Moçambique | Mozambique

Southern Africa

799,380 km²



Strongly Afrotropical avifauna
Approximately 750 recorded species

Brown Scrub Robin (Kevin Ravno)
Neergaard’s Sunbird (Kevin Ravno)
Woodwards’ Batis (Kevin Ravno)

Endemics (E)
Namuli Apalis (EN)

Near-endemics (NE), including endemic subspecies (ESS)
Woodwards’ Batis
Rufous-winged Cisticola
Rudd’s Apalis (ESS ruddi)
Neergaard’s Sunbird
Pink-throated Twinspot
Lemon-breasted Canary | Lemon-breasted Seedeater

Birds occurring in only two territories of the ABC region but not NE (1/2), including ESS
Kretschmer’s Longbill
Roberts’s Warbler | Briar Warbler
Chirinda Apalis
Long-billed Forest Warbler | Long-billed Tailorbird (ESS sousae)
Red-capped Forest Warbler | African Tailorbird
Dapple-throat | Dappled Mountain Robin (ESS orostruthus)
Brown Scrub Robin
Thyolo Alethe | Cholo Alethe (ESS namuli)

Birds best found in two territories but occurring in more (B2)
Olive-headed Weaver

Zambezian endemics or near-endemics occurring in Mozambique, including ESS
Pale-billed Hornbill
Racket-tailed Roller
Böhm’s Bee-eater
Whyte’s Barbet
Stierling’s Woodpecker
Dickinson’s Kestrel
Lilian’s Lovebird | Nyasa Lovebird
Souza’s Shrike
White-tailed Blue Flycatcher
Cinnamon-breasted Tit
Miombo Tit
Red-capped Crombec
Stierling’s Wren-Warbler (ESS olivascens)
Miombo Blue-eared Starling
Meves’s Starling
Boulder Chat
Kurrichane Thrush
Miombo Scrub Robin
Collared Palm Thrush
Miombo Rock Thrush
Arnot’s Chat | White-headed Black Chat
Anchieta’s Sunbird | Red-and-blue Sunbird
Eastern Miombo Sunbird (ESS amicorum)
Shelley’s Sunbird
White-bellied Sunbird | White-breasted Sunbird
Olive-headed Weaver (B2)
Red-throated Twinspot | Peters’s Twinspot
Zambezi Indigobird | Green Indigobird
Broad-tailed Paradise Whydah
Reichard’s Seedeater
Black-eared Seedeater

Proposed new species or splits not yet accepted by IOC
Kirk’s Francolin
African Quail
Usambara Nightjar
Grey-breasted Green Pigeon
Steppe Whimbrel (BT)
Cape Gull
Ngami Owlet
Southern Olive Woodpecker
Grey-headed Parrot
East African Pitta
Four-colored Bushshrike
Anchieta’s Tchagra
Eastern Saw-wing
African Reed Warbler
Mozambique Forest Warbler (E)
Maputaland Scrub Robin (1/2)
Southern Olive-flanked Ground Robin | Olive-flanked Robin-Chat (1/2)
Black-fronted Red Bishop
Red-backed Mannikin
Spectacled Quailfinch | African Quailfinch
Vincent’s Bunting (B2)
Three-streaked Bunting

Pink-throated Twinspot (Jacques de Spéville)
African Pitta (Paul van Giersbergen)
Black-and-white Shrike-flycatcher (Paul van Giersbergen)

