Over 226 bird species have been recorded in this area. These range from forest species such as the Trumpeter Hornbill and colourful Narina Trogon, waterfowl, grassland “little brown jobs”, bushveld birds such as thrushes mousebirds and barbets, to a variety of raptors of which the Crowned Eagle is recorded to have bred in the valley for over twenty-five years. Another endangered species that occurs here is the Ground Hornbill.
Download our BIRD CHECKLIST 2021. If you’ve seen any birds on the reserve not on the list – please email us with updates.
“A group of 15 of us enjoyed a most memorable days birding at Gwahumbe Game Reserve on 28 September 2019. At 6:30 am on Saturday morning, Shanon MacKenzie and I were standing at the reception discussing the plans for the day when I suddenly noticed a small weaver attending a recently constructed nest. On closer inspection with binoculars it turned out to be a male Lesser Masked Weaver in full breeding plumage, a new species for the reserve. This is now the eighth species of weaver seen in the reserve. What a start !
Once all the guests had arrived, we enjoyed a hot cup of coffee whilst watching Amethyst and Greater Double-collared Sunbirds feeding on a flowering Weeping Boerbean, Schotia brachypetala. We then waited for a short while for the Lesser Masked Weaver to reappear, which he did giving good views for all. We then set off in earnest for what promised to be a great days birding. Craig MacKenzie kindly drove us down into the valley. Spring has certainly sprung and the birds were alive with song.
A walk along the river was most productive and we quickly added a multitude of species. Some of our notable sightings were Brown Snake Eagle (only the second sighting in the reserve), Little Sparrowhawk, (yet another new species for the reserve), gave great scope views, Jackal Buzzard, Ring-necked Dove calling, which sounds like “work harder – work harder”, a multitude of Knysna Turaco, Burchell’s Coucal, a confiding male Klaas’s Cuckoo, a splendid male Narina Trogon, Giant Kingfisher, Little Bee-eater, African Hoopoe, Green Wood Hoopoe, Trumpeter Hornbill, Black-collared & Crested Barbet, Golden-tailed and Cardinal Woodpecker, Chinspot Batis, Southern Tchagra, Black Cuckooshrike, Little Rush Warbler, male African Paradise Flycatcher sporting his long tail, Black-bellied Starling, Kurrichane Thrush, Brown Scrub Robin, Mocking Cliff Chat, Mountain Wagtail and Striped Pipit. Thereafter we headed back up to the lodge where we enjoyed a delicious brunch. By now it was getting rather hot and so we did a little birding around the lodge where we found Cape Batis and Orange-breasted Bushshrike. The Springboks were playing Namibia in the World Cup Rugby so during the heat of the day we enjoyed watching the second half and our fabulous victory!
In the afternoon once it had cooled down we took an afternoon drive and found some more great birds and mammals including a stunning pair of Red-throated Wryneck, immaculate Olive Bushshrike, Southern Boubou, endemic Cape Grassbird and Croaking Cisticola. Mammals included Impala, Blesbok, several impressive Nyala and Blue Wildebeest.”
A variety of antelope may be seen at Gwahumbe including Nyala, Impala, Blesbok, Blue Wildebeest, Reedbuck, Kudu, Bushbuck, Grey Duiker and the endangered Blue Duiker. Giraffe, Zebra, Caracal, Large Spotted Genet, Serval, Black Backed Jackal, Porcupine, Cape Clawless Otter, Spotted Necked Otter, Thick-tailed Galago, Bush Pig and Warthog are also found on the farm. Hippos were re-introduced into Malinga Hippo Pool in 2000; a first for the region.
Gwahumbe Game & Spa offers game drives in open 4×4 vehicles with a qualified field guide to ensure your safety and viewing experience. Game drives are undoubtedly the best way to view our exceptional fauna & flora and offers you the chance to get up close and personal with the game in a natural setting. As our reserve is relatively small, there is always an excellent chance for guests to view our game. Self-drives are also possible on the Reserve, but do require a 4×4 vehicle. Get details here: