Overview

South Africa has the highest number of endemic and near-endemic bird species of any country on the African continent. Some of these special birds such as Drakensberg Rockjumper and Blue Crane – are beautiful and charismatic; while others, including the endangered Rudd’s and Botha’s Larks, are less striking but incredibly range-restricted. To boot, South Africa is also home to two very impressive endemic families, the striking Rockjumpers and Sugarbirds.

The focus of this 22 day endemics mega-birding tour is to see as many of these South African endemic, breeding endemic and near-endemic species as possible. Every single one of the 99 birds falling into this category as well as most of the 78 species falling into the category of endemic or near-endemic to the southern African sub-region are targeted during the tour (and are listed in bold in the itinerary below.) Furthermore, we will seek out many other special and sought-after African species; and, in the course of this tour, we have the potential to rack up a very impressive bird list in terms of species numbers, rarities and great sightings. Mammals will likewise form a major focus of our attention, and we can expect to also find an incredible diversity of reptiles, amphibians and other wildlife. We invite you to join us on this exciting celebration of our endemic treasures during this ultimate South African mega-birding adventure!

Please note: these prices are subject to foreign exchange fluctuations.

2023 Tour price is an estimate and will change. Tour dates could be adjusted.

Tour Facts Top Birds
African Penguin, Blue and Wattled Cranes, Ludwig’s and Denham’s Bustards, Blue, Southern Black and Karoo Korhaans, African Oystercatcher, Crowned, Cape and Bank Cormorants, Cape and Natal Spurfowls, Southern Bald Ibis, Cape Vulture, Black Harrier, Cape & Drakensberg Rockjumpers, Cape & Gurney’s Sugarbirds, Bush Blackcap, Ground Woodpecker, Rudd’s, Botha’s, Short-clawed, Red, Sclater’s, Cape Long-billed & Barlow’s Larks, African Rock & Yellow-breasted Pipits, Cape Longclaw, Knysna, Purple-crested & Livingstone’s Turacos, Cape Parrot, Gorgeous, Black-fronted & Olive Bushshrikes, Bokmakierie, Victorin’s, Namaqua, Cinnamon-breasted, and Layard’s Warblers, Fairy Flycatcher, Karoo Eremomela, Cape and Grey Penduline Tits, White-backed Mousebird, Spotted & Orange Ground Thrushes, Cape and Sentinel Rock Thrushes, Rudd’s Apalis, Woodward’s Batis, Karoo & Brown Scrub Robins, Karoo & Buff-streaked Chats, Pink-throated Twinspot, Neergaard’s, Orange-breasted & Southern Double-collared Sunbirds, Cape & Drakensberg Siskins, Protea, Cape, Forest & Black-headed Canaries.
Top Mammals
Black & White Rhinoceroses, Southern African Hedgehog, Meerkat, Black Wildebeest, Nyala, Cape Grysbok, Aardvark, Aardwolf, Springhare, Common Eland, Bat-eared Fox, Blesbok (Bontebok), Grey Rhebok, Klipspringer, Springbok, African Wild Dog, Cheetah
Habitats Covered
dune and mist-belt forest, acacia savanna, high elevation and coastal grasslands, mountains, semi-desert, fynbos, coastal waters, wetlands
Expected Climate
subtropical conditions with occasional rain, cooler in the highlands and the Cape
Max Group Size
8 with 1 Rockjumper leader
Tour Pace & Walking
Our Mega tours are very fast-paced birding adventures designed for the dedicated lister and serious birder. The focus of the tour is to see as many of the endemics and area specials as possible in our given time. In order to cover the necessary route to maximise the species list we tend to spend a single night at most sites and travel large distances. There is very little down time aside from that spent driving from one site to the next. These tours are not suitable for dedicated or avid photographers; inexperienced or new birders; as well as anyone with serious mobility or health challenges.
Accommodation
comfortable guesthouses and lodges
Ease of Birding
mostly easy with some difficult species
Number of Species Expected
500 - 550
Other Attractions
Cape Peninsula, Sani Pass, Lake St. Lucia, Zululand game reserves, good food & wine, remote and seldom visited areas, spectacular scenery
Photographic Opportunities
excellent
Tour Route Map Route Map Client Testimonials

A first rate, very satisfying...tour that met all expectations. We missed two species we were especially interested in but our guide made an extra effort to find them and we were very pleased with him. A first rate birder. He is a great addition to the Rockjumer Team.

Andre Bernon was excellent at sharing his expertise and assisting even the most novice birder (me). We couldn't have asked for a better professional. And he was so personable, considerate and had a great sense of humor.

Doug is a wonderful guide with a lot of passion of rbirding, nature and the environment. He worked very hard in finding the birds and trying to make the trip enjoable for all, which was truly appreciated!! Thank you!!

The faster pace of the tour (South Africa Mega) was just what I wanted, and maximized chances for as many endemics as possible without adding more days. Markus was on top of things throughout, his timing and logistics were flawless, and his spotting skills are excellent. His precision served the group well and the group size (6) was ideal. He also was great with the many mammals, positioning the vehicle for the best viewing and photography, and sharing information about life histories. I thoroughly enjoyed the trip and just wish I could do it all over again!

Gareth is a first class guide both in his ability to hear and find birds as well as being able to handle clients in an understanding manner which at times cannot be easy. I cannot compliment him highly enough on his inter-personal skills. He is both amusing and entertaining, yet serious when the need arises. This tour, as with my previous tour with him, ran so smoothly without any problems, probably due to his foresight in planning and telephoning ahead for the next or even following days.

Dates, Leaders and Pricing
2022 DEPARTURES
2023 DEPARTURES
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