches, and Vervet Monkeys foraging below. There is no place quite like Africa.

It is dark by the time by the time we reach Arusha, and on the way to the airport we have to pull over for a police motorcade with lights flashing. It is the defendants in the Rwanda genocide trials Geitan tells us, being escorted from the courtroom where the trials are taking place to their quarters. We reach the airport, and after an emotional farewell with Anthony and Geitan we are off.



It is hard to say enough complimentary things about Birding and Beyond. Anthony and Geitan became our friends during the time we were there. They are both phenomenal in picking out wildlife, both avian and otherwise. While Geitan was driving, Anthony was ALWAYS scanning for the next sighting, even when we were tired and nodding off. Anthony knows his birds (Geitan isn’t any slouch in this department either). Geitan knows the mammals and history of Tanzania, both have the ability to make you feel well cared for. While we did not have a chance to meet Tina, who makes the arrangements back in Arusha, she did a great job in getting us the best rooms at each lodge. (best views, double vs. single beds, etc.)

Anthony is now a co-leader for one of the major US birding tour companies when they come to Tanzania. They do the same tour that we were on, with 16 people instead of 4, stay in the same lodges, same number of days, for twice the price. It is good to be smug.


I took Stevenson and Fanshawe’s “Guide to the Birds of East Africa”, as well as Sinclair and Ryan’s Birds of “Africa South of the Sahara” (Ian Sinclair guides for Birding and Beyond on occasion, by the way). Anthony had a copy of Stevenson and a copy of Zimmerman’s Birds of “Kenya and Northern Tanzania.” While we had three field guides, we basically used Stevenson 99% of the time, and I think you would be fine to use it as your only reference. I have made up a quick-reference index for the Stevenson book in Excel format, which I will happily share if you e-mail me the request.


Having said the above about the field guides, they do have their own strengths, and I used all three to get ready for the trip. The most helpful thing I did was to buy a copy of the VHS tape “A Nature Safari to Kenya and Northern Tanzania” from the ABA, and watch it with the sound off. As each new bird would come into view, I would pause the tape, try to identify it, and then write down my ID. I then went through and saw how I did. I would get most, and miss some, but it allowed me to hit the ground running once we got to Tanzania.


I almost didn’t bring my scope, since I thought it wouldn’t work well in the car, and we would be outside of the car so little. What a mistake that would have been. We used it daily, propped inside of the car, and when we were outside at the lodges, at lunch sites, and when we were outside of the parks.


I used a Nikon 8800 8 megapixel point-and shoot with a 10X optical zoom, and a 1.7X converter. It was great to have that degree of magnification, and I got some great pictures with it. On the down side, it is somewhat slow, both with time between hitting the shutter and exposure, and the time it takes to process the image before you are ready to shoot again. I also found the auto-focus would get confused with vegetation between me and the subject, and the manual focus mechanism is cumbersome. If I had it to do over again I would look into a digital SLR. However, since I am not really a photographer, I would have a hard time spending more on my camera than I did on my scope!

I also used an Epson P-2000 digital storage device. It performed flawlessly, and allowed my to take an essentially unlimited number of pictures stored on the 40 gb hard drive. It is also handy for showing pictures on our TV when we returned.


When you see close to 100 species a day, day after day, with most lifers, it is hard to keep track of what you have seen (what a great problem to have!). I used the Birds of the World add-on to Avisys to generate a hard copy list of all Tanzanian species, added in some blank pages for notes and mammals list, and had it bound at Kinkos. I used a pocket digital voice recorder in the field, then I would check off what I had seen that night on the bound checklist. It makes this trip report much, much easier to write.


The preferred currency for everything except minor purchases is US dollars. Make sure you bring crisp, new bills. One lodge would not accept the older “small head” US bills in large denominations, because of the concerns of counterfeit bills coming in from Europe.


On the flight into Arusha, try to sit near the front or the back of the plane, so you can get off quickly. Then head immediately for the window where you purchase your visas. This line gets quite long, and it is good to be at the front.


We took only nylon travel clothes, and there is no other way to go. They wash out in the sink, and are dry by the next day. It allows you to pack light. Many lodges do have laundry service however, at E Unoto Lodge it was free.


Tanzanians are very polite and gracious people. Every conversation must start with an exchange of something like “How are you today?”, “Very well thank you, and you?” “Quite well, thank you”. While essentially everyone speaks English, they are obviously pleased with any Swahili that we learned. They will be even more pleased if you acknowledge that their language is actually named Kiswahili; Swahili is a misnomer used by foreigners. A dozen words go a long way, learn these before you go and then build from there:

Hello Jambo
How are you? Habari?
How are you today? Habari ya leo?
How are you this morning? Habari ya asubuhi?
How are you this afternoon? Habari ya mchana?
How are you this evening? Habari ya jioni?
Well, good Nzuri
Very well, excellent Nzuri-sana
Please Tafadari
Thank you Asanti
Thank you very much Asanti-sana
You are welcome Karibu
You are very welcome Karibu-sana
Sorry Pole
Very sorry Pole-sana
Slowly Pole-pole


We decided to spend two nights in Europe both going and coming. While is cut down some on our Africa time, it did provide a nice European “book-end” to the Africa experience. We stayed in Amsterdam on the way over and London on the way back. Between the two I preferred Amsterdam. It is more exotic with its canals and bicycles, very accessible, and cheaper than London.


We wanted to give back in some way to the people of Tanzania. Many tours will hand out treats to children as they drive by, and we did do some of this. The downside is that it encourages the children to beg for treats with each car that passes. Much better I think to visit a school or orphanage and give supplies to them. Pens and pencils are in high demand, along with some items unique to their situation (the orphanage needed mosquito nets). We also made a cash donation to both places, but this is entirely at your discretion. Ask your tour operator what they would suggest. Don’t pass up this opportunity, it is a great way to connect to the people, and gave us some of the best memories of the trip.

