Ndhovu Caprivi Birding September 2008

This is my account of my birding done while staying at Ndhovu Safari Lodge while passing through there for two nights as a tour guide. Not that the guests I had were not birders (although they did appreciate birds,) which affects how much birding I could do. I know that I missed some basics and certainly missed some of the birds that I had hoped for. I did, however, get one new lifer.

This post follows from my last post about my latest Namibian tour

Day one: After getting there, check in and getting the guests settled in, I hit the birds…

Goliath Heron

African Hoopoe

Meyer’s Parrot

There were loads around, almost always flying over. I just love parrots – wild ones, of course

Giant Kingfisher

African Yellow White-eye

Hartlaub’s Babbler

Saddle-billed Stork

Over the river. I love these birds.

Grey Go-away-bird

Ashy Flycatcher

Black-collared Barbet

Grey Heron

African Skimmer

This bird alone makes a visit to Namibia’s Caprivi Strip worth it. If you don’t know them, do a Google Image Search for it.


That night:

Wood Owl

A wood owl is by no means rare and I have seen a number, but it is always considered a good bird.

Next Day, our full day at Ndhovu. The morning started with a run of birds while I waited for my guests to come for breakfast. Birders not, if on tour with me in Namibia, early is usually good!

Dark-capped Bulbul

Green Wood-hoopoe

Bearded Woodpecker

Kurrichane Thrush

Fork-tailed Drongo

Red-eyed Dove

African Fish Eagle

The African nature icon

Grey Hornbill

Black Crake

Green-backed Heron

Cape Turtle-dove

Spur-winged Goose

I got a good sighting of a Cape Clawless Otter while I was alone on the deck, waiting for my guests.

Red-eyed Dove

African Sacred Ibis

White-crowned Lapwing

Southern Yellow-billed Hornbill

Laughing Dove

African Morning Dove

At the feeder near the deck at Ndhovu I counted five doves. I know some birder’s almost dismiss the doves, but here in the Caprivi, they count a lot to a trip list (I got six doves overall in the area…amazing.)

Pied Kingfisher

Swamp Boubou

Black-headed Oriole

Red-billed Oxpecker

If you don’t know much about oxpeckers, they are birds in the middle of a conservation problem…they eat ticks from the backs of large herbivores, and so their numbers have been threatened tremendously by dipping for ticks. In some areas, were the birds have been wiped out by cattle dipping, there are now efforts to re-introduce them as natural tick removers for the cattle.

Off the Mahangu on a game drive lead by the owner from Ndhovu.

Magpie Shrike

Mev’s Longtailed Starling

Lilac Breasted Roller


At Mahangu’s entrance

Green-winged Pytilia

Crowned Lapwing

Red-billed Quelea

Temminck’s Courser

Pied Barbet

Swallow-tailed Bee-eater

Red-billed Francolin

Crimson-breasted Shrike

Sorry I don’t have a camera. If you don’t know this bird then you must image search it. Please.

White-browed Sparrow-weaver

Carmine bee-eater

Image search again. Sorry.

Great Egret

Blacksmith Lapwing

Blue Waxbill

Arrow-marked Babbler

Purple Roller

White-backed Vulture

Emerald Spotted Dove

Namaqua Dove


White-faced Duck

Little Bee-eater

Greater Scimitarbill

Yellow-billed Egret

Squacco Heron

African Jacana

Long-toed Lapwing

Lesser-stripped Swallow

Red-billed Buffalo-weaver

Grey-backed Camaroptera

African Openbilled Stork

Greater Blue-eared Starling

Red-eyed Bulbul

Back at camp

Wattled Starling

Rufous-bellied Heron

My lifer, which I saw flying over the river while we were at the main building over lunch. I stayed around and saw it at 15h04. We ended up seeing a few. I have done many boat trips asking for this bird, but somehow had always missed it. Now, here we were just getting several of them in one afternoon. Don’t all birders know that one?

Spectacled Weaver

Southern Black Tit

Reed Cormorant

Boat Trip

White-breasted Cormorant

Water Thick-knee

Little Egret

Yellow-billed Stork

Pied Wagtail

Common Sandpiper

Back-winged Stilt

Brown-throated Martin

Malachite Kingfisher

White-fronted Bee-eater

African Marsh Harrier

Bat Hawk

The owner didn’t even know what it was. Amazing to see one flying just over us. This bird is a good bird almost anywhere. They mainly have such a limited time out and they fly when the light is poor, so id is difficult.

Grey-headed Gull

Sort of cool to see this bird here on the river. It’s more common in Swakopmund.

Next morning

Red-headed Weaver

Orange-breasted Bush-shrike

White-browed Robin-chat

Violet-backed Starling

All in all, a fun couple of days birding. I certainly pulled my non-birding guests into the birding experience a little bit. Namibia is such a special country for birding with areas from the deserts, coastal lagoons, through to savannas and woodland with the large rivers of the Caprivi.

If you would like to have some fun birding with me in the Caprivi, book a private tailor made tour with me at Frantic Naturalist Tours and Safaris.

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