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Lovin' Liberia - A Week in Sapo National Park, January 2024


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Pictus Safaris

I'm very fortunate to have just returned from a week in one of Africa's least visited destinations - Liberia. Only having started issuing tourist visas a few years ago, it's no surprise that this West African country is hardly a fixture on the safari circuit. As such, I thought a very brief few posts on the visit may be a helpful resource for those on the forum (or at least of passing interest!). I'll start with a bit of background on Liberia and Sapo National Park, before moving on to discuss the logistics of a visit to the country and park and, finally, what wildlife we saw. More to follow soon...

 

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Should be interesting! I confess I had to check the map to see the location of Liberia.

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Pictus Safaris
20 hours ago, TonyQ said:

Should be interesting! I confess I had to check the map to see the location of Liberia.

 

Thanks Tony - I suspect you won't be alone in that regard!

 

A Background to Liberia and Sapo:

 

So, where on earth is Liberia?

 

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Nestled on West Africa's Atlantic coast, Liberia sits between Sierra Leone, Guinea and Cote d'Ivoire. It's not a particularly large country - about the size of the state of Virginia - and is dominated by rainforest. The capital, Monrovia, is home to about 1.8 million people (roughly a third of the total population of Liberia of 5.5 million). As you might expect, Monrovia is on the coast and is really the only settlement with any substantial infrastructure, including the country's only international airport, paved roads and westernised accommodation. Other, much smaller cities, include Gbarnga and Buchanan.

 

Liberia is often mentioned in the same breath as an example of a country never to have been colonised. I suppose whether this is true or not depends on one's definition of 'colonisation', but is hard to argue that Liberia was not in fact colonised, albeit in an unusual way. Like many territories in the region between the 15th and 17th centuries, what is now Liberia was plundered repeatedly by British, Portuguese and Dutch 'explorers', earning the name of the 'Pepper Coast' or 'Grain Coast'. Where things get unusual is that Liberia was selected as a geography to which the "American Colonization (sic) Society" would send freed American slaves. The reasons for this seems to be fairly complex but, essentially, there was a fear that freed slaves in the US would pose a risk of rebellion against slave-owners - sending slaves 'back' to Africa was a way to prevent such rebellions from happening. This wasn't unique to Liberia and, in fact, there were several areas in Africa and Latin America to which American slaves were sent from 1822 onwards.

 

The arrival of 'Americo-Liberians' was bad news for the indigenous peoples of Liberia. Violent clashes were commonplace, devastating outbreaks of disease affected both the colonisers and the indigenous chiefdoms, and many indigenous people were enslaved. By 1847, Liberia was declared independent, although only recognised by a few other nations. Strong ties with the US were in evidence, with the striped flag reminiscent of the US being adopted, and a consitution drafted along the same principles as the US constitution. Monrovia, interestingly, is one of only two world capitals to be named after a US president.

 

For a long time, including during the World Wars, Liberia punched above its weight economically and diplomatically. This was largely down to assistance from the US. Liberia was a founding member of the UN, and one of the only African states to be signatories to many international treaties. The economy grew strongly until, as has so often been the case in West Africa, political instability took hold.

 

I consider myself fairly lucky that my relative youth (which seems to be evaporating alarmingly quickly) perhaps frees me from some pre-conceptions when it comes to territories like Liberia. I'm sure for many forum members, Liberia conjures up images of the deeply turbulent period the country faced between 1980 and 2003. Most famously, Liberia seems to be known for child soldiers and blood diamonds during this time. A military coup in 1980 led to brutal repression of opposition figures, including mass executions. Charles Taylor, now infamous as a war criminal, was supported by neighbouring Cote d'Ivoire in launching a further coup d'etat in 1989. Over the course of the next seven years, up to 100,000 Liberians died and over 700,000 were displaced - across the country, people took to the forests to protect themselves from the warring factions, with ECOWAS intervention largely fruitless. Charles Taylor was elected as President in 1997 after a tenuous peace deal was signed in 1995, but this remained a dark period in the country's history. Violence remained prevalent, with blood diamonds and pillaging of timber and wildlife from the country's forests supporting both Taylor's government, but also funding the ongoing civil war in neighbouring Sierra Leone. 