Other taxa of interest (see also under Birding Sites)
Common Ostrich
White-backed Duck
African Pygmy Goose
Blue-billed Teal
Yellow-billed Duck
Red-billed Teal | Red-billed Duck
Southern Pochard
Southern Crested Guineafowl
Coqui Francolin
Crested Francolin (zambesiae)
Shelley’s Francolin
Red-necked Spurfowl
Fiery-necked Nightjar
Swamp Nightjar
Square-tailed Nightjar
Pennant-winged Nightjar
Böhm’s Spinetail | Bat-like Spinetail
African Black Swift | African Swift
Horus Swift
Grey Go-away-bird
Purple-crested Turaco
Livingstone’s Turaco (cabanisi)
Denham’s Bustard
Burchell’s Coucal
Black Coucal
Green Malkoha | Eastern Yellowbill
Thick-billed Cuckoo
Barred Long-tailed Cuckoo
Madagascar Cuckoo
African Finfoot
African Rail | African Water Rail
Lesser Moorhen
Grey Crowned Crane
Long-toed Lapwing
Blacksmith Lapwing
White-crowned Lapwing
Senegal Lapwing
White-fronted Plover
Greater Painted-snipe
Lesser Jacana
African Snipe
African Skimmer
Saddle-billed Stork
Malagasy Pond Heron
Rufous-bellied Heron
Southern Banded Snake Eagle | Fasciated Snake Eagle
Western Banded Snake Eagle | Banded Snake Eagle
Ayres’s Hawk-Eagle
African Marsh Harrier
African Grass Owl
Southern White-faced Owl
Marsh Owl
Spotted Eagle-Owl
Pel’s Fishing Owl
Speckled Mousebird (simulans)
Red-faced Mousebird
Common Scimitarbill
Southern Ground Hornbill
Southern Red-billed Hornbill
Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill
Crowned Hornbill
Trumpeter Hornbill
Silvery-cheeked Hornbill
Lilac-breasted Roller
Brown-hooded Kingfisher
Mangrove Kingfisher
Half-collared Kingfisher
Swallow-tailed Bee-eater
White-fronted Bee-eater
Olive Bee-eater | Madagascar Bee-eater
Southern Carmine Bee-eater
White-eared Barbet
Green Tinkerbird | Eastern Green Tinkerbird
Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird
Yellow-fronted Tinkerbird
Black-collared Barbet
Brown-breasted Barbet
Crested Barbet
Green-backed Honeybird | Eastern Honeybird
Pallid Honeyguide
Scaly-throated Honeyguide
Bennett’s Woodpecker
Speckle-throated Woodpecker | Reichenow’s Woodpecker
Golden-tailed Woodpecker
Little Spotted Woodpecker | Green-backed Woodpecker
Bearded Woodpecker
Meyer’s Parrot
Brown-headed Parrot
African Broadbill
Chinspot Batis
Pale Batis | East Coast Batis
Black-throated Wattle-eye
Black-backed Puffback
Retz’s Helmetshrike
Chestnut-fronted Helmetshrike
Black-and-white Shrike-flycatcher | Vanga Flycatcher
White-breasted Cuckooshrike
Black-headed Oriole | African Black-headed Oriole
Square-tailed Drongo
Blue-mantled Crested Flycatcher | African Crested Flycatcher
Southern Black Tit
Grey Penduline Tit | African Penduline Tit
Eastern Nicator
Dusky Lark
Rufous-naped Lark (transvaalensis)
Sombre Greenbul
Yellow-bellied Greenbul
Terrestrial Brownbul
Lowland Tiny Greenbul | Tiny Greenbul
Grey-olive Greenbul
Fischer’s Greenbul
Pearl-breasted Swallow
White-throated Swallow
Moustached Grass Warbler
Red-faced Crombec
Long-billed Crombec | Cape Crombec
Livingstone’s Flycatcher
Lesser Swamp Warbler
Fan-tailed Grassbird
Little Rush Warbler
Neddicky | Piping Cisticola
Red-winged Prinia
Black-headed Apalis (lightoni/addenda)
Green-backed Camaroptera
Yellow-bellied Eremomela
Green-capped Eremomela | Greencap Eremomela
Southern Yellow White-eye
Arrow-marked Babbler
Yellow-bellied Hyliota
African Spotted Creeper
Black-bellied Starling
Red-winged Starling
Yellow-billed Oxpecker
Red-billed Oxpecker
Spotted Ground Thrush
Bearded Scrub Robin
White-browed Scrub Robin | Red-backed Scrub Robin
Grey Tit-Flycatcher
Southern Black Flycatcher
African Dusky Flycatcher
White-throated Robin-Chat
White-browed Robin-Chat
Red-capped Robin-Chat
Capped Wheatear
Plain-backed Sunbird
Western Violet-backed Sunbird
Grey Sunbird | Mouse-colored Sunbird
Amethyst Sunbird
Purple-banded Sunbird
Southern Grey-headed Sparrow
Yellow-throated Bush Sparrow
Red-billed Buffalo Weaver
White-browed Sparrow-Weaver
Spectacled Weaver
Eastern Golden Weaver | African Golden Weaver
Holub’s Golden Weaver
Southern Brown-throated Weaver (xanthopterus)
Lesser Masked Weaver
Southern Masked Weaver
Dark-backed Weaver | Forest Weaver
Red-headed Quelea
Yellow Bishop
Fan-tailed Widowbird
White-winged Widowbird
Red-collared Widowbird
Magpie Mannikin
Green Twinspot | Green-backed Twinspot
Grey Waxbill | Black-tailed Waxbill
Blue Waxbill | Southern Cordon-bleu
Orange-winged Pytilia
Jameson’s Firefinch
Purple Indigobird
Dusky Indigobird | Variable Indigobird (nigerrima)
Long-tailed Paradise Whydah | Eastern Paradise Whydah
Cuckoo-finch | Parasitic Weaver
Rosy-throated Longclaw
African Pipit (spurius)
Wood Pipit | Woodland Pipit
Brimstone Canary
Cinnamon-breasted Bunting
Golden-breasted Bunting