Jack Stephens
Edmonds, WA

Click Here for a quick index for the Stevenson and Fanshaw Guide to Birds of East Africa

Species Lists

Struthioniformes Struthionidae
Ostrich Struthio camelus
Common in Tarangire, Ngorongoro and the Serengeti

Podicipediformes Podicipedidae
Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis
Several in Arusha NP
Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus
A few in Arusha NP

Pelecaniformes Phalacrocoracidae
Long-tailed Cormorant
A few in Arusha NP
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
A few in Arusha NP

Pelecaniformes Pelecanidae
Great White Pelican Pelecanus onocrotalus
One immature at Lake Manyara

Anseriformes Anatidae
Maccoa Duck Oxyura maccoa
A few in Arusha NP
Egyptian Goose Alopochen aegyptiacus
Several seen in multiple locations
Spur-winged Goose Plectropterus gambensis
A few in Arusha NP and Tarangire
Comb Duck Sarkidiornis melanotos
A few in Arusha NP
Cape Teal Anas capensis
Several in Ngorongoro Crater
Yellow-billed Duck Anas undulate
One in Ngorongoro Crater
Hottentot Teal Anas hottentota
Several in Tarangire and Ngorongoro
Southern Pochard Netta erythrophthalma
Several in Arusha NP

Phoenicopteriformes Phoenicopteri
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus rubber
A dozen immatures in Ngorongoro

Ciconiiformes Ardeidae
Black Heron Egretta ardesiaca
One at Lake Manyara
Little Egret Egretta garzetta
Several at Tarangire, Manyara and Speke Bay
Intermediate Egret Mesophoyx intermedia
A few at Arusha NP, Tarangire and Lake Manyara
Gray Heron Ardea cinerea
Several at all locations
Black-headed Heron Ardea melanocephala
Several at multiple locations
Great Egret Ardea alba
One at Lake Manyara
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Many at Arusha NP, Tarangire and Lake Manyara
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
One at Lake Manyara
Madagascar Squacco Heron Ardeola idea
One at Lake Manyara
Striated Heron Butorides striatus
One in the western Serengeti

Ciconiiformes Scopidae
Hamerkop Scopus umbretta
Individuals at Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Speke Bay

Ciconiiformes Threskiornithidae
Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
Several at Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro and Speke Bay
Hadada Ibis Bostrychia hagedash
Individuals at Arusha NP and Tarangire, many at Lake Manyara and Speke Bay
Sacred Ibis Threskiornis aethiopicus
Many at all locations around water
African Spoonbill Platalea alba
One at Ngorongoro Crater

Ciconiiformes Ciconiidae
Yellow-billed Stork Mycteria ibis
Several at Serengeti
African Openbill Anastomus lamelligerus
Several at Tarangire, a few around Lake Manyara
Woolly-necked Stork Ciconia episcopus
A few in the Serengeti
Saddle-billed Stork Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis
One seen well in Tarangire, and absolutely stunning bird!
Marabou Stork Leptoptilos crumeniferus
A few perched and soaring in Tarangire and Manyara, two at a kill in Serengeti

Falconiformes Accipitridae
Bat Hawk Macheiramphus alcinus
One soaring at Gibbs farm
Black-shouldered Kite Elanus caeruleus
2-3 seen in Tarangire and the Seregeti
Black Kite Milvus migrans
One soaring en route from Manyara to Gibbs Farm
Yellow-billed Kite Milvus aegyptius
Many at picnic site in Ngorongoro Crater. Anthony says that tourists are regularly injured trying to feed the kites by hand.
African Fish-Eagle Haliaeetus vocifer
Several at Tarangire, and Lake Manyara. At Speke Bay they are nesting on the grounds
Palm-nut Vulture Gypohierax angolensis
Two immatures soaring at Lake Manyara
Hooded Vulture Necrosyrtes monachus
One soaring at Ngorongoro rim and on the Seregeti
White-backed Vulture Gyps africanus
Common at Tarangire, Lake Manyara and the Seregeti.
Rueppell's Griffon, Gyps rueppellii
A few at same locations as White-backed. Outnumbered by that species by about 20:1
Lappet-faced Vulture Torgos tracheliotus
A few at same locations as other vultures. Their large, blocky red heads make them look quite threatening
White-headed Vulture Trigonoceps occipitalis
One soaring and one perched in the Serengeti
Black-chested Snake-Eagle Circaetus pectoralis
Individuals at Tarangire and Ndutu Lodge
Brown Snake-Eagle Circaetus cinereus
Individuals perched in Tarangire and Serengeti
Bateleur Terathopius ecaudatus
Seen flying and perched at Tarangire, Manyara, Ngorongoro and Serengeti. It would be interesting to know the advantage of such a short tail.
African Marsh-Harrier Circus ranivorus
Individuals at Arusha NP and Ngorongoro
Montagu's Harrier Circus pygargus
One early migrant seen our last day near Ndutu Lodge
Lizard Buzzard Kaupifalco monogrammicus
One fly-over at Arusha NP
Dark Chanting-Goshawk Melierax metabates
One at Ndutu Lodge, a few in the western Serengeti
Eastern Chanting-Goshawk Melierax poliopterus
Two at Tarangire, one between Lake Manyara and Arusha
Gabar Goshawk, Melierax gabar
Two and Tarangire and one in the Seregeti
African Goshawk, Accipiter tachiro
One at Manraya and at Gibbs Farm
Ovambo Sparrowhawk, Accipiter ovampensis
One a Tarangire and one in the Serengeti. This is not a common species at all, we were lucky to see two.
Mountain Buzzard, Buteo oreophilus
One soaring at Gibbs Farm
Augur Buzzard, Buteo augur
The most common raptor after the vultures and Tawny Eagle, seen at Arusha, Tarangire, Gibbs Farm, Ngorongoro and Serengeti.
Tawny Eagle, Aquila rapax
Common, seen in all the same locations as Augur Buzzard
Wahlberg's Eagle Aquila wahlbergi
One individual seen perched at Tarangire
African Hawk-Eagle Hieraaetus spilogaster
A pair seen at Tarangire; one hit a francolin in flight that escaped.
Martial Eagle Polemaetus bellicosus
Several seen in Tarangire, one in the Serengeti
Long-crested Eagle Lophaetus occipitalis
Individuals seen in Arusha NP, Tarangire and Serengeti. With the wind from behind, the crest flops forward, earning him the alternate name of “Comb-over Eagle”

Falconiformes Sagittariidae
Secretary-bird Sagittarius serpentarius
Several seen in Tarangire, Ndutu Lodge and the Serengeti. Very cool bird, both on land and in flight.

