Trip Report: Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), April 19 - June 24, 2000

Frank Rheindt, Breslauer Str. 8, 74336 Brackenheim, Germany;

A version of this report with numerous nice photographs is available upon request from the author or from Minnattallah Boutros.


From April 19 through June 24 2000, I spent a little more than 2 months in the République de Côte d'Ivoire. Most of that time (May 1 through June 18) was spent at the Biological Research Camp of the University of Würzburg (Germany) in the Parc National de la Comoé, where I did some research work on the general differences of the vocalizations of the birds to be found in the different microhabitats within the park. Thus, a lot of time was spent in the field making bird recordings, whilst - at the beginning of my stay - some time had also been invested in mist-netting.

Before my stay in Comoé, I spent two days at the tourist lodge Ecotel Touraco in the southern half of the Parc National de Tai, where I did a hiking trip all the way to the famed inselberg Mont Niénoukoué. After that, I was fortunately given the kind permission of entering the northern half of the park and to stay at the International Research Station IET for about a week.

After my research in Comoé, I seized the opportunity of spending my last three days in the Forêt Classée de Yapo near Agboville, only about 50km to the north of Abidjan. My research schedule dictated the amount of time spent outside of Comoé, so I was unfortunately not able to get to a few other sites of ornithological interest which I had initially wanted to visit, like the so-called Centre Suisse (I.I.R.S.D.A.) at Orstom and Banco National Park (both in the environs of Abidjan), or the Research Station at Lamto right along the road from Abidjan to Yamoussoukro, or Mt. Péko (where there is a new BirdLife International office), Mt. Nimba and Mt. Tonkoui just north of Tai. Those sites will certainly merit another trip to the Ivory Coast in the future.


Unfortunately, there is very little good literature on the birds and the birding sites in Ivory Coast. When birding the northern savannas, the new and excellent Field Guide to the Birds of The Gambia and Senegal will certainly be the most recommendable choice, as it brilliantly depicts nearly all the savanna species to be found there. When birding the southern rain-forests, however, the Gambian guide will not suffice, and one has to resort to the old and out-dated Birds of West Africa by Serle and Morel, which has a few major drawbacks in that the plates are mostly poor, most species are not even depicted, and a few are only mentioned by name in the appendix! It is high time for a new and authoritative identification guide to the birds of West Africa.

The best deal should be to up-date your Serle&Morel guide with information on the species not covered therein. Get this information either out of the 5 existing volumes of the Handbook of the Birds of the World or the 5 published volumes of the Birds of Africa. When it comes to a few of the passerine families which are not yet covered by either of the two big handbook series, you will have to consult the Birds of Kenya and Northern Tanzania by Zimmerman or just wait until the corresponding handbook volume is out.

As far as site information is concerned, there seems to be nothing out there yet, maybe with the single exception of a small chapter on the Ivory Coast in Where to watch Birds in Africa by Wheatley. At the time of writing, there hadn't been any trip reports on the Ivory Coast in the net yet, so birders largely depend on a few scientific ornithological publications, as those by Mary Gartshore on Tai National Park, which were of great help to me.

The Country:

I have had previous budget birding experience in South America and Asia, but nowhere did the going get as rough as in Ivory Coast. This is a hard country to travel through as a low-budget birder, and you should be prepared for all kinds of adverse circumstances. The most comfortable way of seeing the birds of Ivory Coast should be to go with BIRDQUEST, the only tour operator currently working in this country. Their tour leader is said to be one of this decade's most knowledgeable people on West African birds. However, it is not impossible to see most birds on your own, if you give it enough time and effort.

French is spoken by virtually all inhabitants of the country, no matter which one of the 72 ethnic groups they adhere to. Communication in a western language other than French will be more than hard to achieve. The currency is called CFA (or Franc on the street), and 100 CFA are equivalent to 1 French Franc; the CFA rises and falls with the French currency, as it is not an independent currency. The CFA is also used in most other former French colonies of West Africa, like Burkina Faso, Mali etc. No-one seems to know what will happen when the French adopt the Euro in 2002, but up till then it will be best to enter the country with French Francs in your pockets, as other currencies are very hard to exchange (maybe except US $).

You can get virtually anywhere with public transportation, and even the remotest localities are served by bush taxis (=taxi brousse). Be prepared for very uncomfortable journeys, though. Sometimes everything goes smooth, but more often, you will be either late one day, or you will emerge from the bus with a major health problem or feeling of disgust at your destination (which could be traced back to things as varied as contagiously ill people sitting next to you and incessantly coughing at you, or overly ripe agricultural products and dirty chickens placed on your lap, or (as a woman) a seat shared with three guys who want to marry you...). Think hard if you have the money to rent a car in Abidjan, and if so, do not miss to do so.

Bring enough money so as to be able to reside in the better hotels that Ivorian towns have to offer. Often, you don't have the choice, but in most towns you can choose from one hotel for CFA 8000.- a night and another one for CFA 3000.- a night. Let me assure you that the one for 3000.- will most certainly foster mice and rats, the bed sheets will be ripe with all sorts of yellow and white liquid stains, and sometimes there will be used condoms laying around in the bath room, if there is such a thing as a bath room at all. Most other guests in the hotel will be there on an hourly basis, so don't plan on making friends.

Bring a mosquito net, and make sure it doesn't have any holes; mine didn't make the impression of having any, until I got bitten 42 times one night. This is the best way to catch malaria, a sometimes lethal disease which has not ceased to be omnipresent in Ivory Coast. The country is situated in one of the areas blessed with the most diseases on our planet, so beware of contact with mice or food that might have been touched by them (e.g., Lassa fever: killed one German tourist in 1999), get a shot against yellow fever and diphteria, avoid dogs on the streets and street food, don't bring your child, reject any offers from prostitutes, and pay a little general attention to what and who you touch, particularly with all those inevitable little scratches that start to dot your body after the second week in a tropical country.

All of this sounds pretty hard, and it is. But consider: You can avoid most of this with a little bit of common sense and an inclination towards investing a little money in your own health.

The Sites

Tai National Park

Ecotel Touraco

The only way to enter Tai as a regular tourist these days is a stay at the Ecotel Touraco, an eco-lodge near Djiroutou in the south-western corner of the park. There are talks of a second eco-lodge being opened in the park's east some time in the second half of the millennium's first decade, maybe even with a canopy walk, but I don't know how serious these plans are. The Ecotel Touraco is only a few kilometers from the main road from Tai City to the coast (San Pédro), but you would have to contact the lodge administration in San Pédro beforehand, either by booking from your home country or by dropping by during your trip in Ivory Coast. I think they would appreciate the first choice more, but if they have vacancies, they won't decline when you come on a "knock-on-the-door"-basis. (The office - administered by a few Germans - is located in the city center of San Pédro and well known among most taxi drivers; the postal and e-mail address should not be too hard to find in the net).

A stay is fairly expensive: I had to pay US$150.00 for two days, which included however the meals and a guide. Accompanying guides are compulsory, which is good or bad depending on your objective; my guide had a fairly good knowledge of a few of the bird vocalizations, as he has regularly accompanied the Birdquest groups that visit the lodge every year; furthermore, he was able to show me chimpanzees, which you are not very likely to see on your own. However, he got very impatient and impolite when I was so unkind as to have him wait for one hour while I was watching a high canopy mixed flock at a fruiting tree.

A must during your stay at Ecotel Touraco will be a hiking trip to Mt. Niénoukoué, an impressive block of granite towering out of the rain-forest and allowing for splendid views over the "green ocean". The only great avian rarity that the guides can guarantee you is the Bare-headed Rockfowl (Picathartes), which has a breeding colony near that inselberg, even though the birds have to be waited for for hours on some days. Other than that, it will be up to you to locate the other West African endemics, and if you are a first-timer to Africa, you will have to content yourself with only a very few of them.


Another way of entering the park used to be the IET station in the north, which is strictly limited to scientific research these days. Sometimes, as in my case, exceptional permits are issued upon demand at the Bureau des Eaux et Forêts in Tai City, but I might have just been lucky insofar as I knew some of the researchers at IET. If time is no problem, you might find it worthwhile to travel all the way up to Tai City and ask for a permit, but don't expect to be successful. The IET station is 8km from the main road from Tai to San Pédro, about 16km from Tai itself. It is situated in good forest habitat and boasts an extensive trail system which leaves plenty of room for ornithological observations.

Yapo Forest

Apart from the Centre Suisse near Orstom, Yapo should be the best choice for people who come to the Ivory Coast for only a few days, as it lies only about 50km from Abidjan. It has the status of a Forêt Classée, which renders logging and hunting illegal, although logging tracks seem to give access to all corners of the forest. It is conveniently located along the road from Abidjan to Agboville, right near the village of Petit Yapo. From Petit Yapo, follow the road to the south for three kilometers through some rewarding secondary habitat until you reach the sign "Forêt Classée" whence the forest stretches along the road for about ten kilometers. Accommodation should be looked for in Agboville, as Petit Yapo doesn't have any hotels. The forest can still be reached before sunlight on one of the countless taxis plying the road to Abidjan at almost any time.