 

In 1999, the Second Liberian Civil War reared its ugly head as a rebel group based in Guinea launched a prolonged assault on Taylor's government. This lasted until 2003, when peace talks (pushed for by the famously women-led Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace movement) bore fruit. Taylor resigned and went into exile (he would later be put on trial in The Hague for war crimes) and the 2005 elections brough Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to power. She was the first female head of state elected in Africa and would go on to win the Nobel Prize for Peace, although she is certainly not without several skeletons in her closet. Subsequent presidents have included George Weah, famed as a world-class footballer, and Josep Boakai was elected last year and was formally sworn in in January. These peaceful transfers of power are certainly encouraging and the future for Liberia looks brighter than it has for some time.

 

Sapo National Park is located in east-central Liberia, a drive of about 200 miles from Monrovia. 

 

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The park's history is, like Liberia's, an interesting and turbulent one. Formally gazetted in 1983, the park for a long time was the only national park in all of Liberia - in fact, if you tell most Liberians nowadays you are going to Sapo you will get a blank stare, but mention 'the national park' and they will know exactly where you are talking about. Excellent work by the WCF (more about that later) has now allowed the Grebo-Krahn National Park to be set up, and there are plans to gazette the Krahn-Bassa National Park, although these have been thrown into ucnertainty by Boakai's election.

 

The park was initially well protected, with multiple international NGOs including WWF developing park infrastructure. However, the civil wars were disastrous for Sapo. All park infrastructure was destroyed, park employees were killed, and logging and poaching were commonplace. Almost all surrounding communities took refuge in the park, relying on bushmeat to support thousands of people. Gold panning polluted the waterways and Sapo, despite being the second-largest area of protected primary rainforest in West Africa after Tai in Cote d'Ivoire, saw much of its natural wealth extirpated.

 

Following the end of the Second Civil War, the park was expanded in area significantly, and efforts were undertaken to remove people from within the park boundaries - this took until 2005. In recent years, FFI (now known as FF) have taken an active role in managing the park in partnership with the Liberian government. Now, though, this role seems to have been taken on by the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation, who have set up accommodation just outside the park. More to follow on the logistics of arranging a visit to this special part of the world.

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This is so interesting. Thank you @Pictus Safaris

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Pictus Safaris

Glad this is of interest, @wilddog!

 

Logistics:

 

Getting to Liberia is, in itself, more difficult than it is to get to many other destinations on the continent. There is only one flight from Europe to the capital, Monrovia, which is with Brussels Airlines from, unsurprisingly, Brussels. Currently this flight stops over in Freetown in neighbouring Sierra Leone, which turns what should be a six-and-a-half hour flight into one of over eight hours - the return, at least, is direct to Brussels. The only other realistic option for travellers from Europe/North America would be to transit through Casablanca with Royal Air Maroc. If you can make this work, I'd recommend it over Brussels, who seem to be the carrier of choice for Chinese mining companies, and that brings with it some fairly unpleasant behaviour on their flights. Still, Brussels Airlines have made improvements in recent years, and are of course much more reliable than carriers such as Ethiopian. Other options into Monrovia include ASKY, Air Cote d'Ivoire, Air Peace and Kenya Airways - the airport is no longer served by British Airways, Delta or Air France.

 

The airport itself is small and fairly easy to navigate. Yellow fever certificates are checked. Visas, at least in the UK, are easy enough to acquire - the Liberian embassy was efficient even over the Christmas period, and required little more than an application form and a letter of invitation. For those who live in countries without permanent Liberian consular representation, there is a visa on arrival letter that must be filled out before you travel by whomever is inviting you.

 

Monrovia is a long old way from the airport. Expect a drive of at least 90 minutes, and more in traffic. The road is paved, although undergoing reconstruction in long sections, and the driving standards are appalling. For some reason, all drivers have their headlights permanently on full-beam, blinding everyone coming in the other direction - any drive in Liberia is hair-raising.