Falconiformes Falconidae
Pygmy Falcon Polihierax semitorquatus
One seen perched on way to Tarangire
Lesser Kestrel Falco naumanni
One seen perched in Tarangire
Greater Kestrel Falco rupicoloides
One individual seen in Seregeti
Gray Kestrel Falco ardosiaceus
One seen in Tarangire

Galliformes Numididae
Helmeted Guineafowl Numida meleagris
Flocks common in Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Serengeti
Crested Guineafowl Guttera pucherani
Two seen in Manyara, a good find that for north

Galliformes Phasianidae
Coqui Francolin Francolinus coqui
Individuals seen in Tarangire, Serengeti and Speke Bay
Crested Francolin Francolinus sephaena
Small groups seen in Tarangire, Manyara, and Serengeti
Scaly Francolin Francolinus squamatus
One flushed from roadside on the Ngorongoro rim
Hildebrandt's Francolin Francolinus hildebrandti
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Manyara
Yellow-necked Spurfowl Francolinus leucoscepus
Common in Tarangire
Gray-breasted Spurfowl Francolinus rufopictus
Common at Ndutu Lodge and Speke Bay
Red-necked Spurfowl Francolinus afer
Common in Tarangire
Common Quail Coturnix coturnix
One flushed from roadside in the Serengeti

Gruiformes Rallidae
Black Crake Amaurornis flavirostra
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Serengeti

Gruiformes Gruidae
Gray Crowned-Crane Balearica regulorum
Two at Manyara, many in Ngorongoro
Gruiformes Otididae
Kori Bustard Ardeotis kori
Several seen in Ngorongoro and Serengeti
White-bellied Bustard Eupodotis senegalensis
Several seen in Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Serengeti

Charadriiformes Jacanidae
African Jacana Actophilornis africanus
Two seen in Arusha NP and Lake Manyara

Charadriiformes Scolopacidae
Marsh Sandpiper Tringa stagnatilis
Individuals at Arusha NP and Speke Bay
Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Individuals seen at Tarangire, Speke Bay, and Serengeti
Green Sandpiper Tringa ochropus
Individuals at Arusha NP and Speke Bay
Wood Sandpiper Tringa glareola
Individuals at Arusha NP and Speke Bay and Manyara
Common Sandpiper Tringa hypoleucos
Individuals at Arusha NP, Lake Manyara, Serengeti, and Speke Bay
Little Stint Calidris minuta
Small flocks at Ngorongoro, Serengeti and Speke Bay
Temminck's Stint Calidris temminckii
One individual with Little Stints at Speke Bay
Ruff Philomachus pugnax
Several seen around water at all sites

Charadriiformes Burhinidae
Water Thick-knee Burhinus vermiculatus
One seen riverside in the western Serengeti
Spotted Thick-knee Burhinus capensis
One on the grounds at Speke Bay

Charadriiformes Recurvirostridae
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus
Individuals and small flocks seen in Arusha NP, Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Speke Bay
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta
Large flock in Ngorongoro

Charadriiformes Glareolidae
Double-banded Courser Rhinoptilus africanus
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Heuglin’s Courser Rhinoptilus cinctus
One seen on the grounds at Speke Bay
Temminck's Courser Cursorius temminckii
Small flock seen in the Serengeti
Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola
Many on the marsh at Tarangire, a few at Speke Bay

Charadriiformes Charadriidae
Common Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
One seen in the Serengeti
Little Ringed Plover Charadrius dubius
A few seen on the Serengeti and in Ngorongoro, many at Speke Bay
Kittlitz's Plover Charadrius pecuarius
The logo bird for Birding and Beyond, a few were seen in Ngorongoro and Serengeti
Three-banded Plover Charadrius tricollaris
Individuals seen in Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Serengeti
Chestnut-banded Plover Charadrius pallidus
On second attempt, a few were found in the crater floor in Ngorongoro
Long-toed Lapwing Vanellus crassirostris
A few at Tarangire and Manyara
Blacksmith Lapwing Vanellus armatus
The most common lapwing, a few to many seen in all parks near water
Spur-winged Plover Vanellus spinosus
A few seen in Manyara and Speke Bay
Wattled Lapwing Vanellus senegallus
Several seen lakeside at Speke Bay
Senegal Lapwing Vanellus lugubris
Individuals seen at Ngorongoro and Serengeti
Crowned Lapwing Vanellus coronatus
Several seen in Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Serengeti

Charadriiformes Laridae
Gray-headed Gull Larus cirrocephalus
Many seen at a distance over the lake at Speke Bay
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybridus
Common at Speke Bay
White-winged Tern Chlidonias leucopterus
A few mixed in with Whiskered Terns at Speke Bay
Gull-billed Tern Sterna nilotica
A few seen at Speke Bay

Pteroclidiformes Pteroclididae
Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse Pterocles exustus
A few seen in the Serengeti
Yellow-throated Sandgrouse Pterocles gutturalis
Several seen at Tarangire and Ngorongoro
Black-faced Sandgrouse Pterocles decoratus
A few seen in the Serengeti and Tarangire

