14/10 - 18/11/2012
Hans Matheve, Toon Spanhove, Jurgen Dewolf, Geert Beckers, Kevin Lambeets, Nicolas Vanermen, Stijn Cooleman & Lieven De Temmerman
Often claimed to be the "eight continent", Madagascar is really a world apart hosting thousands of endemic plant and animal species, including several endemic families or orders The uniqueness of other wildlife (Lemurs, Sifakas, Cameleons) makes up for the relative low number (280, 111 end) of bird species. Unfortunately massive logging, slashing and burning has take place in the past throughout the country and many marshes have been turned into rice paddies. The national parks are about the only places where nature is still preserved...
Many thanks go out to Réné de Roland Lily Arison (or Lily) of the Peregrine Fund Madagascar for organizing the firt leg of the trip. Without it would have taken more time to visit all birding sites. He was a guarantee to have access at the Peregrine Fund camps and logistics. We also like to thank Steve Goodman, Nick Athanas, Dubi Shapiro, Kris De Keersmaecker, the local staff of Madagascar National Parks and many more for their invaluable pre trip information.
Departure from Paris Orly Airport + arrival at Antananarivo Airport. Night in Antananarivo.
Flight Antananarivo to Antsiranana (aka Diego-Suarez) via Mahajunga (3hr) + drive to Montane d'Ambre NP (40') + birding Montange d'Ambre NP. Night camping inside park.
Drive to Antsohihy (10hr) with some birding stops en route. Night in Antsohihy.
Drive to Bemenavika (7hr) + birding Bemenavika (pochard site). Night camping at Peregrine Fund site.
Birding Bemenavika. Night camping at Peregrine Fund site.
Drive to Ankarafantsika NP (11hr). Night camping inside park.
Birding Ankarafantsika NP + drive to Mahajunga (1,5hr). Night in Mahajunga.
Birding Betsikboka delta + drive to Antananarivo (9hr). Night in Antananarivo.
Relax/car repair + drive to Tsiroanomandidi (4hr). Night in Tsiroanomandidi.
Drive to Mainterano (14hr). Night in Mainterano.
Drive to Lac Mandrozo (2hr). Night camping at Peregrine Fund site.
Birding Lac Mandrozo (Sakalava Rail site) + drive to Mainterano with roadside stop. Night in Mainterano.
Drive to Tsingy de Beanka NP (3hr) + birding Tsingy de Beanka NP + drive to Tsiroanomandidi (12hr). Night in Tsiroanomandidi.
Drive to Antananarivo (4hr) + relax. Night in Antananarivo. Arrival of GB, KL and NV.
Flight to Maroantsetra (2hr) + boat to Arrol Lodge (1,5hr) + birding Masoala NP. Night camping at Arrol Lodge.
Birding Masoala NP. Night camping at Arrol Lodge.
Birding Masoala NP. Night camping at Arrol Lodge.
Birding Masoala NP. Night camping at Arrol Lodge.
Birding Masoala NP. Night camping at Arrol Lodge.
Boat to Maroantsetra (1,5hr) + flight to Antananarivo. Night in Antananarivo. - Departure of LDT and SC.
Flight to Tolagnaro (aka Fort Dauphin) (1,5hr) + arrange transport and guides + seawatch from Tolagnaro. Night in Fort Dauphin.
Drive to Andohahela NP (2,5hr) + birding Andohahela NP (Manangotsy area). Night camping in local village.
Birding Andohahela NP (Mangatsiaka area) + drive to Tolagnaro (2,5hr). Night in Tolagnaro.
Drive to Berenty (3,5hr) + birding Berenty. Night in Berenty PR.
Birding Berenty + drive to Tolagnaro (3,5hr). Night in Tolagnaro.
Relax + seawatch from Tolagnaro + flight to Toliara (45') + drive to Ifaty (1hr). Night in Ifaty.
Birding Ifaty + drive to Tuelar with roadside stops (1,5hr) + birding La Table NP. Night in Toliara.
Boat to Anakoa (1hr) + birding Nosy Ve Island and Anakao + snorkeling. Night in Anakao.
Boat to Toliara (1hr) + drive to Zombitse NP (3hr) + birding Zombitse NP + drive to Ranohira (2,5hr). Night in Ranohira.
Birding Isalo NP + drive to Ranomafana (6,5hr). Night in Ranomafana.
Birding Ranomafana NP. Night in Ranomafana.
Birding Ranomafana NP. Night in Ranomafana.
Birding Ranomafana NP + drive to Antananarivo (8hr). Night in Antananarivo.
Arrange flights + drive to Anjozorobe (2hr) + birding Anjozorobe NP. Night in Mananara Lodge.
Birding Anjozorobe NP. Night in Mananara Lodge.
Birding Anjozorobe NP + travel to Antananarivo (2,5hr). Night in Antananarivo.
Relax + flight to Mauritius.
Mascarene Islands (see report), 2nd group visited earlier sites.
Departure from Antananarivo Airport + arrival at Paris Orly Airport.
Note: As independent birding trip reports are very scarce on the
internet we overestimated the time needed to cover the whole country. We
gained about one week on our initial schedule. Hence we kept on moving
on good pace and included both Mauritius and Réunion in our trip! You
can read the report here
Meanwhile the 'second group' (GB, KL & NV) re-visited some of the first as well as some extra sites: Betsiboka - Kinkonty - Ankarafantsika - Mantadia.
Download kml file with all gps coordinates
All of us booked a Paris (Orly) - Antananarivo direct flight through Corsair for approx. 950 EUR. Other options are with Air Madagascar or Air France, all through Paris. The latter includes a stopover on the way in or back in Mauritius, possibly enabling some birding there. The flight to Tana was straightforward and uneventful. On the flight of LDT back to Paris, strong headwinds forced the pilot to refuel in Mombasa, Kenya.
In Antananarivo we booked our flights to Mauritius and Réunion with Air Mauritius as it was the cheapest option (about 200 EUR per flight, no extra cost for a stop-over). Other airlines serve the Mascarene islands as well, for e.g. Air Austral and Air Madagascar. The local office of Air Mauritius charged an extra administrative fee, so better book directly via the internet. As this leg of the trip was not planned on beforehand we only made our flight reservations a couple of days in advance. Unfortunately all the flights back and forth to the small island of Rodrigues were completely full...
Madagascar is roughly the size of France. In theory, one could get anywhere with Taxi-brousse and other types of public transport. However, some birding sites (especially in the North) are way off the beaten track and transport can be very scarce and irregular (e.g. to Bemenavika). As there was a shortage of decent independent trip reports on the net, we had no good idea of what to expect (cost, time, availability) of the transport and opted for the more secure option of hiring vehicle and driver. All the time we were with a group of at at least 5 persons in order to share costs.
The second group covered the Antananarivo - Mahajanga - Betsiboka - Kinkony - Ankarafantsika trip using public transport. See the visited sites section for more details.
Internal flights with Air Madagascar (HYPERLINK) were taken between:
- Antananarivo to Diego in the far North (approx. 200 EUR one way - on time)
- Antananarivo to Maroantsetra to visit Masoala (approx. 400 EUR back and forth - on time)
- Antananarivo to Tolagnaro in the far south (approx. 250 EUR - flight cancelled withouth notice, but we were booked on another flight the same day - delay of 5 hrs)
- Tolagnaro to Toliara (approx. 150 EUR - delay of 5hrs)
For the largest part of the trip we rented a vehicle + driver.
