There are fantastic opportunities for birdwatching during Senegal holidays. The country is home to over 600 different species and the birdlife here is truly fascinating and accessible at the same time: it's guaranteed to stimulate both the expert and the amateur birdwatcher alike. Many of the hotels we work with offer day trips for keen ornithologists with experienced guides. The areas below are in northern Senegal, however we also offer a handful of hotels in Casamance to the south which offers excellent birdwatching opportunities.
The Sine Saloum Delta
The Saloum Delta National Park
The Saloum Delta National Park is an area of mangroves, coastal lagoons and islands and an absolute haven for hundreds of species of birds. The region is in the south of the country, north of The Gambia and has large areas of mangroves, secondary forest and grasslands.There are many raptor species in the area including Dark Chanting Goshawk, Grasshopper Buzzard, African Hawk Eagle and Grey Kestrel.
Réserves de Popenguine & de la Somone
Just to the north of Saly are two tiny reserves, which are home to some 150 different species of birds. Following a sighting of a Blue Rock-thrush in 1986, the Réserve de Popenguine was declared a protected zone. The Campement Keur Cupaam in Popenguine can arrange trips to see the various species with resident ornithological guides from the National Parks Authority. The neighbouring Réserve de la Somone was created by the local community in 1999 and is independently maintained. Combined birding tours can be arranged at Popenguine for both reserves.
Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary
Situated to the north of Dakar, near St Louis, is the Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a Ramsar Site. It is a wetland of 16,000ha situated in the Senegal River Delta and comprises a large lake surrounded by streams, ponds and backwaters which form a sanctuary for large numbers of water birds including Purple Heron, Black-crowned Night Heron, African Spoonbill, Great Cormorant, Great White Pelican and, Black Crowned Crane. Arabian Bustard may also be seen at Djoudj on occasions. Over 300 species have been recorded in total. The area is accessible by road from St Louis and it is open all year round, although many parts of the park are inaccessible during the rainy season, when the area is also popular with mosquitoes. Bicycles are available for hire in the park.