Columbiformes Columbidae
Rock Pigeon Columba livia
Seen in town in Arusha and near Manyara NP. So I am padding my list, I admit it.
Speckled Pigeon Columba guinea
Common around Sopa Lodge in Tarangire, Also seen around E Unoto Retreat
Dusky Turtle-Dove Streptopelia lugens
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Laughing Dove Streptopelia senegalensis
Common around Tarangire and around Ndutu Lodge
African Mourning Dove Streptopelia decipiens
Common in open grassland, multiple areas
Ring-necked Dove Streptopelia capicola
Common in open grassland, multiple areas
Red-eyed Dove Streptopelia semitorquata
Common in Arusha, Tarangire and Gibbs Farm
Emerald-spotted Wood-Dove Turtur chalcospilos
Several seen in Tarangire and Manyara
Blue-spotted Wood-Dove Turtur afer
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Tambourine Dove Turtur tympanistria
One individual seen at Gibbs Farm
Namaqua Dove Oena capensis
A few seen at Tarangire and Speke Bay
African Green-Pigeon Treron calva
One seen perched at Arusha NP

Psittaciformes Psittacidae
Meyer's Parrot Poicephalus meyeri
A few seen in Tarangire
African Orange-bellied Parrot Poicephalus rufiventris
A few seen in Tarangire
Fischer's Lovebird Agapornis fischeri
Common in Serengeti, abundant around Ndutu Lodge
Yellow-collared Lovebird Agapornis personatus
Common in Tarangire

Coliiformes Coliidae
Speckled Mousebird Colius striatus
Common at Gibbs Farm, several seen at Arusha NP, Ngorongoro, and at Speke Bay
Blue-naped Mousebird Urocolius macrourus
Surprisingly skittish compared to their Speckled cousins, four finally seen briefly in Manyara

Musophagiformes Musophagidae
Schalow's Turaco Tauraco schalowi
One brief but spectacular view in the forest behind Gibbs Farm
Bare-faced Go-away-bird Corythaixoides personata
Common in Tarangire, a few seen in Serengeti
White-bellied Go-away-bird Corythaixoides leucogaster
Common in Tarangire

Cuculiformes Centropodidae
White-browed Coucal Centropus superciliosus
Individuals seen in Tarangire, Manyara, and Serengeti

Strigiformes Strigidae
Verreaux's Eagle-Owl Bubo lacteus
A spectacular view in a Yellow Acacia wood outside of Lake Manyara NP
Pearl-spotted Owlet Glaucidium perlatum
Three sightings in Tarangire, including one near the park entrance

Caprimulgiformes Caprimulgidae
Slender-tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus clarus
One found on the grounds at Speke Bay
Square-tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus fossii
Two found on the grounds at Speke Bay

Apodiformes Apodidae
African Palm Swift Cypsiurus parvus
Common in Tarangire and Serengeti
Mottled Swift Tachymarptis aequatorialis
One seen between Manyara and Speke Bay
Eurasian Swift Apus apus
Two migrants seen on the Serengeti
African Swift Apus barbatus
Several seen in Arusha, common in Ngorongoro
Little Swift Apus affinis
Several seen in Tarangire and Gibbs Farm

Coraciiformes Alcedinidae
Malachite Kingfisher Alcedo cristata
One seen on the grounds at Speke Bay
Gray-headed Kingfisher Halcyon leucocephala
Individuals seen in all parks except Manyara, and Speke Bay
Striped Kingfisher Halcyon chelicuti
Individuals seen in Tarangire, Manyara and Serengeti
Pied Kingfisher Ceryle rudis
Individuals seen in Tarangire, Serengeti, and Speke Bay

Coraciiformes Meropidae
White-fronted Bee-eater Merops bullockoides
A jaw-dropping view in Arusha NP. One of those birds where the book can’t do it justice
Little Bee-eater Merops pusillus
Most common bee-eater by far, a few seen in all locations visited
Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater Merops oreobates
A few seen on the Ngorongoro rim
Madagascar Bee-eater Merops superciliosus
A few seen in Tarangire
European Bee-eater Merops apiaster
Flocks of migrants seen in Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro, and the Serengeti

Coraciiformes Coraciidae
Lilac-breasted Roller Coracias caudate
The most beautiful trash bird in existence! Common in Tarangire, several seen in the Serengeti
Rufous-crowned Roller Coracias naevia
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Broad-billed Roller Eurystomus glaucurus
One seen perched in Arusha NP

Coraciiformes Upupidae
African Hoopoe Upupa Africana
Individuals seen in Ngorongoro and in the Serengeti

Coraciiformes Phoeniculidae
Green Woodhoopoe Phoeniculus purpureus
Individuals seen in Tarangire, Manyara, Gibbs Farm, and Serengeti
Abyssinian Scimitar-bill Rhinopomastus minor
Individuals seen in Arusha NP and Serengeti

Coraciiformes Bucerotidae
Red-billed Hornbill Tockus erythrorhynchus
Several seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Von der Decken's Hornbill Tockus deckeni
Many seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Crowned Hornbill Tockus alboterminatus
A flock of four seen in Manyara
African Gray Hornbill Tockus nasutus
Small flocks seen in Tarangire, Manyara, and Serengeti
Silvery-cheeked Hornbill Ceratogymna brevis
Small flocks seen in Arusha NP and Manyara

Coraciiformes Bucorvidae
Southern Ground-Hornbill Bucorvus leadbeateri
Flocks of 6-8 birds seen in Tarangire and Serengeti

