Saturday 18 August 2018

Arrival in Kigali

The flight from Entebbe to Kigali is so short and Rwandan time is one hour behind Ugandan time. The two factors actually allowed me to do some late afternoon birding on July 16th in Kigali near my hotel in the Remera district. I had birded the garden of my hotel in Entebbe in the morning.

  • Kigali is built on hills and Remera has a good under-developed valley between hills which I birded.
  • In the one hour of birding, I added bronze sunbird, and northern fiscal  to my life list.
  • I could see the potential of the valley for further birding

blue-billed firefinch

I originally wrote in this blog  "I don't believe there are any sub-species of red-billed firefinch but the male birds in Uganda and Rwanda appear to have blacker underbellies than the ones I see in West Africa. Furthermore the females appear to have grey-brown fronts whereas those I see have more lemony-brown fronts in Mauritania. I am sure the colour difference is real".

Thanks to Martin Pitt in the comments who alerted me to the possibility that they could be African firefinch (blue-billed firefinch). This prompted me to do some research. There are indeed several sub-species of red-billed firefinch after all. It appears the variation is explained best by that.

immature blue-billed firefinch

speckled mousebird

northern (common) fiscal

common bulbul (dark capped)

red-eyed dove

bronze sunbird 1

bronze sunbird 2

bronze sunbird 3

African paradise flycatcher

a pair of Baglafecht weaver 

male Baglafecht weaver

16th July 2018 early evening, Remera Valley, Kigali
Red-eyed Dove  
Black Kite (Yellow-billed)  
Speckled Mousebird  
Northern Fiscal  
African Paradise-Flycatcher  
Pied Crow  
Common Bulbul (Dark-capped)  
Scarlet-chested Sunbird  
Bronze Sunbird  
Northern Grey-headed Sparrow  
Baglafecht Weaver  
Blue-billed Firefinch  


  1. Are you sure these are Red-billed Firefinches rather than African. The photos and your comments suggest the latter.

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  3. Thank you Martin. I will research further.

  4. I liked your blog thanks for sharing this.