In spite of the ongoing destruction, the forest is great for birdwatching, and a few West African endemics like the Yellow-bearded Greenbul are surely more easy to see here than at Tai. Spend some time along the road, but don't miss to enter some true forest on one of the logging tracks to see those mixed flocks that contain all the bulbuls and other goodies. Those true forest birds can only rarely be seen from the road itself.

Comoé National Park


Comoé NP is one of the largest areas set aside for nature in West Africa. It used to be some sort of "Serengeti of West Africa" as little as a decade ago (in the 80s), when impressive numbers of French tourists poured in to see a little less impressive numbers of elephants (Loxodonta africana), lions (Panthera leo), hippos (Hippopotamus amphibius) and the like in their own former colony. Now, only a few years later, it is depressing to see how little of the former mammalian wealth has been left over by the scourge of poaching which is continuing at a seemingly increasing pace to deplete the park of its star attractions. In the year 2000, lions had not been reliably sighted for two years, although their footprints continue to be seen along the tracks, elephants are thought to have vanished altogether, although rumors of their continued existence around the Iringou River still make their way around once in a while. All the other large mammals have suffered accordingly, and the only species that can nowadays be guaranteed on a one-day tour through parts of the park is the Kob Antelope (Kobus kob kob) and - with a little bit of searching in the right habitat - the hippo.

Ornithologists, however, should not be deterred by the sorry state of the park's mammal fauna. The half-heartedness with which the Ivorian park officials take care of their heritage, and their collaboration with the poachers that has been proved in a few cases, have fortunately not had any negative effect on the park's habitat: Dreaded swarms of tse-tse flies not only make human life a painful task during the rainy season, but they also render bovine life hazardous, as they transmit a disease lethal to cows. Therefore, the park has always been shunned by cattle herders, the very people who have contributed to the large-scale degradation of guinea savanna habitat in most other parts of West Africa.


The park is open to tourists during the dry season from November through April, but I have seen tourists enter in May and June as well, so I guess the guides will be willing to take you anytime as long as the road conditions permit entry (which might not be the case in July, August and September any longer). There are several entrances to the park, but if you wish to take advantage of the site information provided in this report, choose the southern entrance at Kakpin, which is only about 12km from the Research Station where I worked at. I suppose that you need a vehicle of your own to enter the park, and you will find out that guides are compulsory (even though I have seen tourists illegally enter the park without a guide). You will instantly be given a guide as soon as you arrive in Kakpin and indicate that you want to visit the park. I guess the same procedure applies at the other park entrances, like the one in Kaffolo (north), or the one in Bouna (east). The park is big, and it takes a full day to cross it once from Kakpin to Kaffolo, so if birding is your objective, don't plan on seeing all corners of the park, but concentrate on one area; I recommend you the southern area described in this report.


What makes the park so interesting and diverse (almost 500 species of birds!!!) is the mosaic of habitats that can be found within it. Care should be taken so as to spend some time in all the microhabitats. Even though mammals, raptors and a few other large bird attractions are most likely to be seen from the back of a jeep during long rides through the park, you should spend most time working a few areas on foot to get the most out of your stay.

Comoé National Park, southern part

Open Savanna Habitat and Plains

There are numerous species which will only be found in the small patches of open savanna habitat, generally known as "plains", that can be found throughout the park in a limited number. If you visit the north of the park, plains should be easier to find, and some time should be spent at the huge open beauval area the road traverses around two hours south of the Kaffolo entrance. This is the only area of the park that calls into mind what the habitat must look like a few hundred kilometers to the north in the soudan savannas and Sahel steppes of Burkina Faso, and it was the only spot where I ever saw Abyssinian and Rufous-crowned Roller as well as Spur-winged Goose, although the formermost is supposed to be common throughout the park at the beginning of the dry season.

If you don't get to the north, there will be a choice of a few smaller plains in the area described by this report: The biggest amongst those is Congo Plain just south of the River Congo, where Flappet Lark, Sun Lark and Longclaw require some searching to be found. Besides open areas, thornbush habitat reminiscent of drier climates can be found right along the road here, even though it didn't hold the species it had promised whenever I took a closer look. Another plain to check out is Lola Plain, where I spent most time in; Sun Lark and Flappet Lark can be found with a little bit of patience, particularly in the evening hours, so can the Plain-backed Pipit. The Bretelle Plain, just a kilometer from the Main Camp, is supposed to hold one of the smaller bustard species at some times of the year, although they were obviously not present while I was there. Still, I regularly recorded Longclaw and Flappet Lark and even Zitting Cisticola, which seems to like the thornbush habitat near the gallery forest's edge here. Gansé Plain is the only place where I ever lucked out in seeing a Denham's Bustard and two Rufous-rumped Larks, as well as a Fiscal Shrike; apart from that, Plain-backed Pipit and Flappet Lark can be expected.


As most parts of the Comoé River and the Iringou are lined by dense gallery forest, the rivers cannot be accessed just anywhere. Thus, you should not miss to go to at least one of those access points, not just for the serene views of bathing hippos in an African river setting, but also for a few nice species of birds. There are several river birds that occur along the Comoé and its bigger tributaries in low density and that could be seen just about anywhere. Thus, it largely depends on the season, on the amount of time spent at the river and on your good luck, whether you get to see Shining-blue Kingfisher, Giant Kingfisher, Jacana, the occasional Mosque Swallow and Ussher's Spinetail, African Fish-eagle, Senegal Thick-knee, Goliath Heron or Yellow-billed and Woolly-necked Stork. Other birds will almost certainly be there, no matter where exactly you go, like Pied Kingfisher, White-headed Lapwing, Little Green Heron, Hamerkop and at most times African Pied Wagtail. The Cataracts are generally one of the best spots to see the Fish-eagle and Goliath Heron, and it's the only place where I ever saw Rock Pratincoles, though their presence seems to be confined to the rainy season. Other good spots are the Old Camp and the Main Camp (where you would certainly have to ask for permission if you can walk around within the camp). These places are all characterized by islands in the river and shallow riversides, which is probably the reason why they are far more attractive than the riverside at the New Biological Research Station or at the Iringou Delta. A hot spot, not just for its river birds, but also for the rare forest species, is the Iringou Bridge, the only place where I saw Finfoot (early morning!), but even the Congo Bridge, where there is no gallery forest around, afforded views of a Shining-blue Kingfisher. Three species, namely the Oriole Warbler, Black-capped Babbler and the Yellow-crowned Gonolek, were hardly ever seen at any other spot than the riparian growth near the Congo Bridge, presumably because dense gallery forest habitat abuts most other river sections in the park.


Most ponds in the area fall dry during the arid season, but even then they still merit a quick look. Unidentified crakes are reported from Hyperolius Pond and a few roadside ponds on the Gansé Plain, but the only thing I ever saw there is Jacana. The denser vegetation around the ponds sometimes attracts songbird activity during the midday hours, particularly Lola Pond and Hyperolius Pond, but beware of baby crocodiles in these. Mixed swallow flocks often search for their insect prey in the vicinity of Lola Pond, and even though most of them are Lesser Stripeds, try and find the occasional Rufous- and Red-chested Swallows in between. Hyperolius Pond seems to harbor coucals, and once I even lucked out in seeing Plantain-eaters there, though they can probably be seen just about anywhere. The gallery forest ponds near the Iringou Delta are of slightly differing character, as they are within dense forest habitat. Apart from the good views of the high canopy that are afforded from their dry parts, they are the spot where I saw Hartlaub's Duck most often, and once even a Dwarf Bittern.

Roads and Tracks

A few savanna birds like Double-spurred Francolin or Stone-partridge you will most certainly not see on foot; those are the birds that are more often seen by regular tourists than by ornithologists, largely because the former ones restrict their park visit to mammal watching from the jeep. Generally, bigger birds are more likely to be seen driving around than working an area on foot; this can be applied to raptors, Ground Hornbills, bustards and even Blue-bellied Rollers and Red-billed Wood-hoopoes. Night rides can be very fruitful occasions for nightjar sightings: from May onwards, 90% of all nightjar sightings on tracks will be of Long-taileds (only a few Plain Nightjars), while before May, you should also be able to see a considerable percentage of Standard-winged Nightjars. Likewise, Grayish Eagle-owl is occasionally flushed by passing vehicles.

