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Birding In Mahale

Birds in Mahale Mountains National Park

There isn’t a proper study done on the birdlife of Mahale National Park, however a minimum of 230 bird species have been documented here at the moment. The majority of them are actually forest birds, that are challenging to see. This is particularly true because walking inside the forest without guides is not permitted and yet all the guided walks are aimed at chimp tracking. From the beginning of November to April there are migratory birds in the park.
Notable birds

African fish eagle The Common

Palm-nut vulture

Livingstone’s turaco

Vieillot’s black weaver

Giant kingfisher

Crested guinea fowl

Birding specials

Bamboo warbler

Blue-cheeked bee-eater

Crested guinea fowl

Crested malimbe

Crowned eagle

Livingstone’s turaco

Palm-nut vulture

Ross’s turaco

Scaly francolin

Stuhlmann’s starling

Trumpeter hornbill

Vieillot’s black weaver

Best time for watching birds

In general, the birds here are numerous throughout the year; however the best time for watching the birds is from the start of November to the end of April. In these months the resident species begin Nesting and are in breeding plumage, as well as migratory birds coming from Europe or the northern part of Africa are present. From March up to April, the heavy rains make it really challenging to see the birds as the forest trails are really slippery. Chimp tracking is best enjoyed during the dry season, from May up to October, because then it is easier to see them.

Best parks for birding – including birding rating

All the renowned safari parks provide amazing opportunities for watching birds and also  specials may easily be seen almost everywhere you go. Arusha National Park which is usually overlooked offers a wonderful variety of habitats and prides in an overwhelming list of approximately 400 species living within its small area. Also Lake Manyara presents a great diversity of water associated bird species.

Famous for being habitat to some of the few surviving wild chimpanzees on the entire African continent, this Mahale Mountains National Park that covers a total land area of 1,613 square kilometer was gazetted back in 1985. The park is located about 128km south of Kigoma town along Lake Tanganyika’s spectacular eastern shores. The park’s western boundary shelters a nearby 1.6 kilometer wide strip of the waters of the great Lake Tanganyika.

The Mahale Mountains NP together with the area around the park is the traditional homeland of the Waholoholo plus the Watongwe tribes. Back in 1961 a number of primate researchers coming from Japan began exploring the shores of the renowned Lake Tanganyika, found south of Kigoma town. The researchers in 1965 established their very first camp in Mahale Maountains – ‘Kansyana’ and began habituating chimp families.

Mahale Mountains National Park

How To Get To Mahale

Mahale Mountains Weather

When To Visit Mahale

Birding in Mahale Mountains