+ (Whatsapp) birdingafricaoffice@gmail.com
+ (Whatsapp) birdingafricaoffice@gmail.com

Birding Africa Team

Who we are

About Us

We are a group of biologists, bird book authors and conservationists who are drawn together by a common passion: sharing our enthusiasm for Africa’s birds with others. Since 1997, we have been leading tours around our home town of Cape Town and further into Africa for top international tour companies and small groups. We’ve even acted as consultants for the BBC Natural History Unit and shown Bill Oddie his very first Cape Rockjumpers…

Tour Leaders

/Office Team

Callan Cohen

Director & Principal Tour Leader

Callan has had a life-long dedication to birds and founded Birding Africa when he was still a university student. Since then, he has led over 100 tours and expeditions to 23 African countries, both for Birding Africa and British and American bird tour companies.

Michael Mills

Principal Tour Leader & Itinerary Development

Michael Mills grew up “in the bush” in the Kalahari and Kruger National Parks where his parents were carnivore researchers. Michael’s incredible focus, dedication and ability to locate and show people Africa’s toughest birds is probably unequalled on the continent.

Claire spottiswoode

Co-Founder & Expedition Leader

Cape Town-born Claire is a co-founder of Birding Africa and she leads expeditions to remotes places in Africa including Mozambique, Ethiopia and Zambia. She has co-authored three books on birding in Africa, including the Southern African Birdfinder, a guide to finding over 1400 species in the southern third of Africa and Madagascar, and Where to Watch Birds in Ethiopia.

She is largely based at the FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology at the University of Cape Town and you can read about her amazing ground-breaking research discoveries at  www.africancuckoos.com and www.africanhoneyguides.com

Tertius Gous

Principal Tour Leader

Tertius grew up in the bushveld in South Africa and has birded widely across Africa. He now leads tours for Birding Africa in South Africa, Uganda, Namibia and the Okavango, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Zambia and Madagascar. Besides birds, Tertius has a broad interest in all wildlife, especially mammals.

Dalton Gibbs

Principal Tour Leader & Cape Town Pelagics guide

Dalton Gibbs has long been a key person in the City of Cape Town’s Nature Conservation and his various responsibilities have included running Rondevlei Nature Reserve, monitoring critically endangered flora, assessing biodiversity of reserves, monitoring bird breeding colonies and chasing down escaped hippos – which regularly graze on his lawn at night at his home on the edge of Rondevlei Nature Reserve! Dalton leads our tours across South Africa, Namibia and Tanzania, and has been leading Cape Town Pelagics trips for many years. Besides his birding skills, Dalton is a well-rounded naturalist with a deep interest in all aspects of ecology — and history if you get him started!

Vince Ward

Tour Leader around South Africa & Cape Town Pelagics Guide

Vince is a life-long birder, having grown up in Cape Town (but also has lived and birded for a while in California). Vince has a degree in biology, and has worked as a seabird scientist and in nature conservation.

David Swanepoel

Tour Leader around South Africa & Cape Town Pelagics Guide

David grew up in Pretoria and lived in Durban for two years (where he was the chair of Birdlife Port Natal) but now resides in Cape Town. He visited the Kruger National Park numerous times as a child (and many times since), but only really started birding around 25 years ago. As a young geologist, he bought a guide to ID the birds he saw in the field. Birding has since turned into a passion and profession.

Mayur Prag

Tour Leader & Botanical Itinerary Development

Growing up in Cape Town, Mayur has always had a deep passion for the natural world, especially birds and then later flora. He’s explored and led tours extensively around South Africa, and also as far afield as Uganda for Green-breasted Pitta, Shoebill and African Green Broadbill. In recent years he’s combined his love for photography with botanical photography and exploration and he’s developed a reputation for being able to show people some of South Africa’s localised and special flora.