Savanna Streams

It sometimes pays following their course for a while, as a few species are largely restricted to the adjacent vegetation of smaller savanna streams. A prime candidate for "stream observations" is Lola Creek. Malachite Kingfishers are guaranteed at the bridge over Lola Creek, as well as Village Weavers in their nests. African Moustached Warblers and Red-winged Warblers can otherwise only be seen in marshy open savanna habitat which is only infrequently found in this part of the park. The latter does not strictly inhabit the trees and bushes lining the streams, but is rarely found far away from them. The same can be applied to the Black-breasted Firefinch. A particularly promising area appears to be the entrance point of Lola Creek into the gallery forest, where Red-faced Cisticolas climb through the rank streamside vegetation and Bar-bellied Firefinches forage on the ground. This seems to be the preferred microhabitat of the Spectacled Weaver as well, which I rarely ever encountered anywhere else.

Closed Savanna

This is by far the most dominant habitat within the park, so you should expect to see its inhabitants most easily. Still, there are a remarkable number of uncommon species that appear to be confined to large, homogenous tracts of this habitat. The low number of sightings of a few of these is probably attributable to their naturally low abundance, as I suspect with the Hyliota. Others may in fact be more numerous than their sightings reveal, but might pass unnoticed due to their secretive behavior (this seems to hold true with the two savanna tinkerbirds and with Vieillot's Barbet). Most of them, however, are probably not arbitrarily distributed throughout the savanna, but are restricted to certain microhabitat structures that we are not able to discern through the human eye; this is almost certainly the case with Emin's Shrike, Plaintive Cisticola, Croaking Cisticola and maybe even with a little commoner representatives as Cabanis's Bunting and Brubru.

Open Full-grown Woodland

A habitat rarely encountered though very worthwhile to spend some time at, I only know of one locality within the area described in this report that can be characterized thus: opposite the Old Camp, there is a baobab grove whence the surrounding area of about half a square kilometer of open forest must have sprung from. The baobabs and a few of the neighboring ceybas have an impressive girth and merit a look per se, but birdwatchers will be more impressed by the incessant bird activity in this patch of woodland. I have found this spot the best area in the park for quite a lot of species that can otherwise only be found in larger savanna thickets or open island forests, e.g. Cardinal Woodpecker, Spotted Creeper, Heuglin's and Little Weaver, Western Violet-backed Sunbird, Black Wood-hoopoe, Yellow Penduline-Tit and lots more (see list).

Forest Islands

The park comprises hundreds of little island forests, a few opener and almost of the same character as the preceding habitat category, others more closed and approaching gallery forest character. A couple of them are crossed when driving from Kakpin to the Camps, and another one that turned out promising can be found at the end of a dirt track (4-wheel drive!) that turns off to the right just before crossing the Lola Bridge when coming from Kakpin. If you have little time, though, I find it recommendable to concentrate on the gallery forests themselves, as not all of the forest birds found in Comoé also enter forest islands. Puvel's Illadopsis and Square-tailed Drongo might - on occasion - be slightly easier to find in forest islands, but they don't compensate for all the birds that are missed when gallery forest is omitted from your timetable.

Forest Edge

Even though most gallery forests end abruptly in a line, suddenly giving way to savanna habitat, there are still a few species that could almost never be found far from this borderline: most weaver species had a noticeable preference for this habitat, and flocks of White-crested Helmet Shrikes (with the occasional Red-headed Weaver/Malimbe mixed in) were almost obligatory for a few patches of forest edge, like just north of the Main Camp towards the Bretelle Plain, even though they would - on occasion - enter either the forest or the savanna. African Gray Hornbills are by far most frequent near the forest edge, although they can be seen in savanna thickets as well, and Gray Tit-Flycatchers were never encountered anywhere else than at the Old Camp's and the Main Camp's forest edge.

Gallery Forest

Easy to imagine, this is the hardest habitat to work on the one hand, but equally the most promising one on the other hand. If you have more than a week in Comoé, you will almost certainly find it very hard to add lots of new savanna birds to your list the last few days, but there will always be new birds in the gallery forest, no matter how many weeks you stay here. I was strongly reminded of rain-forest birding when I made the experience of finding yet another handful of new species right in front of my hut in the Main Camp's gallery forest after one month of intense birding. The use of a tape-recorder certainly pays in gallery forests and will help you make a few sightings that would have been improbable without it.

One problem is to find paths that give access to large tracts of gallery forest, a habitat that can be impenetrable for humans. There are only very few of these, so stick to this information rather than trying to fight your own way through any random piece of gallery forest. A very decent path that goes through 1300m of gallery forest before leading out to the savanna starts at the Old Camp and runs down-river. There are several incipient trails here, but all but one thin out after a few hundred meters. This trail harbors all the regular gallery forest inhabitants of Comoé, including Fire-crested Alethe, Little Green Sunbird, White-browed Forest-Flycatcher, the Trogon, Yellowbill and Capuchin Babbler (rare).

Most of the aforementioned can also be found in the gallery forest surrounding the Main Research Camp of the University of Würzburg (Germany), with its network of trails giving access to all the huts (if the Camp is still in use, ask for permission to bird around the huts; maybe there is even an experienced ornithologist who wants to show you around).

The best gallery forest in all of Comoé NP, however, can be found along the lower reaches of the Iringou, where the forest structure is not a lot different from old-growth rain-forest. Here, the forest is more than one kilometer wide, and the trees reach remarkable diameters. Early morning visits are important, as the forest can be silent around the afternoon. You should make your observations from the set of roads and paths that are available, as many parts of the forest are too dense to walk through.

The main road that runs to the north of the park awards good views of the forest, especially at the Iringou Bridge where bird activity is often high and baboons are regular. At the southern edge of the forest along this road, there is a small footpath going left along the edge and after 30m into the forest. This is the old course of the road, and you can follow this trail all the way to a little temporary lake inside the forest (which is not depicted on the map). 200m before you enter the forest on the main road, an inconspicuous dirt track leads left. Follow this track for about two kilometers through good savanna habitat (best place for Emin's Shrike and Plaintive Cisticola!) until it ends at the forest edge. From here, there is a long footpath going through prime gallery forest all the way to the spot where the Iringou merges with the Comoé River. At the beginning of this path, you can see a small temporary lake to your right; a few hundred meters on, there are two more temporary lakes left of the path (but not visible from it). It is around these temporary lakes that Emerald Cuckoos and Bronze-naped Pigeons can most often be seen. The Iringou Forest is also the only area where I saw (and tape-recorded) Finsch's Flycatcher-Thrush. Besides those, I encountered all other rarer gallery forest species here as well, even though less time was spent here than at the other gallery forest sites. There is certainly much room for new discoveries in the Iringou Forest, and I would not be surprised if most new records for the park came from here.

Trip List

Birds encountered within the Parc National de la Comoé are printed in bold.

  1. Phalacrocorax africanus - Long-tailed Cormorant
    common along the Comoé River; also frequently recorded in other parts of the country

  2. Ixobrychus sturmii - Dwarf Bittern
    Comoé NP: 1 around one of the gallery forest ponds near the mouth of the River Iringou (June 8)

  3. Ardea goliath - Goliath Heron
    usually recorded several times a week along the Comoé River

  4. Egretta garzetta garzetta - Little Egret
    group of 4 along the Comoé River near the Cataracts (May 9)

  5. Bubulcus ibis ibis - Cattle Egret
    in Comoé NP only recorded three times (little groups of around 5-10 flying along the Comoé River); abundant throughout the rest of the country

  6. Butorides striatus atricapillus - Green-backed Heron
    common along the Comoé River and its tributaries; frequently encountered in wetland habitats in other parts of the country

  7. Scopus umbretta umbretta - Hamerkop
    very common in any aquatic habitats within Comoé NP

  8. Mycteria ibis - Yellow-billed Stork
    1 along the Comoé River near the main camp (June 11)

  9. Ciconia episcopus microscelis - Woolly-necked Stork
    in Comoé NP recorded around twice a week, usually near the Comoé River

  10. Bostrychia hagedash brevirostris - Hadada Ibis
    very common along the Comoé River, its tributaries and comparable aquatic habitats within Comoé NP

  11. Plectropterus gambensis gambensis - Spur-winged Goose
    one sizeable group at a water hole on a large beauval area in the north of Comoé NP (June 9)

  12. Pteronetta hartlaubii - Hartlaub's Duck
    Comoé NP: small groups recorded regularly around the gallery forest ponds near the mouth of the River Iringou from June 8 through June 15

  13. Milvus migrans parasiticus - Black Kite
    only a handful of sightings in Comoé NP, mainly in late May and June; common near the country's coast

  14. Haliaaetus vocifer - African Fish-eagle
    recorded around three times a week along the Comoé River

  15. Gypohierax angolensis - Palm-nut Vulture
    regularly seen in Comoé NP (around twice a week); common in other parts of the country

  16. Necrosyrtes monachus - Hooded Vulture
    2 circling above the Comoé River near the Old Camp (May 24)

  17. Gyps africanus - African White-backed Vulture
    very common within Comoé NP

  18. Trigonoceps occipitalis - White-headed Vulture
    recorded twice within Comoé NP: 2 near camp (each May 7 and June 13)

