Crowned Sandgrouse Pterocles coronatus, Chad
The rocky outcrops at Hadjer el Hamis, about 110 km north of N’Djamena are certainly well worth recommending. The rocks used to be on the southern shore of Lake Chad, but the lake has retreated and cannot be seen even by climbing up the rocks. A good time to visit is at the end of the rains in September when there are a lot of inundations along the road with good water birds. The rocks themselves attract several species of raptor and Tawny Eagle Aquila rapax, Beaudouin's Snake Eagle Circaetus beaudouini, Red-necked Buzzard Buteo auguralis, Black Kite Milvus migrans and Fox Kestrel Falco alopex were all recorded there during one visit.
Zakouma National Park
Zakouma National Park is situated in south-eastern Chad and covers an area of just over 3000km². Zakouma was declared a national park in 1963 by Presidential Decree, offering it the highest form of protection available under the laws of Chad. The park is in the centre of a functional ecosystem that contains the last remaining migration of fauna within the Sudano-Sahelian eco-climatic zone. Although the elephant is the flagship species, the park is an important refuge for numerous other species, many of which are threatened elsewhere within this eco-region.
The ebb and flow of life in the park is dictated by the extremely contrasted wet and dry seasons. Heavy rains from June until October inundate the park, replenishing the water courses in preparation for the oncoming dry months. As the pans and rivers slowly recede, the fauna congregates in flocks and herds around the remaining water, offering some of the most impressive game viewing in Africa. The park falls within the enormous ‘Inundation Plains of the Bahr Aouk and Salamat’ RAMSAR site, one of the largest in the world and an important stop-over for migrating birds and breeding ground for birds and fish alike.
Bird watching in Zakouma National Park is an extremely rewarding experience. Not only in the number of species (currently 373) but also in the sheer abundance of birds. Seeing literally thousands of birds at a pan in the dry season is not uncommon.
The Manager of the Park sent the following documents in February 2014 which you can download to provide further information about the Park, bird watching opportunities, birdlists and brochures in English and French.