For more related posts click on our birds tag. Angola is one of the countries in Africa with the highest bird diversity – 938 native species – including a high number of endemic and threatened species. Despite its richness, Angola is still one of the least known countries for birds. This lack of knowledge is mainly a consequence of both the Portuguese Colonial war and the Angolan civil war which together lasted 41 years (1961–2002), halting scientific studies and expeditions.

 


Download the 2015 Annual Report (Relatório Anual) of the Angolan Association for Birds and Nature (Associação Angolana Para Aves e Natureza), in English and Portuguese, compiled by Michael Mills, on Bird Conservation and Research Activities in Angola (click on the cover to download PDF):

cover1This year saw significant changes in the logistics of running our projects in
Angola, with Michael Mills moving from Luanda to Cape Town, and Aimy Cáceres moving to Luanda. A single field visit to Mount Moco allowed us to maintain the project there, which included preparing new areas for planting and expanding the nursery. The Kumbira Forest Project received a funding boost due to a second round of funding from the Conservation Leadership Programme. Aimy Cáceres is busy finishing off her PhD and will lead this project next year, working with Ninda and Sendi Baptista and Michael Mills. Another landmark achievement was raising funds to print 3000 copies of the bilingual book on The Common Birds of Luanda, which are now in Luanda and ready to be distributed to schools in 2016.

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The nursery at Mount Moco Continues to work well



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Photo courtesy Adam Scott Kennedy

First records of White-collared Olivebacks in Angola by Michael Mills and Pedro Vaz Pinto, 2015 (click on the cover to download PDF):

Mills Vaz Pinto


 

Download the 2014 Annual Report (Relatório Anual) of the Angolan Association for Birds and Nature (Associação Angolana Para Aves e Natureza), in English and Portuguese, compiled by Michael Mills, on Bird Conservation and Research Activities in Angola (click on the cover to download PDF):

Annual Report Birds Angola 2014

Click on the cover to download PDF

This year saw good progress with our two main projects: at Mount Moco tree planting was accelerated and the nursery expanded, and 80 fuel efficient stoves were finally delivered to the community at Kanjonde, to reduce their reliance on fire wood.

    A highlight of the year was delivering 80 fuel efficient stoves to the community at Kanjonde.

A highlight of the year was delivering 80 fuel efficient stoves to the community at Kanjonde.

At Kumbira, seven weeks of field study were undertaken by Aimy Cáceres and colleagues, where a detailed study of Gabela Akalat range sizes and habitat use was undertaken, and tree biomass evaluated.

Aimy Cáceres radio tracking (left) a tagged Gabela Akalat (right)

Aimy Cáceres radio tracking (left) a tagged Gabela Akalat (right).

Additionally, good progress was made with the registration of the Associação Angolana para Aves e Natureza (the Angolan Association for Birds and Nature) with the registration certificate now issued. Other highlights include that the bilingual book on The Common Birds of Luanda was completed and will be launched with the launch of the NGO this year, 2015, and several peer-reviewed publications were produced.


Click here to read this recent paper (March 2014) on historical data on birds of Angola based on the Angolan ornithological collection held by the Instituto de Investigação Científica Tropical (IICT) in Lisbon, Portugal.


 

Nursery workers in the process of planting some of the 42 newly planted trees in a recently cleared area.

Nursery workers in the process of planting some of the 42 newly planted trees in a recently cleared area.

The challenge to prevent deforestation on Mount Moco, Angola’s highest mountain, continues in Huambo province. A total of 181 trees have been planted to date and there are 500 seedlings in the nursery, waiting to be planted. Click here to read Michael Mills’ latest report (February 2014).


Download the 2013 Annual Report (Relatório Anual) of the Angolan Association for Birds and Nature (Associação Angolana Para Aves e Natureza), in English and Portuguese, compiled by Michael Mills, on Bird Conservation and Research Activities in Angola:

Click on cover to download.

Summary – This year saw good progress with our two main projects: at Mount Moco tree planting was accelerated and the nursery expanded, and at Kumbira seven weeks of field study were undertaken by Aimy Cáceres. Additionally, the first official meeting of the Associação Angolana Para Aves e Natureza (the Angolan Association for Birds and Nature) was held to commence the registration of an NGO, a first annotated birder’s checklist of Angolan birds with English and Portuguese names was published, and during a field trip a new species of primate (bushbaby) was confirmed by members of the Nocturnal Primate Research Group, Oxford Brookes University, U. K. Other highlights of the year were the publication of several papers and the start of field surveys in the northern escarpment forests (part of a project funded by BirdLife South Africa).

Resumo – No decorrer deste ano os nossos dois projectos principais avançaram a bom ritmo: no Monte Moco a plantação de árvores acelerou e o viveiro foi aumentado; em Kumbira, a Aimy Cáceres levou a cabo uma expedição de sete semanas. Para além disso, teve lugar o primeiro encontro oficial da Associação Angolana Para Aves e Natureza com o objectivo de iniciar o processo de registro da Associação como ONG, foi publicada a primeira lista das aves de Angola, e uma nova espécie de primata (galago) foi confirmada por membros do Nocturnal Primate Research Group (Grupo de Investigação de Primatas Nocturnos da Oxford Brooke University, Reino Unido). Vários artigos científicos foram publicados e iniciou-se o trabalho de exploração/inventariação das florestas da escarpa norte (parte de um projecto financiando pela BirdLife South Africa).

Seven weeks of field study were undertaken by Aimy Cáceres in Kumbira Forest, pictured here with the Endemic Gabela Bush-shrike.