  19. Terathopius ecaudatus - Bateleur
    common within Comoé NP

  20. Polyboroides typus pectoralis - African Harrier-hawk
    within Comoé NP recorded around twice a week; commonly seen in other parts of the country

  21. Kaupifalco monogrammicus monogrammicus - Lizard Buzzard
    1 in closed savanna in the north of Comoé NP (June 9)

  22. Melierax metabates metabates - Dark Chanting-goshawk
    within Comoé NP recorded around once a week

  23. Accipiter badius sphenurus - Shikra
    1 in closed savanna habitat near the Congo River, Comoé NP (May 12)

  24. Buteo auguralis - Red-necked Buzzard
    common within Comoé NP

  25. Hieraaetus spilogaster - African Hawk-eagle
    2 near Gawi, Comoé NP (June 9)

  26. Hieraaetus ayresii - Ayres's Hawk-eagle
    Comoé NP: 1 near the Cataracts (May 17), 1 near the Lola Pond (June 3)

  27. Polemaetus bellicosus - Martial Eagle
    Comoé NP: 1 near Congo Plain (May 9)

  28. Lophaetus occipitalis - Long-crested Eagle
    Comoé NP: 1 near Main Camp (May 20), 1 near Hyperolius Pond (June 9)

  29. Falco ardosiaceus - Gray Kestrel
    Comoé NP: 1 near Main Camp (May 20)

  30. Falco cuvierii - African Hobby
    2 hunting insects after rain-shower near Comoé's eastern park boundary at Bouna (June 10)

  31. Francolinus lathami lathami - Latham's Francolin
    seen almost daily in Tai NP from April 21 through 29; on April 27 two adults with 1 juvenile of around two weeks' age; in Comoé NP only one probable sighting within gallery forest habitat near Old Camp on June 7

  32. Francolinus ahantensis - Ahanta Francolin
    Comoé NP: a family party of 3 seen regularly within Main Camp gallery forest in first half of May

  33. Francolinus bicalcaratus bicalcaratus - Double-spurred Francolin
    Comoé NP: recorded three times, mostly from the jeep along the tracks, only once when walking through open savanna habitat

  34. Ptilopachus petrosus petrosus - Stone Partridge
    Comoé NP: 1 on park's eastern boundary north of Bouna (June 10); a family party within park near the Bouna entrance (June 10)

  35. Numida meleagris galeata - Helmeted Guineafowl
    common within Comoé NP

  36. Guttera pucherani verreauxi - Crested Guineafowl
    Comoé NP: 3 in forest island (apparently connected to gallery forest) near the Vista Point (May 25), 1 in gallery forest near Old Camp (June 7)

  37. Podica senegalensis senegalensis - African Finfoot
    Comé NP: 1 at Iringou Bridge (June 8)

  38. Neotis denhami denhami - Denham's Bustard
    Comoé NP: 1 at Gansé Plain (May 9)

  39. Actophilornis africanus - African Jacana
    only a handful of sightings in Comoé NP, mainly along the Comoé River or in various ponds; frequently seen in many other parts of the country

  40. Burhinus senegalensis - Senegal Thick-knee
    Comoé NP: recorded around twice a week along Comoé River

  41. Glareola nuchalis liberiae - Rock Pratincole
    Comoé NP: 1 (June 14) and 5 with breeding display (June 15) at the Cataracts

  42. Vanellus albiceps - White-headed Lapwing
    common along the Comoé River and its tributaries; also seen along a river within Tai NP (April 21)

  43. Vanellus senegallus senegallus - African Wattled Lapwing
    common in open savanna and plain habitat within Comoé NP

  44. Actitis hypoleucos - Common Sandpiper
    1 at Comoé River near Old Camp (May 10)

  45. Columba iriditorques - Western Bronze-naped Pigeon
    Comoé NP: regularly encountered in the Iringou gallery forest from June 8 through 16

  46. Streptopelia semitorquata - Red-eyed Dove
    Comoé NP: frequently seen at beginning of May with records decreasing towards the end of June

  47. Streptopelia vinacea - Vinaceous Dove
    Comoé NP: 1 in open savanna near Main Camp (May 5)

  48. Streptopelia senegalensis senegalensis - Laughing Dove
    frequently seen near human habitations all over the country (not within Comoé NP)

  49. Turtur afer - Blue-spotted Wood-dove
    common within Comoé NP; also frequently recorded in other parts of the country

  50. Turtur brehmeri infelix - Blue-headed Wood-dove
    recorded a couple of times in Tai NP (from April 22 through April 28)

  51. Treron calva sharpei - African Green-pigeon
    Comoé NP: recorded about three times a week in all kinds of wooded habitats; also frequently encountered in the country's south

  52. Psittacula krameri (prob. ssp. krameri) - Rose-ringed Parakeet
    one flock in Grand Bassam (June 21)

  53. Psittacus erithacus timneh - Gray Parrot
    frequently seen flying by around Tai NP and its environs (April 21 through 28)

  54. Poicephalus senegalus versteri - Senegal Parrot
    single individuals or small groups seen flying by around twice a week in all sorts of habitat within Comoé NP

  55. Corythaeola cristata - Great Blue Turaco
    frequently seen in and around Tai NP (from April 21 through 29)

  56. Tauraco macrorhynchus macrorhynchus - Yellow-billed Turaco
    seen a few times in Tai NP (from April 25 through 28)

  57. Musophaga violacea - Violet Turaco
    Comoé NP: 1 in a forest island near the northern park entrance at Kaffolo (June 9)

  58. Crinifer piscator - Western Gray Plantain-eater
    1 at the Hyperolius Pond, Comoé NP (June 16)

  59. Clamator levaillantii - Levaillant's Cuckoo
    Comoé NP: many sightings around the end of May, otherwise rarely seen

  60. Cuculus solitarius - Red-chested Cuckoo
    very common in Comoé NP

  61. Chrysococcyx klaas - Klaas's Cuckoo
    frequently recorded in Comoé NP (once vocalizations were known); also recorded in Yapo (June 22)

  62. Chrysococcyx cupreus - African Emerald Cuckoo
    regularly encountered in the Iringou gallery forest and a couple of times encountered in the gallery forest near the Main Camp from June 8 through 16; also seen in Yapo (June 23)

  63. Chrysococcyx caprius - Diederik Cuckoo
    frequently encountered in Comoé NP (once vocalizations were known), but probably not present before mid-May

  64. Ceuthmochares aereus - Yellowbill
    regularly encountered in gallery forest habitat in Comoé NP (knowledge of vocalization is of great help); also seen in Yapo (June 24)

  65. Centropus leucogaster leucogaster - Black-throated Coucal
    1 near IET Camp in Tai NP (April 26)

  66. Bubo cinerascens - Grayish Eagle-owl
    Comoé NP: 1 along track from Main Camp to Kakpin (May 12); several other sightings of unidentified owls most likely referred to this species

  67. Strix woodfordii nuchalis - African Wood-owl
    Comoé NP: heard very often (periodically even every night) around the Main Camp; 2 chased through the canopy by other birds in broad daylight (May 24) in gallery forest near the Main Camp

  68. Glaucidium castaneum etchecopari - Chestnut Owlet
    Comoé NP: 2 caught in mist-nets in gallery forest near the Old Camp (May 25); heard a few times in gallery forest at the Main Camp in June

  69. Caprimulgus inornatus - Plain Nightjar
    Comoé NP: 2 on track from Main Camp towards Gansé after dusk (May 20); a couple of probable sightings a few days earlier

  70. Caprimulgus climacurus (ssp. unknown) - Long-tailed Nightjar
    Comoé NP: commonly seen on vehicle tracks on moonlit nights

  71. Telecanthura ussheri ussheri - Mottled Spinetail
    Comoé NP: small numbers recorded a few times a week

  72. Neafrapus cassini - Cassin's Spinetail
    a few seen at Yapo (June 23+24)

  73. Cypsiurus parvus (ssp. unknown) - African Palm-swift
    in Comoé NP, only seen around three times near Main Camp; frequently recorded in most other parts of the country

  74. Apus apus apus - Common Swift
    Comoé NP: huge flocks on migration; peak from May 17 through 24, first date May 8, last date May 30

  75. Apus affinis aerobates - Little Swift
    very rarely recorded in Comoé NP itself, but commonly seen in other parts of the country

  76. Apus caffer - White-rumped Swift
    Comoé NP: commonest swift, also recorded in other parts of the country a couple of times

  77. Apaloderma narina constantia - Narina's Trogon
    Comoé NP: regularly encountered at all gallery forest sites once vocalizations were known

  78. Halcyon badia - Chocolate-backed Kingfisher
    1 in Tai NP near Ecotel Touraco (April 22)

  79. Halcyon leucocephala leucocephala - Gray-headed Kingfisher
    Comoé NP: common at the beginning of May, sightings sharply decreasing towards end of that month

