Sokoke Scops Owl by David Hoddinott, Painted Tiger Parrot by Lev Frid, Great Hornbill by Jan Pienaar 

Dear Friends of Rockjumper, 

16 August 2023 marked our 25th anniversary and we are absolutely thrilled and bursting with pride. For a quarter of a century now, we’ve had the incredible joy of creating countless birding and travel memories for tens of thousands of fellow bird enthusiasts. Along the way, we’ve also made a meaningful impact by supporting numerous conservation initiatives and spreading the word about the breathtaking world of birding.

And here’s the best part – we’ve been having an absolute blast throughout this journey! We can’t help but smile when we think about all the fun we’ve had.

What truly warms our hearts is that all of this would not have been possible without the unwavering support of our wonderful guests and friends. You’ve been right there with us, sharing in the adventure, the laughter, and the awe-inspiring moments. From the bottom of our hearts, we want to express our deepest gratitude to each and every one of you.

And you know what? We’re not slowing down! In fact, we’re eagerly looking forward to the next 25 years of even more incredible experiences. We can’t wait to create more unforgettable memories, embark on life-changing journeys, and continue to explore our fascinating world together.

Here’s to you, to us, and to the next 25 years of friendship, adventure, and discovery. Thank you for being a part of our story, and here’s to the exciting chapters yet to come! 



Adam Riley

For the past two decades, my key birding goal has been to see a representative of every single bird family.

Originally I had intended to accumulate as large a bird list as possible but at times I felt that the focus of always finding the next new bird somewhat diminished the pleasure I gained from birding. However by targeting every bird family I would experience the diversity of the avian world, travel to some really interesting destinations and each new family would be particularly meaningful.

Six years ago, not without some adventures (that can be related in another post), I managed to track down the Hylocitrea in the montane forests of Sulawesi. This was my penultimate bird family. All that remained was the Plains-wanderer. Another monotypic family, the Plains-wanderer is a buttonquail-like bird of the dry, open plains of scattered locations along the fringes of Australia’s great outback. My search for this bird was thwarted by the birth of my daughter, COVID and other factors but finally the stars aligned and this July saw the Riley family jet out of South Africa bound for Brisbane.

Adam Riley celebrating his final bird family with his son's Will and Alex and fellow birders.

Over the course of three weeks we slowly made our way southwards and finally inland to the fabled Deniliquin area, most famous in birding circles as a reliable location for the Plains-wanderer. We had hired the services of local birding leader Phil Maher for the day and I was joined by good friends Ron Guthrie and Richard White. Our day time birding was focussed around finding some local specialties such as Superb Parrot and we had a brilliant day out birding. However the weather steadily deteriorated during the day and it was with trepidation that we set off in the late afternoon for an outing that was to culminate with a nocturnal search for the star of the show. My two sons William and Alex (aged 10 and 8) were also determined to be there for this much anticipated event. By the time we got to Phil’s chosen site at sunset it was freezing cold with driving rain, not ideal conditions for setting off on foot into the dark wilderness, but this was our one and only shot….! First sighting was a wet, miserable rabbit, then a few Stubble Quails and Australasian Pipits and finally the magic happened, a cute, short-tailed rotund Plains-wanderer was there in his full glory! Further searching nearby revealed his mate, the more boldly patterned and colourful female and in the end we found no less than 5 birds in an hour of searching. Apparently the previous wet summer had provided ideal conditions for this bird and although still considered Critically Endangered, it was a great season for the species.

Despite being soaked to the skin (mostly caused by grovelling in the mud and rain to obtain low angle photos), we shared a bottle of champers to celebrate the culmination of my twenty year quest and it was great to share the moment of success with my two sons and the good friends who accompanied me. Thank you to Phil Maher for the spot-on guidance!

Plains-wanderer by Adam Riley
Plains-wanderer by Adam Riley
Plains-wanderer by Adam Riley
40th Birthday Celebration in Turkey

Turkey is an exotic melting-pot of the world where Asia and Europe collide. The country is steeped in history, offers amazing scenery, plenty of gastronomic highlights, and harbours several special birds. Keith and Cath Valentine decided this would be a wonderful place to celebrate turning 40 and so along with their two children, Tyler and Ethan, they ventured out to Turkey for a two-week celebratory vacation in June, with time spent taking in the sites and sounds of Istanbul, the incredible geological formations in Cappadocia, the ancient underground cities and the stunning Mediterranean near Oludeniz 

Valentine Family in Cappadocia
Family in Goreme
Family with Hagia Sophia
Krüper's Nuthatch by Keith Valentine
Rockjumper's Remarkable HR Manager: Inspiring a Healthier Tomorrow

We want to shine a spotlight on someone extraordinary within our Rockjumper family – our beloved Human Resource Manager, Meg Taylor. Meg’s passion for the well-being of our team has been nothing short of remarkable, and her efforts have left a positive impact on all of us. 

In her continuous pursuit to ensure the welfare of our team, Meg recognised the need to counteract the sedentary nature of office work. She knew that many of us, who are often glued to our laptops for 8 – 10 hours a day, were not getting enough physical activity.   In response to this, Meg came up with an ingenious idea – a fitness program that would not only encourage movement but also foster camaraderie among our Rockjumper colleagues. 

Last year, Meg initiated the “Rockjumper Equator Challenge,” where each team member set individual fitness goals. The challenge was simple – to virtually travel across the equator collectively. By logging their steps, runs, rides, and kilometres, the entire office embarked on a fitness journey like no other. The challenge was launched in August 2022, and in less than a year, we have covered an impressive 20,105 kilometres – nearly halfway around the world! 

The impact of this fitness challenge has been truly transformative. It has motivated many of us to prioritise a healthier lifestyle, encouraging us to walk, run, and cycle like never before. The challenge has not only improved our physical well-being but has also given rise to a newfound passion for fitness among some of our colleagues. As a result, individuals who never thought they could take on marathons are now aspiring to achieve new heights and conquer their goals. 

Meg’s dedication to inspiring our team goes beyond the fitness challenge. She regularly provides support, encouragement, and guidance to each member, ensuring we feel valued and motivated. Her role in Rockjumper Birding Tours has been instrumental in building a cohesive and motivated team. By actively participating in hiring the right people and fostering a positive work culture, Meg has contributed significantly to our success as a company. 

It is not just the core office team that appreciates Meg’s efforts. The management team recognises the tremendous impact she has made, and continues to make, in nurturing a healthy and thriving work environment. 

Meg Taylor is more than just a Human Resource Manager – she is a beacon of inspiration, a catalyst for positive change, and a driving force behind our collective success. Her dedication to our well-being has created a ripple effect of positivity and personal growth that has transformed our lives both within and outside of work. 

Team Building: Whale Watching

On 14 June 2023, the Rockjumper staff embarked on an unforgettable team-building event – a thrilling whale watching expedition. The boat’s deck became a vantage point for witnessing the awe-inspiring spectacle of majestic whales breaching the surface.

The Rockjumper Team after an exciting morning of whale watching
Humpback Whale by Clayton Burne
Humpback Whale by Clayton Burne
House Crow by Reece Dodd
Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross by Reece Dodd
Brown Skua by Reece Dodd
New to The Nest

Kelly Draper

Kelly Draper grew up in Pietermaritzburg and currently resides in the coastal city of Durban. After completing her degree in Dietetics, she practiced as a clinical dietitian at a large government hospital. After more than a decade in that environment, it was time for a change and to try something new. Her interests include gardening, health and a love for wine.

Mike Meidlinger

Born in Johannesburg South Africa, Mike can barely remember a time without being fascinated by birds. Even as a pre-youth, much time was spent squeezed against the pain of the glass car window, fixated, and staring out. This position, held persistently for hours on end, was in search of whatever could be momentarily glimpsed perched on power lines, atop treetops, strutting on fields or in flight while in transit anywhere.

Time spent in the Witwatersrand, and whilst on intrepid family holidays to the eastern mecca of the Kruger National Park, was brief but sufficient to instil a deep wonder and infatuation for all things avian. This has resulted in a lifelong passion for nature and conservation as well as an affinity for others that are met while in the pursuit of similar passions themselves.

Moving to Northern Ireland, as a teenager I immersed myself as a member and then youth leader of the junior RSPB bird and wildlife club. This as well as being involved within the local adult equivalent and eventually becoming the club’s outings secretary by the end of my school career. While at this age, I also spent many hours in service for, or down at, the local Belfast bird reserve, now known as RSPB Wow. Visiting and assisting here throughout high school affirmed, cemented and laid the foundation for a true obsession for both birding and other people.

Wade Lee

Wade has been surrounded my nature his entire life, having grown up on the Manyoni Private Game in the heart of Zululand, South Africa. He took up birding at the early age of 8, becoming a professional nature guide as soon as he left school. To further his global experience, Wade took a sabbatical from the African savannas and spent months guiding in the Andean Cloud Forests of Ecuador.

Team Survey

A few months back we decided to have a little fun and ask our team a few questions about themselves. Below are the results. Enjoy getting to know a little bit more about our Core Team members.


1. My preferred name is?
2. My nicknames are?
3. When I’m not birding you’ll find me?
4. The Birding bug bit me at age?
5. The bird that got me hooked was a?
6. My favourite places to bird are?
7. I joined the Rockjumper Team because?
8. My favourite thing about the Rockjumper family is?
9. Besides a feather-fetish, I am also into (collecting / slugs & snails / photography / world peace)?
10. My close friends and family describe me as?


