Birding and Wildlife in South Africa
South Africa is, quite simply, one of the most pleasurable birding destinations on the planet, offering unrivalled wildlife viewing, world-class infrastructure and unbeatable value for money. Birders across the world visit South Africa for a myriad of different reasons. It boasts the most regionally endemic and near-endemic bird species of any African country, as well as a rich seabird assemblage and vast numbers of more widespread, yet no less spectacular African birds and wildlife.
Add to this the rich botanical heritage, fine food and wines, friendly people, fascinating history, the scenic splendour of Africa’s most varied nation and the fact that it is home to two very impressive endemic families – namely the striking Rockjumpers and Sugarbirds, and it is not hard to see why South Africa is so popular!
Eastern South Africa holds some of the very best birding the country has to offer and plays host to some of the country’s finest birding, as well as exceptional mammal viewing.
An impressive 750+ bird species occur within the region, adding an exhilarating array of colour to the classic African savannah in which they reside, reflecting the incredible natural diversity of the area; and this, coupled with a up-to-date infrastructure well suited to the needs of the modern traveller, makes birding here an absolute delight. From the world-renowned Kruger National Park and the teeming Zululand game reserves to the endemic-rich mist-belt forests of the Natal Midlands and the lofty peaks of the magnificent Drakensberg mountain range.
The province of the Western Cape provides an opportunity to bird in some spectacularly scenic areas.
With sites including the immensely diverse heathland vegetation of the fynbos which cloaks Cape Town’s periphery – widely regarded as one of the most beautiful cities in the world – birding becomes a pleasure; this only enhanced by the fact that comfortable accommodation in and around Cape Town allows for quick and easy access to the key birding sites in the area.
Visiting at the right time could see you enthralled by the breath-taking displays of colour produced by the flowering of the vibrant and almost ineffable Cape Wildflowers, which seemingly blanket vast fields in a spectacular display of beauty – perhaps the only time that the scenery is more colourful than the birds!
Setting the obligatory ranting about South Africa’s stunning scenery aside, birding in South Africa is incredible for one broad, but simple reason… The birds! With specials including Pel’s Fishing Owl, Southern Bald Ibis, Blue Korhaan, Rudd’s and Botha’s Larks, the regal Secretarybird, Southern Ground Hornbill, Pink-throated Twinspot, Orange-breasted Sunbird, Blue Crane – South Africa’s national bird, and so much more, one cannot help but be in awe of what South Africa’s avifauna has to offer.
Throw in the possibility of revelling, first-hand, in the bright, bold and almost insulting colours from the likes of Lilac-breasted Roller, Violet-backed Starling, Narina Trogon and Malachite Sunbird, while partaking in the easy viewing of the seemingly endless bird numbers within the aforementioned scenery, and you have a recipe for some of the best birding opportunities available worldwide!
Experience Nature in South Africa with Rockjumper Birding Tours.