The first 2 weeks (Montagne d'ambre - Bemenavika - Ankarafantsika - Betsiboka - Mandrozo - Tsingy de Beanka), a 4WD vehicle and driver was chartered through Lily. The car was a recent Nissan Patrol. It could fit all luggage on the roof and 5 people in the back (3 on one row and 2 at the back with reduced leg space), while our guide and the driver were occupying the front seats. The 4WD was only strictly necessary for the drive between Bealanana and Bemenavika (but there it was a must), and West of Tsiroanomandidy, all the way to Maintirano (especially so with rain). The car had some problems (suspension/axle stabilisation) but in general, those issues did not delay our travel scheme. In fact, the driver more than made up for the time lost due to repairs, often driving 16+ hrs on some days, non-stop! His name is Andrej and he is absolutely always happy and surely recommended.
In hindsight one could travel most part of these 2 weeks with a much cheaper regular van and rent an expensive 4WD car for specific trajects: (i) from Bealanana to the pochard site and back and (ii) from Antanarivo towards the Tsingy in Beanka and back. Doing this probably saves several hundreds of euros...
On one occasion we used motorcycles to reach Lake Mandrozo from an impassable river crossing 1 hr north of Maintirano. The ride was rather dusty and exhausting (4 hrs on a potholed dirt road).
Lily / Peregrine Fund can be contacted email@example.com or +261328378103.
In the SE part we rented a 4WD + driver to get to Andohahela NP. We didn't feel it was necessary to have a 4WD in dry conditions.
The arrangement for Berenty Private Park includes the (expensive) transport to there (see below).
The stretch from Toliaro to Antananarivo was covered by a rental van + driver. This was a very convenient and not too expensive way of travelling around. It saved us quite some travel time and gave full flexibility for our schedule. Our driver Léon was happy to show us clean and cheap accommodation and restaurants, and didn't bother when we - constantly - changed plans. He was not used to birders before, but he never complained when we wanted to leave very early morning...
Benjamin Raveloarimanana can be conacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To make a last minute visit to Andasibe-Mantadia NP a rental car and driver was charetered through Visit Mada Tours (see above).
Two fast boats were arranged through Olivier Fournajoux from Arrol Lodge to make the crossing between Maroantsetra and the Masoala Peninsula (2 hrs, best in the morning as the sea can get rough especially in the afternoon). The cost was included in the package (4 nights Arrollodge + transport), see under accommodation.
In Antananarivo, taxis to/from the airport were 5000 MGA to hotel Manoir Rouge in the Ivato area, very close to the airport. The transport from the airport to Manoir Rouge is free for guests as long as they are informed about your arrival time.
Taxis between Manoir Rouge, or anywhere in the Ivato area, and the city centre (Haute Ville) were 20.000 MGA.
Antananarivo various hotels in all prices ranges available; we tried Manoir Rouge (close to the airport) and Tropic Asia,... Montagne d'Ambre NP campsite next to the reserve accommodation. The park seems to be
popular during weekends as we saw many tourists leaving on Sunday
afternoon. Antsohihy Hotel la Plaisance Bemenavika (Pochard site) camped at the research site. Ankarafantsika NP camped at the reserve center Mahajunga Hotel 5/5 Tsiroanomandidi very basic hotel (forgot the name) Maintirano Lac Mandrozo (Sakalava site) camped on the research camp site. Masoala peninsula camped on the Arrol Lodge grounds. We were upgraded for free to some bungalow-style huts for the last 3 nights Tolagnaro (Fort Dauphin) Hotel Gina Village (email@example.com) Andohahela NP camped in the village of Ishaka Berenty reserve Ifaty Toliaro Anakao Isalo NP Hotel l'Orchidee, Ranohira Ranomafana NP Hotel Le Grenat Anjozorobe NP
various hotels in all prices ranges available; we tried Manoir Rouge (close to the airport) and Tropic Asia,...
Montagne d'Ambre NP
campsite next to the reserve accommodation. The park seems to be popular during weekends as we saw many tourists leaving on Sunday afternoon.
Hotel la Plaisance
Bemenavika (Pochard site)
camped at the research site.
camped at the reserve center
very basic hotel (forgot the name)
Lac Mandrozo (Sakalava site)
camped on the research camp site.
camped on the Arrol Lodge grounds. We were upgraded for free to some bungalow-style huts for the last 3 nights
Tolagnaro (Fort Dauphin)
Hotel Gina Village (firstname.lastname@example.org)
camped in the village of Ishaka
Hotel l'Orchidee, Ranohira
Hotel Le Grenat
2800 MGA (Ariary) = ± 1 EUR. Only VISA (no Mastercard) is accepted at ATM's! ATM's (mostly the French Credit Agricole) were found at the airport (international arrival), in the centre of Antananarivio (e.g. near the presidential palace), and in other big cities (e.g. Mahajunga). We could withdraw no more than 400.000 ariary/transaction. We also exchanged some euros.
In the north, we experienced sunny and dry weather except for a heavy thunderstorm on the way from Ampijoroa to Antananarivo, and some more rain on the way to Maintirano. Due to this rain, we could not make a normally passable river crossing with our 4-wheel drive vehicle north of Maintirano towards Lake Mandrozo.
The Masoala Peninsula was hot and very humid but no rain.
The south was very hot and dry, every day.
In Ranomafana we had one day with some drizzle, but never too hard to make birding impossible. All other days were dry and sunny.
Health and safety
It is recommended to take Malaria prophylaxis (Lariam or Malarone) throughout a stay in Madagascar. Most health complaints have to do with food hygiene and the effects on digestion. In general, it is recommended to drink bottled water or have some purification ready if bottled water is not available/expensive (e.g. Bemenavika, Lake Mandrozo, Masoala). Madagascar is not particularly unsafe, but it is best not to walk through certain parts of Tana at night. Poverty is very much present everywhere, so it is recommended not to show off your expensive belongings or money while on the streets.
Parks & guides
While preparing the trip we suffered a lack of useful information, but after all it ended up fairly easy as all local travel agents and the drivers seem to know how to reach the National Parks and other birding sites. We were also lucky to have Lily showing us around.
In about every park hiring local guides is obligatory. Often (specialized) guiding fees are quite pricy. Most birding guides used were very good in their birding skills, finding stake-outs and languages (EN and FR). Furthermore one needs to pay entrance fees, touristic fees and for the different circuits you want to visit. At times the total fee was rather high and we had the feeling that sometimes they just tried to add some more, which we tried to talk down. On the other hand we were happy to see that at least there are some parks protecting the very last patches of forest. Most of the country has been drastically ruined...
When visiting Madagascar independently, make sure to check the sites of the major bird tour companies in order to avoid too much overlap. They'll defenitely have the best birding guides and accommodation. We did this as well and never had this problem.
Below is a list of the sites we birded. We mainly used the sparse independent trip reports and searched the whole internet for any advice, tips and tricks. We also bought some older trip reports of Jem Babbington (1995) and Brian Gee (1998) through the African Bird Club website, which includes maps of most areas, but these reports do not mention the more recently discovered birding sites such as the lakes near Bemenavika for the Madagascar Pochard, the Anjozorobe forest and marshed or the Andohahela forest for Red-tailed Newtonia The information in the Madagascar section of the Southern African Birdfinder by Cohen et. al. added little extra information to these older reports.