Blue Quail (Peter Ginn)
Eurasian Bittern (John Caddick)

Coastal forest, montane forest, miombo woodland, floodplain grassland

Eastern Zimbabwe mountains Endemic Bird Area (EBA)
South African forests EBA
South-east African coast EBA
Tanzania – Malawi mountains EBA
16 Important Bird Areas

Serra Jeci/Njesi Highlands (Mount Chitagal, Mount Sanga and Njesi Plateau), Mount Inago, Namuli Massif, Mount Mabu and Mount Chiperone for Namuli Apalis and Long-billed (Mozambique) Forest Warbler (ESS sousae), Red-capped Forest Warbler (metopias), Dapple-throat (ESS orostruthus), Thyolo Alethe (ESS namuli) and Olive-flanked Ground Robin (ESS gurue), as well as African Black Duck, Hildebrandt’s Spurfowl, Montane (Usambara) Nightjar (guttifer), Freckled Nightjar, Scarce Swift, Livingstone’s Turaco (livingstonii), African Olive Pigeon, Eastern Bronze-naped Pigeon, Lemon Dove, Augur Buzzard, Cape Eagle-Owl (mackinderi), Bar-tailed Trogon, Green Barbet (belcheri), Red-throated Wryneck, Rock Kestrel, Dark Batis, Malawi Batis, Black-fronted Bushshrike (sandgroundi), Grey Cuckooshrike, Green-headed Oriole (chlorocephalus), White-necked Raven, White-tailed Crested Flycatcher (subcaerulea), Black-browed Greenbul, Olive-headed Greenbul, Little Greenbul (zombensis), Placid Greenbul, Yellow-streaked Greenbul (vincenti), Red-throated Rock Martin (fusciventris), African Red-rumped Swallow, Yellow-throated Woodland Warbler (ESS quelimanensis), African Yellow Warbler (natalensis), Evergreen Forest Warbler (granti), Singing Cisticola (muenzneri), Lazy Cisticola (lurio), Wailing Cisticola (semifasciatus), White-winged Apalis (macphersoni), Black-headed Apalis (ESS tenebricosa), African Hill Babbler (stierlingi), Orange Ground Thrush, Olive Thrush (milanjensis), Cape Robin-Chat (iolaema), East Coast Akalat (bensoni), Swynnerton’s Robin (swynnertoni), White-starred Robin (orientalis), African Stonechat (promiscuus), Mocking Cliff Chat (subrufipennis), Familiar Chat (falkensteini), Olive Sunbird (alfredi), Forest Double-collared Sunbird, Bertram’s Weaver, Yellow-bellied Waxbill, Red-faced Crimsonwing, Mountain Wagtail, African Pipit (lichenya), Striped Pipit, Southern Citril and Cape Bunting (vincenti)
Mount Tsetserra, Chimanimani Mountains and Mount Gorongosa for Roberts’s Warbler and Chirinda Apalis (chirindensis) as well as African Black Duck, Natal Spurfowl, Freckled Nightjar, Scarce Swift, Eastern Bronze-naped Pigeon, Lemon Dove, Verreaux’s Eagle, Rufous-breasted Sparrowhawk, Augur Buzzard, Cape Eagle-Owl, Speckled Mousebird (rhodesiae), Rock Kestrel, Taita Falcon, Cape Batis (erythrophthalma), Olive Bushshrike (interfluvius), Black-fronted Bushshrike, Bokmakierie, Grey Cuckooshrike, Green-headed Oriole (ESS speculifer), White-necked Raven, White-tailed Crested Flycatcher (swynnertoni), Stripe-cheeked Greenbul, Yellow-streaked Greenbul, Red-throated Rock Martin, Blue Swallow, African Red-rumped Swallow, Yellow-throated Woodland Warbler (alacris), Cape Grassbird, Barratt’s Warbler, Singing Cisticola, Lazy Cisticola (nyika), Wailing Cisticola (mashona/ESS oreobates), Levaillant’s Cisticola, Wing-snapping Cisticola, Bar-throated Apalis (quarta/arnoldi), Gurney’s Sugarbird, Orange Ground Thrush, Olive Thrush (swynnertoni), Cape Robin-Chat (caffra), Swynnerton’s Robin, White-starred Robin, African Stonechat, Mocking Cliff Chat (odica), Familiar Chat (modesta), Olive Sunbird (sclateri), Bronzy Sunbird, Malachite Sunbird, Yellow-mantled Widowbird, Yellow-bellied Waxbill, Red-faced Crimsonwing, Mountain Wagtail, Cape Longclaw, Striped Pipit, Streaky-headed Seedeater (mendosa), Cape Canary and Cape Bunting (smithersii)
