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The Following Reports are available from The Gambia:
Why not send us a report, or an update to one of your current reports?


Pre 2002 reports from the Gambia

For reports 2003 onwards click here

Gambia, an independent birding trip 15-22 November 2002

  • The Egyptian Plovers were easy to see at the River at Basse - we found them within a minute of arriving at the riverbank. We saw seven birds in total - several on the mud on the opposite (north) bank, and several more on the mud bank near the jetty on the Basse side...David Steele reports.

The Gambia 4th to 15th Oct 2002

  • This was my wife Diana's and my second visit to The Gambia, 0ur previous visit being in November 2001. This year we chose to go in the first half of October to catch the end of the rainy season, which ends at the end of the month. It is surprising the difference that six weeks makes at that time of the year....Neil Money reports

The Gambia 18th – 25th Jan 2002

  • The Gambia is a popular birding destination for many Europeans, with a wide range of exotic and colourful species. A novice to Africa can hope to see about 150 new species in a week, without venturing too far from the coast. I travelled independently, being unable to persuade any of my friends to sample the delights of Africa. It was with some trepidation that I set off, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself when I was there....George Watola reports

New Year in The Gambia 2001/2002

  • Leaving Britain in darkest December on a flight to The Gambia, we arrived less than six hours later and almost 30 degrees warmer, under a clear blue sky. En route we crossed an inhospitable sea of dry Sahara sand, just as our summer visitors as small as Willow Warblers must do twice a year. In the nicely laid out gardens of our Bakotu Hotel, the trees rang to the tropical calls of Common Bulbul and a huge twittering roost of Village Weavers as dusk approached...Alison & Christopher Hall report

The Gambia November 30th to December 14th 2001

  • Around the hotel the birding was easy and we spent the first full day learning the calls of common birds such as doves, gonoleks, sunbirds etc. Wetland birding is easiest of all and Kotu Creek, Pirang and other wetland sites were very enjoyable. Woodland birding is harder. We visited Abuko.... The Abuko trip also took in a set of rice fields and we saw some species on this trip that we did not find anywhere else.... Mark and Sandra Dennis report

The Gambia 16th to 23rd November 2001

  • We chose to stay at the Senegambia Hotel because of the extensive mature gardens. This proved a good choice as we recorded over 40 species and missed a number of others known to be present. Many of the birds were confiding and provided good photo opportunities...Neil Money reports

Trip report the Gambia 5-19 July 2001

  • In the Kotu scrub, we saw 2 Snowy-crowned Robin Chats, lots of African Jacanas, a few Bearded Barbets, 2 Vieillot's Barbets, 2 Yellow-fronted Thinkerbirds, a Grey Kestrel, a Great White Egret, 2 Red-necked Falcons, 2 Slender-billed Gulls, 2 Diederik Cuckoos, some Brown Babblers and in the twilight a White-faced Scops Owl, some Standaard-winged Nightjars and at least 1 Long-tailed Nightjar calling....Tiemen De Smedt reports

Gambia 16 – 24 February 2001

  • We observed all the species (except african scops owl which we only heard and african hobby – distance) in excellent conditions. Keep your eyes open because a lot of species you will find just once during your trip...Tom Embo reports

The Gambia   2nd – 9th March 2001

  • We visited the Senegambia Hotel late one morning. The gardens are extensive and the birds confiding, providing good photographic opportunities. (Gonolek, Coucal, Long tailed Glossy Starling, African Thrush and Snowy crowned Robin Chat.) The hotel has a resident birdman and they feed the vultures at 11.30 am each day...John Kirby reports

New Year in The Gambia 2000/2001

  • Next day we meet up with Solomon Jallow, one of The Gambia's top bird guides, ours for the next five days. We elect first to take the ferry across the River Gambia to the north side in search of Northern Anteater Chat. We walk on board with Solomon, watching Little Swifts above and Grey-headed Gulls on the jetties...Alison and Chris Hall report

Oscar tours the Gambia 1-15th December 2000

  • I woke very early (5:45) and got ready for the 7:00 start that we had arrange with Gib. Some of the birds we saw on the short walk to Kotu Creek were Red-eyed Dove, Yellow-crowned Gonolek, Red-billed Firefinch, Grey Kestrel and Lizard Buzzard. The Creek was absolutely full of birds, some wading, some flying over, others drinking and bathing and a few feeding on insects on the mangroves...Howard (Oscar) Orridge reports