Montagne d'Ambre NP
Amber mountain is the only site where one can see the Amber Mountain Rock-thrush (recently lumped by Clements). Many more non-restricted endemics were found during the one afternoon we birded here, making this site an excellent introduction to Madagascar endemics. The reserve accommodation is about 1hr from Diego with private transport.
We first birded the last few kilometers of the entrance road towards the campsite. Later on we birded the trail leading to the waterfall. The Rock-thrush should be sought along the stream just before and after the camp site.
Guide: No guide needed to walk along the entrance road and near the camp site. Later on some of the present guides were happy to show us some chameleons and lizards.
Highlights: (Ambre) Forest Rock-Thrush (one obliging bird near the campsite towards the waterfall -12.532047, 49.169955 and another along the ... trail), Pitta-like Ground-Roller (1 bird taped in along the entrance road and bumped into 2 others), Madagascar Ibis (2 birds on the trails near the campsite).
Bemenavika (Pochard site)
Only very recently the once thought to be extinct Madagascar Pochard had been rediscovered. At the moment of our visit there were 29 known wild birds. A breeding program has been set up already and the first captive hatchlings are being raised. There are plans to release them in the near future!
From the coastal city of Antsohihy we followed the road towards Bealanana. From there, a rough road, only passable with high clearance 4WD, took us in 2hrs to the village of Bememavika. In the wet season, it can take 1-2hrs more, or the road can even become impassable.
The campsite of the Peregrine fund (-14.348303, 48.579703) is located at a small stream, about 20 minutes walking from the Pochard site. A large grassy area with Reunion Harrier and lots of Madagascar Cisticola has to be crossed to reach any good forest or one of the lakes. We arrived in the late afternoon and quickly walked to the day roost of Red Owl, Long-eared Owl and the Pochard lake.
The second full day, we some excellent forest holding a lot of vanga species, 2 species of Asity (Yellow-bellied should also be possible) and dozens of Spectacled Greenbuls. At night we heard both Malagasy and Torotoroka Scops-Owl. Unfortunately, the radio-tagged Madagascar Serpent-eagle was not found during our stay. Most probably the battery of the transmitter died as it the bird was tagged about 2 years ago. The Peregrine fund is planning to tag another Serpent-eagle as soon as they find an active nest.
Guide: As this area is home to some very endangered animals, the people of the Peregrine Fund do their very best to protect the area. It is defenitely the best not to show up there on yourself but seek contact with the fund! It should be possible to aarrange a stay at the research camp and local assistants taking you around and show you the birds.
Highlights: Madagascar Pochard (4 on the pochard lake -14.33274, 48.589386), Madagascar Red Owl (1 radio-tagged bird on its day roost, near -14.329224, 48.581161), Reunion Harrier (1 hunting bird in the grassy areas - by some authors split as Malagasy Harrier), Meller's Duck (daily small numbers), Madagascar Long-eared Owl (1 adult and 1 chick on a nest), Henst's Goshawk (1 adult on a nest), Velvet Asity (1 female), Sunbird Asity (3 single birds), Madagascar Grebe (good numbers at the pochard lake), Madagascar Rail (an very tape respionsive pair at -14.331674, 48.588098), Nuthatch-Vanga (1 single bird, apparently never observed before at this site).
Ankarafantsika NP (near Ampijoroa)
We arrived around midnight from Bemenavika at the headquarters (GPS) of the Ankarafantsika reserve and put our tents at the camping area. We were determined to only spend one day at the site in order to save some time. So early next day, we secured one of the best local bird guides and found most of the target birds easy. Only Schlegel's Asity took some more time and work.
The nearby Lac Ravelobe is a good place to scan for some waterbirds and the ever present Fish-Eagles. The best viewpoint is right opposite the foodstalls next to the HQ (GPS).
Behind the lake there is a grid-like trail system leading through some lush forest. It starts about here (-16.30148, 46.812920) with a short boardwalk section. This is were the Asity holds several territories.
Right behind the HQ, a trail goes up the plateau. The forest is drier and is a better place for finding couas and the vanga.
Guide: We had Jacky as our guide. He knew the birds very well as well as the sites for to find them. He wanted us to pay for 3 circuits on one morning though ...
Highlights: Schlegel's Asity (a pair in a fruiting tree at the trail system accross the HQ at -16.295586, 46.814396), White-breasted Mesite (a party of at least 3 birds was seen on the trail system not too far from the Schlegel's), Van Dam's Vanga (3 birds at the plateau grid at -16.317958, 46.811102), Red-capped Coua (only 1 silent bird encountered on the plateau grid), Coquerel's Coua (4 birds, all on the plateau grid), Madagascar Fish-Eagle (both days present at the Lac Ravelobe, max 2 birds), Madagascar Jacana (2 birds between the vegetation at Lac Ravelobe), Humblot's Heron (1 bird on both days at Lac Ravelobe), Madagascar Pygmy-Kingfisher (a single tame bird perched inside the forest close to the HQ).
Betsiboka delta (near Mahajunga)
Lily arranged a boat for 100.000 MGA + gasoline from the Mahajanga port (-15.725685, 46.306381) which was a very good deal. We left around 7AM, and the tide was high. This gave some initial trouble where to look for the Bernier's Teal. We saw one fly-by soon, but fortunately had better views of 2 males fighting for a female further upstream. It took some time to find the Ibis |exposed mudflats, as they tend to sit out of sight in the mangroves during high tide.
The second group went out with low tide (on our advice) and had much higher numbers and some extra species.
Guide: At least you need a boatman tot take you around. Clearly, all the local boatmen know the tide very well. You might show your bird guide to ask specifically to see the teal and the ibis.
Highlights: Bernier's Teal (several small groups were seen close to the muddy islands in the river, mainly near -15.902457,46.336006), (Madagascar) Sacred Ibis (2 birds in the same area), Crab Plover (a flock of 16 birds on the shores of the river).
Tsingy de Bemaraha (near Beanka)
The main (dirt) road between Antananarivo and Maintirano runs through vast areas of dry grassland with a few large tracks of semi-dry forest along the road (probably parts of the Ambohijanahari Reserve). At Beanka, it cuts through the Tsingy de Bemaraha , which is the type location of a newly described Wood-Rail. The weather was still fine during our visit only with a few showers. Hence it was relatively easy to pass with a 4WD, but it took up to 11 hours from Tsiroanomandidi. Later in the year, when the rain comes, it might become very hard to pass and probably not unlikely to become impassable... People in the small village of Ambinda (-18.030071, 44.494139) can act as trail guides in order to get a better chance finding the bird.
Guide: As this is also part of a national park, it is probably obligatory to have a local guide. We found a young guy in the nearby village to show us all the small trails. Birding along the main road is probably possible on your own. We gave him a tip but it didn't seem very official.
Highlights: Tsingy Wood-rail (a couple after playback allowing very good views at -18.063053, 44.530401), Madagascar Harrier (en route along the dirt road between Tsiroanomandidi and Maintirano at -18.309787, 45.567959 and -18.453959, 45.891437), Madagascar Sparrowhawk (en route at -18.264351, 45.453977), Madagascar Sandgrouse (en route at -18.135406, 44.978510), Madagascar Partridge (en route at -17.940363, 44.789612).
