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WINGS Birding Tours – Narrative

Kenya in November

Samburu to the Masai Mara

2022 Narrative

You can read the full tour report with images at this link: LINK

IN BRIEF: With the planet recovering from the effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic, and the debilitating economic fallout directly associated with it, this was the first Kenya tour since before the scourge commenced in 2019.

Another factor that influenced this tour was a lasting drought over much of the country, leaving the environment in many parts desiccated and struggling.

However in-spite of this factor the birdlife was showing strong resilience, although the indigenous mammal fauna was succumbing to the unfavourable conditions in the low-lying semi-arid environments.

This small group of three Americans and one British participant were still treated to a bird bonanza, and incomparable wildlife experience in spite of the vagaries of the world’s weather. They were exposed to the best of one the world’s natural history spectaculars, and experiencing the hospitality of one of the world’s friendliest nations in incomparable natural settings in high quality comfort.

IN DETAIL: All participants planned to arrive one day earlier than the official start of the tour. This enabled a more relaxed period for resting after the long flights and the preparation for the coming few weeks of travelling. Brian Finch also arrived the previous afternoon and spent the day with the participants.

The tour started on 11th November, with a plane flight which circumnavigated the western side of Kenya’s highest mountain, Mt. Kenya, which cleared enough to be appreciated. We had two stops (Ol Pajeta & Lewa Downs) before we arrived at our destination of Buffalo Springs. Here Ben Mugambi met us and we birded eagerly before leaving the airstrip! A Yellow-winged Bat was hanging under a roof, and the staff were feeding the birds. Red-billed Hornbills, amazing Superb Starlings and doves and weavers of several species were joining the party including the local Donaldson-Smith’s Sparrow-Weaver. Shyer Somali Buntings sang from the bushes, and just along the road we picked up some northern migrants like Pied and Isabelline Wheatears and Eurasian Rock-Thrush freshly arrived.

It was a slow drive to Ashnil Lodge where we were staying as birds as well as mammals kept on slowing us down. Finally we did get to our abode for the next three nights, once we had managed to extricate ourselves from all the birds in the Car Park! Ashnil is a very comfortable establishment along the wooded banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River, and we had a well-earned superb lunch before we were shown to our rooms.

Again after we had managed to break free of the bird-filled car park, we had our first bird and game drive, staying out until dusk. As the afternoon cooled, exciting sightings came thick and fast and we treated to parties of extraordinary but very beautiful Vulturine Guineafowl coming to drink and dust bathe, an enormous Goliath Heron towering over an intimidatingly large crocodile, a perched Hooded Vulture (a rapidly disappearing but previously widespread and common species, that was going to be our only individual for the whole trip), several very stately Bateleurs impressively streaking over the landscape, upright Somali Coursers making sudden dashes, multi-coloured and so graceful and colourful White-throated Bee-eaters. After an extremely appetising meal and completing a rather long bird and mammal list session, we slept extremely well.

An early breakfast (on 12th) was an excellent start to the first full day of birding. Violet Wood Hoopoes, Grey-headed Kingfishers and Orange-bellied Parrots were some of the species seen from the breakfast table, whilst Superb Starlings and Dodson’s Bulbuls were under it!!  As we left the lodge Yellow-necked Spurfowl were well into their mornings activities and scurrying off the road, at a swampy area we found many nice birds including Woolly-necked Stork, Grey-crowned Cranes, a pair of stunning Greater Painted-snipe amongst a selection of palearctic waders, but the prize was a posing and very rare Red-necked Falcon. Other birds were four Pearl-spotted Owlets, a family of White-headed Mousebirds, bizarre and colourful Red-and-Yellow Barbets, miniscule Pygmy Batis, co-operative and colourful Rosy-patched Bush-Shrikes, and truly stunning and very elegant Golden-breasted Starlings nest prospecting.

Today (13th) we were going to have a different sort of day, and after a mini-breakfast set off with a fuller picnic breakfast for Shaba Game Reserve. The object was to find the Kenyan endemic William’s Lark. On arrival the lava plains looked barren, and our search was not doing so well. We drove off slowly, when Ben suddenly spotted a bird running across the road and the rest is history as we had close views of William’s Lark from the comfort of the vehicle. This was not the only nice bird that Shaba offered as we also had, diminutive Pygmy Falcon, Secretarybirds, immense Lappet-faced Vultures, Spotted Thick-knee, Eastern Yellow-billed Hornbills and more. In the afternoon back in Buffalo Springs an afternoon game-drive rewarded us with the up to now elusive Somali Ostrich.

