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The Indian Ocean, coastal areas partly forested to savannahs, semi-deserts, mountain forests, fresh water and soda lakes, rivers, glaciers and rainforests provide a huge range of different biotopes and are responsible for the big variety of bird species. Currently more than 1.400 registered species, of which around 100 are migratory birds, occur in East Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda. You find little brown birds, very colourful species and majestic vultures and eagles. Parks and sanctuaries have between 300 and over 550 registered bird species. East Africa is a paradise for ornithologists. But also non birders will be fascinated by some of the impressive birds.

Many species are spread all over the continent, but several are endemic and only occur in small ranges. We as the specialists know where to find them.

Pictures are listed in the same order as in most bird books.

Pictures taken by Elvira Wolfer and clients








Common Rock Thrush (Monticola saxatilis) is a fairly common
palearctic migrant to East Africa. Spring plumage.

Little Rock Thrush (Monticola r.rufocinereus).
Uncommon in highlands.









Abyssinian Ground Thrush (Zootthera piaggiae kilimensis).
In forested highlands in East Africa.
Foto Marina Meger

Bare-eyed thrush (Turdus tephronotus).
Uncommon in eastern Commiphora bushland.









African Thrush (Turdus pelios centralis). Mainly
Western Kenya and further West. Nakuru

Mountain thrush (Turdus a. abyssinicus) in wooded highlands,
Nairobi. It was earlier T. olivaceus, now its own species.







Mountain thrush (Turdus a. abyssinicus). At almost
3.000 m in the Aberdares with spotted throat.

Snow-headed Robin Chat (Cossypha nivelcapilla) is not uncommon but
shy. It occurs in forests in Kakamega and Uganda. Foto Marina Meger



Rueppels_Robin Chat



Rüppel’s Robin-chat (Cossypha semirufa intercedens) lives in bushes
and forest edges from Central to extreme Northern Tanzania, in
Ethiopia and Sudan. It has a large variety of songs and immitates others.

White-browed robin-chat (Cossypha h.heuglini) has a broader supercilium than Rüppel’s. Widespread in Africa. In Kenya in the Rift Valley, Western and coast.








 Blue-shouldered Robin-Chat (Cossypha cyanocampter).
Local in western Kenyan forests. Kakamega Forest and further West.

Cape Robin-Chat (Cossypha caffra iolaema). In bushy
and forested areas in Kenya and Tanzania.




Brown chested Alethe




Brown-chested Alethe (Pseudalethe poliocephala) lives on forest grounds
in Western Kenya, Uganda and Westafrica. Photo Lorenzo Barelli, Kakamega Forest

White-starred Robin (Pgonocichla stellata) locally common
in highland forests in Africa. Photo Lorenzo Barelli, Mt. Kenya









Spotted Palm-Thrush (Cichladusa g.guttata).
Below 1.600 m in dry thickets in East Africa.

Collared Palm-Thrush (Cichladusa arquata) is found along Kenya’s
coast and further South in palm savanna.
Photo Axel Köhler, Southern Tanzania






Common Nightingale (Luscinia megarhynchos) spends the European Winter from November to March in East to Westafrikca. Despite it is not breeding it sings very actively.

Thrush nightingale or Sprosser (Luscinia megarhynchos hafizi).
Migratory bird from Europe between October and March. It is elusive
and hides in thick bushes in parts of Kenya and Tanzania.






White-browed srub robin (Erythropygia
leucophrys). Widespread.

(Eastern) Bearded scrub-robin (Erythropygia quadrivirgata) occurs in
thickets along the Kenyan coast and only a few places inland, Tanzania
and further South. It is an easily overlooked. Oldonyo Sabuk National park








Common Stone Chat (Saxicola torquata). Male. The Africans are found in
 many countries from 500 to 2.500 m, The Europeans are on the red list.

Where ever you pass in the open moorland you find the Alpine
or Moorland chat
(Pinarochroa  sordida ernesti). Endemic in
Kenya to the Mount Kenya / Aberdare region in Tanzania Kilimanjaro area.








Brown-tailed Rock-chat (Oenanthe scotocerca) is uncommon in
dry rocky areas from Turkana region to Baringo district.

Northern Anteater chat (Myrmecocichla aethiops cryptoleuca)
in typical position. From East to West Africa in savanna.








Sooty chat (Myrmecocichla nigra).
Mara/Serengeti plains and other countries.

Northern Wheatears (Oenanthe oenanthe oenanthe) spend the
European winter in East Africa where they can be met in different areas.








Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe p. pleschanka). Migrant, fairly
common and widespread in drier areas.

Schalow’s Wheatear (Oenanthe lugubris schalowi).
Has 3 localities in Kenya and Northern Tanzania, one is Hell’s Gate.





Isabelline Wheatear




Capped wheatears (Oenanthe pileata livingstonii) are locally
common on open grassland above 1400 m. from Kenya further South.

Isabelline wheatear (Oenanthe isabellina)
migrates to bushland in East Africa.





Mocking Cliff chat (Thamnolaea cinnamomeiventris subrufipennis).
Uncommon near cliffs.