Gambia Birdwatchers’ Association

Senegal Thick-knee. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Senegal Thick-knee. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Speckled Pigeon. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Speckled Pigeon. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

I visited The Gambia earlier this year after a gap of some 27 years. I loved the place the first time round and was prepared to be disappointed. However, I must say that the experience exceeded my expectations and I found a country that not only seemed better for birds and wildlife than I remembered but one that had an infrastructure that worked for me as a photographer and birder. If you visit the Gambia then a guide is essential if you want to make the ornithological most out of your trip. It was great to find that the Gambia Birdwatchers’ Association has got a grip on things and offers a network of experienced and reliable guides https://www.facebook.com/gambiabirdguides/ The Association’s base is at Kotu Creek and their members are easy to spot, dressed in olive-green shirts emblazoned with the organisation’s name. I was fortunate enough to be able to work with association’s President, the excellent Karanta Camara https://www.facebook.com/karanta.camara  The trip was a great re-introduction to the birdlife and wildlife of this tiny bird-rich strip of West Africa.

Hooded Vultures at the Kotu Creek feeding station. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Hooded Vultures at the Kotu Creek feeding station. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

African Pygmy Kingfisher. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

African Pygmy Kingfisher. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Caspian Tern. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Caspian Tern. ©Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Rob Read