The days mammals proved that we were in tropical Africa with many African Elephant, Hippopotamus, an extraordinary daylight sighting of a Striped Hyena, Cheetah, Black-backed Jackal, threatened Grevy’s Zebra, numerous Desert Warthog, outstandingly patterned Reticulated Giraffe, local Gunther’s Dik-Dik, bizarre Gerenuk balancing on their hind-legs, stately Beisa Oryx and much more.

At night African Scops Owls were calling, these can be so very difficult to pin down and often requires not just patience but a lot of luck.

Next morning (14th) we were leaving Samburu for Castle Forest, a very different habitat on the cool slopes of Mt. Kenya. We gathered at breakfast, and Ben announced that he had found the Scops Owls, which caused a quick desertion of the breakfast table. There sitting quietly were four Scops Owl teenagers in a cluster and the two adults sitting nearby. Definitely worth leaving the table for. On our way out there was a brilliant Golden Palm Weaver in the car park as well as a party of Rufous Chatterers to wish us well on our way! As we farewelled the Samburu region and wished it rain very soon, we were alert for any birds we might not have seen up to now and had an obliging Buff-crested Bustard, shortly before the gate.

A stop for a refreshment break before Timau was a welcome respite and a few additions included Tacazze Sunbird and Yellow-crowned Canaries staying high in the exotic pines. A bonus was three Von Hoenel’s Chameleons looking fairly inconspicuous, as intended.

We had lunch in Nanyuki before continuing to Castle Forest arriving in mid-afternoon. Birding started with a fury as this entirely different avifauna was thrust upon us. A pair of Giant Kingfishers posed along the river, whilst both migrant Grey and homely Mountain Wagtails bobbed from rocks in the rushing water. There had been a shower which livened things a bit, and a frustrating Buff-spotted Flufftail wailed from thick bushy cover, and resisted the playback attempt to lure it into view. Scarce Swifts chittered overhead, colourful Cinnamon-chested Bee-eaters hawked insect from a fence, a massive Silvery-cheeked Hornbill flew over, and in a mixed party were Black-fronted Bush-shrikes, Black-throated Apalis, Eastern Mountain Greenbul, skulking but so noisy and monotonous Yellow-whiskered Greenbuls, White-tailed Crested Flycatcher, Brown Woodland Warbler, African Hill Babbler, numerous Kikuyu White-eyes, Brown-capped Weavers and Grey-headed Nigrita.

A cool morning greeted us on 15th and Hudstone was there as our capable local guide, we were anticipating perhaps a glimpse of flying Olive Ibis which are such local and rarely seen birds. The growling call could be heard getting closer as they flew up the valley, through the forest. This was encouraging but the distant potential sighting of a bird was a bit superceded by the event that followed. A group of five appeared and dropped into the trees; another group of four flew in and joined the first five. We crept closer to where they had landed, and there were the nine birds together. They were not shy and groups flew around calling and back to the same tree. We watched them at leisure, numerous photographs were taken and even a video of two birds mating!!!

After this amazing display it was obvious that “love was in the air”, and a pair of Mountain Buzzards dropped out of the sky and mated in front of us as well.

We had a good breakfast then departed slowly back down hill finding a few more species on the way with posing Scaly Francolins, Great Sparrowhawk, a beautiful party of Hartlaub’s Turacos, Green-backed Honeybird, Grey and Black Cuckoo-shrikes, Black-tailed Oriole, Black-collared and Grey Apalises, Waller’s Starlings, White-starred Robin, Yellow-bellied Waxbills, Black-and-White (Red-backed) Mannikins and Thick-billed Seedeaters. This was our only time in the montane forest, but it had indeed “done us proud!”

Our next stop was to meet up with Paul Murithi, the now famous and well deservedly so “owl man.” Paul has dedicated much of his life to studying, protecting and reversing the bad press concerning local superstitions regarding owls. One of his subject species was Mackinder’s (now considered part of Cape) Eagle Owl. We met up with him and he led us to an owl on the side of a quarry, sitting in full view if you succeeded in breaking through its camouflage! Also here we found Little Rock Thrush.