Piciformes Lybiidae
White-eared Barbet Stactolaema leucotis
One seen in Arusha NP
Red-fronted Tinkerbird Pogoniulus pusillus
One seen on the grounds of E Unoto Retreat
Red-fronted Barbet Tricholaema diademata
After several misses, finally seen at visitors center in the central Serengeti
White-headed Barbet Lybius leucocephalus
Individuals seen in Manyara, Ngorongoro, Serengeti
Black-billed Barbet Lybius guifsobalito
One seen riverside in the Serengeti
Red-and-yellow Barbet Trachyphonus erythrocephalus
Several seen in Tarangire and at a picnic site in Lake Manyara. A favorite of the non-birders on the trip, for obvious reasons.
D'Arnaud's Barbet Trachyphonus darnaudii
One seen in Tarangire
Usambiro Barbet Trachyphonus usambiro
Two seen at visitor’s center in the central Serengeti

Piciformes Picidae
Nubian Woodpecker Campethera nubica
One seen in Tarangire
Cardinal Woodpecker Dendropicos fuscescens
One seen in the canopy on the grounds at Gibbs Farm
Bearded Woodpecker Dendropicos namaquus
Several seen in Tarangire
Gray Woodpecker Dendropicos goertae
Individuals seen in Tarangire and the Serengeti

Passeriformes Monarchidae
White-tailed Blue-Flycatcher Elminia albicauda
One seen in the canopy on the grounds at Gibbs Farm
African Paradise Flycatcher Terpsiphone viridis
Several seen in all parks visited

Passeriformes Dicruridae
Fork-tailed Drongo Dicrurus adsimilis
Common in Tarangire and the Serengeti

Passeriformes Corvidae
Pied Crow Corvus alorbus
A few seen in Tarangire and Manyara
White-necked Raven Corvus albicollis
One seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim

Passeriformes Oriolidae
African Black-headed Oriole Oriolus larvatus
One seen in Manyara, heard only in Arusha and Gibbs Farm

Passeriformes Laniidae
Gray-backed Fiscal Lanius excubitoroides
A few seen in the Serengeti and at Speke Bay
Long-tailed Fiscal Lanius cabanisi
Several seen at Tarangire
Taita Fiscal Lanius dorsalis
Two seen on the road to E Unoto Retreat
Common Fiscal Lanius collaris
Common in Arusha NP and at Gibbs Farm
Magpie Shrike Corvinella melanoleuca
Common in Tarangire, a few seen in the Serengeti
Northern White-crowned Shrike Eurocephalus rueppellii
Common in Tarangire and around Ndutu Lodge

Passeriformes Malaconotidae
Black-backed Puffback Dryoscopus cubla
One seen as a drive-by in Arusha NP, with back feathers puffed.
Brown-crowned Tchagra Tchagra australis
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Manyara
Tropical Boubou Laniarius aethiopicus
Common in Gibbs Farm, individuals seen in Arusha NP and Ngorongoro
Black-headed Gonolek Laniarius erythrogaster
Common on the grounds at Speke Bay
Slate-colored Boubou Laniarius funebris
Several seen at Tarangire
Sulphur-breasted Bushshrike Telophorus sulfureopectus
One seen at Tarangire
White-crested Helmetshrike Prionops plumatus
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Chinspot Batis Batis molitor
Individuals seen in Arusha NP, Gibbs Farm and the Serengeti
Black-throated Wattle-eye Platysteira peltata
One seen on ranger walk in Arusha NP

Passeriformes Turdidae
Olive Thrush Turdus olivaceus
Common at Gibbs Farm

Passeriformes Sturnidae
Red-winged Starling Onychognathus morio
Several seen in Arusha NP and Tarangire
Greater Blue-eared Glossy-Starling Lamprotornis chalybaeus
Individuals seen at Tarangire Sopa Lodge and the Serengeti
Ruppell's Long-tailed Starling Lamprotornis purpuropterus
Several seen at visitor’s center in the central Serengeti near Seronera Lodge
Superb Starling Lamprotornis superbus
Common in Tarangire, many seen in Ngorongoro, Serengeti and Speke Bay
After Lilac-breasted Roller, the second most spectacular trash bird in existence.
Hildebrandt's Starling Lamprotornis hildebrandti
Common around Ndutu Lodge, several seen in Tarangire, Manyara and at the visitor’s center in the central Serengeti near Seronera Lodge
Violet-backed Starling Cinnyricinclus leucogaster
A few perched at E Unoto Retreat
Ashy Starling Cosmopsarus unicolor
Common in Tarangire
Wattled Starling Creatophora cinerea
Flocks seen in Speke Bay, individuals seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Yellow-billed Oxpecker Buphagus africanus
Many seen in the Serengeti, only one found in Tarangire
Red-billed Oxpecker Buphagus erythrorhynchus
Many seen in Tarangire, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro and Serengeti

Passeriformes Muscicapidae
Silverbird Empidornis semipartitus
One seen in Tarangire
Pale Flycatcher Bradornis pallidus
One seen in the Serengeti
African Gray Flycatcher Bradornis microrhynchus
A few seen at the visitor’s center in the central Serengeti
White-eyed Slaty-Flycatcher Dioptrornis fischeri
Individuals seen in Arusha NP, Gibbs Farm, and the Ngorongoro crater Rim
Swamp Flycatcher Muscicapa aquatica
Common at Speke Bay
African Dusky Flycatcher Muscicapa adusta
Individuals seen at Arusha NP, Tarangire, Manyara, Gibbs Farm, and the Ngorongoro crater rim
Ashy Flycatcher Muscicapa caerulescens
One seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
White-starred Robin Pogonocichla stellata
Individuals seen at Arusha NP and Ngorongoro crater rim
Cape Robin-Chat Cossypha caffra
A few seen in Arusha NP and Gibbs Farm
Rueppell's Robin-Chat Cossypha semirufa
Several seen at Gibbs Farm
White-browed Robin-Chat Cossypha heuglini
Individuals seen in Arusha NP and Manyara
Collared Palm-Thrush Cichladusa arquata
One seen in Manyara
Spotted Morning-Thrush Cichladusa guttata
A few seen in Tarangire, Manyara, and Speke Bay
White-browed Scrub-Robin Cercotrichas leucophrys
Individuals seen in Lake Manyara and Olduvai Gorge museum
Common Stonechat Saxicola torquata
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Ngorongoro crater rim
Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe
One seen on the Serengeti
Schalow's Wheatear Oenanthe schalowi
Seen roadside between Manyara and Gibbs Farm
Capped Wheatear Oenanthe pileata
A few seen on road to E Unoto Retreat, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti
Isabelline Wheatear Oenanthe isabellina
Individuals seen on road to E Unoto Retreat and Serengeti
Northern Anteater-Chat Myrmecocichla aethiops
Two seen in Ngorongoro crater floor

