Top 8 Birds You’ll See on Safari: A Birdwatcher’s Guide

What are the most precious safari birds to keep an eye out for during your next tour of the savanna? While the options will naturally vary depending on your destination, some of the most noteworthy candidates include the marabou stork, flamingos, ostriches, regional varieties of hornbills, and plenty others. If you’re an avid birdwatcher, keep reading for the full list of safari birds to look out for!

Birds of the Savanna: Beautiful Avians to See on a Safari

The African savannah is home to many gorgeous species of feathered creatures, making it a prime visiting spot for birdwatchers and wildlife enthusiasts. Thanks to its diverse avian population, the African savannah also provides ample opportunities for safari photography, offering a way to immortalize the birds of the savanna.

What exactly can you expect to see? Let’s dive into the list of some of the top safari birds:

Marabou Stork

This bird is certainly a sight to behold! With its elongated, dagger-like bill, and the pinkish hue of its neck and head, the marabou stork inhabits much of East Africa and makes for one of its most recognisable denizens. Therefore, when headed to that region, definitely look out for its signature white belly, which it proudly displays in flight.


No list of safari birds could be complete without the majestic flamingo. Though related to the stork species, the flamingo’s most well-known feature – the bright pink plumage – never ceases to fascinate birdwatchers. This makes it an obligatory entrant on our list.


Several subspecies of ostriches inhabit the African continent, including the North African and Masai varieties. Wherever it may be that you’re headed, the opportunity to observe these birds on safari is one that attracts many in the first place. Just remember to keep a distance for your own safety, and do not disturb them!


Like the previous bird, hornbills are present throughout the continent. In fact, more than half of the world’s species can be found in Africa. Therefore, birdwatchers will be pleased to know that regardless of which part they visit, they are likely to encounter more than one representative of this avian family.

African Fish Eagle

Present all throughout Africa’s eastern coast, the African fish eagle easily makes this list, as there aren’t many other savanna birds out there that could compete with its imposing presence. For many, seeing the white-and-brown plumage of just this majestic avian makes the entire safari worth it.


In spite of the morbid reputation vultures have garnered in popular culture, there is still something undeniably beautiful about them. Their huge wingspans and commanding yet ominous presence make them a captivating sight in the African savannah.

Lilac-breasted Roller

To contrast with the African vulture and the savannah’s earthy tones, the lilac-breasted roller’s appearance offers a burst of iridescent color. This little avian is a joy to observe, and those heading to a safari will want to keep an eye out, as it is not one to miss!

Martial Eagle

Rounding off our list is the majestic martial eagle. Found in most of Southern Africa, it is one of the largest birds of prey in the world and the largest on the continent. Its undoubtedly impressive wingspan makes the martial eagle a truly outstanding marvel among other savanna birds.

Safari Birds – The Takeaway

Much can be said about African savanna birds, though perhaps the most notable aspect lies in their variety. Make sure to keep your eyes peeled for any of the safari birds listed above on your next tour!

You may also read: Top 21 African Animals and Where You’ll See Them


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