Cabo Delgado (Quirimbas National Park) for Kretschmer’s Longbill (griseiceps), Uluguru Violet-backed Sunbird and Zanzibar Red Bishop
Primeiras and Segundas Archipelago for breeding Sooty Tern and waders/shorebirds including Eurasian Oystercatcher, as well as Brown Noddy, Saunders’s Tern, White-tailed Tropicbird, Lesser Frigatebird, Dimorphic Egret and Sooty Falcon
Zambezi Coutadas for waterbirds including Wattled Crane, as well as African Pitta, White-chested Alethe, East Coast Akalat (ESS gunningi) and Lesser Seedcracker
Rio Savane for Blue Quail, Black-rumped Buttonquail, Great Snipe, Locust Finch and Short-tailed Pipit
Inhambane Coastline and Bazaruto Archipelago for waders/shorebirds including African Oystercatcher, Greater Sand Plover, Tibetan Sand Plover, Terek Sandpiper and Crab-plover, as well as Forbes-Watson’s Swift, Southern Boubou (savensis), Mascarene Martin, Brown (Maputaland) Scrub Robin (tongensis) and Lemon-breasted Canary
Panda Woodlands for Neergaard’s Sunbird, Olive-headed Weaver and other miombo woodland species including Southern Hyliota
Panda-Inharrime Wetlands for Eurasian Bittern (capensis)
Bela Vista Wetlands and Salinas Zacharia for waterbirds including Cape Shoveler and Cape Teal, Greater Flamingo and Lesser Flamingo, Pied Avocet, Chestnut-banded Plover and Pink-backed Pelican, as well as Pale-crowned Cisticola, Orange-breasted Waxbill and Cape Wagtail
Maputo Bay for more waders/shorebirds including Eurasian (Steppe) Whimbrel (alboaxillaris)
Offshore for seabirds including Lesser Noddy, Sabine’s Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Caspian Tern, Greater Crested Tern, Lesser Crested Tern, Sandwich Tern, Little Tern, Damara Tern, Bridled Tern, Sooty Tern, Roseate Tern, Common Tern, Brown Skua, Pomarine Jaeger, Parasitic Jaeger, Wilson’s Storm Petrel, Black-bellied Storm Petrel, Snowy Albatross, Sooty Albatross, Black-browed Albatross, Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross, Southern Giant Petrel, Great-winged Petrel, Soft-plumaged Petrel, Grey Petrel, White-chinned Petrel, Wedge-tailed Shearwater, Flesh-footed Shearwater, Bulwer’s Petrel, Great Frigatebird, Cape Gannet, Red-footed Booby and Cape Cormorant
Far south and south-west for Swainson’s Spurfowl, Rufous-cheeked Nightjar, Kori Bustard, Red-crested Korhaan, Double-banded Sandgrouse, Crowned Lapwing, Cape Vulture, Jackal Buzzard, Speckled Mousebird (integralis/minor), Southern Red-fronted Tinkerbird, Acacia Pied Barbet, Cape Batis (hollidayi), Olive Bushshrike (vitorum/olivaceus), Southern Tchagra, Southern Boubou (tongensis), Magpie Shrike, Southern White-crowned Shrike, Southern Fiscal, Chestnut-backed Sparrow-Lark, Sabota Lark (suffusca), Fawn-colored Lark (vincenti), Red-capped Lark (alluvia), Yellow-streaked Greenbul (flavostriatus), Large Rock Martin (pretoriae), Lazy Cisticola (minor), Cloud Cisticola, Bar-throated Apalis (lebomboensis), Burnt-necked Eremomela, Cape White-eye, Cape Starling, Burchell’s Starling, Groundscraper Thrush, Fiscal Flycatcher, White-starred Robin (transvaalensis), Sentinel Rock Thrush, Mocking Cliff Chat (autochthones), Familiar Chat (hellmayri), Marico Sunbird, Cape Sparrow, Southern Brown-throated Weaver (marleyi), Swee Waxbill, Violet-eared Waxbill, Dusky Indigobird (funerea), Shaft-tailed Whydah, Nicholson’s Pipit, Buffy Pipit (vaalensis), Plain-backed Pipit (leucophrys), Bushveld Pipit (traylori) and Streaky-headed Seedeater (endemion)

