Guided by a special set of rules, teams of birders set out to count as many birds as possible in a 24hr period, which is known in the birding world as ‘a big day’. From 1986 until 2014, Kenya held the world record ‘bird watch’ – with 342 species seen in 24 hours! Kenya currently holds third place globally for the number of species seen in a single day.
As of October 2022 the avifauna of Kenya included a total of 1157 confirmed species of which 11 are endemic, and 4 have been introduced by humans. The diverse topography of Kenya, with its impressive mountains, lush forests, marshlands, lakes, rolling savannahs, and breath taking beaches provide varied habitats for all kinds of wonderful and colourful birdlife. These include the largest bird in the world, the Ostrich to some of the rarest, the Taita Apalis (Critically Endangered), with only 150 individuals remaining in the wild. Others include the Sharpe’s longclaw, Sokoke Scops owl, Clarke’s Weaver, Four coloured bush Shrike.
Kenya tops other African countries in migratory bird sightings with reports in 2020 ranking Kenya as the top African haven for migratory birds and sixth globally, recording over 800 species primarily in the Rift Valley, Coastal and Eastern regions. Some of the iconic migratory birds found in Kenya include Eurasian roller, Eurasian bee-eater, Steppe eagle, Black Stork, Caspian Plover, Amur Falcon and Pied Wheatear. Prime months are from September to April when the migratory birds from Europe and northern Africa arrive.
Key birding locations include Lake Baringo, Kakamega Forest, Sokoke Arabuko Forest, Masai Mara, Samburu, Mount Kenya Forest and the Nairobi National Park. If you are an avid birder join us on the 13 May 2023 and be a part of the global Big Day, which is an annual celebration of the birds. Bring your binoculars and bird books, train your eyes to be on the lookout for our feathered friends from morning to night! Alternatively, any time of year offers wonderful opportunities to see a variety of avifauna.
Access, travel logistics, and accommodations are easily arranged by us at Bespoke Safaris. To find out more and the best time to travel, we can organise a tailor made trip, please contact Simon Ball at Bespoke Safaris in Nairobi, Kenya.