Birding in the Grumeti Wildlife Reserve, Tanzania

A beautiful little bee-eater...

The Grumeti Wildlife Reserve in Northern Tanzania is one of the buffer zones associated with the Serengeti National Park. In a nutshell the Serengeti/Mara Ecosystem comprises the range of the great wildebeest migration. This exceeds the range of the Serengeti National Park itself, and in fact overspills into ostensibly populated areas. By way of a compromise to growing population pressure Game Management Areas are appended to the park that allow for both nominal human agricultural and commercial activity and for reasonably unfettered movement of wildlife. 

Grumeti Game Reserve, or Wildlife Reserve as it is also known, is one of these. The principal feature of the area is the Grumeti River itself. Associated with this is a belt of riparian forest that offers sanctuary to an amazing diversity of smaller wildlife, and an even greater variety of birdlife. Away from the river the landscape is dominated by acacia/commiphora savannah woodland which also supports a large diversity of wildlife, mainly plains species, and of course the associated birdlife. 

This year I have concentrated on trying to get a sense of what is actually here from an ornithological point of view. I am not an ornithologist, I hasten to add, but a keen birder and a sometime birding and general field guide. I am also not inclined to dig too deeply into the nameless and faceless world of the LBJ, so the list I have below includes only a few of these. 

Nonetheless I have enjoyed a few months of spectacular birding. Perhaps the most notable sighting I have had has been of an Imperial Eagle. Now I cannot swear with absolute certainty that it was an Imperial Eagle, and I did not have my camera on hand, but I am 90 percent sure… 

I also saw a Narina Trogon for only the second time in my life, and countless other little sparkling gems that have made this trip very memorable. 

For information about birding in Tanzania, and in the Grumeti Wildlife Reserve in Particualr, and in fact anywhere in Africa, drop me a line and I would be happy to do what I can…

Grumeti Bird List