Much is known about endangered African mammals like the black rhino, addax (white antelope), and cheetah, but what about rare bird species? There are more than 115 species of African birds that are endangered, so don’t delay planning a trip to the continent to see them at these following locations, in their natural habitat!
ONE OF THE MOST BIODIVERSE FORESTS IN EAST AFRICA
Located in southwestern Uganda, the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is one of most biodiverse forests in East Africa. Home to hundreds of species of mammals, reptiles, butterflies, and birds (including the Grauer’s Swamp-Warbler, Black Fronted Duiker, Forest Ground-thrush, and the African Green Broadbill) the forest is a true birders delight.
The Mabamba Wetland, located along the shores of Lake Victoria, also contains many elusive species such as the Shoebill Stork and Lesser Jacana.
The Murchinson Falls National Park in northwestern Uganda is a well-kept secret among birders, especially the area around Lake Albert, where sharp-eyed visitors can spot more than 450 species of birds, including the Martial Eagle, Lesser Flamingo, and Papyrus Gonolek. Paraa Safari Lodge, conveniently located in the park, is a great choice for visitors wanting to stay over.
THE RAREST BIRD SPECIES IN ZAMBIA
Zambia’s national parks are havens for many endangered species. More than 500 species of birds call Kafue National Park home, largely due to the wide array of habitats in the park. Highlights of the park’s wildlife include the Wattled Cranes, whose habitat is rapidly being drained, and the Chaplin’s Barbet – the only bird endemic to Zambia. Additionally, visitors can see Black-cheeked Lovebird, Pel’s Fishing Owl, African Finfoot, and Bohm’s Bee-eaters.
In eastern Zambia you’ll find the South Luangwa National Park, home to roughly 400 of the country’s 732 species of birds. That number includes nearly 40 birds of prey as well as close to 50 migrant species such as the Steppe Eagle and Steppe Buzzard that journey all the way from Russia. Some of the rarest species that inhabit the park are the Gray Crowned-Crane, Ground Hornbill, and Heuglin’s Robin. To fully maximize one’s experience, try the Green Season Birding Safari with Norman Carr Safaris to explore all that the park has to offer.
BIRD SPOTTING NEAR SOUTH AFRICA’S OLDEST CAMP
There are many rare birds to be spotted in South Africa. The Kruger National Park in the northeastern part of the country, houses more than 500 species of birds, such as the Ground Hornbill, Pel’s Fishing Owl, Lappet-Faced Vulture, Bataleur Eagle, and the Martial Eagle. Visitors interested in traveling to the park should consider staying at the Sabi Sabi Game Reserve, the oldest and most luxurious camp in the park.
One of the most adorable and tragically endangered birds is the African Penguin. Luckily, the Penguins have established two colonies near Cape Town: the picturesque Boulders Beach and Stony Point in Betty’s Bay.
WORLD OF BIRDS: RAREST SPECIES IN ONE SPOT
Although it is most rewarding to spot these endangered species in their natural habitats, a great ‘one stop shop,’ to see innumerable species is the World of Birds, the largest bird park in Africa located just a short drive out of Cape Town in Hout Bay. The park has over 100 walk-through tropical aviaries and each one mirrors the species’ natural habitats, so it’s also an efficient, albeit artificial, way to see a lot of African birds and mammals. The park contains hundreds of species, many on the verge of extinction, including hornbills, parrots, emus, and the Giant Eagle Owl.
Because the park is conveniently located near Cape Town, a stay at the stylish Steenberg Hotel, where there is a garden to attract birds, is a must!