Passeriformes Hirundinidae
Plain Martin Riparia paludicola
Common in Arusha NP and Tarangire
Banded Martin Riparia cincta
A few seen in Ngorongoro
Rock Martin Hirundo fuligula
A few seen around E Unoto Retreat
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
Several seen in Arusha NP
Angola Swallow Hirundo angolensis
Abundant at Speke Bay
Wire-tailed Swallow Hirundo smithii
Several seen at Lake Manyara and Ngorongoro
Lesser Striped-Swallow Hirundo abyssinica
Several seen at E Unoto Retreat
Mosque Swallow Hirundo senegalensis
Several seen at Tarangire and the Ngorongoro crater rim
Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica
Individuals seen at Tarangire and Manyara
Common House-Martin Delichon urbica
Individuals seen in Tarangire
Black Sawwing Psalidoprocne holomelas
Common in Arusha NP

Passeriformes Pycnonotidae
Common Bulbul Pycnonotus barbatus
Common around lodges in all areas visited
Yellow-bellied Greenbul Chlorocichla flaviventris
Individuals seen at Tarangire Safari Lodge and at Gibbs Farm

Passeriformes Zosteropidae
African Yellow White-eye Zosterops senegalensis
Common on the grounds of Maasai Safari Lodge, Arusha
Montane White-eye Zosterops poliogaster
Small flocks seen at Gibbs Farm
Abyssinian White-eye Zosterops abyssinicus
A few seen in Manyara NP

Passeriformes Cisticolidae
Singing Cisticola Cisticola cantans
One seen in Arusha NP
Hunter's Cisticola Cisticola hunteri
Several seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
Rock-loving Cisticola Cisticola emini
Individuals seen in Tarangire
Rattling Cisticola Cisticola chinianus
Individuals seen in Tarangire
Winding Cisticola Cisticola galactotes
Individuals seen in Manyara, Serengeti, and Speke Bay
Zitting Cisticola Cisticola juncidis
One seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
Desert Cisticola Cisticola aridulus
A few seen in Tarangire
Tawny-flanked Prinia Prinia subflava
Individuals seen in Arusha NP, Tarangire and Speke Bay
Red-fronted Warbler Spiloptila rufifrons
One seen in Tarangire
Bar-throated Apalis Apalis thoracica
One seen at Gibbs Farm
Yellow-breasted Apalis Apalis flavida
A few seen in Arusha NP, Tarangire, and Gibbs Farm
Gray-capped Warbler Eminia lepida
Individuals seen at Gibbs Farm and the crater rim
Green-backed Camaroptera Camaroptera brachyuran
Individuals seen in Arusha NP, Tarangire, Gibbs Farm, and Speke Bay

Passeriformes Sylviidae
Cinnamon Bracken-Warbler Bradypterus cinnamomeus
One seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
Dark-capped Yellow Warbler Chloropeta natalensis
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Buff-bellied Warbler Phyllolais pulchella
One seen on the Serengeti
Yellow-bellied Eremomela Eremomela icteropygialis
One seen in Tarangire
Red-faced Crombec Sylvietta whytii
Two seen in Tarangire
Banded Parisoma Parisoma boehmi
A few seen in Tarangire
Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla
A few seen in tree canopy on the grounds at Gibbs Farm

Passeriformes Timaliidae
African Hill-Babbler Pseudoalcippe abyssinica
One seen at Gibbs Farm
Black-lored Babbler Turdoides melanops
A few seen around Ndutu Lodge
Northern Pied-Babbler Turdoides hypoleucus
A few seen at Tarangire and Manyara
Arrow-marked Babbler Turdoides jardineii
Small flocks seen in Tarangire, Gibbs Farm and Serengeti

Passeriformes Alaudidae
White-tailed Lark Mirafra albicauda
A few seen between Speke Bay and the western entrance to the Serengeti
Rufous-naped Lark Mirafra africana
Individuals seen at Arusha NP, on road to E Unoto Retreat, and Ngorongoro
Fischer's Sparrow-Lark Eremopterix leucopareia
Small flocks seen on road to E Unoto Retreat, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti
Red-capped Lark Calandrella cinerea
Individuals seen in Ngorongoro and Serengeti
Somali Short-toed Lark Calandrella somalica
One seen on road to E Unoto Retreat, a lucky find

Passeriformes Passeridae
House Sparrow Passer domesticus
Seen in town of Arusha. OK, I padding my list again. At least I didn’t count the Red Junglefowl I saw in town.
Gray-headed Sparrow Passer griseus
Many seen in Tarangire, Gibbs Farm, and Serengeti
Swahili Sparrow Passer suahelicus
Several seen in Tarangire and Manyara
Chestnut Sparrow Passer eminibey
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Yellow-spotted Petronia Petronia pyrgita
One seen in Tarangire