Lac Mandrozo (Sakalava rail site near Maintirano)
When making plans to include Beanka for Tsingy Wood-Rail, Lily mentioned a 'nearby' lake where Sakalava Rail is present. So we decided to skip the expensive crossing of the Betsiboka Delta near Mahajunga to get to lake Kinkony (see below), and used that time to search for the Sakalava Rail on Lac Mandrozo (aka Mandrouche), north of Maintirano. In the end, reaching Lake Mandrozo took more time and effort than we had expected, but we made it nevertheless. Reaching the lake from Maintirano involved 2 river crossings (1 on foot and 1 in wobbly wooden canoes) and 4 hrs on the back of an off-road motorcycle.
As far as we understood the local chief, women are not allowed to go on the lake because of some kind of fady (prohibition) from the nearby villagers, who have to be asked permission. We camped at the Peregrine Fund research camp (-17.562932, 44.069893).
Guide: The same remark as at the Bemenavika site. Please contact people of the Peregrine Fund prior to your visit. The friendly staff took us on a canoe trip early morning.
Highlights: Sakalava Rail (one seen at very close range from the canoe on an island at -17.560673, 44.089257), Madagascar Fish-Eagle (one calling and seen perched), Madagascar Jacana (some), Madagascar Grebe (only 2 birds seen).
Lake near Maintirano
On the road between Maintirano and Lac Mandrozo, we saw a nice (but maybe seasonal) lake with a lot of waterlilies (-18.011855, 44.0347). We decided to check the waterfowl on the way back coming from Lac Mandrozo. Unfortunately there were a handful of well organized hunters. We might have prevented them from shooting by our presence. At least for that day...
Guide: No guide needed here.
Highlights: African Pygmy-Goose (common), White-backed Duck (some pairs), Madagascar Jacana (fairly common)
Masoala peninsula (Arrol Lodge, south of Ambanizana)
We stayed at the Arrol Lodge, which was conveniently situated as some target species were found either 20 minutes walking north towards the Masoala park, or 40 minutes south. Most species could readily be found on the trails starting just behind the lodge and crossing a low ridge. As we stayed four days and saw most of our target birds within two days, we could even do some snorkeling and swimming...
Guide: We got the company of two guides (Olivier and Josef) who were transferred together with us on the boat from Maroantsetra. Especially Josef (???) knew the birds and the places where to search for them.
Highlights: Helmet Vanga (one at the nest, and approx. 1 sighting daily, first one at -15.697716, 49.963762), Bernier's Vanga (-15.73061,49.968786), Scaly Ground-roller (1 couple -15.699455,49.964857), Short-legged Ground-roller (1 couple), Brown Mesite (a couple after playback at -15.700894, 49.965748), Collared Nightjar (found day roosting by our guides at -15.71115, 49.964307 and at -15.703337, 49.968178), Red-breasted Coua, Madagascar Ibis, Madagascar Pratincole, White-browed Owl, Madagascar Pygmy-Kingfisher, Banded Kestrel, Nuthatch-Vanga, Crossley's Babbler (-15.718806, 49.965011). One early morning we observed a low flying raptor from a watchpoint that might have been a Madagascar Serpent-Eagle. Although the jizz (shape, size, flight action) felt right, it was too short and far to be sure...
Tolagnaro (Fort Dauphin)
We briefly visited the harbour of Tolagnaro (-25.0268, 46.996266) in order to find the local subspecies of Kelp Gulls. As we had some spare time we tried some seawatching at (-25.030249, 46.999780). It appeared a good site to spot tens of whales.
Guide: No guide needed here.
Highlights: (Madagascar) Kelp Gull (several near the harbour and along the rest of the coast).
This park is probably the best site to see the Red-tailed Newtonia. On our first day we explored the wet forest in the Manangotsy area. There is some kind of a vague trail that starts at (-24.769999, 46.861329). After a crossing an open area, the trail becomes more clear to follow. It passes some stream crossings and then it goes up the mountain ridge again. From here onwards it is best to look for mixed species flocks to find the newtonia (see coordinates below).
En route to the Berenty Private Reserve there is a much drier part of this park. The Mangatsiaka area holds some good spiny forest and thus species similar to the Berenty park. On the main road turn off at (-24.996356, 46.544802), continue for a few kms on a dirt track and park at (-24.967556, 46.553527). From here there are a few well maintained trails to explore the area.
Guide: Via via we met Narcissus who is a guide for Madagascar National Park. He arranged the logistics for the 2 day trip. He was very friendly and helpful. He could show us the area where to look for the newtonia but knew little about other bird species.
Highlights: Red-tailed Newtonia (we observed 1 single bird high up in a mixed feeding flock and our way out we saw 2 singing birds almost at the same spot at -24.755483, 46.85243 in the Manangotsy part of the NP), Madagascar Cuckoo-Hawk (1 bird flew right above our heads in the Mangatsiaka area at -24.968228, 46.559262, a nice bonus!), (Green-capped) Red-capped Coua (1 bird in the Mangatsiaka part), Running Coua (1 seen and a few heard in the Mangatsiaka part), Banded Kestrel (1 bird in the Mangatsiaka area), Archbold's Newtonia (2 seen and 1 more heard in the Mangatsiaka area).
Berenty Private Reserve
In contrary to most other sites, this park is privately owned by Le Dauphin (SHTM). Within the compound of this large sisal company there are a few protected remnants which are a stronghold for some species. We mainly included this park as it used to be one of the most reliable sites for the Madagascar Cuckoo-Hawk, although there was no known nest at the time of our visit. In hindsight we could have skipped this site as we had already seen our only target (the Cuckoo-Hawk) in Andohahela, but that was not possible as we had booked flights...
Prices for the lodging and the food are quite high but the guiding fees are included. The website states that transport back and forth the reserve should be done through their own company. We don't know what they would say if one just turns up there - would be very convenient if comming from the nearby Mangatsiaka part of Andohahela, but wouldn't take the risk...
We tried to make contact by e-mail but never received any answer! Contacting local travel agents who offered this package were just too expensive. In the end we made the arrangement just by showing up in Hotel Le Dauphin in Tolagnaro just a couple of days on beforehand. This proved to be very straightforward and much cheaper than other options. Bear in mind that many tourist groups (bird companies and 'regular' ones) favour this park. It might be safer to book in advance during the high season.
Birding can be done starting right from the lodge as its adjacent a patch of gallery forest.
Another habitat and other bird species can be found in the remnant patches of spiny forest. These can also be visited during night excursions.
Guide: It is obliged to walk around in the company of a guide. The costs are included in the total packege price. We had Justin (not sure), a birding guide and knows most of the birds and places to look for them.
Highlights: Madagascar Cuckoo-Hawk (a single bird observed by a few of us in the gallery forest at -25.005204, 46.304517), Giant Coua (ridiculously common and easy to see in the gallery forest), Lafresnaye's Vanga (1 bird taped in in a spiny forest patch at -25.032188, 46.29786), (Green-capped) Red-capped Coua (a handful of birds encountered bsight and voice in the spiny forest pacthes), Madagascar Sandgrouse (a group of 13 birds flushed early morning from the airfield at -25.004825, 46.294343), Running Coua (1 single bird in the spiny forest), White-browed Owl (in the gallery forest we observed several birds at their day roost where they were very vocal at night), Torotoroka Scops-Owl (commonly heard and easily taped in several birds, mainly in the spiny forest), Archbold's Newtonia (2 birds in the spiny forest).
