South-Central Africa

1,246,700 km² including the exclave of Cabinda (7th largest country in Africa)


Strongly Afrotropical avifauna
Approximately 950 recorded species (5th longest bird list of any country in the ABC region)

Braun’s Bushshrike (Pete Morris)
Monteiro’s Bushshrike (Pete Morris)
Gabela Helmetshrike (Paul van Giersbergen)

Endemics (E)
Swierstra’s Spurfowl (EN)
Grey-striped Spurfowl (LC)
Red-crested Turaco (LC)
Red-backed Mousebird (LC)
White-fronted Wattle-eye (NT)
Braun’s Bushshrike (EN)
Gabela Bushshrike (EN)
Gabela Helmetshrike | Angola Helmetshrike (EN)
Pulitzer’s Longbill (EN)
Hartert’s Camaroptera (LC)
Angola Slaty Flycatcher (LC)
Gabela Akalat (EN)
Ludwig’s Double-collared Sunbird (LC)
Angola Waxbill (LC)

Grey-striped Spurfowl (Pete Morris)
Gabela Bushshrike (Pete Morris)
Angola Waxbill (Paul van Giersbergen)
White-fronted Wattle-eye (Pete Morris)
Ludwig’s Double-collared Sunbird (Pete Morris)

Near-endemics (NE)
Pale-olive Greenbul
Bubbling Cisticola
Angola Cave Chat
Rufous-tailed Palm Thrush
Bocage’s Sunbird
Cinderella Waxbill
Grimwood’s Longclaw

Angola Cave Chat (Paul van Giersbergen)
Landana Firefinch (Pete Morris)
Cinderella Waxbill (Kevin Ravno)
Rufous-tailed Palm Thrush (Kevin Ravno)

Birds best found in Angola but occurring more widely (BT), including endemic subspecies (ESS)
Gabon Coucal
Anchieta’s Barbet (ESS rex)
Angola Batis
Monteiro’s Bushshrike (ESS monteiri)
Yellow-throated Nicator
Falkenstein’s Greenbul | Yellow-necked Greenbul
Brazza’s Martin
Black-and-rufous Swallow
Black-tailed Cisticola | Slender-tailed Cisticola
Salvadori’s Eremomela
Southern Hyliota (inornata)
Sharp-tailed Starling
Forest Scrub Robin (ESS reichenowi)
White-headed Robin-Chat
Bocage’s Akalat (ESS bocagei)
Oustalet’s Sunbird (ESS oustaleti)
Golden-backed Bishop
Grey Waxbill | Black-tailed Waxbill
Dusky Twinspot (ESS cinereovinacea)
Black-faced Canary (ESS hildegardae)

White-headed Robin-Chat (Paul van Giersbergen)

Birds occurring in only two territories of the ABC region but not NE or BT (1/2)
Hartlaub’s Francolin
Rüppell’s Korhaan
Violet Wood Hoopoe
Monteiro’s Hornbill
Rüppell’s Parrot
White-tailed Shrike
Carp’s Tit
Gray’s Lark
Benguela Long-billed Lark
Bare-cheeked Babbler
Herero Chat

Violet Wood Hoopoe (Kevin Ravno)

Birds best found in two territories but occurring in more (B2), including ESS
Finsch’s Francolin
Bradfield’s Swift
Damara Red-billed Hornbill
Miombo Pied Barbet | Miombo Barbet
Black-backed Barbet
African Pitta (angolensis)
Margaret’s Batis | Boulton’s Batis (ESS margaritae)
Angola Lark
Black-collared Bulbul
Red-throated Cliff Swallow
Dambo Cisticola | Cloud-scraping Cisticola
Black-necked Eremomela
Short-toed Rock Thrush
Bannerman’s Sunbird
Chestnut-backed Sparrow-Weaver
Black-chinned Weaver
Bocage’s Weaver
Bar-winged Weaver
Red-headed Bluebill
Broad-tailed Paradise Whydah
Fülleborn’s Longclaw