We stopped once more, this time at Thomson’s Falls in Nyahururu, the hoped for Slender-billed Starlings were not visiting but there was a pair of the rare resident minima, a small resident race of Peregrine Falcon.

We arrived at our destination of Lake Nakuru National Park shortly before the gates were closing.

On the morning the 16th we spent the whole day exploring the Park, and also all of the morning of the 17th. Although damaged severely by mysterious flooding from freshwater underground, it is still a very special place. In our visit we found Hildebrandt’s Francolin, Harlequin Quail, eight species of waterfowl of which seven were new for our trip, Greater and Lesser Flamingos, Glossy Ibis became our fourth Ibis species, twelve heron species, the prize being a Dimorphic Egret, both Great White and Pink-backed Pelicans, of the dozen raptor species the prize went to an adult Great Spotted Eagle, nineteen waders, the surprise being a Grey Plover. This certainly boosted our up to now mediocre showing in waterbirds! Passerines only seen here included Schalow’s Wheatear and the incredible Long-tailed Widowbird. After lunch we left for Lake Baringo. Arriving in the late evening we quickly settled in for a very full day tomorrow.

The 18th started the day with light refreshments and a boat trip before the full breakfast. Early morning on the lake was spectacular, and the water so calm. We saw a lot of birds whilst exploring the near shoreline including our first Open-billed Stork, a posing Little Bittern, Purple Swamphen, and a pair of Senegal Thick-knees with a well-grown young bird. Other birds seen from the boat included Northern Masked Weaver and Northern Red Bishop.

The remainder of the day was local birding out towards the escarpment, with an outstanding local guide, William. What an amazing piece of shopping-list birding we had, we a short walk and rapid succession of our first Common Ostrich, Heuglin’s Courser, more Spotted Thick-knees for those that missed the bird in Shaba, Northern White-faced Owl, Greyish Eagle Owl, a pair of Spotted Eagle Owls, (we had seen Verreaux’s Eagle-Owl from the boat in the morning as well), Slender-tailed Nightjar (six!!!), Jackson’s Hornbill, Golden-backed and Little Weavers.

The next morning (19th), we visited the lava cliffs finding Verreaux’s Eagle, Hemprich’s Hornbill, Upcher’s Warbler, Bristle-crowned Starling, Brown-tailed Rock Chat, Shining Sunbird and Black-cheeked Waxbill. Then continued across the Rift with its magnificent vistas, stopping briefly for White-billed Buffalo-Weavers in Mogotio. After instant Shoe Repair in Kabarnet, we birded amongst some local plots on the side of the Kerio Valley. Being rewarded with Western Black-headed Batis, Gambaga Flycatcher and Chestnut-crowned Sparrow-Weaver, whilst lunch along the Kerio River additionally gave us White-crested Turaco, Broad-billed Roller and Black-headed Gonolek. A brief stop climbing the west wall had us studying more White-crested and three Ross’s Turacos in a fruiting fig, accompanied by Western Yellow White-eyes.

We drove through Iten, the capital of Kenyan athletics and continued towards Kakamega with a brief stop at a reed bed for our first Swamp Flycatchers and Yellow-backed (Black-headed) Weavers. We were making good progress but darkness had fallen and we were brought to a sudden stop with a commotion ahead where a tree had fallen completely across the road. There were some local people dealing with the problem and forty minutes later we were on our way for the last kilometre to Rondo Retreat Gate, (not realising just how close we had been).

Rondo was as marvellous as ever, and after offloading we were soon having a good supper in very nice surroundings.

In the morning (20th) we had an early breakfast and a quick look at the garden. It was a quiet start and so we decided to set off for the morning along the Ikuywa River.  We had a good walk with a local guide who was to be with us for our entire visit to Kakamega.

After lunch we had a look along the Quarry Road and experienced our first heavy rain of the trip so spent the rest of the afternoon watching from the porch whilst being served beverages and home made cake!

The next morning (21st), we examined the Pump-House Trail and part of Zimmemann’s Grid, followed by late morning at the fishponds at Rondo before leaving for Busia.