 

Accommodation in Monrovia:

 

In Monrovia, I stayed at the excellent Libassa Ecolodge, who have partnered with the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation to design and build the Sapo Ecolodge. Libassa itself is a very popular beachside hotel to the east of the capital. The owner is French, so the food is (unsurprisingly) very good, rooms are comfortable and the hotel has a well-kept swimming pool. The nearby beach is lovely, and the hotel focusses on its eco-friendly credentials unrelentingly - it even owns its own wildlife sanctuary nearby. Libassa has now opened Kokon Ecolodge, which we will use in future, which is a slightly more remote, out-of-the-way ecolodge that should offer some real solitude away from Monrovia. 

 

Getting to Sapo:

 

It is unusual to be trying to get to Sapo - ecotourism is nascent here. The drive is an extremely tough one, lasting anywhere from six hours on a motorbike in the dry season to upwards of 15 hours in a 4x4 in the wet season. The estimate we were given was ten hours.

 

The route from Libassa takes you first north-east back towards the airport (around an hour), and then south-east towards the city of Buchanan, where the tar stops. Google tells you this should be a drive of 6.5 hours, but as always in Africa this is best ignored. By good fortune, perhaps, the dirt road from Buchanan to the River Cess Crossing was freshly graded by Chinese vehicles - presumably for logging or mining access. It was a shame to see tracks already being ploughed into the rainforest either side of the road, but it meant that the drive from Buchanan to the crossing took only two hours, and I often looked across to our speedometer to see us at over 90km/h. 

 

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The road after the River Cess crossing was 'au natural' - heavily rutted, with plenty of deep water and mud to navigate - and it is easy to forget that this is classed as a 'highway' and serves as the main route linking Monrovia with the city of Greenville. A 4x4 is absolutely necessary, as well as an experienced driver. In the wet season, it is fair to say that the route is likely to become impassable as trucks get stuck and block the road - I wouldn't attempt the drive any earlier in the season than January. MAF, which many forum members will be familiar with, do operate in Liberia and a real boon for Sapo would be taking advantage of these flights to bring clients to Greenville, from where it is just two hours's drive to Sapo. MAF are pretty picky about who they fly nowadays, though, which is fair enough, so I doubt there is much of a future partnership there. The best solution might be a boat connection from Monrovia to Greenville, but this requires significant further exploration.

 

Once you finally emerge at the intersection with the road to Greenville, it is then just an hour to Jalay Town (for reasons unknown, referred to as 'Jatia Town' on Google) - this final stretch is a good dirt road. In all, the drive took us eight hours, with an hour wasted in Buchanan looking for fuel.

 

Jalay is the location of the Sapo National Park Headquarters, accessed down a jungle track, and signposted fairly well. On arrival, the park management take park fees from you and assign you a guide - as happens so often in West Africa, our expression of interest in particular species (zebra duiker primarily) meant we were charged top dollar as 'researchers'. You are then 'blessed' in a meeting with local villagers, for which a donation is expected, before you embark on the 45-minute walk to the edge of the national park and Sapo Ecolodge.

 

Accommodation in Sapo:

 

Sapo Ecolodge was built in 2019, and is the only permanent accommodation serving the park. It is situated just outside the park boundaries, overlooking the Sinoe River, and consists of three wooden cabins. It is sometimes marketed as 'luxury' - this is a bit of a stretch, but it is certainly some of the best forest accommodation in West Africa, on a par with Ecotel Touraco in Tai and Ankasa Forest Lodge in Ghana. Each cabin has a double bed with a mosquito net, a flush toilet, electricity, a cold shower and plenty of space. There is a communal area where meals are served - at the moment, only local fare is served, and the portion sizes are truly humungous. We only ate breakfast and dinner as a result. Expect plenty of plantains, canned fish, rice and egg - by and large, this was all passable, although canned sardines for breakfast was a low point. For those wishing to camp, covered camping platforms are also available, with shared toilet and shower facilities.

 

All in all, the Ecolodge is a huge step forwards for Sapo. It does not offer anything like a luxury East African experience, and indeed is a far cry from, for example, the Odzala camps run by Kamba (formally CCC). But, by the standards of the region, the work done by the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation with the local community is admirable and extremely impressive.