Angola Lark (Pete Morris)

Proposed new species or splits not yet accepted by IOC
Chestnut-breasted Francolin
Crawshay’s Francolin
Kunene Francolin (1/2)
Cranch’s Spurfowl
Black-shouldered Nightjar
Benguela Nightjar (E)
Loanda Swift (E)
Verreaux’s Turaco
Western Black-billed Turaco
Barrow’s Bustard
Cape Gull
Ngami Owlet
Congo Pied Hornbill
Eastern Piping Hornbill
Eastern Little Hornbill
Eastern Long-tailed Hornbill
Pale-throated Barbet (E)
Eastern Yellow-spotted Barbet
Streaky-throated Barbet
White-bellied Barbet (E)
Brown-faced Barbet (BT)
White-faced Barbet (B2)
Eastern Yellow-billed Barbet
Northern Olive Woodpecker
Grey-headed Parrot
West African Pitta (B2)
Perrin’s Bushshrike (BT)
Anchieta’s Tchagra
Angola Greenbul (E)
Petit’s Saw-wing
Eastern Saw-wing
African Reed Warbler
Lepe Cisticola (E)
Angola Cisticola (B2)
Huambo Cisticola (E)
Forest Hyliota (BT)
Benguela Starling (E)
Kunene Starling (NE)
Red-backed Mannikin
Spectacled Quailfinch
Black-chinned Quailfinch
Landana Firefinch (NE)
Ansorge’s Firefinch (NE)
Benguela Seedeater (NE)

