Lilac Breasted Roller

Birdwatching in the Kruger

Traditionally, people come to the Kruger to watch the Big Five, but the place is also home to up to 500 different species of birds (depending on the season). The best birding time is between October and March when all the migrants are in the Kruger.

Most birds can be found around big dams, waterholes, lakes and forest drives near the riverbanks. One hour before sunrise is the best time to hear the dawn chorus, while mid morning is the best time to see raptors. Vultures can often be seen at waterholes around lunch time or in the afternoon. Alarm calls made by birds often signals the presence of predators.

Some of the best birding drives in the Kruger include: Luvuvhu River Drive, Crocodile bridge to Lower Sabie, Kanniedood Dam (for waterbirds) and Mahonie Loop around Punda Maria camp (for those after rare birds).

European Roller - Kruger National Park, South Africa.
European Roller


Cape Glossy Starling - Kruger National Park
Cape Glossy Starling


Helmeted Guineafowl - Kruger National Park
Helmeted Guineafowl


Giant Kingfisher - Kruger National Park
Giant Kingfisher


Malachite Kingfisher
Malachite Kingfisher


Violet-eared Waxbill
Violet-eared Waxbill


Photo credits (top to bottom): featured photo © Alessandro de Luca; European Roller © Neil Heron; Cape Glossy Starling © Alessandro de Luca; Helmeted Guineafowl © Alessandro de Luca; Giant Kingfisher © Alessandro de Luca; Malachite Kingfisher by Ian N. White; Violet-eared Waxbill by Ian N. White.

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