 

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Weather:

 

January is the dry season, but this is the rainforest. It rained torrentially just twice during our week's stay. It was hotter than usual, with highs in the mid-30s, and it never got below 28 degrees or so. The early morning was the only time at which the temperate could be considered comfortable. Most mornings began with a thick mist, which generally lifted over the course of the day, but it usually remained cloudy - the white sky and dark forest made decent photography almost impossible. If a day passes without sun, as happened several times during our stay, the solar-powered pumps do not work and your room will be without water.

 

Money:

 

The official currency in Liberia is the Liberian Dollar (LRD) - $1 equates to about 200 LRD. We never had to use any currency other than USD, including for gratuities. 

 

Language:

 

English is the official language in Liberia, but the local dialect is extremely difficult to understand - I only catch about a third of what is said on a good day. Luckily, the local team do make a special effort to slow themselves down when speaking to visitors, and communication was never a major issue.

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Kitsafari

super! another fascinating adventure by @Pictus Safaris into a most remote and interesting country/park. Absolutely looking forward to riding along with you. 

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These types of reports are fascinating! Thanks for sharing 

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Pictus Safaris

Thanks @Kitsafariand @lmSA84, great to be able to share this forest with you.

 

As I say, I won't go into a day-by-day of my time in Sapo - the routine was very similar each day. Instead, I'll focus on what was seen (and what could be reasonably expected to be seen) and divide this into four segments: Forest mammals, community mammals, river birding and forest birding.

 

Forest Mammals:

 

So, the chances are if you've made it to Sapo that you'll be keen to make it into the national park, rather than look across the river into it from the ecolodge. If so, you're in luck. The guide assigned to you will paddle you across to the park each morning, and you're free to explore the trails with them throughout the day - we even easily secured permission to walk the forest at night (although we opted not to). There is no permanent research presence in the park, so the trails are not as clear as, say, Tai - in short, walking conditions are challenging, with plenty of rivers to cross, logs to vault and swamps to navigate. This shouldn't dissuade most potential visitors, and you'd be fine provided you have a high level of physical fitness, but you should be prepared to spend most of your time looking at your feet rather than scanning for mammals.

 

This, combined with the fact that mammal densities are lower than in areas like Tai due to prolonged conflict and habitation of the park, means that the wildlife-watching requires dedication and effort. Our key targets were rare forest duikers, most notably zebra and Jentink's, that we have seen in Tai but suspect occur in higher densities in Sapo.  The tactics for 'locating' these duikers are twofold; firstly, and most productively, locating feeding monkeys was a great bet, as the fruit dropped to the forest floor is consumed readily by duikers. Secondly, finding dry, hilly areas with significant amounts of duiker sign and waiting near confluences of game trails was also sometimes worthwhile. The first tactic was richly rewarded on our first day, with extremely brief views of the wonderful zebra duiker, and longer but obscured views of a fleeing bay duiker enjoyed. These would be our only sightings of these species during the tour, despite our guide seeing a further pair of zebra duiker. The second tactic offered excellent views of a confiding Brooke's duiker, by far the best encounter of the tour. We disturbed plenty of other duikers during the tour, but never got a visual. Maxwell's duiker are expected to be by far the most numerous species in the forest, but none were seen (not helped by opting not to walk the forest at night) - black duiker, yellow-backed duiker and Jentink's duiker are present but were also not encountered.

 

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Brooke's Duiker, Cephalophus brookei

 

Primates are another big draw to this part of the world, and the diversity is high, although most species were extremely skittish. This appears to be a particular stronghold for sooty mangabey and Campbell's monkey which were seen well, albeit fleeing at pace. Western red colobus were the most commonly encountered primate in the park, followed by spot-nosed monkey which were usually in the company of diana monkeys. There is a healthy population of chimpanzee in the park but we saw no sign of them, and olive colobus and king colobus were both missed.

 

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Western Red Colobus, Piliocolobus badius

 

When sat quietly in the forest, we were also fortunate to encounter common cusimanse, a delightful little carnivore - I had hoped that Liberian mongoose may make an appearance, but no luck. Squirrels, in particular forest giant squirrel, were extremely common, with one red-legged sun squirrel seen.

 

Community Mammals:

 

Much of one's downtime at the lodge is spent staring out at the Sinoe River bordering the park. The birding was good, but a particular highlight was an African clawless otter torpedoing itself onto the far bank of the river - the freshwater crab shells littering the rocks mid-river indicated this chap was a frequent visitor. 

