Dear fellow birdwatchers,
Corona has changed our lives and we want to study its influence on birdwatching in different countries. Please help us and answer a few simple questions. The questionnaire is in different languages. The study is run by Piotr Tryjanowski (University of Poznan) and Christoph Randler (University of Tuebingen).
Gabela Helmetshrike Prionops gabela is an endangered bird found only in western Angola. In November 2019 the first known nest of this bird was found by Arnon Dattner, near the community of Santa Ambuleia in north-western Angola. The nest, as well as the 5 territories of Gabela Helmetshrike found near the community, were protected by local bird-watching guides who worked with the local population to prevent fires, logging or hunting at these territories.
White-headed Robin Chat is an African endangered bird, known only from two sites worldwide: one site is in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the other is near the community of Kinjila in northern Angola. Although the first nest of this special bird was found by Pedro Vaz Pinto and Ian Sinclair in 2005, there was no documentation of the nest. This nest, found by Arnon Dattner, was protected by a group of local birdwatching guides who act to conserve the forests and the birds around the community of Kinjila.
The 1st edition (1994) went out of print and was commanding high prices for copies online. A reprint was produced a few years ago but the superb image quality of the 1st edition was drastically diminished. This 2nd edition (2020) fully revises the text, restores the spectacular image quality, and adds 16 new species, bringing the total to 74.
Françoise Dowsett-Lemaire and Robert J. Dowsett have kindly provided 10 ornithological reports for use on this website. These reports are summaries of their travels to Benin and Togo and can be found at Benin/references and Togo/references. You will find a wealth of detail relating to habitats, locations, sightings and checklists. The reports are written in French, and some in English with a French summary.
A new organisation called the Madagascar Birding Association (MBA) has been founded to promote the protection and preservation of Madagascar’s birds, among other goals. MBA has since produced the first ever bird field guide in the Malagasy language with the collaboration of a local partner. It is entitled “Ny Vorontsika eto Madagasikara” – Our Birds in Madagascar. You can find more about MBA and its activities at www.madagascarbirding.org.
On the small island of Príncipe in the Gulf of Guinea, a community beekeeping project is empowering communities to obtain honey in a way that doesn't risk their lives. This initiative is already restoring forests and enriching livelihoods.
Traditionally, honey collectors on Príncipe Island extracted honey from wild colonies found in the forest by burning their nests. Not only does this method kill most of the bees and risk starting forest fires, but it is also dangerous for the honey collectors themselves, who must scale tall trees with minimal safety equipment.
BirdLife Botswana (BirdLife Partner) is unequivocally condemning the recent poisoning of 537 highly endangered vultures by elephant poachers in the Central District of Botswana. This devastating incident has resulted in the country’s highest recorded death toll of vultures associated with a single poisoning incident and is one of the worst killings of vultures on the continent, rivaling a similar incident in the Caprivi area of Namibia in 2013, where between 400-600 vultures were killed.