  80. Halcyon malimbica forbesi - Blue-breasted Kingfisher
    common in Comoé NP, especially once vocalization was known; also recorded at Yapo (June 23+24)

  81. Halcyon senegalensis (ssp. unknown) - Senegal Kingfisher
    in Comoé NP, only recorded near the boundary in anthropogenically altered habitat; also recorded around Tai (April 21-24)

  82. Halcyon chelicuti chelicuti - Striped Kingfisher
    seen about twice a week in closed savanna in Comoé NP

  83. Ceyx lecontei - African Dwarf Kingfisher
    2 near IET station in Tai NP (April 29)

  84. Ceyx picta (ssp. unknown) - African Pygmy Kingfisher
    Comoé NP: recorded around twice a week in savanna near edge habitat

  85. Corythornis cristata galerita - Malachite Kingfisher
    Comoé NP: regularly encountered; easily seen at Lola Bridge

  86. Alcedo quadribrachys quadribrachys - Shining-blue Kingfisher
    Comoé NP: single individual seen three times (Comoé River at Old Camp, May 7; Comoé River at Cataracts, June 14; Congo Bridge, June 12)

  87. Megaceryle maxima (ssp. unknown) - African Giant Kingfisher
    seen around three times a week along the Comoé River

  88. Ceryle rudis - Pied Kingfisher
    very common along the Comoé River and its tributaries

  89. Merops gularis gularis - Black Bee-eater
    one small group at the Ecotel Touraco in Tai NP (April 22)

  90. Merops pusillus pusillus - Little Bee-eater
    commonly seen in Comoé NP (about every other day); also recorded in Yapo (June 23)

  91. Merops hirundineus chrysolaimus - Swallow-tailed Bee-eater
    Comoé NP: aggregations seen only about once a week, preferably in open island forests with high trees or forest edge habitat

  92. Merops bullocki bullocki - Red-throated Bee-eater
    commonest bee-eater in Comoé NP, seen almost daily, preferably along brooks and in forest edge habitat

  93. Merops albicollis - White-throated Bee-eater
    Comoé NP: sporadically seen both in May and June, but huge monospecific flocks recorded around the end of May

  94. Coracias naevia naevia - Rufous-crowned Roller
    Comoé NP: 1 in a huge beauval area in north of park (June 9)

  95. Coracias cyanogaster - Blue-bellied Roller
    Comoé NP: one sighting in May (May 23), several sightings in June

  96. Coracias abyssinica - Abyssinian Roller
    Comoé NP: 1 in a huge beauval area in north of park (June 9)

  97. Eurystomus glaucurus afer - Broad-billed Roller
    very common in Comoé NP, seen almost daily

  98. Phoeniculus purpureus (ssp. unknown) - Red-billed Wood-Hoopoe
    Comoé NP: only seen about once or twice per week, preferably near forest edge habitat

  99. Phoeniculus aterrimus aterrimus - Black Wood-Hoopoe
    Comoé NP: recorded about three times a week; easily seen in the baobab forest near the Old Camp

  100. Upupa epops (ssp. unknown) - Hoopoe
    Comoé NP: 1 on Congo Plain (May 9)

  101. Bucorvus abyssinicus - Abyssinian Ground Hornbill
    Comoé NP: groups of two seen on three occasions (first date May 31)

  102. Tockus albocristatus albocristatus - White-crested Hornbill
    1 near Mt. Niénoukoué in Tai NP (April 21)

  103. Tockus camurus - Red-billed Dwarf Hornbill
    1 near Ecotel Touraco in Tai NP (April 22)

  104. Tockus fasciatus semifasciatus - African Pied Hornbill
    seen almost daily in Comoé NP; common in most other parts of the country as well

  105. Tockus nasutus nasutus - African Gray Hornbill
    very common in Comoé NP, especially near forest edges

  106. Ceratogymna fistulator fistulator - Piping Hornbill
    seen almost daily in Comoé NP, especially near the river just before dusk

  107. Ceratogymna elata - Yellow-casqued Wattled Hornbill
    several groups near the Ecotel Touraco in Tai NP (April 21+22)

  108. Gymnobucco calvus calvus - Naked-faced Barbet
    recorded at fruiting trees near the park boundary of Tai NP (April 23) and in Yapo (June 23)

  109. Pogoniulus scolopaceus scolopaceus - Speckled Tinkerbird
    common in Yapo (end of June) and in secondary habitat near Tai NP (end of April)

  110. Pogoniulus subsulphureus chrysopygius - Yellow-throated Tinkerbird
    one or two seen in Yapo (June 24)

  111. Pogoniulus bilineatus leucolaima - Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird
    Comoé NP: recorded in closed savanna habitat in low densities (only about once a week)

  112. Pogoniulus chrysoconus chrysoconus - Yellow-fronted Tinkerbird
    Comoé NP: only recorded twice (first date May 11) in savanna near forest edge habitat

  113. Tricholaema hirsuta hirsuta - Hairy-breasted Barbet
    1 near the boundary of Tai NP (April 23)

  114. Lybius vieilloti rubescens - Vieillot's Barbet
    Comoé NP: recorded in closed savanna in low densities (only about once a week)

  115. Indicator maculatus maculatus - Spotted Honeyguide
    Comoé NP: 1 caught in gallery forest near Old Camp (May 27) with 1 Buff-spotted Woodpecker (Campethera nivosa) caught in the same net 1 hour earlier; 1 sighting from the Iringou Bridge (June 8)

  116. Indicator indicator - Greater Honeyguide
    Comoé NP: only recorded about once or twice a week, mostly in forest edge habitat

  117. Campethera punctuligera punctuligera - Fine-spotted Woodpecker
    Comoé NP: recorded almost about once a week in closed savanna habitat

  118. Campethera nivosa nivosa - Buff-spotted Woodpecker
    low density inhabitant of gallery forests in Comoé NP (only about one sighting per week); also frequently recorded in Tai NP and in Yapo

  119. Campethera caroli arizelus - Brown-eared Woodpecker
    recorded several times in Tai NP near IET station (April 25-28)

  120. Dendropicos fuscescens lafresnayi - Cardinal Woodpecker
    Comoé NP: 2 in baobab forest near Old Camp (June 4)

  121. Dendropicos goertae goertae - Gray Woodpecker
    Comoé NP: recorded about once a week, often near forest edge habitat

  122. Picoides obsoletus obsoletus - Brown-backed Woodpecker
    Comoé NP: recorded around once or twice a week in open savanna, rarely found in denser habitat

  123. Smithornis rufolateralis rufolateralis - Rufous-sided Broadbill
    1 in Tai NP near IET station (April 28)

  124. Smithornis capensis delacouri - African Broadbill
    Comoé NP: 2 caught in gallery forest near Main Camp (May 16); heard just on a couple of occasions near the Main Camp

  125. Mirafra rufocinnamomea buckleyi - Flappet Lark
    Comoé NP: occasionally recorded in open savanna and plain habitat, e.g. Lola Plain, Congo Plain, Bretelle Plain; rarely seen in more closed savanna habitat (track to the Iringou Ponds)

  126. Pinarocorys erythropygia - Rufous-rumped Lark
    Comoé NP: 2 seen on Gansé Plain (May 15+16)

  127. Galerida modesta (ssp. unknown) - Sun Lark
    Comoé NP: only seen on few occasions (Lola Plain, Congo Plain)

  128. Psalidoprocne nitens nitens - Square-tailed Saw-wing
    1 in Yapo (June 24)

  129. Psalidoprocne obscura - Fanti Saw-wing
    Comoé NP: very common

  130. Hirundo semirufa gordoni - Red-breasted Swallow
    Comoé NP: recorded only about a handful of times, primarily single individuals associating with Lesser Striped Swallows (Hirundo abyssinica); not recorded before the first big rains (end of May)

  131. Hirundo senegalensis senegalensis - Mosque Swallow
    Comoé NP: single individuals or small groups recorded about once a week, mostly by the river, either singly or associating with swifts

  132. Hirundo abyssinica puella - Lesser Striped Swallow
    common in Comoé NP and in most other parts of the country, occuring in large flocks

  133. Hirundo smithii smithii - Wire-tailed Swallow
    common in Comoé NP; occuring pair-wise, seen almost daily

  134. Hirundo nigrita - White-throated Blue Swallow
    seen a few times in Tai NP (April 26-28)

  135. Hirundo lucida lucida - Red-chested Swallow
    Comoé NP: a few occasionally seen associated with Lesser Striped Swallows (Hirundo abyssinica) from the beginning of the rains (end of May)

  136. Motacilla aguimp vidua - African Pied Wagtail
    Comoé NP: seen regularly along the Comoé River (about 4 times a week)