Other taxa of interest, including more ESS
Hartlaub’s Duck
Western Crested Guineafowl
Southern Crested Guineafowl
Red-billed Spurfowl
Scaly Spurfowl (afer)
Swainson’s Spurfowl
Rufous-cheeked Nightjar
Pennant-winged Nightjar
Scarce Swift
Böhm’s Spinetail
Great Blue Turaco
Grey Go-away-bird
Ross’s Turaco
Guinea Turaco
Schalow’s Turaco
Kori Bustard
Denham’s Bustard
Red-crested Korhaan
Coppery-tailed Coucal
Blue Malkoha
Dusky Long-tailed Cuckoo
Olive Long-tailed Cuckoo
Double-banded Sandgrouse
Burchell’s Sandgrouse
Afep Pigeon
Western Bronze-naped Pigeon
African Green Pigeon (ESS ansorgei)
White-spotted Flufftail
Chestnut-headed Flufftail (lynesi)
Lesser Flamingo
Rock Pratincole
West African Crested Tern
Damara Tern
Cape Gannet
Cape Cormorant
Congo Serpent Eagle
Ayres’s Hawk-Eagle
Cassin’s Hawk-Eagle
Long-tailed Hawk
Chestnut-flanked Sparrowhawk
Red-thighed Sparrowhawk
Rufous-breasted Sparrowhawk
Fraser’s Eagle-Owl
Akun Eagle-Owl
Vermiculated Fishing Owl
Red-faced Mousebird
Bar-tailed Trogon
Black Scimitarbill (anchietae)
Southern Ground Hornbill
Southern Red-billed Hornbill
Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill (ESS elegans)
Bradfield’s Hornbill
Crowned Hornbill
Pale-billed Hornbill
Trumpeter Hornbill
Black-and-white-casqued Hornbill
Black-casqued Hornbill
Racket-tailed Roller
Blue-throated Roller
Chocolate-backed Kingfisher
Blue-breasted Kingfisher
African Dwarf Kingfisher
White-bellied Kingfisher
Shining-blue Kingfisher
Half-collared Kingfisher
Black Bee-eater
Blue-breasted Bee-eater
Olive Bee-eater | Madagascar Bee-eater
Southern Carmine Bee-eater
Grey-throated Barbet
Western Tinkerbird (ESS angolensis)
Acacia Pied Barbet | Pied Barbet
Double-toothed Barbet
Crested Barbet
Cassin’s Honeybird
Green-backed Honeybird (ESS lathburyi)
Pallid Honeyguide
Least Honeyguide
Red-throated Wryneck | Rufous-necked Wryneck
African Piculet
Buff-spotted Woodpecker
Brown-eared Woodpecker
Bennett’s Woodpecker
Little Green Woodpecker
Little Spotted Woodpecker | Green-backed Woodpecker
Yellow-crested Woodpecker | Golden-crowned Woodpecker
Elliot’s Woodpecker
African Grey Woodpecker
Dickinson’s Kestrel
Red-fronted Parrot
Meyer’s Parrot (ESS reichenowi)
Red-headed Lovebird
Rosy-faced Lovebird (ESS catumbella)
African Broadbill
Western Black-headed Batis (congoensis)
Chestnut Wattle-eye
Black-throated Wattle-eye
Yellow-bellied Wattle-eye (ESS ansorgei)
Black-necked Wattle-eye
Many-colored Bushshrike
Black-fronted Bushshrike
Bocage’s Bushshrike | Gray-green Bushshrike
Brown-crowned Tchagra (ESS ansorgei + bocagei)
Sabine’s Puffback
Pink-footed Puffback (angolensis)
Red-eyed Puffback
Lowland Sooty Boubou
Swamp Boubou
Crimson-breasted Shrike | Crimson-breasted Gonolek
Retz’s Helmetshrike
African Shrike-flycatcher
Black-and-white Shrike-flycatcher
White-breasted Cuckooshrike
Petit’s Cuckooshrike
Purple-throated Cuckooshrike
Magpie Shrike
Southern White-crowned Shrike
Souza’s Shrike
Mackinnon’s Shrike
Northern Fiscal
Southern Fiscal
Western Oriole
Black-winged Oriole
Velvet-mantled Drongo
Common Square-tailed Drongo
Sharpe’s Drongo
Blue-headed Crested Flycatcher
Rufous-vented Paradise Flycatcher
Red-bellied Paradise Flycatcher | Black-headed Paradise Flycatcher
Bates’s Paradise Flycatcher
African Blue Flycatcher
White-tailed Blue Flycatcher
White-winged Black Tit
Southern Black Tit
Dusky Tit (ESS gabela)
Rufous-bellied Tit
Miombo Tit
Western Nicator
Dusky Lark
Chestnut-backed Sparrow-Lark
Sabota Lark (ESS ansorgei + C plebeja)
Fawn-colored Lark
Rufous-naped Lark (ESS occidentalis)
Red-tailed Bristlebill
Swamp Palm Bulbul | Swamp Greenbul
Simple Greenbul
Honeyguide Greenbul
Red-tailed Greenbul
Plain Greenbul
Little Grey Greenbul | Gray Greenbul
Grey-olive Greenbul
Cabanis’s Greenbul
African Red-eyed Bulbul | Black-fronted Bulbul
White-headed Saw-wing (ESS suffusa)
Pearl-breasted Swallow
White-bibbed Swallow | White-throated Blue Swallow
Angola Swallow
Greater Striped Swallow
Yellow Longbill
Grey Longbill
Long-billed Crombec | Cape Crombec (ESS ansorgei)
Red-capped Crombec (ESS makayii)
Green Crombec
Lemon-bellied Crombec
Green Hylia
Tit Hylia (denti)
Laura’s Woodland Warbler (ESS laurae)