Reece Dodd

  1. Reece
  2. haven’t been allocated a nickname as of yet!
  3. Photographing birds
  4. 20
  5. Boulder Chat
  6. Miombo Woodlands in Zimbabwe
  7. I really liked the look of the company and the reputation as well as myself being obsessed with birds
  8. The combined knowledge and willingness to share it to help others
  9. Photography, fish, reptiles, plants
  10. Crazy about wildlife
Clayton Burne

Clayton Burne

  1. Clayton
  2. CB
  3. at my desk ensuring everyone else is birding well
  4. 15
  5. Knysna Turaco, South American Andes
  6. I ran out of birding cash in South America and didn’t want to go back to England…
  7. The ‘can do’ attitude of the entire team
  8. photography, fishing, golf, darts, gardening, true crime
  9. Mr Grumpy

Brittany James

  1. Brittany
  2. Britt
  3. In the kitchen
  4. 22
  5. Secretary bird
  6. Anywhere outdoors as long as its not cold and rainy
  7. I thought that I would be well suited to the position and joining the Rockjumper Team was/is an opportunity to learn new skills
  8. We have a reliable and helpful team
  9. Cooking/exercising
  10. Semi OCD/caring

Keith Valentine

  1. Keith
  2. Slinksta was my nickname at school, otherwise KV, Keithster. Back in cricket playing days I went by Desperado due to my long hair
  3. Playing tennis or table tennis, or in the cricket nets with my boys, cooking up a storm, or playing guitar
  4. 6, this is when my first checklists date back to (Feb 1990). every year after that the bug was simply cemented.
  5. I don’t think there was one. What got me hooked was breaking records, whether it be a day record, weekend record, Kruger holiday record. That was always the main goal while also trying to see new birds as well.
  6. Pretty much anywhere I haven’t been yet. Then loads that I love to go back to and they include most birding sites in the country’s as well. The list is long but top ten would likely be Kenya, Tanzania, Malaysia, India, Thailand, Brazil, Argentina, Indonesia, Bhutan, Uganda”
  7. I love birds and I love showing people birds.
  8. How we all work so hard for each other and genuinely love seeing or hearing about people enjoying their birding holidays. Also love that we are a global company and completely online based. Allows anyone anywhere on Earth with a wifi connection to join our team. ,”
  9. cooking, playing sport, playing guitar, reading, gardening
  10. Well travelled and full of interesting information
birding tour operator

Nigel Redman

  1. Nigel
  2. Marabou (formerly!)
  3. At home or down the pub!
  4. 7
  5. Dunnock or European Robin and later a Common Cuckoo
  6. Anywhere outside Britain!
  7. It’s the best bird tour company
  8. We are family!
  9. Opera, good food and fine wine.
  10. Self-centred. It may be true to some extent, but it’s not the whole story!

Peter Kaestner

  1. Peter
  2. When I was young my brothers called me Fat-boy
  3. Under water
  4. 2
  5. Vermilion Flycatcher started my brother when he was ten and I was two
  6. Colombia
  7. I want to share my passion for birds.
  8. The caring community
  9. Identifying all other living things I encounter
  10. Nuts

Bobby Wilcox

  1. Bobby
  2. None known
  3. Cooking, Pumping iron
  4. 25‚ I was a late bloomer!
  5. Yellow-rumped Warbler
  6. Colombia, Argentina, Nevada
  7. Before I even had an inkling of applying I went to a bird fair to talk to different guide companies about getting my foot in the door. Rockjumper was the only one that didn’t intimate that guiding was a sure fire path to becoming a lonely spinster with nothing to cling to but my epic life list.
  8. Everyone is super open and supportive and loves what they do. 
  9. Knitting
  10. My five year old nephew recently described me in a Pros/Cons writing assignment as ‚ Fun, radical and funny, with the only con being, too funny.

Sarah Dell

  1. Sarah
  2. Sez, Serie, Zooz
  3. Gardening or crafting
  4. Not a specific age but I grew up learning birds. My family are nature lovers and we were blessed with abundant birds in our large garden.
  5. Crested barbet, paradise flycatcher, African hoopoe, golden oriole and forked tail drongo are just a few
  6. Gardens!
  7. I was without a job and thought the advert for a job at a bird touring company sounded different. I wasn’t keen on a corporate office. I gratefully got the job. 10 years later I’m still smiling and enjoying my job.
  8. We are all on the same page and think in the same way and get on well and know how to get the job done. There are a few of us old timers still going and we have a special connection.
  9. Buying pretty material for a project one day
  10. Creative and organized

Forrest Rowland

  1. Forrest
  2. Bosque, Ted Bibs, Bibby 
  3. Thinking about birding or perhaps wildlife photography
  4. 9
  5. Trinidad Motmot
  6. Anywhere, anytime, but Colombia, Bhutan, and South Africa are pretty high up
  7. I got to create loads of fun itineraries to execute, and to learn more about the World
  8. Positive outlook, durability, support, and fun-loving colleagues
  9. Photography, Film, Writing, Music
  10. Enigmatic in a good way? And kind
Megan Taylor

Megan Taylor

  1. Meg
  2. Meglet, Meggles
  3. Training with my pup!
  4. 28
  5. Shoebill pictures in the Rockjumper office
  6. Anywhere, everywhere, especially the places I haven’t been yet!
  7. I wanted a new challenge
  8. I learn something new every time I chat with anyone in the Team, about a bird, a destination, life… They’re all such incredible humans!
  9. Dragonflies, flowers & puppies.
  10. It’s a secret!
birding tour operator

Mark Beevers

  1. Mark Beevers
  2. Not got one unless you lot down south know different.
  3. At home typing up bird stuff until it’s time to go for a pint.
  4. That long ago I can’t remember, I went to Slimbridge wildfowl and wetlands place when I was ten, that’ll do.
  5. Waxwing
  6. Carr Vale nature reserve, my beloved patch, Isles of Scilly (32 trips so I must like it there) and of course Morocco (17 tours)
  7. Having travelled as a client I realised I could get around the world and get paid for it just because I was an experienced passionate birder with people skills though at least with these people I don’t have to use restraint techniques.
  8. Friendship, I’ve met some great people in my 20 years association. 
  9. Mammals, butterflies, dragonflies, Pink Floyd, rock music, real ale, politics and current affairs and William who has appeared in the newsletter before (our dog)
  10. Crazy and obsessed with birds

Paul Josop

  1. Paul
  2. Pauly
  3. Working, training or on safari!
  4. 21
  5. Gorgeous Bushshrike
  6. iSimangaliso Wetland Park – Eastern Shores, iSimangaliso Wetland Park – Mkuze Game Reserve, Mpempe Pan, Hluhluwe Floodplain, Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve, Ongoye Forest, Mtunzini, West Coast National Park, Tankwa Karoo National Park, Mountain Zebra National Park, Marievale Bird Sanctuary, Pilanesberg National Park, Kruger National Park
  7. It was a dream job – persevered for 5+ years to be part of the team!
  8. Like minded people!
  9. Photography, tracking animals, climbing mountains, wild flowers and fishing!
  10. Wildlife crazy!

Wade Lee

  1. Wade
  2. Vondo
  3. Looking for frogs and snakes
  4. 8
  5. Lilac breasted roller and flame bowerbird
  6. Ecuador, especially the choco cloud forests as well as my home. Manyoni private game reserve
  7. Because it has been a dream of mine ever since I first birded with the legend himself and owner of Rockjumper, Adam Riley. The places we as guides get to explore and travel to and share knowledge about is mindblowing and is incredibly rewarding for myself. 
  8. The sheer amount of knowledge that each person posseses and how willing everyone is to help
  9. Fishing, herping.
  10. Crazy and wild but in the good sense, as well as outgoing and full of patience and always willing to help.

Jenna Phillips-Page

  1.  Jenna
  2. Jen / Mom
  3. Exercising, gardening, playing with the kids (inevitably acting like one of the kids)
  4. Probably 32ish
  5. I LOVE a spoonbill, they fly so strangely – makes me laugh every time!
  6. I haven’t done a lot of specific Birding but feel like Zululand offers a lot of opportunity and it’s a place I love,
  7. Meg asked me to)…
  8. The people! 
  9. Cooking, I love to share a meal around a table with friends and family
  10. Probably loud, energetic and fun

Greg de Klerk

  1. Greg
  2. Dough, Greggles, Spanish
  3. Not birding? Running around with the family, working on my aquarium.
  4. 9 years old
  5. A lovebird – escapee hybrid
  6. Kenya and Tanzania, Bhutan and West Coast NO
  7. I had a passion for birding and a travel itch to scratch.
  8. We are family. The best working team around.
  9. Photography, Big Cats and Carnivore conservation
  10. A reliable crazy traveling birder
birding tour operator

Paul Varney

  1. Paul,
  2. Varney but in school was known as “Fanny” – a Chinese friend had trouble with Varney…and it stuck.
  3. Watching sport, being with the family
  4. 9 years old,
  5. Nothing specific but best bird still was a summer plumage Ross’s Gull in Norfolk in 1984…mega rare (in that plumage) and gorgeous
  6. Norfolk coast (especially autumn), Isles of Scilly…Ecuador and Brazil are faves too and just returned from Bhutan which was really special
  7. Retired from my corporate job to guide. Combines people and birds, two things I love.  Showing nice people awesome birds in wonderful places is better than producing and presenting a 5 year strategy!
  8. So supportive and caring. Really impressed with the welcome and faith shown in me…
  9. Sport – football, season ticket holder at Norwich City – were in the English Premier League but relegate last year and had a mediocre season this year but my boys and I have enjoyed some great times in recent years!
  10. A bird nut but hopefully caring, loving and supportive

Stuart Elsom 

  1. Stu
  2. Twitch, Surveying
  3. 8
  4. Waxwing
  5. Neotropics
  6. I’d met Adam a few times and he came across as someone who I got on very well with and could imagine working for. I felt like we were on the same page from Day 1.
  7. Learning from some of the best field ornithologists and most experienced tour guides.
  8. Photography, insects, football, gardening
  9. Bird mad, bordering obsessive