 

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African Clawless Otter, Aonyx capensis

 

The forest between Jalay Town and the ecolodge is referred to as 'community side', as it is not part of the national park. We selected these, much more open, trails for night walks every other night or so, and these were surprisingly productive. A highlight was an excellent look at two water chevrotain, truly a beautiful little creature. We also recorded good views of West African potto and African brush-tailed porcupine. The calls of western tree hyrax and galagos were commonplace each night, but we really struggled for sightings - a single Demidoff's dwarf galago was seen on the last night. A stunning specimen of an Emin's pouched rat was encountered one evening. 

 

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West African Potto, Peredicticus potto

 

By day, this trail was occasionally used for birding, which revealed the presence of black-bellied pangolin and fire-footed rope squirrel.

 

River Birding:

 

The river birding in Sapo was good, but not nearly as prolific as in Tai. Permanently in residence in front of the lodge were rock pratincoles and Cassin's flycatchers. Frequently seen were palm-nut vultures overhead, as well as yellow-casqued hornbills, yellow-billed turacos, great blue turacos, white-browed forest flycatchers, common sandpiper, brown sunbirds, western bronze-naped pigeon and white-bibbed swallows. Boat trips upstream are available, and highly recommended, as the river becomes narrower and the birding improves. African pygmy kingfisher, spot-breasted ibis, hadada ibis, Cassin's spinetail and more were all reliably seen. Back at the lodge, giant kingfisher and shining-blue kingfisher made regular appearances, and perhaps the best of the bunch was a pair of African finfoot, common here as they are in almost every river system in West Africa.

 

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White-Bibbed Swallow, Hirundo nigrita

 

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Hadada Ibis, Bostrychia hagedash

 

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Rock pratincole, Glareola nuchalis

 

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Western Bronze-Naped Pigeon, Columba iriditorques

 

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African Finfoot, Podica senegalensis

 

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Palm-Nut Vulture, Gypohierax angolensis

 

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Shining-Blue Kingfisher, Alcedo quadribrachys

 

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White-Browed Forest Flycatcher, Fraseria cinerascens

 

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Giant Kingfisher, Megaceryle maxima

 

Forest Birding:

 

The forest birding in Sapo was, at times, spectacular - and far superior to much of Gola and Tai. The highlight was undoubtedly immediate views of a mixed flock containing Gola malimbe, shining drongo and a western wattled cuckooshrike on the trail to Vera's Camp, a campsite/old research station within the park boundaries. There were several more open areas of forest on this trail, and one could easily spend hours at any one of these as mixed flocks make their way through. Blue-billed malimbe, red-headed malimbe, green hylia, Fraser's sunbird, yellow-whiskered greenbul, whistling long-tailed cuckoo, red-fronted antpecker, capuchin babbler, grey longbill, white-tailed alethe, western nicator, brown illadopsis, red-tailed bristlebill, spotted greenbul, chestnut-capped flycatcher, lesser honeyguide and Timneh parrot were all seen whilst sat quietly in these areas. Photography was immensely difficult, but I'm certain that more skilled and patient birding photographers would leave with some excellent shots.

 

The trails around the lodge produced blue-breasted kingfisher, blue-headed wood-dove, white-crested hornbill, black-casqued hornbill and dwarf black hornbill

 

Whilst the drives between the park and Monrovia did not allow for much birding, we still recorded piping hornbill, West African pied hornbill, chestnut-and-black weaver, white-throated bee-eater, blue-spotted wood-dove, northern grey-headed sparrow, little egret and western cattle egret. Libassa ecolodge produced whiskered tern, African green pigeon, common ringed plover and common bulbul.

 

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Yellow-Casqued Hornbill, Ceratogymna elata

Edited by Pictus Safaris
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  • 2 weeks later...