Seven weeks of field study were undertaken by Aimy Cáceres in Kumbira Forest, pictured here with the Endemic Gabela Bush-shrike. Photo courtesy Henriette Koning.

Ricardo Lima spent 4 weeks radio tracking endemic Gabela Akalat and Bush-shrike in Kumbira.

Ricardo Lima spent 4 weeks radio tracking endemic Gabela Akalat and Bush-shrike in Kumbira. Photo courtesy Henriette Koning.

Logging the Kumbira Forest, a biodiversity hotspot poses a threat to endemic species. Photo, A.Cáceres from http://kumbiraforest.blogspot.pt

Logging the Kumbira Forest, a biodiversity hotspot poses a threat to endemic species. Photo courtesy A.Cáceres from http://kumbiraforest.blogspot.pt


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Michael Mills and Martim Melo have launched the first birder’s checklist of Angolan birds published in Portuguese and English.
It is available for free in pdf format and can be downloaded on the Birds Angola website: www.birdsangola.org/birdlist.htm.

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Mount Moco Project Update Report: January 2013, available to read as a two page PDF here.

The tree nursery employees and one additional assistant, standing proudly beside the nursery and in the area now planted with 108 trees.

The tree nursery employees and one additional assistant, standing proudly beside the nursery and in the area now planted with 108 trees. Photo courtesy Michael Mills.

The report is written by Michael Mills. Summary: “Very satisfactory progress was made with the reforestation project during the January 2013 field trip to Mount Moco. Eighty six new trees were planted onto the mountain, bringing the total of planted trees to 108, and covering an area of about 100 x 20 m. Two new nursery areas for growing tree saplings in bags were cleared inside a nearby forest patch and more than 300 saplings were planted into bags, to join the ninety trees already in bags and not yet planted back on the mountain. I estimate that 80 of these plants will be ready for planting by the next field visit.”

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Notes on birds in the Lubango Bird Skin Collection, Angola 16-18 January 2013 by Michael Mills, member of the Angola Birders.During January 2013 I had the privilege of visiting the Lubango Bird Skin Collection in Angola for three days, to study some of the 40000 bird skins in the collection. This was the first step at studying various taxonomic questions related to Angolan birds, and clarifying various identification questions. Some notes based on this visit follow…Click here to download the report (it is a 13 MB PDF due to many photos).

 Birds in the Lubango Bird Skin Collection. Photo courtesy Michael Mills.

Birds in the Lubango Bird Skin Collection. Photo courtesy Michael Mills.

Courtesy MIchael MIlls.

Birds in the Lubango Bird Skin Collection. Photo courtesy Michael Mills.

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Red-crested Turaco © Sheryl Hughes

Red-crested Turaco, Conservation Icon and National Bird of Angola © Sheryl Hughes

An update from our friends at the Angola Birders, the 2012 Annual Report: Bird Conservation and Research Activities, compiled by Michael Mills:

This year was a year of consolidation. Three important tasks were initiated and two of these were completed. Firstly a project vehicle was purchased and registered in Luanda and secondly Michael obtained a work permit for Angola. Both activities required a month in Luanda, without the option of traveling, which limited field time this year but should greatly enhance efficiency in the future. The third action was to initiate the registration of an Angola bird conservation society, a process which is still ongoing. Other highlights of the year were the publication of several papers, constructing a new nursery facility at Mount Moco and Aimy Cáceres commencing field work for her PhD at Kumbira.

To download the 10 page report (PDF) click here.
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KUMBIRA FIELD TRIP REPORT October 11-November 7, 2012 by Aimy Cáceres Pinedo. Download here (12 page PDF). Information about the Kumbira Forest Project including a list of bird species endemic to Angola and present in the Scarp Forest is available via her blog: kumbiraforest.blogspot.pt

Kumbira Forest.

Kumbira Forest.

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A FEW BIRDING FIELD NOTES:

The egg collection of the weavers in the Lubango Museum has been digitised and added to PHOWN (photos of Weaver Nests, http://weavers.adu.org.za/phown.php). Read more about this data at http://weavers.adu.org.za/newstable.php?id=240 or go directly to a listing of the records at http://weavers.adu.org.za/phown_query.php?ask=Angola. PHOWN is a Virtual Museum, citizen science project of the Animal Demography Unit at the University of Cape Town, to collect and monitor breeding distributions and colony sizes of weaver birds globally.

Thank you to avid birder Michelle de Cordova for sharing this list of birds she spotted in her garden in the Alvalade area of Luanda.

View some incredible photos taken by Kostadin Luchansky during our January 6 birding trip here.

For your reference, a list of 170 birds found in Angola -including scientific names AND references to the birds spotted on May 8th- can be downloaded in a Word document here, courtesy of our resident birder Ronnie Gallagher

Below are photos from our May 8, 2008 trip to Quicama National Park and the wetlands of Saco dos Flamingos, taken by Ronnie Gallagher:

Namaqua Doves

Namaqua Doves

Black Bellied Bustard

Black Bellied Bustard

African Fish Eagle

African Fish Eagle

Red Billed Helmet Weaver

Red Billed Helmet Weaver (centre) and Yellow Billed Hornbill (right)


January 2008 birding field trip:


© Kostadin Luchansky

Hornbill © Kostadin Luchansky

Butterfly © Kostadin Luchansky

Butterfly © Kostadin Luchansky

Flamingos © Kostadin Luchansky

Flamingos © Kostadin Luchansky

Field Group birders scan the tree tops

Field Group birders © Kostadin Luchansky

To view more of Kostadin’s photos taken during Angola Field Group birding excursions visit:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kodilu/sets/72157601751201946/