Rob Williams

  1. Rob
  2. Nugget or Nugg, Dr Roc (it was a spelling mistake that stuck)
  3. Reading nature books, taking photos or worrying about politics. 
  4. 4
  5. Eurasian Sparrowhawk plucking a Starling.
  6. Peru, Colombia, Spain, Brazil
  7. I was asked and it is the best crew of leaders out there with fantastic support staff in the office.
  8. The comradeship and fun
  9. Otters, mammals, dragonflies, butterflies, photography and trying to garden. 
  10. Weird, obsessive, excitable

Mike Meidlinger

  1. Mike
  2. Wee mike
  3. Out in the bush, spending time with, training or mentoring safari guides in the Greater Kruger and Greater Marakele regions.
  4. I can’t really remember, but sources indicate it all began at around five years old. 
  5. Narina Trogon 
  6. Nainital (India), Tacumshin (Ireland), Miombo Woodlands (Harare), Cape Town (South Africa), Isles of Scilly (England), Cape May (USA), Denali NP (Alaska)
  7. With its infamous reputation, and fantastic opportunities, what better way to immerse into the exciting world of global birding than with truly one of the best teams in the industry. 
  8. It is really like a family, that is for sure. While the freedom and variety of experience offered is truly astounding. 
  9. Walking in the bush, butterflies
  10. Always smiling with a witty sense of humor

Lev Frid

  1. Lev
  2. Lev
  3. Herping!
  4. 11
  5. Mangrove Cuckoo
  6. Too many! Algonquin and Point Pelee parks here in Ontario, Canada where I live, the island of New Guinea, Mexico, Brazil‚ different places for different reasons‚ and sometimes food is also a factor.
  7. Working for Rockjumper was my dream job!
  8. Everyone is very kind and supportive no matter what you need!
  9. Herping, butterflies and dragonflies, photography, eating, kayaking, social media!
  10. Birding-centered

Niki Stuart

  1. Niki
  2. My husband calls me SMURF (sad name I gave myself 22 years ago at laser tag and has been his nickname for me ever since).
  3. When I’m not birding, you’ll most likely find me engaged in my other passion‚ running. I find solace and joy in hitting the pavement or exploring scenic trails, challenging myself physically and mentally. Running allows me to connect with nature in a different way, appreciating the landscapes and experiencing the thrill of pushing my limits. It complements by keeping me fit, focused, and ready to embrace the wonders of the natural world whenever I have the opportunity.
  4. Later in life
  5. The bird that truly captivated me and solidified my passion for birding was the breathtaking Paradise Flycatcher. It was a remarkable encounter, witnessing the vibrant colors and graceful flight of this magnificent species.
  6. Hard to say because I still need to do more travelling so will only answer with my most recent travel to Antarctica. The emperor penguins in Antarctica is my favourite for now.
  7. Passion for Birds: Rockjumper Birding is renowned for its expertise in birding tours and expeditions. Joining the office team allows individuals with a genuine passion for birds to immerse themselves in an environment where they can work with like-minded colleagues, share knowledge, and contribute to the conservation and appreciation of avian species.
    Professional Growth: Being a part of the Rockjumper Birding office team provides excellent opportunities for professional development. The company has a wealth of experience in the birding industry, and employees can benefit from training, mentorship, and exposure to a wide range of birding destinations and clientele. This can enhance their expertise, expand their networks, and open doors to exciting career prospects within the birding and travel sectors.
    Contribution to Conservation: Rockjumper Birding has a strong commitment to conservation and sustainable tourism. By joining the office team, individuals can actively contribute to the company’s efforts in promoting bird conservation initiatives and responsible travel practices. This can provide a sense of purpose and fulfillment, knowing that their work is making a positive impact on bird populations and their habitats.
    Collaborative and Supportive Environment: Rockjumper Birding prides itself on fostering a collaborative and supportive work environment. Being a part of the office team means working alongside passionate professionals who share a common love for birds. This creates a vibrant and inspiring workplace where individuals can learn from each other, exchange ideas, and collectively contribute to delivering exceptional birding experiences to clients.
  8. Travel Opportunities: One of the perks of working in the Rockjumper Birding office team is the potential for travel. While the primary focus may be on supporting birding tours and operations from the office, there may be opportunities to join field trips, familiarize oneself with birding hotspots, and experience firsthand the destinations the company operates in. This can be an exciting aspect for individuals who have a desire to explore new places and encounter diverse bird species.
    In summary, joining the Rockjumper Birding office team offers a unique chance to align one’s passion for birds with a rewarding career, contribute to conservation efforts, grow professionally, and be part of a supportive community of birding enthusiasts.
  9. Teamwork, Running km
  10. NICE NIKI (or NARCOLEPSY NIKI because I always tired)


Kruger Challenge

We continue to be in awe of the work that our friends at BirdLife International and BirdLife South Africa continue to do and we are very proud of the small part we have been able to play with regards to some of their conservation initiatives. 

As most of you are aware Rockjumper is a BirdLife Species Champion for the White-winged Flufftail, a little-known bird that many of you will only be familiar with through stories while on tour from some of our tour leaders, from articles that we have written about the bird from time to time or from the blog posts on our website. The White-winged Flufftail is an extremely rare bird, and its mythical status is only amplified by its habits and habitat. Earlier this year (Feb) we ran our special Kruger Birding & Wildlife Challenge which saw several teams gather in South Africa’s Kruger National Park. This was the second edition of the event ever and despite the inclement weather was a resounding success.

Daniel Danckwerts, one of Rockjumper’s tour leaders, who participated in the event had the following to say.

“There is nothing quite like a birding race to bring out a friendly competitive steak among colleagues and friends, particularly when it’s on your home turf. The Kruger Challenge achieved exactly this, and the ultimate winning team took their lead within the final hour of the final day. Each day saw groups extend their reach as far as they could to the most marginal corners of Kruger National Park to gain an upper edge. Such familiar birds as Southern Fiscal, Common Myna, Senegal Coucal, and Lazy Cisticola became top targets as they all occur marginally within the park and thus carried the same weighting as our rarities, White-throated Bee-eater and Common Whitethroat. Three hundred became our ‘number to reach,’ and two of our four groups managed this impressive milestone on the final afternoon. Many of the region’s top targets were enjoyed and included specials such as Greater Painted-snipe, African Pygmy Goose, Lesser Moorhen, Icterine and Olive-tree Warblers, African Barred Owlet, Bronze-winged Courser, Monotonous and Dusky Lark’s, Harlequin Quail, Lemon-breasted Canary, Thick-billed Cuckoo, Arnot’s Chat, Dickinson’s Kestrel, Racket-tailed Roller, and Brown-necked Parrot.”

Adam Riley and his team once again finished in top spot and it awaits to be seen if 2025 can yield an upset. Much fun was had by all, and we are thrilled to announce that we raised a total of R231,220 (US$13,600) which has been donated to the ongoing research and protection of the White-winged Flufftail. We couldn’t have done it without everyone who signed up for this special event. Thank you for all your support. As always events of this magnitude are not possible without collaboration and key partners included BirdLife South Africa, ZEISS, Middelpunt Wetland Trust, and Painted Wolf Wines. Thank you for your unwavering support.

In addition to the amount raised during the Kruger Challenge, Rockjumper has also donated GBP10,000 to BirdLife International as White-winged Flufftail Species Champions. We maintain our passionate stance towards species conservation and will continue to support the White-winged Flufftail and other species in peril across the globe. 

Our next Kruger Challenge event will be from 1st to 8th February 2025.

Lesser Antilles - Pearls of the Caribbean
Forrest Rowland

Sometime, nearly 7 years ago now, we endeavored to create a tour that would include visits to all of the major Lesser Antillean islands: Antigua & Barbuda, Montserrat, Guadeloupe, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Barbados, & Grenada. 10 Islands. 8 Countries. We further postulated (without any humility whatsoever and a good dose of optimism we will admit) that we could squeeze ALL of the island endemic species, and subspecies, into one spectacular comprehensive tour that would set the bar for island birding in the Lesser Antilles. The journey was first organized by sailboat, but proved far too difficult to land on all the islands, do so in a realistic timeframe, and not require participants to seriously consider selling a kidney or other necessary organ on the black market to fund the endeavor. We scaled back our hopes to include fewer islands…but it still proved too impractical. Then we decided that another approach by utilizing inter-island flights and ferries was the only way. And it was! Unfortunately, this was no easy feat. Montserrat and St. Lucia had both suffered recent volcanic events. St. Lucia and St. Vincent suffered massive hurricanes. And it seemed impossible to patch together the necessary logistics to pull this off in anything less than 3 weeks, and with no assurances from the local airlines. Given the volatile nature of the island chain, which is highly volcanic and smack in the hurricane belt, the majority of the endemic species fall within an endangered species listing criteria to some degree. A shocking number are listed as endangered, many critically so. Despite the beautiful rugged and lush primary forests, stunning white sand beaches, and breathtaking scenery overall, island life in the Lesser Antilles has its difficulties for birds and humans alike. We were at a standstill….for years.  

Plumbeous Warbler by Forrest Rowland

Enter Ryan Chenery, and his brilliant wife Alex. While we had abandoned the idea and cast our creative logistical talents elsewhere in the World, a young couple from Barbados (well, Barbados and England, respectively) surfaced with a birding tour company based in the Lesser Antilles. This company appeared to specialize in tackling the severe logistics of getting birding groups through the region, bagging the dazzling array of special island and regional endemics along the way. They even purported to enjoy doing so, bragging about having “down time” at the beach after seeing all the endemics, and spoke of lobster lunches and scenic boat rides! It was a dream come true!!! The Lesser Antilles were back on the menu. But, could it really be that luxuriant, enjoyable, and smooth a tour?  