Summary:

 

Overall, then, a visit to Sapo NP is, for now, recommended primarily for the most intrepid and enthusiastic birders, or perhaps those mammal-watchers desperately seeking a glimpse of zebra duiker. Photographers will either need an extended period in the forest, or a big slice of luck, to leave with the quality of photo one might be used to in more open forests. For those seeking the most 'bang for your buck' in the West African forests, Tai NP is for now absolutely your best bet for quantity of species and quality of sightings. But the unfettered access we currently have to Tai will not be possible forever, and Sapo is certainly emerging as a real contender over the next few years for those seeking a high-quality wilderness experience in the region.

 

As always, more than happy to answer any questions here (or by pm) about Sapo, and I'll use this thread to provide any pertinent updates about Sapo that may be useful for those planning travel to the park.

 

Mammal List - 25 species:

 

Species

Scientific Name

Location(s)*

Carnivora – 4 species

African Clawless Otter

Aonyx capensis

SNP

Common Cusimanse

Crossarchus obscurus

SNP

Egyptian Mongoose

Herpestes ichneumon

ER

Common Slender Mongoose

Herpestes sanguineus

ER

Cetartiodactyla – 4 species

Brooke’s Duiker

Cephalophus brookei

SNP

Bay Duiker

Cephalophus dorsalis

SNP

Zebra Duiker

Cephalophus zebra

SNP

Water Chevrotain

Hyemoschus aquaticus

SEL

Chiroptera – 4 species

Buettikofer’s Epauletted Fruit Bat

Epomops buettikoferi

SEL

Little Collared Fruit Bat

Myonycteris torquata

SEL 

Veldkamp’s Dwarf Epauletted Fruit Bat

Nanonycteris veldkampii

SEL

Banana Pipistrelle Bat

Neoromicia nanus

SEL

Pholidota – 1 species

Black-Bellied Pangolin

Phataginus tetradactyla

Withheld

Primates – 7 species

Sooty Mangabey

Cercocebus atys

SNP

Campbell’s Monkey

Cercopithecus campbelli

SEL, SNP

Diana Monkey

Cercopithecus diana

SNP

Spot-Nosed Monkey

Cercopithecus petaurista

SEL, SNP

Demidoff’s Dwarf Galago

Galagoides demidoff

SEL

West African Potto

Perodicticus potto

SEL

Western Red Colobus

Piliocolobus badius

SNP

Rodentia – 5 species

African Brush-Tailed Porcupine

Atherurus africanus

SEL

Emin’s Pouched Rat

Cricetomys emini

SEL

Fire-Footed Rope Squirrel

Funisciurus pyrropus

SEL

Red-Legged Sun Squirrel

Heliosciurus rufobrachium

SNP

Forest Giant Squirrel

Protoxerus stangeri

SNP

*LEL – Libassa Ecolodge, ER – En route to Sapo NP, SEL.- Sapo Ecolodge, SNP – Sapo National Park

 

Bird List - 75 species:

 

Species

Scientific Name

Location(s)*

Accipitriformes – 6 species

Red-Chested Goshawk

Accipiter toussenelli

SNP

Cassin’s Hawk-Eagle

Aquila africana

SEL, SNP

Palm-Nut Vulture

Gypohierax angolensis

ER, SEL

Yellow-Billed Kite

Milvus aegyptius

LEL, ER, SEL

African Harrier-Hawk

Polyboroides typus

ER, SEL

Long-Tailed Hawk

Urotriorchis macrourus

SEL

Apodiformes – 3 species

Little Swift

Apus affinis

SEL

Common Swift

Apus apus

SEL

Cassin’s Spinetail

Neafrapus cassini

SEL

Bucerotiformes – 7 species 

Brown-Cheeked Hornbill

Bycanistes cylindricus

SEL

Piping Hornbill

Bycanistes fistulator

ER

Black-Casqued Hornbill

Ceratogymna atrata

SEL

Yellow-Casqued Hornbill

Ceratogymna elata

ER, SEL, SNP

White-Crested Hornbill

Horizocerus albocristatus

SEL, SNP

Black Dwarf Hornbill

Horizoercus hartlaubi

SEL

West African Pied Hornbill

 

