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the birds of Namibia

After two months of sorting, the final tally is in, and it exceeded D’s hopes and expectations. In addition to all the spectacular animals we saw – cheetahs, lions, a leopard, desert-adapted elephants, and much more – we photographed 170 different bird species in just under two weeks in Namibia. All this without setting foot in the Caprivi Strip – the country’s remotest region, and the one that has the highest concentration of birds.

pearl-spotted owlet, Damaraland

For the sake of comparison – we photographed just 150 birds during our two years in Kenya. Though, to be fair, it took D a full year before he became interested in ornithology, and even then only half-heartedly at first. Of the 170 birds we photographed in Namibia, 125 were new to us, and we’ve showcased most of them here. We also included a list of the ones we chose to omit – either because they are already pictured elsewhere on this blog, or – in the case of the “new” birds – because the photos did not do them justice.

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Bustards and Korhaans, Sandgrouses and Spurfowl

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Hornbill, Doves, Go-away Bird, Mousebird

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Starlings, Shrikes, Roller

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Larks, Pipits, Buntings

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Flycatchers, Bee-Eater, Sunbirds

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Tits and Chats

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Weavers, Sparrows, Finches, Canaries

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Not pictured: African grey hornbill; African hoopoe; African scops-owl; African white-backed vulture; barn swallow; bateleur; black kite; black-winged stilt; blacksmith lapwing; cape crow; cape wagtail; cardinal woodpecker; cattle egret; chestnut weaver; chestnut-backed sparrow-lark; common fiscal shrike; common house martin; common ostrich; common sandpiper; common swift; common tern; common (western) fiscal; crowned lapwing; Egyptian goose; European bee-eater; familiar chat; fawn-colored lark; fork-tailed drongo; great sparrow; great spotted cuckoo; great white pelican; greater flamingo; grey heron; grey-backed camaroptera; grey-backed sparrow-lark; helmeted guineafowl; house sparrow; kori bustard; lappet-faced vulture; lesser flamingo; lesser masked weaver; lilac-breasted roller; little bee-eater; little stint; marico sunbird; Namaqua dove; pied crow; red-backed shrike; red-faced mousebird; rock martin; sand martin; speckled pigeon; spectacled weaver; tawny eagle; white-browed sparrow-weaver; willow warbler; yellow-billed kite.

The birds in bold we photographed for the first time on this trip; the others appear elsewhere in our birding posts. After Namibia, we made a quick stop at Victoria Falls on our way back to Kigali, and we’ve included the four “new” birds we spotted during our brief visit there below.

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