Bridled Quail-Dove by Forrest Rowland
Montserrat Oriole by Forrest Rowland
Grenada Dove by Forrest Rowland

In March I was excited to be the guinea pig.. Let’s be honest, I LOVE being the guinea pig for new tours. I accepted employment with Rockjumper some 13+ years ago with the stipulation that I would be let run amok, so to speak, to create new tours all over the hemisphere and pilot them to a successful version that could be replicated. These days, many of Rockjumper’s fabulous expedition leaders, my esteemed colleagues, fill this niche all across the globe. New destinations are constantly being explored, but the Lesser Antilles had been this little, antagonistic, gap in our menu for the Western Hemisphere which covers nearly every country and habitat known. I couldn’t wait to see if the itinerary we had created with Ryan’s expertise and Alex’s diligence and finesse would be the answer to the long-standing question: can we really pull off the Lesser Antilles sweep? 

Barbuda Warbler by Forrest Rowland

I am happy to report that this was one of the most enjoyable, scenically-pleasing, cuisine-rich tours that I have ever had the immense pleasure to lead. The islands were welcoming and beautiful, the logistics flawless and efficient. Ryan Chenery as our local leader was an absolute joy and enthusiastic professional in the field. But, did we manage the famed and impossible Lesser Antilles endemic sweep? YES WE DID!!! We made it to every island, including mythical Montserrat, and had wonderful experiences with every single endemic species in this stunning island chain. It was incredible! We enjoyed three species of boobies and both present Tropicbirds during our ferry rides. We had a private boat ride to Barbuda complete with lobster for lunch, and we indeed did have some promised down time at the beach to celebrate our success in the forests and native habitats of these special islands. It was all wonderfully true, as hoped. Check out the Trip Report here: 

We can’t wait to repeat the feat in years to come! Join us.

Southern Ecuador
Dušan Brinkhuizen

Our Southern Endemics tour to Ecuador was epic. The number of rare birds and specialties that we got to see was pretty overwhelming. The fact that Chestnut-bellied Cotinga only ranked #10 on our top ten list tells you something! We kicked off with the Pacific coastal extension targeting the endemic Esmeraldas Woodstar. We successfully found this little gem and even witnessed some display interactions between a male and a female! After obtaining views of the endemic El Oro Tapaculo, a notorious skulker, we continued to the highlands of El Cajas adding the endemic Violet-throated Metaltail to the list. The endemic Pale-headed Brushfinch was an easy target and once again we got to see a male Blue-throated Hillstar, Ecuador’s latest endemic, a species only described in 2018! Bonus birds that we got to see in the area included Crescent-faced Antpitta and Chestnut-bellied Cotinga back-to-back unbelievable! The Southern Andes produced crackers like Jocotoco Antpitta and Neblina Metaltail. Downslope in the foothills of the Cordillera del Condor we connected sweetly with the amazing Orange-throated Tanager, together with many more rarities like Blackish Pewee, Zimmer’s Antbird and Fiery-throated Fruiteater! 

Chestnut-bellied Cotinga by Holger Teichman

In the subtropics we targeted the highly localized Bar-winged Wood Wren but also got the rare Spectacled Prickletail and Roraiman Flycatcher the latter species being a new one for Rockjumper! In Tumbesian habitats we had tons of highlights like Watkins’s Antpitta, Pale-browed Tinamou, Rainbow Starfrontlet and Tumbes Tyrant, to mention a few. However, without a doubt our star bird here was a stunning Buff-fronted Owl! In the humid tropics of coastal El Oro we ended the trip with a displaying male Long-wattled Umbrellabird. Click here to see our video on Facebook?! 

Jocotoco Antpitta by Holger Teichmann
Long-wattled Umbrellabird by Holger Teichmann
Watkin's Antpitta by Holger Teichmann
Crescent-faced Antpitta by Holger Teichmann
Buff-fronted Owl by Holger Teichmann
Esmeraldas Woodstar by Holger Teichmann
Kenya Relaxed
Nigel Redman

It is probably impossible not to have a great trip to Kenya, although all too often it is easy to get sucked into striving for a big species list or spending too much time searching for a particularly elusive species of cisticola or lark. The premise for a Kenya Relaxed tour was to have a really great trip without the additional pressure of targeting difficult birds, or having to suffer long drives and poor accommodation. This year’s inaugural relaxed tour proved to be a great success. Our small group, using a single land cruiser, enjoyed a veritable feast of birds and mammals, despite arriving at the end of a long drought. The dry conditions over much of the country had the advantageous effect of concentrating the wildlife close to waterholes and rivers, while the Mara was lush and green having received early rains.  

Plains Zebra by Nigel Redman
Cheetah chasing zebras by Gretchen Locy

The 13-day itinerary covered some of Kenya’s best protected areas: Nairobi National Park, Mount Kenya, the trio of Samburu/Buffalo Springs/Shaba, Lake Nakuru, and the Maasai Mara. Although we were not trying to achieve a big list, we still collectively recorded some 420 species of birds and 45 mammals, and there were many highlights. The most popular birds included Lilac-breasted Roller, Saddle-billed Stork, Vulturine Guineafowl and Superb Starling, all of which are pretty much guaranteed on a trip to Kenya. But we also found some of Kenya’s more special birds including Hinde’s Babbler and Jackson’s Francolin, and even a Kenya rarity, Black-winged Pratincole. But, as always in Kenya, the mammals stole the show. We had amazing encounters with zebras, giraffes, antelopes of every description, warthogs, monkeys, rhinos, elephants and hippos. And the icing on the cake? Six Cheetahs, one Leopard and many Lions, some of which were awake! 

Red-and-yellow Barbet by Nigel Redman
Vulturine Guineafowl by Nigel Redman
White-throated Bee-eater by Gretchen Locy


White-bellied Cinclodes by Dubi Shapiro
Peru - Central: Rare Andean Endemics

Our tour of Peru’s central Andes is designed to search for a wide variety of scarce and rare species, many of which are localised endemics, a testament to the rich avian diversity of Peru in general. A mountainous country, Peru’s isolated valleys and cordilleras have seen avian evolution at its finest, with many species being described to science in recent years.

We will visit a variety of habitats during our tour, including high-altitude lakes, cloud forests, and Andean grasslands. This will give us the opportunity to find more than 50 endemics, including some of the most sought-after birds in Peru.

Just some of the birds we are targeting include Golden-backed Mountain Tanager, Pardusco, Rufous-browed Hemispingus, Junin Grebe, Creamy-bellied Antwren, Fiery-throated Metaltail, Marcapata Spinetail, Eye-ringed Thistletail, Black-goggled Brushfinch, several antpittas and tapaculos, Masked Fruiteater, Bay-vented and White-cheeked Cotingas, Royal, White-breasted and Peruvian Seaside Cinclodes, Tit-like Dacnis and Yellow-scarfed Tanager.

White-throated Robin by Nigel Redman 
Azerbaijan - Caucasus & Caspian Birding

Azerbaijan is a hidden gem for birdwatchers in the Western Palearctic. Located in the Caucasus region, it is a crossroads for a variety of birds from Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. This small country has recorded over 400 species, many of which are rare or difficult to see elsewhere. This is a land of major contrasts, with a mix of high-altitude mountain ranges, arid steppe, and desert. We’ll be birding across much of the country, from the Greater Caucasus Mountain range running along almost all the country’s northern border, to the Lesser Caucasus, Talish Mountains and the exclave, or autonomous republic of Nakhchivan.

We will be searching for several Western Palearctic range-restricted species such as Caspian Tit, Asian Crimson-winged, Desert and Mongolian Finches, Red-tailed, Finch´s & Eastern Black-eared Wheatears, White-tailed Lapwing, Bimaculated & Turkestan Short-toed Larks; White-throated Robin, Armenian and Pallas’s Gulls, Black Francolin, Eastern Imperial Eagle, Red-fronted Serin and Menetries’s Warbler. We’ll also be targeting three near endemics; Caspian and Caucasian Snowcocks as well as Caucasian Grouse. 

Trinidad Piping Guan by Adam Riley
Trinidad & Tobago - Tropical Island Birding (Relaxed)

The tropical islands of Trinidad and Tobago in the southern Caribbean are situated just off the coast of north-eastern Venezuela. It is this archipelago’s unique position, combined with a mixed terrain ranging from coastal plains to mountains, that makes it such a superb birding destination. Our tour covers the entirety of these beautiful islands, utilising fantastic accommodations in prime birding habitat. This is birding at its best and a perfect introduction to the Neotropics for those new to the habitat, combined with everything the seasoned birder could want with resident endemics and specialties that include the Bearded Bellbird, the breathtaking Scarlet Ibis, Trinidad Motmot, Tufted Coquette, and the critically endangered Endemic Trinidad Piping Guan. Photographers should also come prepared to be overwhelmed, since not only do these islands offer an impressive diversity of colourful birds such as macaws, toucans, tanagers, motmots, and hummingbirds, but many of the views are simply spectacular!



This year, 2023, marks Rockjumper’s 25th birthday and we are thrilled to bring you a brand new, exciting program that gives you every opportunity to explore our planet, and in the process see not only a wonderful array of the world’s birds, wildlife, scenic splendour, people, cultures and more but also a chance of finding every single currently recognised bird family. 

While the world’s total number of birds currently sits at 11,140 species (IOC taxonomy) the world’s total number of unique bird families is just 253 (IOC taxonomy), although one family from Hawaii (the Oos) are sadly extinct). You can bird your entire life, and even visit every single country more than once, but the reality is that while you can potentially see 8000, 9000, or dare we say even 10,000 species nobody is ever going to see every bird species on Earth. The bird families of the world, however, are a completely different story. With 253 families in total, it is an achievable goal, and the beauty is that while trying you are almost guaranteed to see half the world’s birds while also seeing a wonderful selection of countries, habitats, mammals, cultures, scenery and so much more.