The combination of our time there rewarded us with a host of species that in Kenya are confined to this region. We departed Kakamega having seen such niceties as Bat Hawk, Sooty Falcon, African Crowned Eagle bringing in unfortunate monkeys to its nest in full view on the Rondo lawn!, Grey Parrot (a single but exceptional record nowadays), Blue Malkoha, Blue-headed Bee-eater, Black-and-White Casqued Hornbill, Yellow-spotted and Yellow-billed Barbets, Buff-spotted and Golden-crowned Woodpeckers, Jameson’s Wattle-eye, Pink-footed Puffback, Luhder’s and Bocage’s Bush-shrikes, African Shrike-flycatcher, Petit’s Cuckoo-shrike, Mackinnon’s Fiscal, Western Black-headed Oriole, Sharpe’s Drongo, Dusky Tit, Turner’s Eremomela, White-chinned Prinia, Buff-throated Apalis, Black-faced Rufous Warbler, Olive-green Camaroptera, Green Hylia, Kakamega, Ansorge’s, Joyful, and Toro Olive Greenbuls, Red-tailed Bristlebill, Uganda Woodland Warbler, Forest Hyliota, Stuhlmann’s Starling, White-tailed Ant-Thrush, Blue-shouldered Robin-Chat, Equatorial Akalat, Brown-chested Alethe, Grey-chinned and Green-throated Sunbirds, Black-billed, Dark-backed, and Vieillot’s Black Weaver, Red-headed Malimbe, and Red-headed Bluebill.

Twenty minutes of spotlighting in the garden after dinner revealed six Palm Civets, and we even had a daylight individual running across the lawn in the rain!

After leaving Kakamega after lunch, we stopped at the Mumias Bridge for hoped for but not-at home Rock Pratincoles, but the dazzling Red-chested Sunbirds in their spectacular rainbow-like iridescence put on a superb “light display.” Almost the entire Busia Grassland area has been cultivated, and sadly potentially 15 species that used to be resident in the area may now be extinct in the country. We scraped up a few species for the tour with Yellow-throated Leaflove (Pale-throated Greenbul), Angola Swallow, Olive-bellied and Copper Sunbirds, Northern Black Bishop, and Bar-breasted Firefinch.

We stayed in Busia overnight, had an early breakfast on 22nd, and departed the town as the tour’s first Grey Kestrel flew overhead. Firstly we explored some remnant scrub near the Sio River sluice/pump house. Here we found our first Fan-tailed Widowbirds, African Moustached Warbler and an interesting apparent hybrid between Yellow-backed and Northern Brown-throated Weaver that was nest building.

Nearby we could hear Piapiacs calling and saw a flock leaving some Eucalypts where they may have roosted although there were a few Borassus Palms in the area which is their tree of choice. We counted the birds as they left the tree; there was a staggering 55 of them. This is an unheard of figure in Kenya for this species, when we left these birds and drove back towards Busia, just a couple of kilometres further down the road we found another flock of 22 Piapiacs feeding on emerging alates (winged termites) by the side of the road. 77 is an even more outrageous record for the species. Who knows what the number is for this species now in this corner of the country along the Ugandan border.

From here we left for the Alupe area, there is still some remnant scrub in the area, but after being granted permission to explore the scrub by the University that now owned the land, the only new bird we added was the distinctive white-shouldered, all black-tailed, black bellied nominate race of White-headed Barbet. With time in this unique area running out, it was thought that the scrubby covered rocky hills of Adungosi might at least hold on to its Whistling Cisticolas. We hastened off there, and it was worth the effort. It took a while for the Whistling Cisticolas to pose for good views after a good deal of playback but finally they performed well. We also found Yellow-fronted Tinkerbird and Black-faced Waxbills. Whilst we were waiting patiently for the birds to appear members noticed orange-headed, blackish agama lizards basking on the rocks, in fact there were lots of them. They asked Brian what they were, and the reply was that they are Finch’s Agama Agama finchi,  actually named after a reprobate birder who discovered them as a species new to science!

It was now getting late and we had to drive to Kisumu, so we took our leave and started moving south. On the way we found an adult Banded Snake Eagle sitting on a roadside post, and another stop at the bridge over the Nzoia River to check for Rock Pratincoles rewarded us with two birds sitting on the rocks, which was a success on the same river as we checked and failed to find them at Mumias. It would be interesting if there could be a proper count along the river as there could be a potential of 40 kilometres of Rock Pratincoles! As we edged closer to the Sunset Hotel, our intended destination, a party of 14 Abdim’s Storks flew over the road on their way to a roost site.

