The Nechisar National Park is border on Lake Chamo and Lake Abaya. The lakes are very different because of the ferrous oxide, what makes Lake Abaya’s water brown, whereas Lake Chamo is very blue. The lakes are connected by River Kulfo.
The land which dived the lakes is called ‘Bridge of God’.
We visited the Lake Chamo several times. It’s famous for the large crocodiles and hippos that live here. We could observe them at close quarters and of course we could always find new birds to add to our list.
On the shore we found an African Fish Eagle nest where we could follow up how the chick was growing and we saw adults bird everywhere around the national park.
We found hippopotamus footprints one kilometre from the lake in the mountains. Supposedly they spent the nights there.
Before we started the hard work on the south of the plains we always had a HotPack for dinner.
Where we saw the vultures and the eagles:
The camels are important lifestock in Ethiopia (Camelus dromedarius). Like cattle, they provide a variety of resources (including milk, meat and hides) and they play an important role in pastoralist culture.
Birds around Yabelo
Stresemann’s bushcrow (Zavattariornis stresemanni) is endemic to central-southern Ethiopia. It lives in a small area circumscribed by the towns of Yabelo, Mega, and Arero in Sidamo Province.
We spent a night at the school of Madacho.
On the 18th of January the expedition group split into 2 small groups. Doortje and Frederik went to Bale Mountains, Zsófi, Ruben and Eddy to Yabelo Wildlife Sanctuary. Pim, our friend from Belgium joined to the Yabelo group.
Yabelo Wildlife Sanctuary is a protected area in southern Ethiopia. It is located in the Borena Zone of the Oromia Region.
The park affords protection to the endemic and vulnerable Streseman’s Bush Crow and and the White-tailed Swallow, these are also restricted-range species.
This area is famous for the big amount of nightjar what they have, that was the reason why we went there. A very nice scout (Jarso) joined us on these days. With his help we could easily observe the endemic species, and e.g. Ostrich, Rosy-patched Bush-shrike, Gabar Goshawk, Vulturine Guinea Fowl and at one stop-point we saw 15 vultures and 5 Tawny eagles together!
We saw same nice mammal species, like the Unstriped Ground Squirell, Generuk and Black-backed Jackal.
We were searching for the nightjars two nights long but we couldn’t find any so we decided to go back earlier to Nechisar to continue the work there.
During the trip we gave the children pens which were was donated by the Hasselt University and a Hungarian sponsor.
Finally we stopped at the border of the National National Park to do some bird watching at the marshland of Lake Chamo. The diversity of the birds was amazing. We saw 37 species in one hour! Our favorite bird was the hunting Black Heron.
We arrived back safely to Hungary and Belgium after this amazing trip.
We would like to say thank you for everybody who helped to prepare and manage our expedition. Thank you for the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority, the BirdLife Ethiopia and the Nechisar National Park!
We are summarizing our data and we will publicize them soon!