Working for birds in Africa


Wed, 01/16/2013 - 14:30 -- abc_admin

Lake Piso, Liberia

Image Credit: 
Alan G. Johnston

Libassa Ecolodge, Marshall, Liberia

Image Credit: 
Clara Cassell

Sea Monkey Lodge, Robertsport, Liberia

Image Credit: 
Clara Cassell

Libassa Eco-lodge is a small resort located an hour’s drive from Monrovia. The lodge contains several micro-habitats, including forests, lagoons, and beaches. Waders, parrots, hornbills, kingfishers, riverine swallows and weavers abound here. Camaropteras, tinkerbirds, sunbirds, and greenbuls can be seen and heard calling along the forest trail to the beach. The resort also offers several platforms with excellent views of the surrounding habitats below. Accommodation, restaurants, and other amenities are available.

Sea Monkey Lodge is named after the Liberian word for Dolphin, and the sea creatures can only be seen far out on the ocean. The lodge is one of a few others located along the beach in Robertsport, 2 hours’ drive from Monrovia. It is perfect for a weekend trip, and is placed to provide an easy morning of bird watching on trails through the mixed forest behind or along the beach. Additionally, the Sea Monkey Lodge offers options for canoeing and open water fishing which provide a chance to observe seabirds such as petrels, gulls, and terns.

Birding tours

We know of no organised tours to Liberia.


See the trip report in the following section for further information.

Trip reports

This trip report titled "Birding in and around Monrovia, Liberia" was kindly sent to ABC for download by Alan G. Johnston following a visit to the Monrovia area of Liberia in January / February 2012. Download the report*.


The best route from Europe is via Brussels but several West African airlines (e.g. Slok and Bellview) with mixed safety ratings connect all the major capitals of West Africa including connections to Accra, Dakar, and Banjul.

Birding in Liberia remains a logistical challenge. Infrastructure is non-existent or badly damaged by the war. The road from Monrovia to Talla (see hotspots) is paved for most of the way but the last hour (maybe 10 miles) is on very challenging rutted dirt and sand tracks which requires 4x4 vehicles. Talla has no hotel or restaurant although an international NGO has built a new school and clinic. The local manor house was totally destroyed during the war but the grounds make a fine campground. The villagers are friendly and accommodating but do expect some compensation for 'hosting' a camp. Interestingly, cell phones work since the area is near Robertsport, probably an hour away by canoe.


Please read the safety and travel advice before travelling to Liberia. Links for the US and UK are provided below. Should you decide to travel, it is important to note that the use of binoculars and cameras can generally cause problems in Liberia.

Other safety and health issues are no different from those in many African countries. Guidebooks, travel companies and websites provide much of the advice one needs, but key points warrant repetition here: (1) be aware of the risk of malaria and seek current advice, sleep in a sealed tent or under a net and take prophylaxis as recommended; (2) always ensure you have sufficient water and some method of purification (even if this comprises a pot and a campfire for boiling); (3) do not underestimate the danger of being in the sun for too long, ensure you use sun-block, drink plenty of water and wear a hat; (4) be aware of the risk of AIDS; (5) ensure that you take a reasonably-equipped first-aid pack with you including supplies of hypodermic and suturing needles. See the following 2 websites for the latest safety and travel information: US Travel and UK FCO.

* In order to view and print this paper, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader.

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