Albertine rift valley endemic birds in Rwanda and where to go birding

The Albertine Eco-region

The Albertine region comprises of a chain of mountains that were formed through the upliftment and volcanic activity. It stretches across through the western half of Rwanda, and covers five other countries. The Albertine is regarded as the center of the Afromontane habitat and is a belt of exceptional faunal and floral endemism including over 40 bird species, 34 mammals, 117 butterflies, 34 amphibians, and 16 reptiles.

The Mountain Gorilla is by far the most popular of the Albertine rift valley endemics.

Rwanda has at least 27 birds known as the Albertine Rift Endemics of which include

Birds of the Albertine Rift Valley found in Rwanda – Rwanda’s Albertine rift endemic birds – and the places birdwatchers can find them:

Abundance IUCN Volcanoes NP Northern Lakes Gishwati Forest Mukura Forest Nyungwe Forest Cyamudongo Forest Busaga Forest Rugezi Swamp
Handsome Francolin Pternistis nobilis C LC X X X X
Ruwenzori Turaco Gallirex johnstoni C LC X X X X
Congo Bay Owl Phodilus prigoginei ? EN ?
Albertine Owlet Glaucidium albertinum VUC VU X
Ruwenzori Nightjar Caprimulgus ruwenzorii C LC X X X X
Dwarf Honeyguide Indicator pumilio VUC NT X X
Ruwenzori Batis Batis diops C LC X X X X X X
Willard’s Sooty Boubou Laniarius willardi ? ? ?
Stripe-breasted Tit Melaniparus fasciiventer FC LC X X X X X
Grauer’s Warbler Graueria vittata FC LC X
Neumann’s Warbler Hemitesia neumanni C LC X X
Red-faced Woodland Warbler Seicercus laetus C LC X X X X
Grauer’s Swamp Warbler Bradypterus graueri C EN X X X
Ruwenzori Apalis Oreolais ruwenzorii C LC X X X X X X
Mountain Masked Apalis Apalis personata C LC X X X X X X
Kungwe Apalis Apalis argentea C ? X X
Red-collared Babbler Kupeornis rufocinctus FC NT X
Kivu Ground Thrush Geokichla tanganjicae UC ? X X X X X
Yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher Melaenornis ardesiacus C LC X
Archer’s Ground Robin Dessonornis archeri C LC X X X X
Red-throated Alethe Pseudalethe poliophrys C LC X X X X
Blue-headed Sunbird Cyanomitra alinae C LC X X X X
Purple-breasted Sunbird Nectarinia purpureiventris C LC X X X
Ruwenzori Double-collared Sunbird Cinnyris stuhlmanni C LC X X X X
Regal Sunbird Cinnyris regius C LC X X X X
Rockefeller’s Sunbird Cinnyris rockefelleri VUC VU X
Strange Weaver Ploceus alienus C LC X X X X
Dusky Crimsonwing Cryptospiza jacksoni C LC X X X X
Shelley’s Crimsonwing Cryptospiza shelleyi UC VU X X X X X

VC – Common

C – Common

FC – Fairly Common

UC – Uncommon

S – Scarce

VSC -Very Scarce

VUC – Very Uncommon

CR – Critically Endangered

EN – Endangered

VU – Vulnerable

NT – Near Threatened

LC – Least Concern

DD – Data Deficient

? – Not Recognised by IUCN

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