  137. Anthus leucophrys (ssp. unknown) - Plain-backed Pipit
    Comoé NP: recorded in low densities (only about once a week or less) in open savanna and plain habitat, especially Lola Plain and Congo Plain

  138. Macronyx croceus - Yellow-throated Longclaw
    Comoé NP: recorded a few times at the Bretelle Plain and once at the Congo Plain

  139. Campephaga phoenicea - Red-shouldered Cuckoo-shrike
    common in Comoé NP; recorded up to 5 days a week

  140. Coracina pectoralis - White-breasted Cuckoo-shrike
    Comoé NP: recorded once or twice a week, usually near forest edge habitat

  141. Coracina azurea - Blue Cuckoo-shrike
    1 in Tai NP near IET station (April 25)

  142. Andropadus virens erythropterus - Little Greenbul
    commonly encountered in secondary roadside habitat and forest clearings in and near Tai NP and in Yapo

  143. Andropadus gracilis extremus - Little Gray Greenbul
    Comoé NP: 1 silent individual feeding among a mixed flock at forest edge in Main Camp (June 15), identification based on perception of eye-ring (excluding most other possible greenbuls of similar coloration and size) and lack of rufous tones in plumage (excluding the rare Ansorge's Greenbul (Andropadus ansorgei); also recorded in forest edge habitat in Yapo several times

  144. Andropadus curvirostris (ssp. unknown) - Plain Greenbul
    seen on two occasions in virtually primary forest in Yapo (June 23+24)

  145. Andropadus gracilirostris gracilirostris - Slender-billed Greenbul
    frequently encountered in Yapo Forest (June 22-24)

  146. Andropadus latirostris congener - Yellow-whiskered Greenbul
    frequently encountered in Tai NP and Yapo

  147. Calyptocichla serina - Golden Greenbul
    small group repeatedly seen at the same fruiting tree in Yapo Forest (June 23+24)

  148. Baeopogon indicator leucurus - Honeyguide Bulbul
    Comoé NP: regularly encountered at all gallery forest sites (once vocalizations were known); about three encounters per week; very hard to see without knowledge of sound

  149. Ixonotus guttatus - Spotted Greenbul
    large groups occasionally encountered in Yapo Forest (June 22-24)

  150. Chlorocichla simplex - Simple Greenbul
    seen a couple of times in secondary roadside habitat near Yapo (June 22)

  151. Chlorocichla flavicollis flavicollis - Yellow-throated Leaf-love
    Comoé NP: one caught in closed savanna habitat interspersed with thickets right near Main Camp (June 1)

  152. Thescelocichla leucopleura - Swamp Palm Bulbul
    large flock in clearing of IET station in Tai NP (April 29)

  153. Pyrrhurus scandens scandens - Leaf-love
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of gallery forest, though far more often heard than seen

  154. Phyllastrephus icterinus - Icterine Greenbul
    common member of mixed bird parties in Tai NP and in Yapo, occuring in good numbers; usually staying in lower canopy

  155. Bleda canicapilla canicapilla - Gray-headed Bristlebill
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of gallery forest (once vocalization is known); also recorded in primary forest in Tai NP and in Yapo

  156. Criniger barbatus barbatus - Western Bearded Greenbul
    regular member of mixed bird parties in primary forest in Tai NP and in Yapo

  157. Criniger calurus verreauxi - Red-tailed Greenbul
    regular member of mixed bird parties in primary forest in Tai NP and in Yapo

  158. Criniger olivaceus - Yellow-bearded Greenbul
    1 in mixed bird party in primary forest in Yapo (June 24); seen higher up in canopy than Icterine Greenbuls (Phyllastrephus icterinus), gleaning the trunks for insects in woodcreeper manner

  159. Pycnonotus barbatus inornatus - Common Bulbul
    generally one of commonest bird species in Comoé NP and outside

  160. Stiphrornis erythrothorax erythrothorax - Forest Robin
    recorded several times in Tai NP and in Yapo

  161. Cossypha niveicapilla niveicapilla - Snowy-crowned Robin-Chat
    Comoé NP: regularly recorded in gallery forest and forest island habitat, occasionally in savanna thickets; very hard to see, knowledge of vocalization helpful

  162. Alethe diademata diademata - Fire-crested Alethe
    regularly recorded at all gallery forest sites in Comoé NP (once vocalization was known); about four encounters per week; also seen in Tai NP several times

  163. Alethe poliocephala poliocephala - Brown-chested Alethe
    seen once or twice in Tai NP (April 27)

  164. Neocossyphus poensis poensis - White-tailed Ant-Thrush
    seen a couple of times in Tai NP (April 22+27)

  165. Neocossyphus finschii - Finsch's Flycatcher-Thrush
    Comoé NP: 2 individuals of different territories found in the Iringou gallery forest (June 16), one of them singing and tape-recorded; also seen in Tai NP and in Yapo several times

  166. Cercotrichas leucosticta (ssp. unknown) - Forest Scrub-Robin
    Comoé NP: regularly recorded at all gallery forest sites (once vocalization was known)

  167. Myrmecocichla albifrons frontalis - White-fronted Black Chat
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of open savanna and plain habitat

  168. Zoothera princei princei - Gray Ground-Thrush
    1 seen in Tai NP (April 27) among huge mixed feeding flock

  169. Turdus pelios chiguancoides - African Thrush
    fairly common in Comoé NP and its surroundings, especially near forest edge

  170. Melocichla mentalis mentalis - Moustached Grass-Warbler
    Comoé NP: common in marshy savanna or in open habitat near brooks

  171. Hippolais polyglotta - Melodious Warbler
    Comoé NP: 1 singing in savanna (May 4), 1 associated with Wood Warblers (Phylloscopus sibilatrix) (May 10)

  172. Cisticola erythrops erythrops - Red-faced Cisticola
    Comoé NP: seen a few times in rank waterside vegetation along the Lola Creek immediately adjacent to the Main Camp

  173. Cisticola cantans swanzii - Singing Cisticola
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of closed savanna habitat, far more often heard than seen with vocal activity starting around the end of May

  174. Cisticola lateralis lateralis - Whistling Cisticola
    very common inhabitant of closed savanna habitat in Comoé NP, far more often heard than seen, with vocal activity starting around the end of May; also recorded in other parts of the country (e.g. Tai NP)

  175. Cisticola natalensis strangei - Croaking Cisticola
    Comoé NP: two pairs in closed savanna near Hyperolius Pond (June 12), 1 singing individual at Lola Pond (June 17)

  176. Cisticola dorsti - Plaintive Cisticola
    Comoé NP: regularly recorded in a small area of closed savanna habitat along the track connecting the Main Road with the mouth of the River Iringou (June 8-15); vocal activity on June 11 and 13, but unfortunately sound recordings could not be obtained on those days due to technical difficulties; however, vocalizations and morphology were found to be clearly consistent with new species coverage in the Field Guide to the Birds of The Gambia and Senegal (Barlow et al., 1997); therefore, older records of Rufous-pate Cisticola (Cisticola ruficeps) in Comoé NP will evidently have to be reviewed and - at best - reconfirmed

  177. Cisticola brachypterus/rufus - Rufous/Siffling Cisticola
    Comoé: birds omnipresent in dry season appeared to be "brachypterus"; from June 2 onwards sightings of very rufous birds with very white underparts ("Booted Warbler" appearance) in Bretelle Plain; after that, apparently no sightings of streaked birds any more, with even the camp birds making appearance of "rufus", even though not necessarily all rufous, but at least unstreaked; sound recording of one such individual obtained on June 15 matches sound description of "rufus" in The Birds of The Gambia and Senegal, but the Birds of Africa considers songs of both species very similar; most probably both species involved, with majority of sightings referring to "brachypterus" and those sightings on more arid habitat in Bretelle Plain referring to "rufus"

  178. Cisticola juncidis uropygialis - Zitting Cisticola
    Comoé NP: rarely recorded in open savanna or plain habitat, most often near thorn bush habitat at Bretelle Plain (all in all about 4 encounters)

  179. Prinia subflava melanorhyncha - Tawny-flanked Prinia
    very common in Comoé NP and other parts of the country

  180. Heliolais erythroptera erythroptera - Red-winged Warbler
    Comoé NP: reasonably common near brooks or in marshy savanna; recorded about once or twice a week, more often towards rainy season (June); on June 6, a family party in marshy savanna near Old Camp

  181. Apalis sharpii - Sharpe's Apalis
    1 female seen at Mt. Niénoukoué in Tai NP (April 21)

  182. Camaroptera brachyura (ssp. unknown) - Bleating Warbler
    one of the commonest birds encountered in Comoé NP and other parts of the country

