Angola has a wide variety of biomes and ecosystems that support a rich and unique biodiversity of rare and endemic species of birds. Angola supports more than 900 unique species of birds. However, due to human activities coupled with effects of climate change, these birds are currently faced with threats to their populations with some facing the risk of extinction while others are likely to become endangered soon.
Endemic Birds Of Angola
The grey-stripped francolin is categorized as least concern but rare species found only in Angola. The bird is found in subtropical, dry tropical moist lowland forests and tropical or subtropical grasslands. The bird has a body and tail length of 29-333cm with males weighing 265-430g and females 213-350g. The head has a grayish brown colour with pale colors on the neck and sides. The bird mainly feeds on small arthropods, shoots, seeds and grass. The sedentary bird is facing a threat through habitat loss.
The Swierstra’s francolin is a rare and endangered bird species found only in the Angolan habitats. The bird has an estimated body length of 33cm, a black band on the breast and black-brown eye strips. The bird is known to occupy habitats such as montane evergreen forest, forest edge, and tall grass areas in western Angola in the Cuanza Sulk and Huambo districts and the Mombolo plateau. The Swierstra’s forages under thick vegetation cover for grasses, seeds, legumes, and insects. The bird is sedentary and faces a high risk to their populations due to habitat loss.
The red-crested turaco is a least concern species endemic to the western parts of Angola. The bird has a red crest, a white face and a yellow beak, green wings and a darker shade on the tail and the undersides near the rear. The body length of the turaco is about 42cm with a weight of about 210-325g. The species feeds on fruits and seeds in its woodland and forest habitats. The vast distribution of the species and the lack of any pressing threat have prompted its classification as a least concern species. However, more research is being done to establish the actual population and threats.
The Gabela helmetshrike is an endangered species endemic to the subtropical or tropical forests and montane forests of Angola. The bird is medium sized with a gray body and a white tipped tail. The predator bird has strong legs and sharp claws that aid in grasping the prey. Their hooked bill is bright red in color. The bird occupies the area of Gabela in western Angola. The bird is threatened by the rapidly declining habitat.
Conservation Of Birds In Angola
The birds of Angola are not so well covered in research. However, various organizations such as Save our Species and the African Birds club have made efforts towards the conservation of these birds together with their habitats to preserve the unique avian biodiversity in Angola. Among the bird's species native to Angola are the Benguela lark, Gabela bushrike, Braun’s, bushrike, montane double-coloured Sunbird, the white-fronted wattle-eye, Angolan slaty flycatcher, Pulitzer’s long bill, red-backed, the Gabela akalat and the Angolan cave chat.