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bird watching

salcombe devon
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bird watching

Not long to go now! This time next week we shall be there. Although I think I've done a lot of research into this trip, a little bit more advice from those who know would be great

Is it possible to obtain a guide who is knowledgeable about the birdlife in the area? We are staying at the Bamburi Beach hotel and hoping to explore the area near to the hotel and further afield such as Araboke Forest etc. Any recommendations please!? Thanks

Hythe, United...
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1. Re: bird watching

Arabuko-Sokoke Forest has bird guides who work for the Kenya wildlife service. You can hire the services of a guide when you purchase your park entrance tickets at the park HQ. I have the business card for one of the bird guides somewhere I will take a look for it and PM you with his details.

manchester uk
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2. Re: bird watching

Anybody know any guides in Mombasa? And can you bird the forests in the area?

Kingston-upon-Hull...
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3. Re: bird watching

If you do head up to the Arabuko-Sokoke Forest, I suggest you take a few hours at the mida creek, there is a bird hide there situated at the end of the board walk, very popular with bird watchers

Nairobi, Kenya
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4. Re: bird watching

You could also visit Mwamba Field Study Centre in Watamu & speak to Colin Jackson a local expert on Conservation. He also manages the centre.

They also have rooms.

Link : www.arocha.org/ke-en/work/centre.html

Stef.

5. Re: bird watching

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Manchester, United...
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6. Re: bird watching

Hi,

We are well-travelled world birders, including 6 birding trips to Kenya.The problem in Kenya is that there are a lot of people who know enough obvious, common birds to get by. But you can just as easily find most of these yourselves. In the forests, you need someone who knows the bird calls, and where the endemics such as Sokoke Scops Owl, Sokoke Pipit, Amani Sunbird and Clark's Weaver can be found.

We would highly recommend David Ngala for the Arabuko-Sokoke forest (he was the first bird guide to work in the forest, and basically IS Mr Arabuko-Sokoke Forest, and an avid conservationist and protector of the forest). We went out with him last time stayed in Watamu and he is simply awesome at finding the special birds of the area, and such a nice guy.

These days he is contactable via Spinetail Safaris in Watamu (linked to the Turtle Bay Beach Club?):

http://www.spinetailsafaris.com/

Look in the contact details for his mobile, plus those of the other two guides (Willy and Albert) both of whom we have heard good reports about.

We are visiting again in April 2011, and hope to meet up with David again.

salcombe devon
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7. Re: bird watching

Thanks everyone for your help and advice. Much appreciated.

I know Kenya is mainly about the big 5 but I am a very keen birder and hope to see lots of them.

Cheers

Liverpool, United...
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8. Re: bird watching

Hi There,

I would rather see some sunbirds than the big 5!!!. . . . I always go equipped for bird watching. My last trip was in November '10 and as stated arabuke sokoke is a must but you need a guide to call the birds closer to you!. Mine was Albert.

I've never stayed in Mombassa but in a couple of times in Killifi. Any large garden setting will have hundreds of waxbills, sunbirds, lovebirds and ibis. Just keep your binoculars with you at all times. There are also dozens of sea birds and waders along the beach at Killifi.

Good luck and enjoy!

Tom

Edited: 09 March 2011, 09:30
Newcastle upon...
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9. Re: bird watching

Hi,

As a keen birder you are just going to love Kenya. I've been going almost every year since 1998 and I'm back again for the last 2 weeks in July this year, can't get enough.

The places already mentioned like Arabuko Sokoke and Mida Creek are a must. The coastal area is also good and

in particular Kilifi which is only about 40 km north of Bamburi. I can recommend a trip up the creek in a local dhow. The hotel gardens at Mnarani are also excellent as is a walk along Mnarani East Road. Also near Bamburi is Haller Park which I think is worth a visit. On the south side of Mombasa a day trip to Shimba Hills NP is definitely worth trying to fit in. I was there in 2009 and saw my one and only African Crowned Eagle as well as a few other interesting birds not usually seen elsewhere around Mombasa. Are you going on a safari? If so, and you have not yet booked, send me a message and I will recommend a great guide from Mombasa.

Have a fabulous time.

Cheers, Tom

London, United...
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10. Re: bird watching

Hi,

Firstly - I hope you have a great time in Kenya - I sure did!

I am also a very keen Birder and used 'Wildlife Sun Day Safaris' from Shanzu Beach to take me all around the national parks of Tsavo/Amboseli/Shimba Hills and Arabuko.

Everyone will have their own personal preferences but I will be honest and give you mine:

Best place for 'Rare' birds - Arabuko Sokoke Forest - I spent 2 days here and only saw a handful of birds (Which did surprise me as it was supposed to be 'the' place to go a s a birder?) But I was not let down by what I saw. The Sokoke Scops Owl for instance....wow! Look out for the Elephant shrew too.

Best place for abundance of birds - Tsavo West at Ngulia Lodge. Too many weavers to list, some Birds of Prey too. they do 'ringing' here late in the year and are renowned for the birds that visit them.

Best place for Fish Eagle: Shimba Hills Lodge. there are a few of them there and I saw them hunt every single day....incredible!

Overall advice: I would try going to the parks first for a couple of days as I saw just as many birds as I did big 5. Make sure you have a good guide though as many of them just drove past trying to find the cats, where as my drivers from 'Wildlife Sun Day Safaris' were not only knowledgable but stopped to find birds for me, which turned out to be invaluable. I would then take a trip up to Arabuko Sokoke Forest and explore there for a day or two. When you are there, try to go to 'Malindi' also, if you like wetlands birds. I saw Flamingo and Plovers etc... Lovely place. I stayed at the Scorpio Villas in Malindi and they are incredible value for money for real luxury.

I am back in Kenya in 7 weeks and cannot wait to see the birds again.

Have a fab trip!

Cheers

G

p.s. If you do decide to contact 'Wildlife Sun Day safaris' ask for James Mwalata or Norman (They run the Safaris and will look after you well) And mention me: Graham from the UK :-)

p.p.s. If you want to see the photos I took check out my flickr page:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/30606758@N04/

Edited: 11 March 2011, 14:47