Below we outline how the ‘Bird Families’ Program Works. We have also produced a special e-book that outlines some of the trickier families and where to find them. The e-book can be downloaded from our website here.

• Sign up below or e-mail directly to register for the program. 

• Registration ends 31st December 2023. 

• No cost or obligation involved. 

• We have carefully selected 25 countries that if visited, on a Rockjumper scheduled tour, give you every opportunity of finding all the currently recognised bird families. See below for the list of countries that qualify for the ‘Bird Families’ program. Within the countries selected we have outlined the tours that give you the very best chance of seeing the critical bird families and these are the tours that qualify for the ‘Bird Families’ program discounts. 

• Your next tour with Rockjumper (any qualifying tour in 2023 or 2024 even if you have booked already) qualifies for a 2.5% discount provided it is one of those listed under the Bird Families Program below. 

• Thereafter you have a maximum of 6 years to sign up for 6 further Rockjumper tours that fall under those listed for the Bird Families Program below. You will receive discounts on the tours as follows: 5% on your 2nd tour, 7.5% on your 3rd tour, 10% on your 4th tour, 12.5% on your 5th tour, 15% on your 6th tour and a whopping 17.5% on your 7th tour! 

• You can take a maximum of 7 tours under the Bird Families Program. A tour must be taken at least once every calendar year otherwise future discounts are forfeited. The tours can be taken in less than 7 years but not longer. The Bird Families Program is only valid for the scheduled Rockjumper tours outlined below and the tours must be booked directly with Rockjumper to qualify. Antarctica has been included as a bonus destination under the program. Further terms and conditions can be found below or else email  

1st tour – Save 2.5%
2nd tour – Save 5%
3rd tour – Save 7.5%
4th tour – Save 10%
5th tour – Save 12.5%
6th tour – Save 15%
7th tour – Save 17.5%
Plains-wanderer by Stephan Lorenz
Bearded Reedling by Adam Riley
Cuban Tody by Dušan Brinkhuizen


Kenya & Tanzania

  • Tanzania Mega Birding
  • Kenya Mega Birding


  • Comprehensive: Rockfowl & Upper Guinea specials
  • Mega Birding


  • Comprehensive
  • Highlights
  • Budget

South Africa

  • Eastern
  • Cape Extension
  • Birds, Wine & Big Game
  • Budget
  • Cape & Kruger
  • Western Endemics
  • Cape Wildflowers Birding & Big Game
  • Falcons & Big Cats


  • Birds & Gorillas
  • Highlights

Uganda, Tanzania, and Ghana

  • Bird Families




  • East Coast
  • Bird Families of Australasia

New Zealand

  • Comprehensive
  • North Island Extension
  • Bird Families of Australasia

New Caledonia

  • Southwest Pacific Islands: New Caledonia Extension

Papua New Guinea

  • Birding in Paradise
  • Highlights
  • Bird Families



  • Sulawesi & Halmahera


  • Birding the Buddhist Kingdom
  • Highlights


  • Sichuan Birding
  • Highlights


  • Winter Birding

Malaysia & Borneo

  • Rainforest Birds & Mammals
  • Bird Families

Oman & UAE

  • Arabian Birding Adventure

Kuwait & Saudi Arabia

  • Bird Families




  • Western Chocó Specialities


  • Mega Birding
  • Highlight
  • Southern Andes Endemics


  • Pantanal: Birds & Wildlife
  • Amazon Rainforest Ext

Argentina & Chile

  • Southern Patagonia incl. Torres del Paine NP



  • Best of Birding
  • Chiriqui Extension




  • Birding Among Volcanoes
  • Oaxaca, Veracruz & Eastern Sierras Extension



Dominican Republic

  • Endemics of Hispaniola

Puerto Rico

  • Forgotten Greater Antilles


  • Caribbean Endemic Birding


  • Bird Families




  • Best of Birding



Falkland Islands, South Georgia & Antarctica (Included as a bonus destination)



2024 Rates & Tour Schedule

We are very pleased to present our full Tour Schedule for 2024. This is available as a free download at the following link. 2024 Tour Schedule

Rockjumper proudly offers the most extensive tour selection of any bird tour company with over 340 different scheduled tours to choose from. Our tours are designed by category to allow you to choose the tour that best suites your birding style, and energy levels. With options including Highlights tours, Budget tours, Birds & more tours, fast-paced Mega style tours and so much more, there is a Rockjumper tour to satisfy every birder. We are also finding that our new Relaxed style option is proving to be very popular, and we have launched several new itineraries in this vein for 2024.  
Our 2025 dates have also been scheduled for those who wish to plan further in advance, but firm rates will only be available from next year.  

Global Birdfair

The Global Birdfair in Oakham, England has always been a wonderful event and once again Rockjumper was privileged to be able to attend. This great event has been on the cards since 1989 and our team of Sue, Dan, Mark, Nigel, Paul and Rob all had a fantastic time meeting up with our valued guests, partners and service providers. Unfortunately, Adam and Keith had a flight issue out of Johannesburg, which caused massive travel delays and they had to head back home without attending.  
This was the second new-look Birdfair since the Covid years of 2020 and 2021, which caused the event to be cancelled. Every year the proceeds generated from the Birdfair go towards a special conservation effort and this year the project is restoring and expanding forests in Ecuador’s Northwest Choco for the Endangered Black-breasted Puffleg & other threatened species. The project hopes to protect nature by creating wildlife corridors and eco-friendly income through sustainable community involvement.  

Finally, a massive thank you to everyone who took the time to attend the Global Birdfair this year. It was wonderful to see you all, share a few stories and connect in person. We are already looking forward to next years event. See you there.  

The Birdfair Team 2023 - Rob, Nigel, Sue, Dan, Paul, Mark
Dan giving a lecture
Online Store

Our new online shop stocks a host of excellent birding accessories, including our 25 years of worldwide birding birthday shirts! Shop now

What It Takes to See 10,000 Bird Species

Peter Kaestner has traveled the world on an adventure-filled quest to become the first birder to hit 10,000. Ornithologist Jessie Williamson hitched a ride on a rollicking South American mission that involved land, sea, and (you guessed it) air. Read the full article here.

Facebook, Twitter & Instagram

Team Rockjumper’s social media is as bold as ever. We share daily photos, sightings, stories, and exciting news through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! Follow us to stay in touch and see what’s happening in the Rockjumper world in real time!

Go Club

Rockjumpers Go Club is an exclusive subscriber-based mail notification system that offers last minute tours which are guaranteed to depart, at discounted prices.

Up to 15% off is offered on our carefully selected tour destinations, have your bags packed and ready to go as we send you special updates, free of charge!

Join now

Birding Direct

Rewind just 3 years ago and Birding Direct was just getting going. July 2021 saw the very first Birding Direct tours head out the door, and now 25 months later we have seen over 100 tours completed! The most popular destinations to date have been South Africa, Ecuador, Borneo, Costa Rica, Spain, Peru, Canada, Tanzania, Indonesia, Panama, Argentina, and Colombia.  
All the tours through Birding Direct are custom designed using the very best local guides and ground agents across the globe. We now have 220 local guides and agents to choose from covering 72 of the world’s top birding destinations.  
We have designed Birding Direct to be simple to navigate and easy to use. Sign onto the Birding Direct platform here and you can immediately open up a conversation, directly with one of the local guides about a trip you would like to do. Some of the guides have given examples of tours they can operate, which can be found under the tours tab on the home page here. These are designed to give ideas, but every tour is fully customizable to your exact preference. 

Barred Eagle-Owl by Richard Hyman

Below are some recent tour highlights, direct from guests in the field together with recent feedback.  

 “Having a great time with a very skilled bird guide. Had to work hard for this one but finally got this shot (Barred Eagle Owl)” 

 “I had an amazing trip with guide Alexander in the USA. His exceptional bird identification skills led us to encounter a diverse range of species, even the elusive ones. Alexander’s superb organization and companionship made the experience truly unforgettable.” 


Join Birding Direct Today 

Tailor-made Team News

Have you ever dreamt of venturing into the heart of one of the world’s most biodiverse regions, a place teeming with many rare and elusive species? Well, now is your chance to witness the magic of Borneo’s enigmatic wildlife like never before.

A recent Tailormade tour was met with unparalleled success as our group were treated to phenomenal rainforest birding and unbeatable encounters with several of Borneo’s most sought-after mammals. In just 19 days, our tour covered several well-known sites and amassed an overall species count of 319 birds. Top among these were a list of near-mythical chickens including Crested, Sabah, Crimson-headed and Red-breasted Partridges, Bornean Crested Fireback, Bulwer’s Pheasant, and the unbeatable Bornean Peacock-pheasant. The supporting cast included such rarities as the highly localized Black Oriole, unbeatable views of Bornean Bristlehead, little-known Dulit and Bornean Frogmouths, Storm’s Stork, Oriental Bay Owl, Diard’s and Whitehead’s Trogons, Critically Endangered Helmeted Hornbill, jewel-like Hose’s and Whithead’s Broadbills, no less than six species of pitta, and the monotypic Rail-babbler. Additional highlights of the tour included no less than 57 mammals including both the endangered Bay and Sunda Leopard Cats, a prolonged daytime sighting of Sunda Clouded Leopard, Bornean Pygmy Elephant, Sunda Flying Lemur, Bornean Slow Loris, Horsfield’s Tarsier, and Bornean Orangutan.

Red-breasted Partridge by Glen Valentine

Beyond Borneo, the possibilities are boundless. Recent Tailormade tours have included a relaxing beach holiday combining the opportunity to see Mauritius’s endemic birds, a once-in-a-lifetime journey through the Namib desert for desert-adapted African Elephants and Lions, and mega-type tours of Bolivia for such sought-after species as Blue-throated Macaw and Masked Antpitta.

