Birding Tours in Botswana

Birders are almost certain to spot Fish Eagles, kingfishers, herons, and storks, which are prolific in the area. Those who are lucky may also catch a glimpse of rarer birds such as Pel’s Fishing Owl, the White-backed Heron, and the African Skimmer.

With over 580 recorded species in some the continent’s most beautiful destinations with its diversity of habitats from the dry plains of the Central Kalahari to its ever rich wetlands in the North, Botswana is a must “tick” on any birders list. The wetlands are home to many varieties of stalks, waders and is in particular well known for its rare and endangered Wattled Crane populations.

The best way to tour the country searching for its birds is on a tour with a specialist guide as this will give you best access to many different area’s allowing you to enjoy multi habitats with local knowledge of the area’s. There are also many lodges, specifically those located in the Okavango Delta that provide great accommodation for those looking for a one stop birding destination. Lodge’s provide boats and makoros’s (traditional boats) for birders to utilise on daily activities

Okavango Delta

The Okavango Delta and Greater Chobe River area of Northern Botswana offers some of the best birding in Southern Africa. Although Botswana has no endemic bird species the country is home to one of the most prisitine and finest wetlands in Africa. Birdlife is abundant with an estimated 580 different species.

A wetland located in a fairly arid region of the Kalahari, it is birder and nature lover’s paradise. The delta forms a pristine environment and home to many species of birds and animals, some highly sought after birds include Carmine Bee-eaters, Pels Fishing Owls, African Skimmers, Slaty Egrets and the endangered Wattled Crane.

Chobe National Park

Known for some of largest number of birds species, you can easily average between 100 – 200 different species of bird per day. The total birds counted in this area exceeds 450 species. Whilst birding through the mixed woodland, riverine and flood plain habitats you can expect to add Schalow’s Turaco, Pygmy Goose, White Crowned Plover, African Finfoot and Purple Gallinule to your lists.

Makgadigadi Pans

These Salt pans which are known to be some of the largest in the world are located in the dry Savannah region of North-Eastern Botswana. During the wet season a variety of migratory aquatic birds flock here to feed. The pans are a special habitat for Greater Flamingos and are one of there only breeding grounds in Southern Africa.

Central Kalahari

The second largest park in the world with an area of 52 800km², not technically a true desert but semi-arid sandy savannah. Birding is best enjoyed in the greener wet months of the year. Up to 350 different species have been recorded which include the world’s largest bird the Ostrich and the world’s heaviest flying bird the Kori Bustard. Known as one of Africa’s harshest landscapes, all animals have had to adapt to survive in such a terrain.

The most prolific birding time in Botswana is between November and March. This is due to the influx of all the migratory birds that have arrived to feast on the insects that are evacuating the annual wetland floodings.
Botswana has 3 typical Seasons:

• May – Aug (Dry & Cool)
• Sept – Oct (Very Hot & Dry) – Best Game Viewing Season
• Nov – April (Wet & Green) – Best Birding Season

Birding Tours