Evergreen Forest Warbler (ESS boultoni)
Little Rush Warbler (ESS benguellensis)
Whistling Cisticola
Chattering Cisticola
Rock-loving Cisticola (ESS bailunduensis)
Tinkling Cisticola
Wailing Cisticola (ESS namba)
Luapula Cisticola
Chirping Cisticola (ESS pipiens)
Levaillant’s Cisticola (perpullus)
Neddicky | Piping Cisticola
Desert Cisticola (ESS lobito)
Cloud Cisticola (ESS bulubulu)
Pale-crowned Cisticola
Wing-snapping Cisticola (ayresii)
Black-chested Prinia
Banded Prinia (ESS heinrichi)
White-chinned Prinia
Lowland Masked Apalis | Masked Apalis
Black-throated Apalis
Buff-throated Apalis (ESS angolensis + brauni)
Gosling’s Apalis
Grey Apalis (ESS grandis)
Brown-headed Apalis
Yellow-browed Camaroptera
Miombo Wren-Warbler | Pale Wren-Warbler (ESS huilae)
Stierling’s Wren-Warbler
Barred Wren-Warbler (ESS pallidior)
Yellow-bellied Eremomela (ESS puellula)
Green-capped Eremomela
Burnt-necked Eremomela
Rufous-crowned Eremomela
African Hill Babbler
Chestnut-vented Warbler (ESS ansorgei)
Northern Yellow White-eye (ESS heinrichi + quanzae)
Southern Yellow White-eye
Brown Illadopsis (ESS dilutior)
Scaly-breasted Illadopsis
Spotted Thrush-Babbler | Thrush-Babbler (upembae)
Southern Pied Babbler
Hartlaub’s Babbler
Black-faced Babbler
Yellow-bellied Hyliota
African Spotted Creeper
Cape Starling
Splendid Starling (bailundensis)
Burchell’s Starling
Chestnut-winged Starling (intermedius)
Narrow-tailed Starling
Babbling Starling (ESS gutturalis)
Fraser’s Rufous Thrush | Rufous Flycatcher-Thrush
White-tailed Ant Thrush (ESS pallidigularis)
Orange Ground Thrush
Groundscraper Thrush
Kurrichane Thrush
Fire-crested Alethe
Miombo Scrub Robin
Brown-backed Scrub Robin
Fraser’s Forest Flycatcher
White-browed Forest Flycatcher
Grey-throated Tit-Flycatcher
Grey Tit-Flycatcher
Marico Flycatcher | Mariqua Flycatcher
Cassin’s Flycatcher
Dusky-blue Flycatcher
Sooty Flycatcher
Böhm’s Flycatcher
Brown-chested Alethe (ESS hallae)
Grey-winged Robin-Chat
Snowy-crowned Robin-Chat
Miombo Rock Thrush
Sooty Chat
Congo Moor Chat
Mountain Wheatear (ESS nigricauda)
Arnot’s Chat (ESS harterti)
Capped Wheatear
Fraser’s Sunbird
Anchieta’s Sunbird
Mangrove Sunbird | Mouse-brown Sunbird
Violet-tailed Sunbird
Little Green Sunbird
Grey-chinned Sunbird
Reichenbach’s Sunbird
Blue-throated Brown Sunbird
Carmelite Sunbird (fuliginosa)
Green-throated Sunbird
Bronzy Sunbird (ESS gadowi)
Olive-bellied Sunbird
Western Miombo Sunbird
Orange-tufted Sunbird
Superb Sunbird
White-bellied Sunbird | White-breasted Sunbird
Great Sparrow | Great Rufous Sparrow
Yellow-throated Bush Sparrow
Red-billed Buffalo Weaver
Slender-billed Weaver
Black-necked Weaver
Orange Weaver
Southern Brown-throated Weaver
Lesser Masked Weaver (ESS beattyi)
Southern Masked Weaver
Vieillot’s Black Weaver
Yellow-mantled Weaver
Compact Weaver
Dark-backed Weaver | Forest Weaver
Brown-capped Weaver
Blue-billed Malimbe
Red-headed Malimbe (ESS praedi)
Crested Malimbe
Yellow Bishop (ESS angolensis)
Marsh Widowbird
Long-tailed Widowbird (delacouri)
White-collared Oliveback
Green Twinspot | Green-backed Twinspot
Red-faced Crimsonwing (reichenovii)
Woodhouse’s Antpecker (ESS ansorgei)
White-breasted Nigrita
Chestnut-breasted Nigrita
Grey-headed Nigrita (angolensis)
Pale-fronted Nigrita
Black-faced Waxbill
Black-headed Waxbill (avakubi)
Fawn-breasted Waxbill (benguellensis)
Common Waxbill (ESS angolensis)
Locust Finch
Cut-throat Finch
Red-headed Finch
Violet-eared Waxbill
Blue Waxbill | Southern Cordon-bleu
Black-bellied Seedcracker
Orange-winged Pytilia
Red-throated Twinspot | Peters’s Twinspot
Brown Twinspot
Brown Firefinch
Purple Indigobird
Dusky Indigobird
Shaft-tailed Whydah
Long-tailed Paradise Whydah | Eastern Paradise Whydah
Cuckoo-finch | Parasitic Weaver
Cape Wagtail
Rosy-throated Longclaw
Long-billed Pipit (ESS moco)
Nicholson’s Pipit (palliditinctus)
Wood Pipit | Wood Pipit
Buffy Pipit (ESS neumanni)
Long-legged Pipit
Striped Pipit
Short-tailed Pipit
Bushveld Pipit | Bush Pipit
Black-throated Canary
Yellow Canary
Black-eared Seedeater
Thick-billed Seedeater (tanganjicae)
Yellow-crowned Canary (ESS huillensis)
Lark-like Bunting
Cabanis’s Bunting

