Working for birds in Africa

Birding in Tanji Bird Reserve and Bijol Island, The Gambia

p 51-55

The Gambia is now a well-established destination for European birders because of the great variety of species which can be seen in a relatively small and accessible area covering a broad range of habitats. Hospitable people and the lack of dangerous big game also play an important part in the enjoyment of birding as, unlike in parts of East and South Africa, it is unnecessary to be confined to a vehicle. The country has been well-described as 'the gateway to African birding'. Organised bird tours are available, as are charter flights from Manchester and Gatwick and many similar options are available from other European countries. There are hotels in Banjul and along the Atlantic coast to suit most pockets. The popular time to visit is during the dry season, October-April, when many Palearctic migrants are present and all roads are passable by vehicle. However, it is apparent that the wet season offers a completely different perspective to the visiting birder; a period which is at present underwatched.

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