  183. Camaroptera superciliaris - Yellow-browed Camaroptera
    encountered along road through Yapo Forest (June 23+24)

  184. Camaroptera chloronota (ssp. unknown) - Olive-green Camaroptera
    1 in Yapo (June 24)

  185. Macrosphenus kempi kempi - Kemp's Longbill
    1 in forest edge habitat near IET station in Tai NP (April 25)

  186. Eremomela pusilla - Senegal Eremomela
    Comoé NP: very common inhabitant of open or closed savanna habitat

  187. Sylvietta brachyura brachyura - Northern Crombec
    Comoé NP: recorded around once a week in open forest, closed savanna or forest edge habitat; little groups often associated with other songbirds

  188. Sylvietta virens flaviventris - Green Crombec
    family parties recorded along road through Yapo Forest (June 22-24)

  189. Phylloscopus sibilatrix - Wood Warbler
    Comoé NP: small migrant parties encountered from May 5 through 15, a few times recorded singing, found especially in forest edge habitat and open forest

  190. Hypergerus atriceps - Oriole Warbler
    Comoé NP: patchily recorded in riparian growth habitat (regularly along Congo near Congo Bridge) and in damp savanna thickets (once)

  191. Hyliota flavigaster flavigaster - Yellow-bellied Hyliota
    Comoé NP: rarely recorded in closed savanna habitat (less than once a week); usually pair-wise or associated with other songbirds

  192. Hylia prasina prasina - Green Hylia
    recorded several times in Tai NP and in Yapo

  193. Fraseria ocreata prosphora - Fraser's Forest-Flycatcher
    1 seen foraging on a huge tree trunk at the IET entrance to Tai NP (April 29)

  194. Fraseria cinerascens cinerascens - White-browed Forest-Flycatcher
    Comoé NP: single individuals recorded twice in gallery forest near Old Camp and twice in Iringou Forest; 2 adults feeding one spotted juvenile on June 6 at Main Camp

  195. Melaenornis edolioides edolioides - Northern Black Flycatcher
    Comoé NP: recorded around twice a week, particularly in savanna habitat with high emergent trees and in open forest habitat

  196. Melaenornis pallidus (ssp. unknown) - Pale Flycatcher
    Comoé NP: very common in open savanna habitat, seen almost daily

  197. Muscicapa cassini - Cassin's Flycatcher
    one family along stream near Mt. Niénoukoué in Tai NP (April 21+22)

  198. Muscicapa ussheri - Ussher's Flycatcher
    a few seen in Tai NP (April 25)

  199. Muscicapa comitata aximensis - Dusky-blue Flycatcher
    a family party seen along road in Yapo Forest (June 23)

  200. Muscicapa epulata - Little Gray Flycatcher
    seen twice in Yapo Forest (June 23+24)

  201. Myioparus plumbeus plumbeus - Gray Tit-Flycatcher
    Comoé NP: recorded about once a week, exclusively at the edge of gallery forest (e.g. at Main Camp and at Old Camp)

  202. Ficedula hypoleuca (ssp. unknown) - European Pied Flycatcher
    Comoé NP: migrants recorded from May 6 through 16 with decreasing numbers, found particularly often in open forested habitat or gallery forest edge; one late date: 1 seen near Main Camp on June 11

  203. Erythrocercus mccallii nigeriae - Chestnut-capped Flycatcher
    a few seen in Tai NP (April 29) and in Yapo Forest (June 23+24)

  204. Elminia longicauda longicauda - African Blue Flycatcher
    Comoé NP: recorded around three times a week; fond of open forest habitat, forest edge and savanna with high emergent trees surrounded by thickets

  205. Terpsiphone rufiventer nigriceps - Red-bellied Paradise-Flycatcher
    very common inhabitant of forested habitats in Comoé NP; also recorded in Yapo and Tai NP

  206. Megabyas flammulatus flammulatus - Shrike-Flycatcher
    a couple of pairs seen in Tai NP (April 22-25)

  207. Dyaphorophyia castanea hormophora - Chestnut Wattle-eye
    frequently seen in Tai NP and in Yapo

  208. Dyaphorophyia concreta concreta - Yellow-bellied Wattle-eye
    seen on a couple of occasions as a member of mixed feeding parties in Tai NP (April 27)

  209. Platysteira cyanea cyanea - Brown-throated Wattle-eye
    Comoé NP: frequent inhabitant of forested habitat and savanna thickets, seen daily

  210. Batis senegalensis - Senegal Batis
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of fairly open savanna habitat, seen almost daily

  211. Prionops plumatus - White-crested Helmet-Shrike
    Comoé NP: mostly seen in flocks of up to 7, recorded about twice to three times a week, preferrably in gallery forest and forest edge habitat

  212. Prionops caniceps - Red-billed Shrike
    small groups seen twice in Tai NP (April 26-28) and twice in Yapo Forest (June 23+24)

  213. Nilaus afer - Brubru
    Comoé NP: low density inhabitant of closed savanna and open wooded habitat, recorded around twice a week, regularly seen in Baobab Forest near Old Camp

  214. Dryoscopus gambensis - Northern Puffback
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of forest edge habitat and savanna thickets, seen on most days of the week

  215. Dryoscopus sabini - Sabine's Puffback
    1 seen in Yapo Forest (June 24)

  216. Tchagra senegala - Black-crowned Tchagra
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of opener savanna habitats, recorded almost daily

  217. Laniarius aethiopicus - Tropical Boubou
    Comoé NP: common inhabitant of forest edge habitat and savanna thickets; readily encountered once conspicuous vocalization is known

  218. Laniarius barbarus - Yellow-crowned Gonolek
    Comoé NP: confined to riparian growth along river sections where there is little gallery forest; regularly encountered at Congo Bridge, otherwise only recorded once along Comoé River in central parts of Park

  219. Malaconotus sulfureopectus - Sulphur-breasted Bush-Shrike
    Comoé NP: recorded around four times a week, patricularly in forest thickets, vegetation along savanna streams and forest edge habitat

  220. Lanius collaris - Fiscal Shrike
    Comoé NP: 1 on Gansé Plain (May 9), 1 in savanna near Main Camp (May 14)

  221. Lanius gubernator - Emin's Shrike
    Comoé NP: presumably a family recorded a few times in closed savanna along the connective track between the Main Road and the Iringou Delta (June 7 through 16); 1 at Lola Pond (June 17)

  222. Oriolus auratus - African Golden Oriole
    Comoé NP: low density inhabitant of closed savanna with high emergent trees or open wooded habitat; recorded about once a week

  223. Oriolus brachyrhynchus - Black-headed Oriole
    frequently recorded in primary forest in Tai NP and in Yapo

  224. Oriolus nigripennis - Black-winged Oriole
    Comoé NP: encountered at all gallery forest sites, though somewhat sparse; knowledge of vocalization is of great help

  225. Dicrurus adsimilis (ssp. unknown) - Glossy-backed Drongo
    Comoé NP: fairly common inhabitant of forest edge and opener habitats with high trees, recorded almost daily

  226. Dicrurus atripennis - Shining Drongo
    frequently encountered as a leader of mixed bird parties in Tai NP and in Yapo

  227. Dicrurus ludwigii - Square-tailed Drongo
    Comoé NP: encountered at all the gallery forest sites and in forest islands, though not more than three times a week; often hard to see

  228. Lamprotornis chalybaeus - Greater Blue-eared Glossy Starling
    Comoé NP: large flocks gathering every evening along Lola Creek and adjacent Plain before the first rains (peak from May 3 through 8); after that, no more records

  229. Cinnyricinclus leucogaster - Violet-backed Starling
    Comoé NP: recorded around three times a week, preferrably in savanna habitat with high emergent trees and thickets, or in open wooded habitat

  230. Buphagus africanus - Yellow-billed Oxpecker
    Comoé NP: recorded three times; exclusively seen in association with Wild Buffalo (Syncerus caffer), with one to five individuals accompanying herds of five to ten buffalo

  231. Corvus albus - Pied Crow
    common in most inhabited parts of the country covered with open habitat; in Comoé only seen around park margins and once on Gansé Plain

  232. Picathartes gymnocephalus - Bare-headed Rock-fowl
    1 seen at Mt. Niénoukoué in Tai NP (April 22)

  233. Nicator chloris - Western Nicator
    Comoé NP: uncommon inhabitant of gallery forest, only recorded about once a week; also recorded in Tai NP and in Yapo

  234. Illadopsis puveli - Puvel's Illadopsis
    Comoé NP: regularly encountered at all gallery forest sites and in most larger forest islands; very shy and unconfiding, knowledge of vocalization is prerequisite

  235. Phyllanthus atripennis - Capuchin Babbler
    Comoé NP: rare inhabitant of gallery forest, recorded twice near Main Camp, once near Old Camp and once in Iringou Forest

  236. Turdoides plebejus - Brown Babbler
    Comoé NP: 1 caught in savanna thicket near Hyperolius Pond (May 12)

  237. Turdoides reinwardtii - Black-capped Babbler
    Comoé NP: a large group twice encountered in riparian growth near Congo Bridge