The coastal spiny forest near the village of Mangily (often referred to as Ifaty) holds several highly wanted birds. Most people tend to visit privately owned Moosa Park, but there are several other options... We arrived rather late in the village but easily found Moosa and some relatives near the entrance of the park (-23.122452, 43.614595). We made arrangements to acces the park next day early morning in company of a guide.
On our way back to Toliara we birded near some roadside ponds.
Guide: As these parks are private, one needs to go with a guide. We had Gila and another guy to show us all their the staked-out birds. Within 2.5 hours we were ready with that. They were very time efficient but we felt like walking in a zoo as we were walking from nest to nest...
Highlights: Long-tailed Ground-Roller (an unshy pair was observed near their nest hole in the ground in Moosa Park at -23.119393, 43.622427), Subdesert Mesite (we had views of a male that had been chased into a tree by our guides at -23.117233, 43.622246 where it stayed motionless for a while), Thamnornis (in Moosa Park first seen at -23.118486, 43.622815, several more oserved later on), Madagascar Plover (on our way back to Toliara we found 3 birds at a temporal pool -23.159904, 43.615188), Running Coua (2 birds in Moosa Park), Banded Kestrel (a pair next to their nest in Moosa Park at -23.122278, 43.633431), Archbold's Newtonia (2 birds seen in Moosa Park).
La Table NP (near Toliara)
Just half an hour south of Toliara not La Table itself, nearby area. About 17km along the main road from Toliara to Antananarivo Take the dirt road right at -23.410218, 43.801039. The trail starts at -23.411367, 43.802868
Guide: We went together with Moosa (see in the Ifaty section). Although the entrance seemed free, he needed to talk to the local army men to let us in. According to Moosa, the area is protected and cannot be entered on your own. But we didn't see any sign stating so.
Highlights: Red-shouldered Vanga (1 bird heard calling distantly and then seen at very close distance along some kind of trail at -23.413184, 43.807623), Verreaux's Coua (only 1 bird seen, not far from the RS Vanga), Lafresnaye's Vanga (3 birds).
Toliara mudflats (Tulear)
At low tide, a huge mudflat becomes visible just west of Tulear, both north and south of a long jetty into the sea. A part of this was clearly visible from the restaurant of our hotel (-23.363443, 43.666964). Usually thousands of waders are present, althoug the birds were often too far tob e seen from the beach, and the best option is to explore the mudflat on foot. Be carefull when doing so, as this area also acts as a huge public toilet!
Guide: No guides needed here.
Highlights: Crab Plover (a handful of these birds were present on the mudflats amongst huge numbers of other waders; at low tide only).
Anakao & Nosy Ve Island
Anakao is a small village located ca. 40 km south of Tulear with a broad range of tourist accommodations. It can easily be reached from Tulear by a speed boat that run daily between Anakao and Tulear in the morning hours, orby a more expensive private boat that can also be arranged by tour operators around harbour. The xeric coral rag vegetation in the dunes surrounding Anakao is very poor in birds, but it is one of the few locations where Littoral Rock-Thrush can easily be seen.
In addition, the breeding colony of the spectacular Red-tailed Tropicbirds on the nearby Nosy Ve island forms a major tourist attraction. Trips to this island in a small dhow can be arranged by local boatmen, but due to the wind conditions, an early start to the island strongly adviced.
Guide: Anakoa can be birded/visited by yourself. To get to Nosy Ve a boatman and guide will take you there. We were joined and showed around by one of the staff members of the lodge. We didn't have to pay for his assistance, but we were charged some kind of 'community tax' to land on the sacred island of Nosy Ve...
Highlights: Littoral Rock-Thrush (several birds readily found in the coral rag of Anakao, just between our accommodation and the village, near -23.6509, 43.652339), Red-tailed Tropicbird (about 50+ observed in the year-round breeding colony of Nosy Ve Island). Unfortunately there was no sign of a sporadically encountered White-tailed Tropicbird. Some of us did see it later in the Mascarenes though...
Situated along the main road between Tulear and Isalo, the dry Zombitse forest is the only site where the restricted range Appert's Tetraka can conveniently be found. We birded the trails around the park's Headquarters, both north and south of the main road. Since we only arrived after noon, bird activity was very low and it took a long while before we saw the tetraka.
Guide: We had the company of our only female guide of the trip; she was not a birder at all. Later on we met another guide on the forest trails who joined us searching for the tetrakas.
Highlights: Appert's Tetraka (2 very tame birds observed in the lush forest at -22.883604, 44.693963), Giant Coua (a single bird), Coquerel's Coua (several birds seen and more heard), Madagascar Ibis (a single bird, here of the urschi subspecies).
This surely is a scenic national park. It is situated en route from Zombitse to Ranomafana and visited by birding groups for the potentially split of Forest Rock-Thrush. There is plenty of accommodation. We left the nicely situated but expensive lodges aside and opted to spent the night in the town of Ranohira where prices are much cheaper.
We did not enter the park itself but started off with some roadside birding. We walked into the grassy fields along the main road westwards (see coordinates below) listening for calling quails and later on flushing them.
The main target however can be easily found on the rocky outcrops. We tried our luck (not really needed) behind Hotels de La Reine and Le Jardin du Roy where one can walk freely.
Guide: No guides needed here, except when you want to visit the park properly.
Highlights: (Benson's) Forest Rock-Thrush (at least 2 birds seen and 1 other heard near the rocky outcrops at -22.649566, 45.334541), Harlequin Quail (flushed several calling birds from the recently burned areas at -22.574082, 45.410752)
Ranomafana NP (incl Vohiparara)
We started birding the lower parts of the park, just a few km up the village of Ranomafana. The trail of the Varibolo circuit starts at (GPSxxx) and goes through some nice forest. Birding was somewhat slow here.
Most of the time however was spent on the Vohiparara circuit. The trail head is at (GPSxxx) and goes up a ridge. Most bird species can ben seen all along the trail, only for the Yellow-bellied Sunbird Asity it is probably necessary to climb up the ridge for about 45'. Checking flowering trees proved to be the best strategy for us.
One midday was spent looking for snipes in a small remnant marshy area between the many rice fields near the village of Halakinresy. We asked permission to walk though the fields and slowly walked on a line to flush the snipes. As soon as we saw one we stopped doing so in order not to disturb this/these bird(s). Probably it won't take too long before this marsh will be converted into agricultural fields as well...
The very last morning was spent at a stake-out for Gray Emutail. The Circuit Amboditanimana starts at (GPSxxx) and goes uphill and down again towards a scrubby and later on marshy area. We followed the Akaka trail - his was not really necessary as later we would easily get the emutail in Anjozorobe as well...
Guide: We used the services of several guides. The better bird guide was definitely Lloret as he knew every sound and had good spots for every wanted species. He gave somehow an absent general impression, but was very sharp when it came to birds. He charged some extras compared to the other guides as his specialization apparently is good bussinuess; he leads many birding groups. The first morning way went in company of a bird guide, but clearly a less experienced one. The last day we went together with a young guy starting off as a (birding) guide.