Sabah Partridge by Glen Valentine
Crested Partridge by Glen Valentine
Bulwers Pheasant by Glen Valentine

Whether you’re a passionate wildlife photographer, a devoted birdwatcher, or simply someone eager to witness nature’s most astonishing creations, our Tailormade team will cater to your interests, ensuring that each day is a new and exhilarating adventure. From transportation and accommodations to guided excursions and personalized experiences, we take care of every detail, allowing you to focus on the extraordinary moments that await you. Let us transform your travel aspirations into reality! Contact our Tailormade team (Dan, Laverne, Karina and Mike) today to begin crafting your dream wildlife

Bornean Peacock-Pheasant by Glen Valentine
Sunda Clouded Leopard by Liew Weng Keong
Rockjumper Wildlife Tours

Rockjumper Wildlife Tours continues to make positive strides forward and 2023 has been a fabulous year to date.  
One of our standout wildlife tours this year took place in May, through the heart of Borneo. Always an exciting destination with an amazing list of highlight mammals and other interesting species, this tour produced some incredible sightings of Sunda Clouded Leopard, Bay Cat, and Otter Civet. All species of mythical status and well enjoyed by our fortunate group. Other more typical highlights included Bornean Orangutan, Proboscis Monkey, Müller’s Bornean Gibbon, Malay Civet, Horsfield’s Tarsier, Bornean Slow Loris, and Sunda Leopard Cat. In total an incredible 57 mammal species were recorded.

Lowland Streaked Tenrec by Keith Valentine
Verreaux's Sifaka by Keith Valentine

Looking ahead we have some exciting trips lined up with a September tour to South Africa focusing on the best that the fair Cape has to offer and a week at Manyoni Private Game Reserve in Zululand. This reserve has become famous for quality Cheetah sightings while other fabulous species like African Elephant, Lion, African Wild Dog, and many others are additional highlights. We then have groups heading to Madagascar, one of our core destinations, which offers a wildlife experience like no other with magical lemurs being the stars of the show, although other crazy critters like Giraffe-necked Weevil, Lowland Streaked Tenrec and giant Oustalet’s and Parson’s Chameleons will no doubt get the adrenalin going. We also have a private group heading off to explore some of Namibia and Botswana’s most stunning wildlife reserves. The trip has been designed with a special personal landmark in mind and they will be enjoying several luxury camps in the Okavango, Chobe, Victoria Falls, and Etosha.  
The vast majority of the tours that we operate are private, customized tours, so if you have a family vacation that you are considering, a special romantic holiday planned or a classic wildlife safari that you have been itching to do for a while, we look forward to hearing from you – 

Cheetah by David Hoddinott
Black Rhino by Adam Walleyn
A trip of a lifetime to Remote Northern Madagascar

Joined by three friends, Rockjumpers’ Reece Dodd and Mike Meidlinger recently ventured into the seldom-visited reaches of remote Northern Madagascar, in search of some of Madagascar’s rarest endemic birds!  

Starting in the capital city of Antananarivo and reaching the pinnacle of our journey in Bemenevika, our group endured many hours of driving through Madagascar’s scenery as well as a 5-hour motorcycle transfer up steep, slippery slopes, through the stunning fragmented rainforest to our campsite. Here we found ourselves in prime position for some Madagascar megas, and we were fortunate enough to see the last remaining habitat for the Madagascar Pochard, a species brought back from the brink of extinction with less than 80 individuals left in the wild!  

The highlights came one after the other as if we’d placed an order before our arrival, and the extremely elusive likes of Slender-billed Flufftail, Madagascar Flufftail, Madagascar Rail, Grey Emutail, Malagasy Harrier, Madagascar Snipe, Madagascar Partridge, Madagascar Mannikin, Red Owl, a stunning selection of Vangas, including Crossley’s, Tyla’s, Red-tailed, Chabert, Blue, and many more all made an appearance. 

Red Owl by Reece Dodd

In the campsite itself, we were treated to up-close views of a male Cuckoo Roller and White-throated Rail both vocalising in the open, as well as many obliging Madagascar Stonechats, both brown and white plumed Malagasy Paradise Flycatchers, Malagasy Bulbuls and many Malagasy White-eyes, all offering great photographic opportunities!  

On our return, we included a visit to Ankarafantsika National Park where our list of splendid endemic specials continued to grow! Schlegel’s Asity, White-breasted Mesite, Van Dam’s, Sickle-billed, White-headed and Rufous Vangas, obliging Couas and of course the last remaining Madagascar Fish Eagles all made for constant excitement.  

Sickle-billed Vanga by Reece Dodd
Madagascar Fish Eagle by Reece Dodd

Not only were the birds excellent but the reptiles, insects and mammals were just as exciting! Some special mentions included Greater Dwarf, Common Brown, Rufous Mouse, Grey Mouse and Sportive Lemurs, Coquerel’s Sifaka, Cat-eyed Python, Leaf-tailed Gecko and an excellent selection of tiny and huge Chameleons too.

After just a week of many miles travelled and a set of excellent destinations visited, we ended up with a list of close to 80 of Madagascar’s most sought-after endemic bird species as well as many others, mammals, insects and reptiles! The friendly Malagasy locals made it a joy to travel through the small towns along the way up North and we were delighted with the local tasty treats, many rice and noodle based dishes with sweet breads and locally-grown coffee kept us happily sustained for the entirety of this awesome adventure.

Madagascar Pochard by Reece Dodd
Schlegel's Asity by Reece Dodd
Hilton Arts Festival

Now in its 31st year, the annual Hilton Arts Festival was held at Hilton College over the period 11-13 August 2023. The festival is aimed at highlighting the best of South African theatre, featuring all genres, but also to showcase local arts, crafts, and tourism. As a proud sponsor of the festival, Rockjumper Birding Tours featured an exhibition of photographs taken on our tours, lectures by Adam Riley unveiling many of the world’s most spectacular birds, top-of-the-range Zeiss optical products, as well as guided walks and drives through the Hilton College Nature Reserve to highlight the rich Midlands wildlife.

The guided outings, in particular, were very well attended and gave our participants the chance to see such sought-after local bird species as the Half-collared Kingfisher, Gorgeous Bushshrike, African Firefinch, Chorister Robin-chat, and Fan-tailed Grassbird.

Half-collared Kingfisher by Hugh Chittenden


New Zeiss SFL Binoculars

Last year Zeiss launched the brand new SFL Binoculars, and several of our top tour leaders have now had the opportunity to use these fabulous binoculars in the field. For all of us, two features really standout: How light they are and how sharp they are. The light weight makes for a wonderful field experience and one can scan for an extended period without feeling your arms. You can also easily wear these binoculars around your neck for hours without them feeling heavy, so no need for a special binocular harness unless you already have one or are simply in the habit of carrying your binoculars this way. The sharpness is also impressive and easily competes with the much-loved and highly lauded SF range for sheer clarity. Most of us have been using 10x but the 8x are just as fantastic and are especially good for forest birding as they allow in plenty of light.  

Below is what Zeiss says about their fantastic new SFL binoculars.   
With the ZEISS SFL binoculars (SmartFocus Lightweight), special moments can be experienced with ease. Optimized to be as lightweight and compact as possible, the SFL binoculars are a perfect addition to the SF family. The new Ultra-High-Definition (UHD) Concept ensures true-to-life color reproduction and the highest level of detail. Thanks to its SmartFocus Concept, the focus wheel is perfectly positioned and enables fast and precise focusing – even with gloves on. The optimized ergonomics and a large exit pupil allow for a relaxed and undisturbed viewing experience. 
With a field of view of up to 115 meters at a distance of 1,000 meters and a closest focusing distance of 1.5 meters, the SFL 10×40 deliver a perfect overview combined with precise detail recognition. 
The lens diameter has been reduced by 2 mm, making it possible to use thinner lens elements at closer spacing and thus reduce the binoculars’ weight by up to 20% and their volume by up to 13% compared to the ZEISS Victory SF models. As a result, the SFL binoculars are up to 30% lighter than comparable products from competitors.

Birdlife & Rare Bird Club

Over many years now we have been proudly associated with BirdLife International, who continue to do amazing work across the globe to protect the birds and environment that we all love so much. Our partnership with the Rare Bird Club has also continued to go from strength to strength and this year we operated a very special trip to the mountain Kingdom of Bhutan for BirdLife’s Rare Bird Club.

Ibisbill by Daniel Danckwerts
Himalayan Monal by Daniel Danckwerts

The tour in question had long been postponed since Covid started back in 2020 so it was with some relief that Bhutan was once again open and safe to travel to this year. Daniel Danckwerts had the pleasure of leading a very enthusiastic group of Rare Bird Club members who appreciated not only the country’s fine birds but also the incredible mountain vistas, immense dzongs, and rich culture that comes with any tour to Bhutan. Highlights were numerous and included some incredible sightings of Bhutan’s most sought-after species such as Satyr Tragopan, Himalayan Monal, Blood Pheasant, Ibisbill, Wallcreeper, Black-tailed Crake, Fire-tailed Sunbird, Rufous-necked Hornbill, Black-headed Shrike-Babbler, the critically endangered White-bellied Heron, and Himalayan Cutia.

Upcoming trips with BirdLife International’s Rare Bird Club include Kenya in Nov/Dec 2023, Thailand in Feb 2024, and Madagascar and Mexico in Oct 2024.

