Birds of Addis Ababa

2009 June 13
by David J. Ringer

ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA –Well, I’ve been all over the world since I last managed to post, and I’m currently finishing up a week in Ethiopia. I had a day in the UK on my way here, and Charlie Moores of 10,000 Birds graciously took me out for a great afternoon of birding. Thanks again, Charlie! I will get a post up eventually….

Anyway, I’ve had no real birding opportunities here in Addis, but thankfully, several of the common city birds are endemic to the Abyssinian Highlands, birds like Ethiopian Cisticola, White-collared Pigeon, and Wattled Ibis. Other species are common across much of Africa, but still spectacular, like the African Paradise Flycatcher and the Red-cheeked Cordon-bleu.

I managed to get a few pictures out the office window this week:


Abyssinian Thrush, Turdus abyssinicus


African Citril, Crithagra citrinelloides


Baglafecht Weaver, Ploceus baglafecht. Both males and females of this race have green backs and crowns.


Black (or Yellow-billed) Kites are abundant.


Common Fiscal, Lanius collaris, a common African shrike.


Dusky Turtle Dove, Streptopelia lugens


Hooded Vulture, Necrosyrtes monachus


Red-eyed Dove, Streptopelia semitorquata


Red-rumped Swallow, Cecropis daurica


Streaky Seedeater, Crithagra striolata, a common finch related to canaries.


Swainson’s Sparrow, Passer swainsonii. Local member of the Grey-headed Sparrow complex, which fills the niche of the House Sparrow across much of Africa.


White-backed Vulture, Gyps africanus

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6 Responses
  1. June 13, 2009

    I’m going to print this post out and take it with me to Addis next month so I’ll know what to look for out the window!

  2. June 14, 2009

    Great pics! The seedeater is like a mini female Purple Finch.

  3. June 16, 2009

    Marvelous birds! Most people think you have to “go birding” to see beautiful things. It’s just not true.

  4. July 4, 2012

    Nice pics, in Addis you can see different birds in different seasons.

  5. Sandra permalink
    November 16, 2013

    Thanks for the wonderful pictures. Now I’m even more excited about my February 2013 trip to Addis –and hopefully farther afield. This time, unlike my volunteer time in 1968-69, I’ll bring good optics!

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