ER

Caprimulgiformes – 1 species 

Plain Nightjar

Caprimulgus inornatus

LEL

Charadriiformes – 4 species

Common Sandpiper

Actitis hypoleucos

SEL

Common Ringed Plover

Charadrius hiaticula

LEL

Whiskered Tern

Chlidonias leucopterus

LEL

Rock Pratincole

Glareola nuchalis

SEL

Columbiformes – 5 species

Western Bronze-Naped Pigeon

Columba iriditorques

SEL

African Green Pigeon

Treron calvus

LEL

Blue-Spotted Wood-Dove

Turtur afer

ER

Blue-Headed Wood-Dove

Turtur brehmeri

SEL

Tambourine Dove

Turtur tympanistria

SEL

Coraciiformes – 6 species

Shining-Blue Kingfisher

Alcedo quadribrachys

SEL

Blue-Breasted Kingfisher

Halcyon malimbica

SEL

Woodland Kingfisher

Halcyon senegalensis

ER

African Pygmy Kingfisher

Ispidina picta

SEL

Giant Kingfisher

Megaceryle maxima

SEL

White-Throated Bee-Eater

Merops albicollis

ER

Cuculiformes – 1 species

Whistling Long-Tailed Cuckoo

Cercococcyx lemaireae

SNP

Gruiformes – 1 species

African Finfoot

Podica senegalensis

SEL

Musophagiformes – 2 species

Great Blue Turaco

Corythaeola cristata

SEL, SNP

Yellow-Billed Turaco

Tauraco macrorhynchus

SEL, SNP

Passeriformes –  32 species

White-Tailed Alethe

Alethe diademata

SNP

Mangrove Sunbird

Anthreptes gabonicus

SEL

Little Green Sunbird

Anthreptes seimundi

SEL, SNP

Black-Headed Rufous Warbler

Bathmocercus cerviniventris

SEL

Red-Tailed Bristlebill

Bleda syndactylus

SNP

Green-Backed Camaroptera

Camaroptera brachyura

SEL, SNP

Yellow-Browed Camaroptera

Camaroptera superciliaris

SNP

Pied Crow

Corvus albus

LEL, ER

Blue-Throated Brown Sunbird

Cynaomitra cyanolaema

SNP

Fraser’s Sunbird

Deleornis fraseri

SEL

Shining Drongo

Dicrurus atripennis

SNP

Velvet-Mantled Drongo

Dicrurus modestus

SNP

Rufous-Crowned Eremomela

Eremomela badiceps

SEL

Yellow-Whiskered Greenbul

Eurillas latirostris

SNP

White-Browed Forest Flycatcher

Fraseria cinerascens

SEL

Green Hylia

Hylia prasina

SEL, SNP

Brown Illadopsis

Illadopsis fulvescens

SNP

Spotted Greenbul

Ixonotus guttatus

SNP

Western Wattled Cuckooshrike

Lobotos lobatus

SNP

Grey Longbill

Macrosphenus concolor

SNP

Gola Malimbe

Malimbus ballmanni

SNP

Blue-Billed Malimbe

Malimbus nitens

SNP

Red-Headed Malimbe

Malimbus rubricollis

SNP

Western Yellow Wagtail

Motacilla flava

SEL

Cassin’s Flycatcher

Muscicapa cassini

SEL, SNP

Western Nicator

Nicator chloris

SNP

White-Breasted Nigrita

Nigrita fusconotus

SNP

Red-Fronted Antpecker

Parmoptila rubrifrons

SNP

Northern Grey-Headed Sparrow

Passer griseus

ER

Chestnut-and-Black Weaver

Ploceus castaneofuscus

ER

Common Bulbul

Pycnonotus barbatus

LEL

Capuchin Babbler

Turdoides atripennis

SNP

Pelecaniiformes – 5 species

Intermediate Egret

Ardea brachyrhyncha

ER

Hadada Ibis

Bostrychia hagedash

SEL

Spot-Breasted Ibis

Bostrychia rara

SEL

Western Cattle Egret

Bubulcus ibis

ER

Little Egret

Egretta garzetta

ER

Piciformes – 1 species

Lesser Honeyguide

Indicator minor

SNP

Psittaciiformes – 1 species

Timneh Parrot

Psittacus timneh

SNP

*LEL – Libassa Ecolodge, ER – En route to Sapo NP, SEL.- Sapo Ecolodge, SNP – Sapo National Park

 

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