If you would like more information on becoming a member of BirdLife International’s Rare Bird Club or a BirdLife Species Champion feel free to contact Sarah Proud – or Keith Valentine –


Bobby Wilcox 

It’s been a busy year for me so far, and while I’m taking a few months break from guiding to conduct spring bird surveys, it’s already been an epic year with much more to come in the fall. Over the winter I got to visit some new destinations, Cuba and the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico, both delivering heaps of lifers and excellent sightings. It’s tough to pick favorites, but two famous Cuban endemics, the Bee Hummingbird (worlds smallest bird!!) and the Blue-headed Quail-Dove, we’re two outstanding birds that my group had walk away looks at. As for Mexico, the bird I keep coming back to is the Cozumel Vireo, one of only two remaining endemics on the tiny island of Cozumel. I’ve always loved vireos and this one is one of the more striking members of the family.

Blue-headed Quail-Dove by Bobby Wilcox
Bee Hummingbird by Bobby Wilcox
Cozumel Vireo by Bobby Wilcox
David Hoddinott 

Highlights this year have been Pin-tailed Snipe and Masked Booby on Socotra, Stripe-breasted Seedeater in Ethiopia, Striped Flufftail in Kenya, Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler in Egypt and Finsch’s Wheatear and Cretzschmar’s Bunting in Jordan and Maghreb Owl in Morocco

Maghreb Owl Group by David Hoddinott
Maghreb Owl by David Hoddinott
Dušan Brinkhuizen 

The Bolivia Comprehensive tour was definitely a highlight. This amazing country has so much to offer but it is very much under-birded, adding to the excitement of the trip. We kicked off in the Chaco region, where we enjoyed a neat set of regional endemics, including the stunning Chaco Owl, a rare and poorly known species in Bolivia. The Yungas cloud forests offered superb birding with Hooded Mountain Toucan being among the superstars. This is by far the trickiest of the four mountain toucan species to see, and we lucked into a delightful pair that we watched for a prolonged time. We ended the tour with a lovely boat trip on Lake Titicaca, connecting sweetly with the endemic Titicaca Grebe. In two weeks’ time, we tallied a total of 480 species without even birding the rich Amazonian habitats in the east. Bolivia in a nutshell: lots of quality and quantity!

Titicaca Grebe by Dušan Brinkhuizen
Hooded Mountain Toucan by Dušan Brinkhuizen
Chaco Owl by Dušan Brinkhuizen
Erik Forsyth

Best birds so far are Ural and Long-eared owls, 3 Long-billed Plover, Mandarin Duck, Marsh Grassbird, Ochre-rumped and Yellow Bunting, Japanese Thrush and Accentor and a trio of Oriental Stork, an adult and two chicks at a nest. Heading to Amami today.

Forrest Rowland 

I have been handed some great opportunities by my friends and colleagues at Rockjumper, over the years. Several years back we made it a point to start asking leaders for their most wanted destinations, to fit the tours of their dreams into their respective schedules, somehow. Could be an apprenticeship, to learn and lead those tours in the future. Could be as a simple one-off, co-lead situation simply to adventure and enjoy. I am so very grateful that there is a lot of trust placed with me: the trust that I can successfully lead a tour to a destination I’ve never been to before. The caveat is that I’ve birded and have experience somewhere in the region, naturally, so I’m not going in “cold”. I could not be more appreciative to get to travel so far and wide, see so many unique and interesting birds in the world’s most fascinating places. Bhutan had, for many years, been in my Top 5 most wanted tours to lead, having never been but having heard marvelous things over the years from other leaders and clients alike. I was given the opportunity to do so this year, at last! It has not only been my best tour of the year thus far; it was flat out one of the best tours of my 20+ year career.

Bhutan is unique in nearly every respect. It is far more well preserved than neighboring India, China, or Nepal, in every way. The forests and native habitats are far more preserved. The culture is far more preserved. The environment is far better preserved. The regard for quality of life is far better preserved. The birds and animals are far better preserved. I have never, in some 70 countries, driven more than 4 hours without seeing signs of human habitation, alteration, or intervention. I’ve never spent a whole day birding a “main road” without seeing more than 2 vehicles pass me. I have never had the same feeling of a remote oneness with a place, approaching a sought-after ideal, as I had in Bhutan. This tour was about as close to sublimity as I dare claim to have come. But enough about my feelings….the birds were unreal!!!

We encountered nearly 400 species on this incredible journey, including some of the rarest and most desired birds in the World. Namely, with a suspected population of fewer than 100 individuals worldwide, White-bellied Heron is one of the headline species of Bhutan. Bhutan is perhaps the only place to see the species on Earth! We had outstanding views of a fishing individual. Fire-tailed Myzornis is a gorgeous, range-restricted, nomadic resident of blossoming Rhododendron forests high in the Himalaya. Bhutan is the premier place to see this stunner, of which we saw a whopping 26 birds! Ward’s Trogon is a retiring, seldom-seen, dazzlingly pink beauty found only in the cold mossy forests of the Himalaya. We had outstanding views of an obliging pair that sat for us spectacularly. Ibisbill is a striking, large, shorebird with an incredible shape and structure. This monotypic species is so unique as to belong to its own family. We had no fewer than 8 individuals, including 4 chicks, in the rocky high mountain rivers of Bhutan! Parrotbills, Hornbills, Laughingthrushes, Forktails, the colors and shapes of the birds were saw were mind-boggling. But the grand prize honors went to the pheasants. Himalayan Monal, and Blood Pheasant, were voted the top two favorite birds of our time in Bhutan. Both species put on such shows as to never be forgotten.

Of the more than 25 tours we’ve now conducted in Bhutan as a company, our tour this April saw more species than any other had previously recorded. Our local guide and drivers stated that this was because of a Harmony. Not luck. Not effort. Not skill. Not even the new route, which is awesome. Rather, they suggested that a combination of these attributes along with true fascination, wonder, and appreciation for where we were and who we were sharing these experiences with had allowed us to enjoy such marvelous success in this special country. I cannot wait to return!

Blood Pheasant by Forrest Rowland
Beautiful Nuthatch by Forrest Rowland
Himalayan Monal by Forrest Rowland
Ibisbill by Forrest Rowland
Holly Faithfull

I was lucky enough to lead a group of clients on the Heritage Expeditions’ cruise, Western Pacific Odyssey. It was a 4 week cruise, starting in Auckland, New Zealand and ending in Yokohama, Japan. We covered more than 10,000km and crossed both Tropics and the Equator, looking for seabirds and cetaceans (and flying fish!) every hour of daylight – as well as visiting Norfolk Island and the Solomon Islands. But the highlight for me was a visit to New Caledonia, where we had the great fortune to see a bird that I have wanted to see for decades: Kagu! We were lucky enough to watch a family of 4 Kagus going about their business, seemingly oblivious to our presence. With their beautiful grey plumage, long shaggy crests, and red legs and bills, they were even more fabulous (and a lot more characterful) than I had dared to hope!

Kagu by Holly Faithfull
Keith Valentine 

Kenya is arguably Africa’s birdiest country and a short 11-day tailormade tour in February proved this yet again as we recorded an exceptional 411 species of birds and 48 species of mammals! Considering the trip was primarily setup to target some very specific lifers and photo lifers and that Cheetah was arguably the most important species to find only exemplifies just how bird rich Kenya is. Our tour focus was on Mount Kenya, the dry country reserves of Samburu, Buffalo Springs and Shaba, the Aberdare mountains, Lake Nakuru and the prolific Maasai Mara. We recorded numerous quality endemics including the Critically Endangered Sharpe’s Longclaw, Data Deficient Williams’s Lark, Jackson’s Spurfowl, Aberdare Cisticola, Kikuyu White-eye and Hinde’s Babbler while other specials included point-blank views of male and female Lichtenstein’s Sandgrouse, male Golden Pipit, breeding plumage Steel-blue Whydah, a close-up flock of Grey-crested Helmetshrike, stunning Hartlaub’s Turaco, noisy group of nesting White-headed Wood Hoopoe, at least 6 different groups of Somali Courser, Somali Bee-eater, knock-out Golden-breasted Starling, scarce White-throated Robin (Irania), White-headed Mousebird, gorgeous Golden-winged and Black-bellied Sunbirds, and breeding plumage Jackson’s Widowbird. The game viewing, as always in Kenya, was exceptional, and we enjoyed multiple views of Cheetah, Lion, Leopard, Spotted Hyaena, both White and Black Rhinoceros and African Buffalo. The Aberdares produced wonderful looks at Giant Forest Hog while ‘The Mara’ offered up vast numbers of plains game and herds of African Elephant. We also especially enjoyed the unique northern mammals such as Reticulated Giraffe, the odd-looking Gerenuk, Lesser Kudu, Grevy’s Zebra and Beisa Oryx.

Black-bellied Sunbird by Keith Valentine
Somali Courser by Keith Valentine
Sharpe's Longclaw by Keith Valentine
Spotted Hyeana by Keith Valentine
Cheetah by Keith Valentine
Paul Varney

So in April, I had (an unexpected) opportunity to co-lead a tour to Bhutan. What a wonderful place. Known as the “Land of the Thunder Dragon” we did indeed hear the rumbles of thunder on a couple of occasions but for us Bhutan was tranquil, peaceful, calming and absolutely full of birds. Panoramas of forest clad hills and mountains, as far as the eye can see, Bhutan is truly unspoilt. Add in striking Dzhongs, monasteries built on impossible cliff sides and wonderful people and you have a feel for what Bhutan is, a truly wonderful country. The birds did not disappoint and the whole group got excellent views of 5 species of Pheasant (if you include Junglefowl), Ward’s Trogon, Beautiful Nuthatch, several Laughingthrushes including Himalayan Cutia and a whole range of other species. My personal stand out species are tricky to pick but the pheasants were amazing Satyr Tragopan was perhaps the most elusive for us of the set but what a bird and we got decent views of a male in the end but Blood Pheasant and Himalayan Monal were incredibly obliging and stunning. Rarest of all was a single White-bellied Heron, one of Bhutan’s star birds with perhaps only 70 individuals remaining on the planet. A large grey, heron, the fieldguides do not do this incredibly rare bird justice. It is a tall, snaky necked elegant Heron with white plumes on the rear of the crown and a gleaming white belly. Reminiscent of a Purple Heron in structure it was a special moment to be watching one of these incredibly rare birds. Fulvetta’s and Minlas are common too but tricky to get a decent photo of as they move quickly through the foliage but 2 species White-browed Fulvetta and Chestnut-tailed (or Bar-throated) Minla obliged. Finally Spotted Laughingthrush, a huge well marked bird proved particularly obliging on a couple of occasions…..oh no, forgot to mention Fire-tailed Myzornis and the stunning Rufous-necked Hornbill…..Bhutan is a special, special place and the birding is amazing. I am very lucky to have had the chance to visit and hope to be back again in the not too distant future. One last comment….. “how can I forget one last thing? We heard a flock of mobbing birds so stopped the bus to check them out. The birds were noisy and then one of the clients found an Owlet perched in the bush. Amazingly it was holding an Oriental Magpie Robin which it had caught. The prey was far larger than the Owlet and it was incredible to sit and watch this amazing scene, something so rare to see.