Passeriformes Estrildidae
Green-winged Pytilia Pytilia melba
Seen at Tarangire park entrance
Peters's Twinspot Hypargos niveoguttatus
One seen at Lake Manyara
Red-billed Firefinch Lagonosticta senegala
Small flocks seen in Tarangire
African Firefinch Lagonosticta rubricate
Small flocks seen in Tarangire and Gibbs Farm
Red-cheeked Cordonbleu Uraeginthus bengalus
Small flocks seen in Tarangire
Blue-capped Cordonbleu Uraeginthus cyanocephalus
Several seen in Tarangire, Manyara, Ndutu Lodge and Speke Bay
Purple Grenadier Uraeginthus ianthinogaster
Individuals seen at Tarangire and Serengeti
Yellow-bellied Waxbill Estrilda quartinia
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Crimson-rumped Waxbill Estrilda rhodopyga
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Common Waxbill Estrilda astrild
Small flock seen at Gibbs Farm
Black-faced Waxbill Estrilda erythronotos
A few seen at Tarangire, Ndutu, and Serengeti
Gray-headed Silverbill Lonchura griseicapilla
A few seen on the Serengeti
Bronze Mannikin Lonchura cucullata
A small flock seen at E Unoto Retreat
Cut-throat Finch Amadina fasciata
One seen at Tarangire park entrance
Pin-tailed Whydah Vidua macroura
Non-breeding individuals seen at Manyara and Gibbs Farm

Passeriformes Motacillidae
African Pied Wagtail Motacilla aguimp
Common around lodges in Tarangire, Manyara, and Speke bay
Yellow Wagtail Motacilla flava
One seen in the Serengeti
Mountain Wagtail Motacilla clara
One seen in Lake Manyara
Yellow-throated Longclaw Macronyx croceus
Individuals seen in the western Serengeti and Speke Bay. Has anyone written on the remarkable similarity in plumage between this species and our meadowlarks?
Rosy-throated Longclaw Macronyx ameliae
One non-breeding bird seen in the Serengeti
Grassland Pipit Anthus cinnamomeus
Several seen in Arusha and Serengeti
Plain-backed Pipit Anthus leucophrys
A few seen in the Serengeti

Passeriformes Ploceidae
Red-billed Buffalo-Weaver Bubalornis niger
Common in Tarangire and Serengeti
White-headed Buffalo-Weaver Dinemellia dinemelli
Common in Tarangire, a few seen in Serengeti
Speckle-fronted Weaver Sporopipes frontalis
Several seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Rufous-tailed Weaver Histurgops ruficauda
Several seen in Tarangire, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti
Gray-headed Social-Weaver Pseudonigrita arnaudi
Many seen at the visitor’s center in the central Serengeti
Baglafecht Weaver Ploceus baglafecht
Very common at Gibbs Farm (two races present, reichenowi and stuhlmani), several seen in Arusha NP and E Unoto Retreat
Slender-billed Weaver Ploceus pelzelni
Common at Speke Bay
Lesser Masked Weaver Ploceus intermedius
One seen at Gibbs Farm
Spectacled Weaver Ploceus ocularis
A few seen at Gibbs Farm
Black-necked Weaver Ploceus nigricollis
A few seen in the Serengeti
African Golden-Weaver Ploceus subaureus
One seen in the Serengeti
Holub's Golden-Weaver Ploceus xanthops
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Northern Brown-throated Weaver Ploceus castanops
One seen at Speke Bay, a lucky find
Vitelline Masked Weaver Ploceus velatus
A few seen on the Serengeti
Black-headed Weaver Ploceus cucullatus
A few seen at Manyara
Speke's Weaver Ploceus spekei
Two seen at Gibbs Farm
Chestnut Weaver Ploceus rubiginosus
One seen at Tarangire park entrance
Red-headed Weaver Anaplectes rubriceps
One seen at Tarangire Sopa Lodge
Red-billed Quelea Quelea quelea
Large flocks seen in Tarangire, Manyara, and Speke Bay. Their small spherical nests densely packed in trees are distinctive.
Black Bishop Euplectes gierowii
One non-breeding individual seen at Olduvai Gorge museum
Black-winged Red Bishop Euplectes hordeaceus
Non-breeding individuals seen at Arusha NP, Manyara, and Gibbs Farm
Fan-tailed Widowbird Euplectes axillaries
Non-breeding individuals seen in Gibbs Farm and Ngorongoro Crater

Passeriformes Nectariniidae
Eastern Violet-backed Sunbird Anthreptes orientalis
Individuals seen at Tarangire and Manyara
Collared Sunbird Anthreptes collaris
A few seen at Gibbs Farm
Green-headed Sunbird Nectarinia verticalis
Two seen at Gibbs Farm; the first time that Anthony has seen them there.
Amethyst Sunbird Nectarinia amethystine
Individuals seen at Arusha, Tarangire, and Manyara
Scarlet-chested Sunbird Nectarinia senegalensis
Common at Speke Bay
Variable Sunbird Nectarinia venusta
Seen in the gardens of Maasai Safari Lodge
Eastern Double-collared Sunbird Nectarinia mediocris
Two seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
Tacazze Sunbird Nectarinia tacazze
One seen one the Ngorongoro crater rim
Bronze Sunbird Nectarinia kilimensis
Common at Gibbs Farm, a few seen in Arusha NP
Golden-winged Sunbird Nectarinia reichenowi
A few seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
Red-chested Sunbird Nectarinia erythrocerca
Common at Speke Bay
Marico Sunbird Nectarinia mariquensis
Individuals seen at Tarangire
Purple-banded Sunbird Nectarinia bifasciata
One seen at Manyara
Beautiful Sunbird Nectarinia pulchella
One seen at Tarangire park entrance

Passeriformes Fringillidae
Yellow-crowned Canary Serinus canicollis
A few seen in the Serengeti
African Citril Serinus citrinelloides
Several seen at Gibbs Farm
Yellow-fronted Canary Serinus mozambicus
A few seen in the Serengeti
White-bellied Canary Serinus dorsostriatus
Several seen at Tarangire, Manyara, and Serengeti
Yellow-rumped Seedeater Serinus reichenowi
Several seen at Tarangire and Manyara
Streaky Seedeater Serinus striolatus
A few seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim
Thick-billed Seedeater Serinus burtoni
Individuals seen at Arusha NP, Gibbs Farm, and Serengeti