  238. Pholidornis rushiae - Tit-Hylia
    seen a few times in Yapo Forest (June 23-24)

  239. Parus leucomelas - White-shouldered Black Tit
    Comoé NP: small groups or family parties encountered around every other day, preferably at the edge of savanna thickets or open wooded habitat

  240. Anthoscopus parvulus - Yellow Penduline-Tit
    Comoé NP: small groups (often associated with Yellow White-eyes, Zosterops senegalensis, and Wood Warblers, Phylloscopus sibilatrix) occasionally encountered in Baobab Forest near Old Camp and in adjacent gallery forest edge (about 5 records); also one record from closed savanna habitat along connective track between Main Road and Iringou Delta

  241. Salpornis spilonota - Spotted Creeper
    Comoé NP: about two sightings a week, preferrably in open wooded habitat (like Baobab Forest near Old Camp); also in closed savanna

  242. Zosterops senegalensis - Yellow White-eye
    Comoé NP: recorded around three times a week, often in association with other passerines; fond of open forest islands and comparable wooded habitat, gallery forest edge

  243. Emberiza cabanisi - Cabanis's Bunting
    Comoé NP: low density inhabitant, strictly confined to extensive areas of closed savanna, like along the connective track from Main Road to Iringou Delta, or the so-called "Buffalo Pond Valley" near Lola Pond; only recorded around 5 or 6 times

  244. Serinus mozambicus - Yellow-fronted Canary
    Comoé NP: seen on most days of the week in all kinds of open habitat; also recorded in Bouaké

  245. Anthreptes gabonicus - Mouse-brown Sunbird
    Comoé NP: a small party at the river's edge near the Cataracts (May 15)

  246. Anthreptes fraseri - Scarlet-tufted Sunbird
    frequent member of mixed bird parties in Tai NP and in Yapo

  247. Anthreptes longuemarei - Western Violet-backed Sunbird
    Comoé NP: seen only about four times in Baobab Forest near Old Camp

  248. Anthreptes collaris - Collared Sunbird
    Comoé NP: fairly common inhabitant of gallery forest (seen at least four times a week); also recorded in Tai NP and in Yapo

  249. Nectarinia olivacea - Olive Sunbird
    recorded a few times in Tai NP and probably also in Yapo

  250. Nectarinia verticalis - Green-headed Sunbird
    Comoé NP: 1 female caught in savanna thicket near Hyperolius Pond (May 11)

  251. Nectarinia cyanolaema - Blue-throated Brown Sunbird
    recorded once in Tai NP (April 29) and several times in Yapo Forest (June 22-24)

  252. Nectarinia adelberti - Buff-throated Sunbird
    1 in Yapo Forest (June 24)

  253. Nectarinia chloropygia - Olive-bellied Sunbird
    Comoé NP: just one or two records from the Iringou Forest (June 8); recorded in Yapo and Tai NP a few times

  254. Nectarinia cuprea - Copper Sunbird
    Comoé NP: recorded on around four to five days a week, found in all kinds of savanna habitat; also one record from secondary roadside habitat in Yapo

  255. Nectarinia coccinigaster - Splendid Sunbird
    Comoé NP: one of commonest sunbirds, found in savanna habitat as well as all sorts of wooded habitat right into closed gallery forest; seen almost daily

  256. Nectarinia pulchella - Beautiful Sunbird
    Comoé NP: one couple along Lola Creek near Main Camp (May 3)

  257. Nectarinia johannae - Johanna's Sunbird
    fairly frequently encountered in Yapo and Tai NP

  258. Nectarinia seimundi - Little Green Sunbird
    Comoé NP: almost exclusively found in monospecific flocks; recorded around once a week or less, mostly in gallery forest near Old Camp or in Iringou Forest; possible sightings of this species in Tai NP and in Yapo included associations with other flocking species, but identity of those birds could never be securely established due to identification problems resulting from poor literature

  259. Ploceus luteolus - Little Weaver
    Comoé NP: seen around 4 or 5 times, often in vicinity of the two following species; preferrably in forest edge habitat, for instance a few records from Baobab Forest near Old Camp

  260. Ploceus heuglini - Heuglin's Masked Weaver
    Comoé NP: only recorded around 5 or 6 times, often in vicinity of following species; fond of edges of forest islands and open wooded habitat, for instance a few records from Baobab Forest near Old Camp

  261. Ploceus cucullatus - Village Weaver
    Comoé NP: regularly recorded in open wooded habitat, forest edge, savanna thickets and along savanna streams; seen on most days of the week; also seen in many other parts of the country, often in villages

  262. Ploceus nigerrimus - Vieillot's Black Weaver
    one flock in open agricultural area near Yapo (June 22)

  263. Melanoploceus tricolor - Yellow-mantled Weaver
    one colony at IET park entrance of Tai NP (April 29)

  264. Ploceus nigricollis - Spectacled Weaver
    Comoé NP: recorded around 5 times, exclusively at the edge of gallery forest along savanna streams, for instance several sightings along Lola Creek near forest edge; also seen in Tai Village

  265. Malimbus scutatus - Red-vented Malimbe
    1 in Tai NP (April 21); one couple in Yapo Forest (June 24)

  266. Malimbus nitens - Gray's Malimbe
    several sightings in Tai NP and in Yapo Forest, mostly in association with mixed flocks

  267. Malimbus rubricollis - Red-headed Malimbe
    1 in Tai NP (April 23)

  268. Anaplectes rubriceps - Red-headed Weaver
    Comoé NP: only recorded around once a week; fond of open wooded habitat (like Baobab Forest near Old Camp) or gallery forest edge (as near Main Camp); often in one flock with White-crested Helmet Shrike (Prionops plumatus) and other birds of comparable size

  269. Quelea erythrops - Red-headed Quelea
    a few in agricultural field near Yapo (June 22)

  270. Euplectes macrourus - Yellow-shouldered Widowbird
    Comoé NP: very common and seen almost daily in open savanna habitat

  271. Plocepasser superciliosus - Chestnut-crowned Sparrow-Weaver
    Comoé NP: common in closed savanna habitat, sometimes entering open wooded habitat; recorded on most days of the week

  272. Passer griseus - Gray-headed Sparrow
    Comoé NP: only three records from the Lola Plain; however, common outside of park, recorded in many other parts of country

  273. Vidua macroura - Pin-tailed Whydah
    frequently seen in humid southern half of country; one record from Dabakalah near Comoé NP (May 1)

  274. Pyrenestes sanguineus - Crimson Seed-Cracker
    1 near lake along roadside in vicinity of Yapo Forest (June 22)

  275. Nigrita canicapilla - Gray-crowned Negro-Finch
    seen a few times at the edge of primary habitat in Yapo (June 22-24)

  276. Nigrita bicolor - Chestnut-breasted Negro-Finch
    seen a few times in secondary habitat and even in town near Yapo Forest (June 22-23)

  277. Spermophaga haematina - Western Bluebill
    a couple seen in thick habitat bordering the Comoé River near Main Camp (June 11+13)

  278. Pytilia melba - Green-winged Pytilia
    Comoé NP: only recorded 4 or 5 times, exclusively in closed savanna habitat

  279. Pytilia phoenicoptera - Red-winged Pytilia
    Comoé NP: one caught in savanna thicket near Hyperolius Pond (May 12); one or two more sight records from closed savanna habitat

  280. Estrilda melpoda - Orange-cheeked Waxbill
    Comoé NP: only recorded in more or less extensive marshy savanna areas or along savanna streams; not recorded more often than once a week; seen near Tai NP in rice paddies and in other parts of the country

  281. Estrilda bengala - Red-cheeked Cordon-bleu
    very common and daily encountered in open savanna habitat in Comoé NP

  282. Estrilda larvata - Black-faced Fire-Finch
    Comoé NP: irregularly encountered; apparently found in strange mix of habitat, as seen in forest islands as well as closed savanna near marshy openings (around 5 sight records)

  283. Lagonosticta rufopicta - Bar-breasted Fire-Finch
    Comoé NP: recorded once or twice a week, mostly on open ground not far from savanna stream

  284. Lagonosticta rara - Black-bellied Fire-Finch
    Comoé NP: seen around once or twice a week, often on ground in closed savanna, not seldom near thickets or streams

  285. Bronze Mannikin - Lonchura cucullata
    only seen in cultivated margins of Comoé NP; common elsewhere in the country

  286. Lonchura bicolor - Black-and-white Mannikin
    frequent in logged areas near Tai NP and Yapo

  287. Anthreptes rectirostris rectirostris - Yellow-chinned Sunbird
    1 in Yapo Forest (June 24)

Total: 288 species (considering record of C. "rufus" and C. "brachypterus", number 177). In addition:

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This page served with permission of the author by Urs Geiser;; August 14, 2000; updated November 5, 2000