Highlights: Yellow-bellied Sunbird Asity (1 female feeding on flowers of a coffee plant in the Vohiparara area at -21.232999, 47.402267), Pollen's Vanga (several small vocal groups encountered, often aomngst other vangas), Ward's Flycatcher (2 single birds seen at both sites), Rufous-headed Ground-Roller (several heard and seen in the Vohiparara area, not too difficult), Pitta-like Ground-Roller (regularly heard and seen, even |playback, mainly in the Vohiparara area), Brown Emutail (several seen and more heard, mainly in the Vohiparara area -21.235648, 47.398234), Gray Emutail (several birds taped in at the marshy area of Amboditanimana -21.194429, 47.372228), Madagascar Snipe (flushed at a small marshy area amidst rice padies at -21.171329, 47.340903), Wedge-tailed Jery (several flocks encountered in the Vohiparara area), Meller's Duck (4 birds on the river near the Amboditanimana marshy area), Henst's Goshawk (1 adult bird near its nest), Sunbird Asity (1 bird only), Crossley's Babbler (2 very cooperative birds in the lower Ranomafana area), Cryptic Warbler (small numbers seen, the most cooperative birds singing along the main road at -21.240903, 47.39271), Yellow-browed Oxylabes (one flock of several birds moving low through the dense understorey of the Vohiparara area at-21.233489, 47.401906), Gray-crowned Tetraka (2 times a single bird recorded in a mixed species flock in the Vohiparara area, typical tree climbing behaviour), Forest Fody (a few 'pure' birds seen in the Vohiparara area while the majority showed signs of hybridisation).
The main attraction for birders is the presence of Slender-billed Flufftail. These days it is the most reliable and accessible site as older stake-outs seem to have dissappeared. In the village of Anjozorobe we chartered 4WD to take us up the Mananara Lodge (HYPERLINK), which is about 10km further. The lodge is regularly frequented by birding companies but they seemed somewhat surprised to receive independent visitors. Nevertheles the staff welcomed us friendly and summoned a guide to show us around.
The first area to visit was the marshy area where the flufftail occurs. Walking back from the lodge to the village, take the first clear dirt road right. After a while this somwhat ends but continous as a clear foot path. It goes down until it hits the marsh. We walked knee-deep through the marsh and followed the obvious track that cuts through it, as many visitors have gone there before...
Later on we also tried our luck on the trail system above the lodge. It goes up the ridge and then makes some kind of a loop.
Guide: We were joined by a non-birding but very friendly guide. Basically he was able to show us the site for the flufftail and he knew some bird and mammal sounds.
Highlights: Slender-billed Flufftail (we observed a single bird on two occasions in the marsh at -18.439304, 47.945001; it was little vocal and did not react too responsive to playback, probably overtaped...), Madagascar Snipe (a few seen daily in the flufftail marsh, they were roding at night), Gray Emutail (several at the flufftail marsh), Brown Emu-tail (2 birds in the forest understory at -18.447435, 47.952582), Meller's Duck (3 birds flying overhead at the lodge), Henst's Goshawk (1 bird flying close to the lodge), Madagascar Rail (several very tape responsive birds in the flufftail marsh), Pitta-like Ground-Roller (1 seen and more heard), Sunbird Asity (1 bird only), Crossley's Babbler (1), Cryptic Warbler (1), Yellow-browed Oxylabes (a flock of at least 3 birds, very tape responsive), Gray-crowned Tetraka (a flock of at least 5 birds including young ones near -18.444194, 47.947793).
EXTRA SITESAs our roads splitted, Geert, Nicolas and Kevin were off the next day for an adventorous trip towards the northwest of Madagascar. Their aim, to catch up with some more species the others had already seen before.
With a surface area of ca. 14.000ha Lac Kinkony is the second largest lake in Madagascar, situated in the northwest at sea level altitude. Since 1971 the shallow lake has been protected as an integral part of the nature reserve Complex Mahavavy Kinkony, being 300.000ha in total. Varied biotopes are found here: open water, sandy river banks (mainly along the river Mahavavy), and extensive wetlands consisting of reeds, high brushwood vegetation and wet forests.
At 4AM we left from Mitsinjo to the banks of the river Mahavavy. The dusty walk to the river banks were good for some Madagascar Night-Jars. Our peroque, all day long being rowed by two young lads and their captain, took us up to the broad tidal river. From the peroque we've focused on the river banks for some birding. Highlights during the early morning were several Humblot's Herons, White-fronted Plovers, many Madagascar Sandgrouses (one group up to 18 individuals) and quite common Madagascar pratincoles. Also an Eleonora's Falcon was nicely perched alongside the river. We arrived approximately at 10AM at Makaray village. Here we switched peroques, and the friendly local guide Mr. Tavares took us on a 2h peroque trip through the Kinkony wetlands. After about 1h rowing through dense reeds and thickets we spotted the most wanted Sakalava Rail. Four adults and a juvenile bird were easily seen and heard, even on nest. Also, we picked up Hottentot Teal, Fulvous Whistling-Duck, Comb duck, Pygmy Goose, Little Bittern and Madagascar Jacana, and added African Spoonbill to the total trip list. On our way back we've spotted Decken's Sifaka along the river banks, and flushed some Madagascar Sandgrouse along the dusty track back to Mitsinjo.
Guide: Mr. Tavares (from Makary) guided through the Kinkony wetland; Jean-Cesar arranged a meeting with the Mitsinjo parc office and afterwards our private 4x4 transport out of Mitsinjo
Highlights: Sakalava Rail, Humblots Heron, Madagascar Pond-Heron, Madagascar Sandgrouse, (Madagascar) Sacred Ibis, Madagascar Jacana, Madagascar Harrier-Hawk.
Andasibe-Mantadia NP (Perinet)
Situated at the east, the Andasibe-Mantadia National Park is one of the largest in Madagascar. In total the park consists of 155km2 primary forest growth at 900-1250m of altitude. However, slash-and-burn, logging and Eucalyptus forestry put a lot of pressure on the parc's integrity.
As we still had one spare day before our return, we arranged for private transport from Tana with Ben from Visit Mada Tours (Benjamin Raveloarimanana email@example.com; (0026120)2478250 / (00261)331131924; www.madagascar-tour.com), to Perinet. Aming for Madagascar Grebe and Madagascar Long-eared Owl, we left at 5AM. After a 3h15 drive we arrived at the parc headquarters and picked up two guides at the spot. Flore (firstname.lastname@example.org; 0349611340), who was still 'learning the job' and bird guide Sambo knew the spots well. The 1h30 drive into Mantadia proved worthwhile as we soon saw Madagascar Grebe at some small pond aside a couple of Meller's Duck. Our short walk into the Mantadia forest was less successful, although we had 'petting views' of two male Indri's and Mantella baroni. Just recently a day roost of Madagascar Long-eared Owl was rediscovered. We searched the pine trees very intensively, but |success. It took us until 18h30 as we heard one individual calling in the distance. Nat able to tape it in, we decided to try our luck on an other spot nearby the parc headquarters. We heard one individual calling from the car, hit the breaks and one 'full grown' juvenile nicely perched overhead while an adult bird was calling further on (and which we were not able to tape in, again.). At 19h30 we left for Tana to reunite with the Mascare crew and have a drink.
