Ghana, Day 1, 24 November 2023 - Shai Hills and Winneba Lagoon

As we'd arrived after dark the previous evening today was the first birding of the trip.

Checking out of the Alexis Hotel in Tema we had Purple Glossy Starling, Purple Heron and the first Bronze Mannikins and Northern Grey-headed Sparrows of the trip from the hotel forecourt before we hit the road. A bizarre sight of a Black Crake flying across the road proved to be the only one of the entire trip just before we pulled up at the main entrance of Shai Hills. 

The site is one of dry savannah scrub surrounding a large rocky hill/outcrop. It is the site that everyone visits for White-crowned Cliff Chat (the local ssp of Mocking Cliff Chat) and we saw 3 of these at distance on an elevated rocky area. Other highlights as we explored the track on the west side were Yellow-throated Leaflove, a couple of typically elusive Grey-headed Bristlebills, Copper Sunbird (my 3000th world species), Splendid Sunbird, 2 Oriole Warblers, Violet-backed Starlings, White-shouldered Black Tit, Red-shoudered Cuckoo-shrike (another big target here), Cardinal Woodpecker, Vieillot's Barbet, Bearded Barbet, Double-toothed Barbet, Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird, Croaking Cisticola, Siffling Cisticola, African Grey Hornbill, Grey Kestrel, Honey Buzzard and Red-necked Buzzard. Foster then lead us up a steep rocky path to a cave where there were a large number of roosting Egyptian Tombs Bats. A Guinea Turaco was nearby and the area by the entrance and carpark had plenty of Olive Baboons.


After lunch at the hotel we started the long journey westwards along the coast stopping near the village of Ekumfi to see 2 Mosque Swallows, African Jacana and nearby a Black-shouldered Kite.


Our main scheduled stop on the journey was at Winneba Lagoon. This was the only coastal estuarine site we visited so was a good opportunity to boost the trip list. A good variety of waders were present with the best being Black-winged Stilts, Spur-winged Plover, Marsh Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, plenty of Curlew Sandpipers, Whimbrel, Little Stints and Sanderling. Royal, Sandwich and Common Terns were also present as were several Western Reef Herons, Yellow Wagtail and African Pied Wagtail.


No comments:

Post a Comment