The Gambia April 2000

  • This was a repeat visit having had a successful week last Easter. Well, what a difference a year and three weeks makes! We arrived in high humidity and 110 F heat having travelled by Monarch from Gatwick. The usual transfer to the Senegambia ensued and I couldn't help but notice that everyone else looked like a "normal" tourist - no woolly hats or eagerly clutched bird-guides to be seen...Alf King reports

The Gambia 1999

  • "I have just come back from one of those short, sharp trips to my favourite haunt, the Gambia. Four of us made a quick one week visit where we disappeared up country to a new camp near Georgetown for two nights, and to Tendaba for two nights. With two of the group collecting bird sounds and two of us concentrating on video, we didn't expect to accumulate a large species list in that week, but it was, never-the-less, over 220 species....." This report contains some superb Photographs by the author... Nigel Eaton-Gray reports

Birding in the Gambia November 17th - 24th 1998

  • Most mornings, we encountered many "bird guides" around the bridge over the Kotu stream.  They all have binoculars and a copy of the field guide but their competence may be questionable.  Even if you state that you do not need a guide, they will often follow you and become something of a nuisance...Stephen Mawby reports

The Gambia Nov 1st - 8th '98

  • The trip was planned as a short winter break and an introduction to tropical African birds. I am hoping to make more African trips in the future, and saw The Gambia as a perfect introduction, not only to the birds but also to the complications and difficulties of African birding, in a relatively easy environment. In this respect, the trip worked out perfectly...Gruff Dodd Reports.

The Gambia 20th - 27th January 1997

  • This is a popular destination for european birders, probably because of its accessibility and the friendliness of its people. The Gambia is a good choice to encounter and learn to identify many Afrotropical species, so for those interested in exploring sub-Saharan Africa this is the perfect introduction....Jan Vermeulen reports





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Some Useful bird books for The Gambia:
Do you have a good book for this region that we haven't featured? let us know


A Field Guide to the Birds of the Gambia and Senegal
Clive Barlow, Tony Disley: Buy from or

  • This field guide covers the area of the Gambia, a country which is very popular with a large number of birders. The Gambia shelters many migrants from the Western Palaearctic, from September to April, as well as having a significant list of resident West African birds. The guide also covers Senegal, which almost entirely surrounds The Gambia...

The Birds of Western Africa
Nik Borrow, Ron Demey: Buy from or

  • A major new fieldguide, and a classic from the "Helm" stable that will set the standard for Western Africa for years to come. It covers all the 1282 species expected to be seen in the c.20 nations inside a triangle enclosing The Congo, Chad and Mauritania. For several of the countries it is the only single guide that covers all of the nations birds in one book. Nicely illustrated with over 3000 drawings on 142 colour plates which cover all the species described apart from a few vagrants. Distribution maps are provided for the majority of species. As the first comprehensive guide to the region in over 25 years this is a "must buy" for any serious birder visiting Western Africa. Now available in Paperback

Birds of Africa
Chris Stuart, Tilde Stuart: Buy from or

  • A comprehensive account of the birds of Africa. The text covers all the avifaunal families that occur in Africa, discusses the species that occur within each family, and provides representative examples of each family in depth. Also included is a general introduction to the major avifaunal regions of Africa.

Where to Watch Birds in Africa
Nigel Wheatley: Buy from or

  • One of a series of guides devoted to birdwatching, this book contains site accounts, plans, maps, lists of birds in the regions and advice on planning bird-watching trips. It deals with over 200 sites in detail, and mentions many others. Each country is covered alphabetically, including archipelagos and isolated islands off the African mainland, for example, the Azores. Bird lists are included under the headings "Endemics", "Specialities", "Others" and also "Other Wildlife", if relevant. Access details are given, often with detailed site maps. The emphasis of the book is "bird finding", that is, where to go for the "best" species.

Travel books for the Gambia:

The Rough Guide to West Africa
Richard Trillo, Jim Hudgens: Buy from or

  • This is a marvellous guide to the region, packed with hard-nosed advice and information, streets ahead of any other travel guide.


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External Links:
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West African Bird Studies Association (WABSA).

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