Hornbill, Rollers, and a Firefinch (Historical post: Kenya #4)

We woke up a bit late on our last morning before we went to “the Mara” (as people here call Masai Mara), and it wasn’t till 7:10 that we got out of the house to do a bit of birding. We were soon in business with a hornbill flying across and landing on one of the many cactus like trees (Euphorbia ingens). The hornbill turned out to be an African Grey Hornbill and my first ever hornbill species!

Poor “record” shot of a cool species

The only other lifer on our morning walk was a Yellow-rumped Seed-eater (Reichenow’s Seedeater per eBird, but I don’t like that name and prefer the older descriptive name)

Terrible photo, but obviously shows why this bird should be called Yellow-rumped Seed-eater not Reichenow’s Seed-eater…

Other than the two lifers, we basically just had the same normal birds we’d been seeing regularly over the last few days. Had good views of a Scarlet-chested Sunbird feeding on some flowers right near us.

Scarlet-chested Sunbird ©Niccolas Miller

And a short video I was able to get of the sunbird:

A little later in the morning I went on another short walk and almost immediately found some our first weavers of the trip! I quickly went and called Nic and we were both able to see our lifer Speke’s Weavers, and I got a few poor photos.

This White-fronted Bee-eater was a little more obliging, and Nic was able to get some nice shots.

White-fronted Bee-eater ©Niccolas Miller

Other lifers on our little walk were a Red-crowned Barbet and a flyover White Stork that had just left Lake Nakuru NP.

Red-crowned Barbet
Trust me, it’s a White Stork!

No more bird highlights from that short late morning walk, but we did see a cool large beetle which iNaturalist suggests is in genus Pachnoda.

Once we were back at the house, we saw another lifer, a Tawny-flanked Prinia perching on top of the wall. They look quite similar to the Plain Prinias we have here in Bangladesh.

Tawny-flanked Prinia ©Niccolas Miller

We had some more decent birding in the afternoon including three lifers: a nice looking Red-billed Firefinch, and two species of roller, both Lilac-breasted and Rufous-crowned.
Didn’t get good photos of any of these lifers, but here’s one of Nic’s long distance shots of the Lilac-breasted Roller to give you a bit of a feel for what we were seeing!

Lilac-breasted Roller ©Niccolas Miller

To finish up here’s a Pied Wheatear that was hanging out on the backyard swing.

Pied Wheatear

We ended up with a total of 9 lifers, which was decent for not going anywhere for birding. And we were super excited about getting ready to leave for the Mara the next morning! Good times coming yet!

eBird checklists for the day: early morning walk, late morning walk, and a bit of afternoon birding from the house.

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Published by Seth Miller

Teenaged birder and amateur photographer. Originally from Kansas, USA, but have grown up in Bangladesh.

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