Thursday 7 April 2011

Cape Verde Pt 4 - desert birding

Below are some images of typical desert species I saw in Boa Vista, Cape Verde last month.  Boa Vista was the only island I visited and held enough to keep me occupied.  Other islands are expensive to visit and the locals seem to know how to charge the Euro200 inter-island flight.  A further 200 euros paid for a trip to Razo island for the endemic Razo Lark but I declined when told you cannot now land !

A typical ribeira, or dry river bed.  This area alone held three species of lark and Cream-coloured Courser

Hoopoe Lark, a common bird of the open desert

Hoopoe Lark, adult seen feeding a fledgling nearby.
Hoopoe Lark, in open desert with no vegetation. The tube in the foreground is actually a parched branch from an ancient woodland. 

Adult Spectacled Warbler, common in all habitats.

Bar-tailed Desert Lark; more localised but still present in good numbers.

Female Black-capped Finch Lark, common in arid desert.

Juv Black-capped Finch Lark

Adult male Iago Sparrow, a common endemic of the Cape Verdes (sometimes known as Rufous-backed Sparrow).

This was one of my target species and I saw about 20 in total.

Adult Cape Verde Cream-coloured Coursers, a localised sub species.



  1. Superb set Steve, Have we had more than one Cream Coloured Courser in Cornwall. I know of one on the Scillies.

  2. Looks like you had a very productive trip Steve. Spectacled Warbler image is superb. Would like to know which lens you used and also camera settings used for this particular shot.

    Tony Armstrong

  3. Hi Tony - the reply to your question is as follows: 300mm f/2.8 plus 2x TC. Tripod mounted. Settings: ISO 250. F/8. WB Cloudy.Exp c. EV 0.0