Wildlife Guides For Kenya/Tanzania

Jun 8th, 2004, 01:13 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 119
Wildlife Guides For Kenya/Tanzania

Could anyone recommend the best bird and animal guides for Kenya/Tanzania? I'd like to take a couple of good books on my trip in September. Thanks!
styleoracle is offline  
Jun 8th, 2004, 10:04 PM
Join Date: May 2004
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Style: If you want to get beyond just pictures for identification The Safari Companion: A Guide to Watching African Mammals by Richard D. Estes is excellent. I picked up a copy for $25. It gives identification information but the real strength is descriptions of key behaviours so you can better understand the mammals when you are watching them. The Kingdon Field Guide to African Mammals is the definitive mammal guide but it is a very expensive book and probably more than you really need. I have only travelled in Southern Africa so I don't have any other mammal or bird guide recommendations but I'm sure someone else will.
PredatorBiologist is offline  
Jun 9th, 2004, 04:02 AM
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styleoracle -

I cannot recommend a specific book, but every guide seems to have a "bird" book in their vehicles. And these are excellent. Some guides have both a "birds" and "mammals" book. All are available for your use. And most every camp/lodge has a library of books for your use during your stay. Just ask.

Should you find a book while on your holiday that is of particular interest, get the name, publisher info, etc. and purchase it when you return home. In this way, there is that much less weight you have to bring along, considering you'll have weight limits on your in-country flights.

Bye the way, have you gotten confirmation on camps at Tarangire and in the Mara? I sure hope so.

Jun 9th, 2004, 05:23 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 119
Thanks for the suggestions PredatorBiologist and Sandi! Sandi: we were only able to get two nights in the mara not three (At Bateleur Camp) and no nights at Tarangire, so we've adjusted our schedule to include Grumeti Camp instead. Hopefully there will be soe wildlife to see! Then we're on a wait list for our third night in the Mara. Thanks for your concern!
styleoracle is offline  
Jun 9th, 2004, 06:06 AM
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styleoracle - sorry to hear that space wasn't available at some places, but the wait-list might come thru.

As to Grumeti River Camp - it's lovely, and one nice thing about being in the Western Serengeti is that there are almost herds there (maybe not as large as the full migration into the Mara), but because there seems to be a constant source of water here - some herds never actually make the migration. They just stay home and don't take vacation! lol!

Also, you'll be able to get over to the Grumeti River, know to have some very very big Nile Crocs, and who knows you might see some interesting activity here. And it's now as if there are no animals here, there are, just that at that time of the year, the migration takes hold of people's choice of location to see this. You're also close to Lake Victoria and can do a day trip here, go fishing, or whatever - remember to ask about this.

styleoracle - I believe in one of your initial posts you mentioned that you live in NYC. If I recalled correct and if you have any questions, you can contact me direct at: [email protected]

The only good thing about hearing that space is limited, this year, in some areas of East Africa - means visitors are returning, and these countries desperately need as many as possible. The US & UK travel warnings have had a horrible impact on tourism.
Jun 9th, 2004, 08:41 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 218
Last year I asked the same question - and if you search "field guides" you will find a post asking about "good guides - Kenya and Tanzania safari" or similar (sorry I dont know how to link posts)

We acquired the Audobon Society book listed, the Estes guide and the bird book.

The Audobon Society Field Guide to African Wildlife was great, and not that expensive (currently 16 USD new on Amazon.com and also available used). It is a reasonable size to take with you on all trips, has good pictures and some info about animals.

The Estes book was great to have with us but not necessarily in the vehicle - I read it before going, and it added to my experience to have some idea of what I was seeing in terms of behaviour - worth taking, but leave in camp for reference when you get back from the game drive.

The only book that we took that we didnt really need was the Bird Guide - the Audobon guide has some of the birds in it and our driver had his own book. The book we were recommended is excellent, and was great for identifying pictures after our return, but we didnt really need it the way we needed the others.
nkh is offline  

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