TIMING (Aug–Sep, Dec)
Best at the end of the dry season, when most birds breed
African Pitta displays mostly in Dec
Avoid the main rains (Jan–Apr)

RESOURCES (see also South Africa)
Birds of Africa (iOS or Android)
Roberts Bird Guide 2 covers most species

Field guides
Birds of Greater Southern Africa by Keith Barnes, Terry Stevenson & John Fanshawe (2024)
Birds of Southern Africa by Ber van Perlo (2009)
Sasol Birds of Southern Africa by Ian Sinclair, Phil Hockey, Warwick Tarboton, Niall Perrins, Dominic Rollinson & Peter Ryan (2020) is better for birds occurring south of the Zambezi River
Birds of Africa South of the Sahara by Ian Sinclair & Peter Ryan (2010)

Southern African Bird Sounds by Guy Gibbon covers most species

Site guides
Southern African Birdfinder by Callan Cohen, Claire Spottiswoode & Jonathan Rossouw (2006)
Pelagic Birding Trips in the Southern Mozambique Channel by Peter G Ryan, John Graham & Andrew C Sutherland (2006)
A Productive Birding Transect from Highland Zimbabwe to Coastal Mozambique by Chris Lotz (2012)

Southern African Bird Atlas Project 2 (SABAP2), a member of the African Bird Atlas Project
The Atlas of the Birds of Central Mozambique by Vincent Parker (2005)
The Atlas of the Birds of Sul do Save, Southern Mozambique by Vincent Parker (1999)

Further reading
Roberts – Birds of Southern Africa edited by P A R Hockey, W R J Dean & P G Ryan (2005) for species occurring south of the Zambezi River
Mozambique by Vincent Parker in Important Bird Areas in Africa and Associated Islands: Priority Sites for Conservation edited by Lincoln D C Fishpool & Michael I Evans (2001)
Avifauna chapter by Sam Jones & Gabriel Jaimie in The Njesi Plateau Expedition: a Biological Assessment of Mt Chitagal, Mt Sanga and the Njesi Plateau in Niassa Province, Mozambique by Sam Jones, Justin Clause, Lore Geeraert, Gabriel Jamie, Emidio Sumbane, Tim van Berkel & Merlijn Jocque (2017)
Birds of the Niassa Reserve, Mozambique by Vincent Parker (2005)
Birds of the Maputo Special Reserve, Mozambique by Vincent Parker & Fred de Boer (2000)
Birds of Inhaca Island, Mozambique by Fred de Boer & Carlos Bento (1999)
The Birds of Southern Mozambique by Phillip A Clancey (1996)
Articles in Scopus, Bull. ABC, etc.

Maputo Special Reserve: Southern Mozambique’s Unknown Birding Gem by Dominic Rollinson (2021)


There is currently no BirdLife Partner in Mozambique

Bird or conservation organisations active in Mozambique include –
Associação Ambiente, Conservação e Educação Moçambique (AACEM)/Birds Mozambique
Association for the Conservation of Birds and Bats of Mozambique
Fórum Natureza em Perigo (FNP)/Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT)
Justiça Ambiental (JA!)
Associação Amigos da Floresta de Moçambique/Trees4Moz
Sociedade para a Gestão e Desenvolvimento da Reserva do Niassa (SGDRN)
Legado: Namuli
Cabo Delgado Biodiversity and Tourism Project (Zoological Society of London)
Biofund – Fundação para a Conservação da Biodiversidade
Eden Reforestation Projects
Biodiversity Inventory for Conservation (BINCO)
African Safari Foundation (ASF)
Pembi Wildlife Conservancy
Blue Ventures
Marine Megafauna Foundation
African Parks: Bazaruto Archipelago National Park
Peace Parks Foundation: Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area and Lubombo Transfrontier Conservation and Resource Area
FFS-IGF: Parque Nacional do Gilé
Carr Foundation: Parque Nacional da Gorongosa/Gorongosa National Park 
Fauna & Flora International (FFI): Niassa Special Reserve
WCS Mozambique: Niassa Special Reserve
WWF Mozambique

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