Highlights: Madagascar Long-eared Owl, Ward's Flycatcher, Madagascar Grebe
FULL TRIP LIST
Taxonomy strictly follows Clements' 6th Edition (incl. updates). The list only contains species positively identified by at least one of our group. Birds identified by guides or other people only are not included, presumed species neither...
White-faced Whistling-Duck Dendrocygna viduata
Fulvous Whistling-Duck Dendrocygna bicolor
White-backed Duck Thalassornis leuconotus
Comb Duck Sarkidiornis melanotos
African Pygmy-Goose Nettapus auritus
Meller's Duck Anas melleri Endangered (EN) Country endemic
Red-billed Duck Anas erythrorhyncha
Bernier's Teal Anas bernieri Endangered (EN) Country endemic
Madagascar Pochard Aythya innotata Critically endangered (CR) Country endemic Restricted range
Helmeted Guineafowl Numida meleagris
Madagascar Partridge Margaroperdix madagascarensis Country endemic
Harlequin Quail Coturnix delegorguei
Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis
Madagascar Grebe Tachybaptus pelzelnii Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus
Wedge-tailed Shearwater Puffinus pacificus
Red-tailed Tropicbird Phaethon rubricauda
African Openbill Anastomus lamelligerus
Long-tailed Cormorant Phalacrocorax africanus
African Darter Anhinga rufa
Hamerkop Scopus umbretta
Little Bittern Ixobrychus minutus
Gray Heron Ardea cinerea
Humblot's Heron Ardea humbloti Endangered (EN) Country endemic Restricted range
Purple Heron Ardea purpurea
Great Egret Ardea alba
Little Egret Egretta garzetta
Black Heron Egretta ardesiaca
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides
Madagascar Pond-Heron Ardeola idae Endangered (EN)
Striated Heron Butorides striata
Black-crowned Night-Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
Madagascar Ibis Lophotibis cristata Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Sacred Ibis Threskiornis aethiopicus
Madagascar Harrier-Hawk Polyboroides radiatus Country endemic
Madagascar Cuckoo-Hawk Aviceda madagascariensis Country endemic
Reunion Harrier Circus maillardi Endangered (EN) Country endemic Restricted range
Frances's Goshawk Accipiter francesii
Madagascar Sparrowhawk Accipiter madagascariensis Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Henst's Goshawk Accipiter henstii Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Black Kite Milvus migrans
Madagascar Fish-Eagle Haliaeetus vociferoides Critically endangered (CR) Country endemic Restricted range
Madagascar Buzzard Buteo brachypterus Country endemic
White-breasted Mesite Mesitornis variegatus Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Brown Mesite Mesitornis unicolor Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Subdesert Mesite Monias benschi Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Madagascar Flufftail Sarothrura insularis Country endemic
Slender-billed Flufftail Sarothrura watersi Endangered (EN) Country endemic Restricted range
Madagascar Wood-Rail Canirallus kioloides Country endemic
Tsingy Wood-Rail Canirallus beankaensis Country endemic Restricted range
Madagascar Rail Rallus madagascariensis Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
White-throated Rail Dryolimnas cuvieri
Sakalava Rail Amaurornis olivieri Endangered (EN) Country endemic Restricted range
Eurasian Moorhen Gallinula chloropus
Black-bellied Plover Pluvialis squatarola
Greater Sand-Plover Charadrius leschenaultii
Kittlitz's Plover Charadrius pecuarius
Common Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula
Madagascar Plover Charadrius thoracicus Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Three-banded Plover Charadrius tricollaris
White-fronted Plover Charadrius marginatus
Crab Plover Dromas ardeola
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus
Madagascar Jacana Actophilornis albinucha Country endemic
Terek Sandpiper Xenus cinereus
Common Sandpiper Actitis hypoleucos
Common Greenshank Tringa nebularia
Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres
Sanderling Calidris alba
Little Stint Calidris minuta
Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea
Madagascar Snipe Gallinago macrodactyla Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic
Madagascar Buttonquail Turnix nigricollis Country endemic
Madagascar Pratincole Glareola ocularis Vulnerable (VU)
Greater Painted-Snipe Rostratula benghalensis
Kelp Gull Larus dominicanus
Saunders's Tern Sternula saundersi
White-winged Tern Chlidonias leucopterus
Roseate Tern Sterna dougallii
Common Tern Sterna hirundo
Great Crested Tern Thalasseus bergii
Lesser Crested Tern Thalasseus bengalensis
Madagascar Sandgrouse Pterocles personatus Country endemic
Madagascar Turtle-Dove Streptopelia picturata
Namaqua Dove Oena capensis
Madagascar Green-Pigeon Treron australis
Madagascar Blue-Pigeon Alectroenas madagascariensis Country endemic
Madagascar Cuckoo Cuculus rochii
Giant Coua Coua gigas Country endemic
Coquerel's Coua Coua coquereli Country endemic
Red-breasted Coua Coua serriana Country endemic
Red-fronted Coua Coua reynaudii Country endemic
Red-capped Coua Coua ruficeps Country endemic
Running Coua Coua cursor Country endemic
Crested Coua Coua cristata Country endemic
Verreaux's Coua Coua verreauxi Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Blue Coua Coua caerulea Country endemic
Madagascar Coucal Centropus toulou
Barn Owl Tyto alba
Madagascar Red Owl Tyto soumagnei Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic
Malagasy Scops-Owl Otus rutilus
Torotoroka Scops-Owl Otus madagascariensis Country endemic
Madagascar Long-eared Owl Asio madagascariensis Country endemic
Marsh Owl Asio capensis
White-browed Owl Ninox superciliaris Country endemic
Collared Nightjar Gactornis enarratus Country endemic
Madagascar Nightjar Caprimulgus madagascariensis
Malagasy Spinetail Zoonavena grandidieri
Alpine Swift Apus melba
Madagascar Swift Apus balstoni Country endemic
Little Swift Apus affinis
African Palm-Swift Cypsiurus parvus
Malagasy Kingfisher Corythornis vintsioides
Madagascar Pygmy-Kingfisher Corythornis madagascariensis Country endemic
Madagascar Bee-eater Merops superciliosus
European Bee-eater Merops apiaster
Broad-billed Roller Eurystomus glaucurus
Short-legged Ground-Roller Brachypteracias leptosomus Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Scaly Ground-Roller Brachypteracias squamiger Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Pitta-like Ground-Roller Atelornis pittoides Country endemic
Rufous-headed Ground-Roller Atelornis crossleyi Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic Restricted range
Long-tailed Ground-Roller Uratelornis chimaera Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Cuckoo-Roller Leptosomus discolor
Madagascar Hoopoe Upupa marginata Country endemic
Madagascar Kestrel Falco newtoni
Banded Kestrel Falco zoniventris Country endemic