Black-and-white Colobus monkey Colobus guereza (abyssinicus)
A few seen in Arusha NP
Olive Baboon Papio anubis
Common in all areas visited
Vervet Monkey Ceropithecus pygerythrus
Small troops seen in Tarangire, Ngorongoro and Serengeti
Gentle Monkey Cercopithecus mitis
Anthony and Geitan understand that these races are split, they are lumped in Kingdon’s book:
Sykes monkey race – troops common in Arusha NP
Blue monkey race – several seen in Manyara
Greater Galago (Bushbaby) Otolemur crassicaudatus
At feeder at nightfall at Gibbs Farm

Fruit bats (species?)
Hanging in trees at Speke Bay
Insect-eating bats (species?)
Around lodges in Tarangire and Ndutu Lodge

African Hedgehog Atelerix albiventris
Remains of 8-10 along with whitewash at the Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl site near Manyara. They ust be tasty.

Hare (Cape Hare Lepus capensis or Scrub Hare L. saxatilis)
One roadside at Ngorongoro

Unstriped Ground Squirrel Xerus rutilus
Common around lodges in Tarangire

Mice (genus?)
Common around Ndutu Lodge and at ranger station in the Serengeti

Golden Jackal Canis aureus
A pair seen in the Serengeti
Black-backed Jackal Canis mesomelas
Individuals seen in Tarangire and Ngorongoro

Slender Mongoose Herpestes naso
Three seen in Tarangire
Dwarf Mongoose Helogale parvula
Groups seen in Tarangire, in burrows in termite mounds. Very cute little guys.
Banded Mongoose Mungos mungo
Large groups seen in Tarangire and Serengeti
Marsh Mongoose Atilax paludinosus
On seen around E Unoto retreat
Meller’s Mongoose
One seen in Tarangire

Spotted Hyena Crocuta crocuta
A few individuals and pairs seen in Ngorongoro and Serengeti

Common Genet Genetta genetta
One at feeder inside Ndutu Lodge. Could possibly be a Blotched Genet (Genetta tirina), the manager said that this has been a matter of some debate. Anyone with mammal ID skills can check their web site and offer their opinion.

Leopard Panthera pardus
One in a tree in Ngorongoro. 3-4 vehicles were grouped up looking at an angle where you could only see the tail. We drove a short distance and got a good luck at the whole animal. Strange.
Lion Panthera leo
About 30 seen total, including Tarangire, Manyara, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti. The last one we saw was a lone female perched up on top of a kopje surveying the Serengeti plains. Very cool.
Cheetah Acinonyx jubatus
Three seen total; one at Ngorongoro at a kill, one near Ndutu Lodge with the unsuccessful hunt of an Impala, and the last 2 kms further on with the successful hunt of a Grant’s Gazelle. My favorite predator for some reason.

Black-necked Rock Hyrax Procavia johnstoni
Common and confiding around the Tarangire Sopa Lodge and the visitors center in the central Serengeti.
Southern Tree Hyrax Dendrohyrax arboreus
One seen on the Ngorongoro crater rim

African Elephant Loxodonta africana
Common in Tarangire, Manyara, Ngorongoro and Serengeti. We never tired of watching elephants, especially the babies.

Common Zebra Equus quagga
Common to abundant in all parks visited.

Black Rhinoceros Diceros bicornis
A mother and baby seen in Ngorongoro crater. We were lucky, at the time of our sighting no rhinos had been seen in the crater for four days.

Hippopotamus Hippopotamus amphibious
Groups seen Manyara, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti

Common Warthog Phacocheroerus africanus
Small groups common in all parks visited. Somehow, they seem cuter when they run with their tails up.

Giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis
Individuals common in all parks visited

African Buffalo Syncerus caffer
Small to large herds seen in all parks visited.

Bushbuck Tragelaphus scriptus
Several females seen in Arusha NP, one male spotted in Manyara
Eland Taurotragus oryx
A small group seen in the distance in Tarangire

Harvey’s Duiker Cephalphus harveyi
One seen in the forest of Arusha NP
Sharpes’s Grysbok Raphicerus sharpie
Three seen in Tarangire
Kirk’s Dikdik Madoqua kirkii
Common in Tarangire, Manyara, and the Serengeti. About three times the size of a jackrabbit, these little guys quickly became favorites.
Bohor Reedbuck Redunca redunca
One seen from an overlook in Tarangire
Waterbuck Kobus ellipsiprymnus
Anthony and Geitan insisted that the Common Waterbuck (with white rump crescents, “the toilet seat sign”) and the Defassa’s Waterbuck (without rump marks) are separate species. They are lumped in Kingdon’s book.
Common seen in Arusha NP and Tarangire.
Defassa’s seen in Serengeti.

Thompson’s Gazelle Gazella rufirons
Common in Ngorongoro and the Serengeti, a few in Manyara
Grant’s Gazelle Gazella granti
One in Tarangire, a few in Manyara, common in the Ngorongoro and the Serengeti

Impala Aerpyceros melampus
Common in all parks except Arusha NP. I thought the curve of their horns was especially beautiful.
Topi Damaliscus lunatus
Many seen in the Serengeti
Coke’s Hartebeast Alcephus buselaphus cokei
A small herd seen in Ngorongoro, individuals seen in Serengeti
Wildebeest Connochaetes taurinus
Common in all parks visited


Crocodile – several in the Serengeti
Tree-climbing Python – two seen in Tarangire
Agama Lizard – Tarangire Sopa Lodge
Gecko – Speke Bay
Skink – Speke Bay
Monitor Lizard - Serengeti
Struthio camelus Tachybaptus ruficollis Podiceps cristatus Phalacrocorax africanus OSTRICH