Soomaaliya | الصومال | Somalia

SUB-REGION
Horn of Africa

SIZE
637,660 km²

BIRDS AND BIRDING

SPECIES
Diversity

Mostly Afrotropical avifauna, but with a Middle Eastern component
Approximately 570 recorded species

Somali Bulbul (Paul van Giersbergen)
Somali Bee-eater (Paul van Giersbergen)
Somali Lark (Nigel Redman)

Endemics (E)
Somali Pigeon (DD)
Ash’s Lark (EN)
Somali Lark (LC)
Obbia Lark (DD)
Somali Thrush (LC)
Somali Golden-winged Grosbeak (NT)
Warsangli Linnet (NT)

Near-endemics (NE)
Black Boubou
Red Weaver

Birds best found in Somalia but occurring more widely (BT)
Little Brown Bustard
Lesser Hoopoe-Lark
Rufous-capped Lark (daaroodensis)
Philippa’s Crombec
Somali Wheatear

Heuglin’s Bustard (Paul van Giersbergen)
Little Brown Bustard (Nik Borrow)
Gillett’s Lark (Nik Borrow)

Birds occurring in only two territories of the ABC region but not NE or BT (1/2)
Chestnut-naped Spurfowl
Violet-breasted Sunbird
Malindi Pipit

Birds best found in two territories but occurring in more (B2)
Heuglin’s Bustard
Somali Bee-eater
Somali Crow
Gillett’s Lark
Collared Lark
Somali Short-toed Lark

Proposed new species or splits not yet accepted by IOC
Archer’s Francolin (B2)
Archer’s Buzzard (E)
Sharpe’s Lark (E)
Mangrove Reed Warbler (BT)
Bafirawari Flycatcher (B2)

Other taxa of interest, including endemic subspecies (ESS)
Augur Buzzard (ESS archeri)
Forbes-Watson’s Swift (ESS bensoni)
Nyanza Swift (somalicus)
Spotted Thick-knee (ESS dodsoni)
Crab-plover
Somali Courser
Double-banded Courser (hartingi)
Crowned Lapwing (demissus)
White-eyed Gull
Sooty Gull
African White-winged Dove
African Collared Dove (arabica)
Little Owl (somaliensis)
Nubian Nightjar
Black-throated Barbet (ESS blandi)
Yellow-breasted Barbet (somalicus)
Grey-headed Batis
Red-naped Bushshrike (ruficeps)
Somali Fiscal
Chestnut-headed Sparrow-Lark
Foxy Lark (alopex)
Short-tailed Lark (fremantlii)
Somali Bulbul
Somali Crombec
Pale Prinia (somalica)
Brown-tailed Apalis
Yellow-vented Eremomela
Arabian Warbler (somaliensis)
White-crowned Starling
Somali Starling
Magpie Starling
Little Rock Thrush
Brown-tailed Rock Chat (ESS validior)
Abyssinian Wheatear (EES vauriei)
Somali Sparrow (castanopterus)
Juba Weaver
Northern Grosbeak Canary

Somali Starling (Nik Borrow)
Collared Lark (Nigel Redman)

MAIN HABITATS
Arid grasslands, escarpments, temperate forest, coastal and riverine forest, arid savanna

BIRD AREAS
Central Somali coast Endemic Bird Area (EBA)
East African coastal forests EBA
Jubba and Shabeelle valleys EBA
North Somali mountains EBA
North-west Somalia Secondary Area (SA)
Northern Ethiopia SA
24 Important Bird Areas

BIRDING SITES
Daalo for temperate forest and escarpment species
Burao area for arid savanna and grassland species
Coastal plain at Jowhar-Warshiikh for larks

TIMING (Apr-May, Oct)
Being an arid country, best during the rains when most birds breed (Mar-May, Aug-Oct)
Passage migrants are most common Sep-Oct and Mar-Apr
Avoid coastal areas May-Aug due to heat

RESOURCES
Field guides
Birds of the Horn of Africa by Nigel Redman, Terry Stevenson & John Fanshawe (2011)
Birds of Eastern Africa by Ber Van Perlo (2009)

Further reading
Birds of Somalia by J S Ash & J E Miskell (1998)
Somalia by Peter Robertson in Important Bird Areas in Africa and Associated Islands: Priority Sites for Conservation edited by Lincoln D C Fishpool & Michael I Evans (2001)
Endemic and Special Birds of Somaliland by Callan Cohen, Michael Mills & Julian Francis (2011)
Birding in and around Hargeisa, Somaliland, December 2010 by Bram Piot
Birding in and around Hargeisa, Somaliland, April 2014 by Bram Piot
Articles in Scopus, Bull. ABC, etc.

Blogs
Birding in Somaliland by Richard Fleming (2011)

ORGANISATIONS

There is currently no BirdLife Partner in Somalia

Bird or conservation organisations active in Somalia include –
Somali Ecological Society (SES)
Nature Somaliland
Blue Ventures
Candlelight for Environment, Education & Health



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