Eleonora's Falcon Falco eleonorae
Sooty Falcon Falco concolor Near-threatened (NT)
Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus
Gray-headed Lovebird Agapornis canus Country endemic
Greater Vasa-Parrot Mascarinus vasa
Lesser Vasa-Parrot Mascarinus niger
Velvet Asity Philepitta castanea Country endemic
Schlegel's Asity Philepitta schlegeli Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Sunbird Asity Neodrepanis coruscans Country endemic
Yellow-bellied Asity Neodrepanis hypoxantha Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Tylas Vanga Tylas eduardi Country endemic
Dark Newtonia Newtonia amphichroa Country endemic
Common Newtonia Newtonia brunneicauda Country endemic
Archbold's Newtonia Newtonia archboldi Country endemic
Red-tailed Newtonia Newtonia fanovanae Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Chabert Vanga Leptopterus chabert Country endemic
Blue Vanga Cyanolanius madagascarinus
Red-tailed Vanga Calicalicus madagascariensis Country endemic
Red-shouldered Vanga Calicalicus rufocarpalis Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Nuthatch-Vanga Hypositta corallirostris Country endemic
Hook-billed Vanga Vanga curvirostris Country endemic
Helmet Vanga Euryceros prevostii Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Rufous Vanga Schetba rufa Country endemic
Sickle-billed Vanga Falculea palliata Country endemic
Bernier's Vanga Oriolia bernieri Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
White-headed Vanga Artamella viridis Country endemic
Lafresnaye's Vanga Xenopirostris xenopirostris Country endemic
Van Dam's Vanga Xenopirostris damii Endangered (EN) Country endemic Restricted range
Pollen's Vanga Xenopirostris polleni Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Ward's Flycatcher Pseudobias wardi Country endemic
Crossley's Babbler Mystacornis crossleyi Country endemic
Ashy Cuckooshrike Coracina cinerea
Crested Drongo Dicrurus forficatus
Madagascar Paradise-Flycatcher Terpsiphone mutata
Pied Crow Corvus albus
Madagascar Lark Mirafra hova Country endemic
Plain Martin Riparia paludicola
Mascarene Martin Phedina borbonica Restricted range
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
Madagascar Bulbul Hypsipetes madagascariensis
Madagascar Brush-Warbler Nesillas typica
Subdesert Brush-Warbler Nesillas lantzii Country endemic
Madagascar Swamp-Warbler Acrocephalus newtoni Country endemic
Brown Emu-tail Dromaeocercus brunneus Country endemic
Gray Emu-tail Dromaeocercus seebohmi Country endemic
White-throated Oxylabes Oxylabes madagascariensis Country endemic
Long-billed Bernieria Bernieria madagascariensis Country endemic
Cryptic Warbler Cryptosylvicola randrianasoloi Country endemic
Wedge-tailed Jery Hartertula flavoviridis Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Thamnornis Thamnornis chloropetoides Country endemic
Yellow-browed Oxylabes Crossleyia xanthophrys Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic Restricted range
Spectacled Tetraka Xanthomixis zosterops Country endemic
Appert's Tetraka Xanthomixis apperti Vulnerable (VU) Country endemic Restricted range
Gray-crowned Tetraka Xanthomixis cinereiceps Near-threatened (NT) Country endemic
Rand's Warbler Randia pseudozosterops Country endemic
Common Jery Neomixis tenella Country endemic
Green Jery Neomixis viridis Country endemic
Stripe-throated Jery Neomixis striatigula Country endemic
Madagascar Cisticola Cisticola cherina
Madagascar White-eye Zosterops maderaspatanus
Madagascar Magpie-Robin Copsychus albospecularis Country endemic
Forest Rock-Thrush Monticola sharpei Country endemic
Littoral Rock-Thrush Monticola imerina Country endemic
African Stonechat Saxicola torquatus
Madagascar Starling Saroglossa aurata Country endemic
Common Myna Acridotheres tristis
Souimanga Sunbird Cinnyris souimanga
Madagascar Sunbird Cinnyris notatus
Madagascar Wagtail Motacilla flaviventris Country endemic
House Sparrow Passer domesticus
Nelicourvi Weaver Ploceus nelicourvi Country endemic
Sakalava Weaver Ploceus sakalava Country endemic
Red Fody Foudia madagascariensis Country endemic
Forest Fody Foudia omissa Country endemic
Madagascar Munia Lonchura nana Country endemic
|Brown (= Rufous) Mouse Lemur (Microcebus rufus)||Anjozorobe|
|Grey-brown Mouse Lemur (Microcebus griseorufus)||Berenty|
|Greater Dwarf Lemur (Cheirogaleus major)||Amber Mountain|
|Fat-tailed Dwarf Lemur (Cheirogaleus medius)||Ampijoroa|
|Amber Mountain Fork-marked Lemur (Phaner electromontis)||Amber Mountain|
|Masoala Sportive Lemur (Lepilemur scottorum)||Masoala|
|Hubbard's (= Zombitse) Sportive lemur (Lepilemur hubbardi)||Zombitse|
|White-footed Sportive Lemur (Lepilemur leucopus)||Andohahela, Berenty|
|Eastern Grey (= Lesser) Bamboo Lemur (Hapalemur griseus)||Ranomafana, Perinet|
|Ring-tailed Lemur (Lemur catta)||Andohahela, Berenty|
|Crowned Lemur (Eulemur coronatus)||Amber Mountain|
|Red-bellied Lemur (Eulemur rubriventer)||Ranomafana|
|Common Brown Lemur (Eulemur fulvus)||Ampijoroa|
|Sanford's Brown Lemur (Eulemur sanfordi)||Amber Mountain|
|White-fronted Brown Lemur (Eulemur albifrons)||Masoala|
|Red (= Rufous Brown) Lemur (Eulemur rufus)||Mandrozo Lake|
|Red-fronted Brown Lemur (Eulemur rufifrons)||Ranomafana|
|Red Ruffed Lemur (Varecia rubra)||Masoala|
|Eastern Avahi (Avahi laniger)||Masoala|
|Western Avahi (Avahi occidentalis)||Ampijoroa|
|Cleese's Avahi (Avahi cleesei)||Tsingy de Bemaraha|
|Sambirano Avahi (Avahi unicolor)||Bemanevika (pochard-site)|
|Verraux's Sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi)||Berenty, Zombitse|
|Coquerel's Sifaka (Propithecus coquereli)||Ampijoroa|
|Decken's Sifaka (Propithecus deckeni)||Mandrozo Lake, Tsingy de Bemaraha, en route from Mitsinjo to Kinkony along Mahavavy river|
|Indri (Indri indri)||Andjojorobe, Perinet|
|Ring-tailed Mongoose (Galidia elegans)|
|- ubspecies dambrensis||Amber Mountain|
|- subspecies elegans||Andohahela|
|Brown-tailed Mongoose (Salanoia concolor)||Masoala|
|Common Tenrec (Tenrec eucaudatus)||en route caught by hunter + Mauritius (introduced)|
|Greater Hedgehog tenrec (Setifer setosus)||Andohahela (probably this species)|
|Lesser Hedgehog Tenrec (Echinops telfairi)||Berenty|
|Lowland Streaked Tenrec (Hemicentetes semispinosus)||Masoala|
|Madagascar Flying Fox (Pteropus rufus)||Berenty + en route to Berenty|
|Mauritius Flying Fox (Pteropus niger)||Mauritius|
|Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)||Fort Dauphin|
|Bottlenose Dolphin spec. (Tursiops truncatus / aduncus)||Anakao|
|Eastern / Lowland Red Forest Rat (Nesomys rufus/audeberti)||Ranomafana|
|Mantidactylus sp. aff. biporus||Masoala|
|Mantidactylus (Ochtomantis) spp. aff. femoralis||Masoala|
|Gephyromantis (Duboimantis) redimitus||Ranomafana|
|Brookesia minima||Amber Mt.|
|Uroplatus henkeli||Amber Mt.|
|Phelsuma pusilla / lineata||Masoala|