Grey Apalis (Pete Morris)
Yellow Longbill (Pete Morris)
Black-throated Wattle-eye (Pete Morris)

National bird
Red-crested Turaco | Turaco de Angola

Escarpment forest, Afromontane forest, gallery forest, miombo woodland, desert

Western Angola Endemic Bird Area
Gabon Cabinda coast Secondary Area (SA)
Namibian escarpment SA
West Zaïre and North Angola forests SA
23 Important Bird Areas

Kumbira Forest, Kissama National Park (NP) and Quibaxe for escarpment endemics
Mount Moco and Tundavala for montane forest and miombo woodland species
Kalandula Falls for White-headed Robin-Chat and miombo woodland species
Iona NP for desert and arid savanna species, including Common Ostrich, Ludwig’s Bustard, Namaqua Sandgrouse, Burchell’s Courser, Double-banded Courser, Pale Chanting Goshawk, Pririt Batis, Ashy Tit, Cape Penduline Tit, Spike-heeled Lark, Grey-backed Sparrow-Lark, Stark’s Lark, Grey-backed Cisticola, Pale-winged Starling, Kalahari Scrub Robin, Chat Flycatcher, Karoo Chat, Tractrac Chat, Dusky Sunbird, Cape Sparrow, Scaly-feathered Weaver, Chestnut Weaver, White-throated Canary and Cape Bunting
Cabinda for lowland forest species occurring north of the Congo River, including Black Guineafowl, Plumed Guineafowl, Latham’s Francolin, Sabine’s Spinetail, Cassin’s Spinetail, Yellow-throated Cuckoo, Blue-headed Wood Dove, Nkulengu Rail, Grey Pratincole, White-crested Tiger Heron, White-thighed Hornbill, Black-headed Bee-eater, Rosy Bee-eater, Bristle-nosed Barbet, Spotted Honeyguide, Lyre-tailed Honeyguide, Grey Parrot, Rufous-sided Broadbill, Lühder’s Bushshrike, Rufous-bellied Helmetshrike, Blue Cuckooshrike, Golden Greenbul, Yellow-lored Bristlebill, Spotted Greenbul, Sjöstedt’s Greenbul, Eastern Bearded Greenbul, Icterine Greenbul, Square-tailed Saw-wing, Chestnut-capped Flycatcher, Pale-breasted Illadopsis, Purple-headed Starling, Johanna’s Sunbird, Bates’s Sunbird, Loango Weaver and Western Bluebill