Blood Pheasant by Paul Varney
Spotted Owlet with Oriental Magpie-Robin by Paul Varney
Himalayan Monal by Paul Varney
White-browed Fulvetta by Paul Varney
Bar-throated Minla by Paul Varney
Spotted Laughingthrush by Paul Varney
Nigel Redman

My top tour highlight so far this year was undoubtedly the exquisite male Blyth’s Tragopan that very stealthily came up to the road at Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary in Northeast India, and then crossed the road just a short distance from us, giving everyone a truly unforgettable experience of one of the world’s most beautiful and sought-after birds. Not surprisingly, it was unanimously voted the bird of the trip.

The runner-up was no less special: Bugun Liocichla is a very handsome and shy laughingthrush that was only discovered a little more than 20 years ago. It is still only known from Eaglenest WLS and thus its world range and population size are tiny. This is the species to see if you go to Eaglenest, but it’s not easy. Like many laughingthrushes, it’s very shy, preferring to move rapidly through the dense undergrowth without showing itself. Fortunately, our group all managed to connect with this very special bird, but sadly no-one got photos.

Eaglenest is a fantastic area of unbroken forest covering a wide altitudinal range in the Eastern Himalayas. Our highlights were many, but two of my favourites were Long-billed Wren-Babbler and Beautiful Nuthatch.

Blyth’s Tragopan by Marcel Holyoak

In March, I was leading our first Kenya Relaxed tour, and it was amazing. Despite most of the country still being in the grip of a long drought (with the exception of the Mara which was green), we did really well on birds and mammals (can one ever fail in Kenya?). The highlights were many, and frequently mammalian rather than avian. I was particularly pleased to see a vagrant Black-winged Pratincole which had wintered in Nairobi National Park – there are only a handful of records of this species in Kenya, and it’s not an easy bird to see anywhere. My mammalian highlight was seeing a Cheetah hunting a Plains Zebra foal. We watched the whole thing, from the pair of Cheetah siblings patiently stalking the small herd of zebras, to the high-speed chase by one of them. Although it failed to catch the foal, analysis of the photographs showed that it only missed by a few centimetres, foiled by some clever manoeuvring by the protective adults.

Long-billed Wren-Babbler by Marcel Holyoak
Black-winged Pratincole by Nigel Redman
Beautiful Nuthatch by Marcel Holyoak
Stephan Lorenz

I was fortunate to lead six tours during the first half of the year and enjoyed every single one of them with great groups of people. Spending much time in the United States at the beginning of the year, it was exciting to find lots of uncommon ABA birds for our participants and celebrate several milestone achievements with them. During our South Texas in Winter tour, we saw several family groups of Whooping Cranes, one of the rarest birds on the planet with only a few hundred in the wild. Yet, it was a Hook-billed Kite that stole the show as this is an exceedingly difficult bird to find in the US. We spent a full day searching without luck in the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park, but our determined and intrepid group returned the following morning. After walking the trail one last time, we spotted a female Hook-billed Kite perched fairly close and had great scope studies before the bird dropped out of sight to resume hunting snails. Bird of the trip! Moving on to Colorado on another tour, we witnessed the display of the Gunnison Sage-Grouse, another extremely rare bird with about 5,000 surviving individuals. This endangered species was eclipsed by the White-tailed Ptarmigan though, which was voted top bird of the tour for the seventh time in a row! Understandably since we really had to put in our time for this special bird. Occurring only above 3,500 meters (about 11,500 feet) in its Colorado range, we traveled to Loveland Pass where on the first try we encountered storm-force winds and windchill of negative 33 degrees Celsius (about -28 degrees Fahrenheit), even the tough ptarmigans weren’t moving during these extremes. Luckily, we detoured on another day and during better conditions found a male White-tailed Ptarmigan that offered great views. On another tour in a different climate, we scoured a side canyon deep in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeast Arizona where we spied the uncommon Spotted Owl on a day roost, this sighting would be voted the top bird of the tour. Yet, we had a rarer sighting during our lovely hike up Miller Canyon in the Huachuca Mountains where our adventurous group discovered a Flame-colored Tanager, a very rare visitor to the US and this unexpected bird helped some participants reach various milestones. Looking forward to the second half of 2023 and sharing more exciting birds.

White-tailed Ptarmigan by Stephan Lorenz
Hook-billed Kite by Stephan Lorenz
Flame-colored Tanager by Stephan Lorenz
Hinde's Babbler by Greg De Klerk
Greg De Klerk
Our tour through East Africa was amazing and produced highlight after highlight. From the scenic landscapes and iconic mammals to the stunning array of bird species, we enjoyed an exceptional adventure. The highlights were too many to mention but some species stood out. An inquisitive Golden Pipit, frantic breeding pairs of Vulturine Guineafowl which would defend their mates against all comers, an incredible Hinde’s Babbler sighting, a gorgeous Silverbird hawking alates and many others, while the vast number of migrating Common Wildebeest and Plain’s Zebra left us awe struck, a lone Cheetah entertained us as we departed the Serengeti and to top it off, a Lioness allowing her young cubs to suckle while we watched a few meters away. This trip had it all and we were fortunate to experience the best East Africa has to offer.
Golden Pipit by Greg De Klerk
Lion by Greg De Klerk
Silverbird by Greg De Klerk
Paul Josop

Kenya and Tanzania was an unforgettable experience! The birds, mammals, landscapes, different ecosystems and the hospitality at all the lodges we visited was simply incredible! So many highlights.

Purple Grenadier by Paul Josop
Friedmann's Lark by Paul Josop
Mt Kilimanjaro by Paul Josop
Buff-crested Bustard by Paul Josop
Abdim's Stork by Paul Josop


Our guests provide our best information. And, given that well over half our business are repeat guests, you are also each other’s best source of info. Here’s what you’ve been saying.

Greg De Klerk

“I cannot say enough about Greg de Klerk. He is, without a doubt, the best tour guide I have ever traveled with. Not only was he aware of each sound and could ID the birds easily, he was like an encyclopedia for the natural world. In addition to the usual bird watching one expected on a tour, Greg taught us so many things about the African environment, habitat and behavior of the birds and animals, and the ever changing circle of life. Every insect and herp was identified instantly, Couple that with his endless patience and absolutely killer sense of humor.”

“Our tour with David Hoddinott was educational and awe inspiring. David helped the tour to run smoothly and with his tremendous knowledge of the birds he helped us maximize our sightings of the native and migratory species. In addition, the local guides assisted our understanding of the antiquities we were viewing and made the customs of the countries (both Egypt and Jordan) interesting and manageable. David was enthusiastic, dynamic and engaging and an all round competent and enjoyable leader. We would highly recommend this tour with David.”

David Hoddinott
David Hoddinott
birding tour operator
Stephan Lorenz

“Stephan is an exceptional tour leader and guide. Not only are his birding skills and knowledge superb, but his people skills are outstanding. His ability to engage all levels and interests of participants makes for a happy tour for all! I look forward to my next opportunity to tour with Stephan and Claudia.”

“Glen is a great guide with an outstanding knowledge, excellent skills to find the most difficult birds even and together with his enthusiasm, patience and friendliness this is the perfect basis for outstanding birding trips. So we enjoyed an excellent and the most successful tour ever to the Philippines in 2023 and we are happy to go on the next Rockjumper birding trip with Glen very soon!”

Glen Valentine
Glen Valentine
Dušan Brinkhuizen
Dušan Brinkhuizen

Amazing Trip! Going to the Amazon was life long dream come true. All of the guides were experienced and very knowledgeable. The food was delicious and accommodations were comfortable. I really liked the wide variety of different habitats and birding areas. The birds were amazing, we were able to get over 480 different species of birds!”

“This was the first group birding tour I’ve ever taken (meaning, more than myself and either one or two other persons). Rockjumper and Nigel Redman made it a very pleasurable experience, with wonderful birds, beautiful landscapes, and good flexibility and adaptability to the various challenges and obstacles thrown our way on the trip. I heartily recommend both this tour and Nigel Redman as a tour leader! I would happily go on any tour for which Nigel was the leader; his knowledge of ornithology, history, and birding folklore is encycylopedic, and his easy humor and casual nature made for happy hours in our vehicles or over dinner tables (this, in contrast to the group next to us in some of the dining halls, where hardly a word was spoken by any tour member when the trip leader was going through the day’s list; that was a dictatorship; Nigel’s tour was a democracy in many ways.)”

birding tour operator
Nigel Redman


This year has been full to the brim with wonderful birds and experiences and we are so glad to be able to share them with you, our Rockjumper family. Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter and we look forward to sharing even more lifers, stories and adventures with you in the years to come.

All the best for a birdy, adventure filled end to 2023!

Yours in birding,
Team Rockjumper.