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MADAGASCAN Tropical and Subtropical Dry Broadleaf Forest

In the right national park, the birds of the Madagascan woodlands are easily seen and include spectacular endemic species...

Family Mesitornithidae: 'Mesites'

The Mesites are a family of birds only found in Madagascar. They are shy and difficult to see.

(walking trail, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'White-breasted Mesite'.

Family Cuculidae: Cuckoos and 'Couas'

Coua spp.

Coua are only found in Madagascar. They are related to the ground-cuckoos, and typically have a patch of blue skin around the face. Of the nine species in Madagascar, six are found in the woodlands.

(walking trail, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Red-capped Coua'.

(walking trail, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Crested Coua'.

Centropus spp. 'Coucals'

Madagascan Coucal (Ankarafantsika National Park).

Family Phalacrocoracidae: Cormorants

(Lake, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Reed Cormorant'.

Family Ardeidae: Herons

(Lake, Ankarafantsika National Park)

Cattle Egret, in breeding plumage.

(Lake, Ankarafantsika National Park).

Ardea humbloti, 'Humblot's Heron', 'Madagascar Heron'.

Family Accipitridae: Eagles

(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Frances Sparrowhawk'.

(Lake, Ankarafantsika National Park).

Haliaeetus vociferoides, 'Madagascar Fish Eagle', 'Madagascar Sea-eagle'.

Family Leptosomidae: Cuckoo-Roller

An endemic family to Madagascar that only includes one species!

(Ankarafantsika National Park HQ)

'Cuckoo-Roller'. A strange looking bird that is not related to Cuckoos or Rollers. (Ankarafantsika National Park).

Family Upupidae: Hoopoes

(Ankarafantsika National Park HQ)

'Madagascan Hoopoe'.

Family Meropidae: Bee-eaters

(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Olive Bee-eater'.

Family Alcedinidae: Kingfishers

(Ankarafantsika National Park centre)

'Madagascan Malachite Kingfisher'.

(near Lake, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Madagascan Pygmy Kingfisher'.

Family Coraciidae: Rollers

(Ankarafantsika National Park HQ)

'Broad-billed Roller'.

Family Philepittidae, Asities

A small family restricted to Madagascar.

When Asity build their nest, they just weave a ball, then poke a hole in it afterwards to make an entrance; sort of like building a house and forgetting to put a door in. 

(Walking trail, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Schlegels Asity'.

Family Vangidae

The biggest family of birds in Madagascar are the Vanga. They once made up their own group endemic to Madagascar, but this family has been expanded to include species in Africa and Asia. Within Madagascar, this fascinating group of related birds has exploded into a range of niches, and thus there are many very different looking species.

'Rufous Vanga' (image by Damon Ramsey)(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Rufous Vanga'.

'Blue Vanga' (image by Damon Ramsey)(trail, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Madagascan Blue Vanga'.

'Chabert Vanga' (image by Damon Ramsey)(National Park HQ, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Chabert Vanga', (Ankarafantsika National Park).

'Sickle-bill Vanga' (image by Damon Ramsey)(Ankarafantsika National Park)

Falculea palliata, 'Sickle-bill Vanga'.


(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Crested Drongo'

Family Bernieridae, 'Malagasy Warblers'

A small family birds endemic to Madagascar.

(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Long-billed Tetraka'.


(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Madagascan Bulbul'.

Old World Flycatchers

(Ankarafantsika National Park)
(walking trail, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Madagascar Paradise Flycatcher'.

(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Madagascar Paradise Flycatcher' white form.

(HQ, Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Madagascan Magpie-Robin'.


(Ankarafantsika National Park)

'Souimanga Sunbird'

Back to the page on the Madagascan dry forest & woodlands

Throughout the virus I am working in Australia on and off as local borders close, mostly as Expedition Leader in the Kimberley (May-September). If you can't go travelling until everything settles down, then until then, here I am doing online guided walks for Noble Caledonia and online lectures for Silversea.