TIMING (Aug–Oct)
Best at the start of the rains (Aug–Oct) when most birds breed
Some places, including Kumbira, may be inaccessible during the rains (Nov–Mar)
Feb–May is good for breeding plumaged Golden-backed Bishop and various Vidua species
Jun–Jul is unproductive in the highlands

Birds of Africa (iOS or Android)

Field guides
Birds of Africa South of the Sahara by Ian Sinclair & Peter Ryan (2010)
Birds of Southern Africa by Ber van Perlo (2009)
Birds of Western Africa by Ron Demey & Nik Borrow (2014) is the best available field guide for the north of the country
Sasol Birds of Southern Africa by Ian Sinclair, Phil Hockey, Warwick Tarboton, Niall Perrins, Dominic Rollinson & Peter Ryan (2020) is useful for the south of the country and, together with the previous field guide, covers most non-endemic birds

Vocalisations of Angolan Birds by Michael S L Mills
African Bird Sounds Vol 2: West and Central Africa by Claude Chappuis
Southern African Bird Sounds by Guy Gibbon

Site guides
Birds Angola – Birding Sites by Michael Mills
Southern African Birdfinder by Callan Cohen, Claire Spottiswoode & Jonathan Rossouw (2006)
Birding Western Angola by Ian Sinclair, Claire Spottiswoode, Callan Cohen, Michael Mills, Rodney Cassidy, Pedro vaz Pinto & Peter Ryan (2004)

Further reading
The Avifauna of Angola: Richness, Endemism and Rarity by Richard Dean, Martim Melo & Michael Mills in Biodiversity of Angola Science & Conservation: a Modern Synthesis edited by Brian J Huntley, Vladimir Russo, Fernanda Lages & Nuno Ferrand (2019)
The Special Birds of Angola/As Aves Especiais de Angola by Michael Mills (2017)
The Collection and Database of Birds of Angola Hosted at IICT (Instituto de Investigação Científica Tropical), Lisboa, Portugal by Miguel Monteiro, Luís Reino, Pedro Beja, Michael Stuart Lyne Mills, Cristiane Bastos-Silveira, Manuela Ramos, Diana Rodrigues, Isabel Queirós Neves, Susana Consciência & Rui Figueira (2014)
The Checklist of the Birds of Angola 2013 Edition/A Lista das Aves de Angola Edição 2013 by Michael Mills & Martim Melo (2013)
A Bibliography of Angolan Birds compiled by W R J Dean and M S L Mills (2012)
Angola by W R J Dean in Important Bird Areas in Africa and Associated Islands: Priority Sites for Conservation edited by Lincoln D C Fishpool & Michael I Evans (2001)
The Birds of Angola: an Annotated Checklist by W R J Dean (2000)
Ornitolgia de Angola Vol 1: Non-passeres by António Augusto da Rosa Pinto (1983)
Articles in Bull. ABC, Malimbus, etc.

Birds Angola
Birding Angola
Kwanza Lodge: About Angola

Angola Field Group: Birds
Kumbira Forest Project: Saving Angola’s Endemic Birds

Facebook groups
Angola Selvagem is a forum for anyone interested in the fantastic wildlife and natural environment of Angola
Birding Angola is a group with a goal to promote birdwatching in Angola


There is currently no BirdLife Partner in Angola

Bird or conservation organisations active in Angola include –
Associação Angolana para Aves e Natureza/Angolan Association for Birds and Nature
Wild Bird Trust
Fundação Kissama/Kissama Foundation
Mount Moco
Acção para o Desenvolvimento Rural e Ambiente (ADRA)/Action for Rural Development and Environment
Juventude Ecológica Angolana (JEA)
African Parks: Iona, Luengue-Luiana and Mavinga National Parks
Peace Parks Foundation: Kavango Zambezi (KAZA) Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA) and Liuwa Plains-Mussuma TFCA
The Nature Conservancy (TNC)

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