Campbell Fleming

Tour Leader around South Africa

Campbell’s interest in birds was sparked at the tender age of seven after seeing his first Lammergeier soaring above the majestic Drakensberg. Since then he has birded across the whole of South Africa …and beyond. Some of his best garden birds in Cape Town have included Knysna Warbler and Buff-spotted Flufftail. Campbell was a volunteer for Birding Africa for the ‘350 bird species photographed in one day’ project. In addition to birding, he studied biology at the University of Cape Town and his interests include hiking, photography, sport, and traveling.

Cameron Blair

Tour Leader Around South Africa & Cape Town Pelagics Guide

Captivated by birds since he was a small child, Cameron’s love for birds and the natural world was solidified growing up in the town of Hoedspruit, a stones-throw from the famous Kruger National Park, Blyde River Canyon and Mariepskop forest. He has birded widely in every province of South Africa, as well as in parts of Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana.

Nick Fordyce

Tour Leader around South Africa & Cape Town Pelagics Guide

Nick grew up in Johannesburg and developed a passion for the natural world after numerous family trips to nature reserves in Mpumulanga and the Kruger National Park. The huge variety of lowveld birds opened his eyes to the wonderful world of birding and this has subsequently resulted in him pursuing a career focused on the conservation of the natural world.

Joel Radue

Tour Leader around South Africa & Cape Town Pelagics Guide

Growing up in the incredibly biodiverse Cape Town area, Joel has been passionate about birds, and nature in general, from a young age. He has birded around the country, and loves sharing South Africa’s rich birdlife with others. He is currently doing a BSc at the University of Cape Town.

Daniel Engelbrecht

Tour Leader & Social Media

Daniel has been an avid birder since he can remember and spend much of his free time birding the Limpopo Province of South Africa. Over the past few years he has birded across Southern Africa in search of a number of special and localised species. Daniel has a passion for guiding and have presented a number of talks, podcasts and radio-interviews on birding related topics and is currently an editor for ‘The Lark’ – a newsletter covering ornithological observations as well as trip reports from across Southern Africa and further afield.

Gabriel Jamie

Tour Leader & Cape Town Pelagics guide

Gabriel Jamie became interested in science as a child through watching birds, first in Cape Town and then in the United Kingdom. This has resulted in a life-long avian obsession that has led him to study birds and their ecosystems in many places around the world.

Gabriel did his PhD at the University of Cambridge, conducting fieldwork in Zambia and Mozambique on a group of finches which, like many cuckoos, forego their parental duties and instead lay their eggs in the nests of other bird species. Gabriel is currently a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Cambridge and a research associate at the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology where he studies the evolution of mimicry and speciation with a particular focus on African birds.

For more information on Gabriel’s work see: https://www.zoo.cam.ac.uk/directory/gabriel-jamie and http://www.fitzpatrick.uct.ac.za/fitz/staff/research/jamie

Luke Goddard

Tour Leader around South Africa & Cape Town Pelagics Guide

Luke fell in love with birding at a young age and is becoming well know around Cape Town for the rare and unusual birds he able to find, and the passion for which he shares his sightings with guests. He’s an all round naturalist and also enjoy searching for reptiles and amphibians.

Andrew Wagner

Tour Leader in Kruger National Park

Andrew lives on the edge of the world famous Kruger National Park, and leads our groups there using his specially modified safari vehicle.

Steve Woodhall

Tour Leader - Butterfy Tours around South Africa

Steve started butterfly & moth collecting in UK at the age of 5. He made the decision to go to Africa after seeing Born Free & finally made it (to South Africa) in 1980. He dabbled around before joining Lepidopterists’ Society of Africa in 1986. Steve spent the next 30 years running around Africa, collecting with net, traps and cameras.

Martim Melo

Tour Leader for São Tomé & Príncipe

Martim is a Portuguese biologist and birder who has been working on São Tomé and Príncipe for 20 years. He knows the islands inside out and has pioneered much of the ornithological research on the islands, and the discoverer of the new scops owl on Principe Island. There is nobody better to guide you around these unique islands.

Office Team

Director & Principal Tour Leader
Principal Tour Leader & Itinerary Development
Tour Manager for Namibia & South Africa
Tour Leader & Botanical Itinerary Development
Tour Leader & Social Media
Marketing Assistant