It was now the 23rd, another early breakfast and with our bags packed and left in the rooms, we set off for Dunga Point and the papyrus specialities. We met up with the resident guide, Titus. By walking along the road alongside the papyrus it was very productive and we found our first Blue-spotted Wood Dove, Blue-headed Coucal, Eastern Grey Plantain-eaters, Grey-capped Warbler, Highland Rush Warbler, White-winged Swamp Warbler, Greater Swamp Warbler, Sedge and Eurasian Reed Warblers, Slender-billed and Northern Brown-throated Weavers, Yellow-fronted and Papyrus Canaries, but although we could hear Papyrus Gonolek and Carruther’s Cisticolas we could not induce them into view. A short boat trip soon had us all getting good views from the lakeside of the papyrus.

Whilst packing the car Brown Babblers started calling and we went off after them but they were not on our side of a wall, however we were consoled by a Double-toothed Barbet and this is just as well as we never encountered the species in the Maasai Mara!

The next piece of birding was not until we descended the Oloololo Escarpment towards Kichwa Tembo, then suddenly birds were everywhere again. These included new trip species such as Dusky Turtle Dove, Bare-faced Go-Away Bird, Usambiro Barbet, Stout Cisticola, Hildebrandt’s Starling and Sooty Chat. After a long drive we arrived at Kichwa Tembo our decadent destination for two nights and got swamped in luxury!

Yes, for a change we had an early breakfast on the 24th, then set off up the Sabaringo track along the river valley of the same name, to the top and back. It was a breath-taking morning with stunning Mara views at their best, and the birds were active and noisy. Over the next few hours we found plenty of new species to keep us on our toes, with Lesser Spotted Eagles, Narina Trogons, Red-throated Wryneck, Trilling Cisticola, Violet-backed Starling, and Long-billed Pipit.

In the afternoon (after an amazing lunch), we drove through the Oloololo Gate and along the Mara River as far as Serena Lodge with the welcome additions of Red-necked Spurfowl, Coqui and Red-winged Francolins, incomparable Saddle-billed Stork, Black-chested and Brown Snake Eagles, African Wattled Lapwing, Mosque Swallow, Rufous-naped Lark (birds seen in Lake Nakuru NP are soon to be split Sentinel Larks), Black-backed Cisticola, Broad-tailed Warbler, Yellow-mantled and Jackson’s Widowbirds, Fawn-breasted Waxbill and Tree Pipit.

Leaving Kichwa on 25th, and it’s incredible sunrise (the genuine Lion King sunrise was first drafted from Kichwa’s lawn!), we checked out areas along the river, and having our picnic lunch at the Mara Bridge along the Tanzanian border continued slowly to exit at Sekenani Gate. Of the new birds today we enjoyed Spur-winged Goose, Montagu’s Harriers, Dark Chanting Goshawk, Black-bellied Bustard, Temminck’s Courser, Schalow’s Turaco, Southern Ground Hornbill, Rufous-chested Swallow, Desert Cisticola, Grey-headed Social-Weaver (note that this different looking race dorsalis in the Maasai Mara is a candidate for splitting), and Grey-headed Silverbill.

Nov 26th was the final day of the Main Tour. Having spent a comfortable night in the locally owned Oldapoi Wageni Camp, it was absolutely astounding to see the birds just outside of the restaurant in the early morning. The lawn was alive with colour with numbers of Violet-backed Starlings shimmering from purple to gold, startling male Red-headed Weavers, and dancing flocks of Grey-headed Silverbills and Yellow-fronted Canaries. Whilst alone, a participant photographed a Red-tailed Chat, a rare bird on the eastern side of the Mara, and although we waited it never rematerialized. Maybe the strangest thing to see on a manicured lawn though is a Tabora Cisticola! About thirty species were entertaining us at this spectacle.

We had to drag ourselves away as we had to visit the Siana Valley, and had a rendezvous with a local ranger. Compared to the garden at Oldapoi, it was extremely quiet and the new species added was sorely limited. We found a pair of African Hawk-Eagles, and a lone Cardinal Quelea. Before Namanga we stopped to eat our picnics, and the residents of the souvenir supermarket were feeding the birds, and amongst the many species attending were several Swahili Sparrows, our final new bird for the tour.

We crossed the Great Rift Valley arriving in Nairobi and taking the flyover across the entire city as the sun was setting and Ben gave a swift ID to most of the high rise buildings, but it was quite a magical finale gliding across the entire city in the last of the days sunlight. Soon we were at “Four Points Hotel” actually inside the airport grounds. After a farewell dinner we farewelled some participants, as they were returning home and would be missed on our short extension excursion starting tomorrow.

Oh yes, the 27th started with another early breakfast for the Ngulia excursion. We were soon on the Mombasa road heading eastwards. Closer to Nairobi the countryside was still parched, but when we stopped for a break at Hunter’s Lodge, there was green grass and a lot of breeding activity, so evidently there had been some rain locally. As we enjoyed our refreshments there, there were some new birds with our first Knob-billed Duck, a drake with an enormous swollen bill, and a pair of Snowy Barbets, now a Kenyan endemic. Having a cuppa under an active Black-headed Heron colony may seem risky, but we came away unscathed! Another new bird, African Golden Weaver was abundant and nesting in full swing, amongst them were the odd and even more dazzling Golden Palm Weavers that we had seen long ago in the grounds of Ashnil. A Grey Wagtail was a bit of a surprise in the low country. Mann’s Dwarf Geckos were active on the wooden posts.

We arrived late morning at the Mtito Andei entrance gate of Tsavo West National Park. This was only our second visit to a Kenya National Park on the entire tour, apart from Lake Nakuru National Park. All other places visited had been Game Reserves administered by local government, private land or concessions.

Entering Tsavo West had a familiar feel to it, as the avifauna more closely resembled the Samburu regions, however there were differences and these were what we were looking for. We meandered on our way to Ngulia Lodge, as we wanted to arrive after the sun had set for a special experience. Checking out a mainly grassy valley we encountered some new species such as Kori and Hartlaub’s Bustards, Long-tailed Fiscal, Red-winged Lark, Pringle’s Puffback, Ashy and Tiny Cisticolas, Marsh Warbler, Scaly Chatterer, Tsavo Sunbird and Green-winged Pytilia. As the sun set, we closed in on Ngulia Lodge our destination, the cars headlights went on and we drove slowly along the road looking for the eye-shine of nightjars sitting in the road. We were not disappointed as there were many, and we found Eurasian, Dusky (Sombre), Donaldson-Smith’s and Plain as well as a Genet, Jerbils and a Four-toed Elephant-shrew.

Ngulia is one of the world’s most impressive visible migration meccas, and there has been a ringing group present at this time of year for the past forty years. The geography of the region funnels birds from a wide source to this apex which is the illuminated Ngulia Lodge. The ringing group was there, and they were eager to share the Ngulia experience.

The next morning (28th) the group was able to see birds in the bushes around the lodge and also examine species such as Donaldson-smith’s Nightjar, Eurasian Rock-Thrush, compare Common and Thrush Nightingales, Irania, River and Upcher’s Warblers (and many more) in the hand.

After breakfast and again after lunch, it was time to find some more desirable species, and the foray added Black-headed Lapwing, Madagascar (Olive) Bee-eater, Zanzibar Sombre Greenbul, White-winged Widowbird, Jameson’s Firefinch and Purple Indigobird. We had a frustrating time with Red-naped Bush-shrike, and no effort would bring the birds into view. The nightjars put on another show in the evening, as did a Leopard striding along the road towards the lodge.

The 29th arrived and marked the end of a very successful tour. After leaving the lodge we birded our way out. The final trip birds were Booted Eagle, Eurasian Golden Oriole, and the hitherto inexplicably elusive Black-necked Weaver now as we left, encountered no less than three times! Our sortie to Tsavo added a few more mammals than those already mentioned, with Yellow Baboon, Bush Hyrax, Klipspringer, Lesser Kudu and Fringe-eared Oryx.

We farewelled back at the hotel, and later that night the visitors started their journeys homewards, looking forward to the pleasurable task of labelling all of their photographic memories they were taking back with them.

The final results for the birds recorded on this tour were:

MAIN TOUR 10th-26th November 2022: 586 species seen (22 species heard only).

TSAVO EXTENSION 27th-29th November 2022: An additional 29 species seen (4 species heard only).

TOTAL: 615 species seen and 26 species heard only.

Additionally the group were fortunate enough to encounter nearly fifty species of mammals with a number unidentified rodents and bats! 

                                                                                                                                                                                             - Brian Finch

Updated: March 2023