Must admit it did hurt when the alarm went off at 04:30am and with breakfast shortly after we were soon driving to Kakum National Park. How best to describe a morning’s birding here is very difficult as there’s always a steady flow of quality species and time passes all too quickly. Even walking to the start of the canopy walkway gave us Green Crombec and a delightful Forest Robin hopping along the trail in front of us. The canopy walkway is suspended some 40m above the forest floor and you get a great view of the surrounding area – as long as you can ignore the heart-pounding, bouncing and moving walkway between the solid platforms!
Anyway, we had a great four hours here before the activity died and the heat got too much and our birdlist reads like a ‘Who’s Who’ of desirable species. So here goes: 3 White-crested Hornbills, a superb Brown-cheeked Hornbill, flyby Tambourine Dove, a pair of Black Bee-eaters, Sabine’s Puffback, Speckled, Red-rumped and Yellow-throated Tinkerbirds, Fire-bellied Woodpecker, Yellow-spotted and Hairy-breasted Barbets, Yellowbill, the rare Willcock’s Honeyguide, Cassin’s Honeybird, Slender-billed, Ansorge’s, Spotted, Golden, Little Grey and Honeyguide Greenbuls, 3 Tit-Hylias, West African Wattle-eye, Violet-backed Hyliota, Rufous-crowned Eremomela, Sharpe’s Apalis, Yellow-browed and Olive-green Cameroptera, Grey Longbill, Copper-tailed Starling, Purple-throated Cuckooshrike, Blue Cuckooshrike, Western Black-headed and Black-winged Orioles, Grey-headed, Chestnut-breasted and White-breasted Negrita, Red-headed Malimbe, Velvet-mantled Drongo, Preuss’s Weaver, Maxwell’s Black Weaver, Little Green, Green, Blue-throated Brown, Collared and Superb Sunbirds. Phew! Lunch and a siesta back at the hotel were very much appreciated.
After scoping a nice Magpie Manakin across the road from the hotel we left at 3.30pm and returned to the canopy walkway, which was not unexpectedly much quieter than this morning. But we still picked up a few trip birds such as Lanner, Palm-nut Vulture, a cracking Yellow-billed Turaco and an immature European Honey Buzzard. We stayed until dusk when a Brown Nightjar was heard below us but failed to respond to the tape, so we returned to the coach and headed back to the hotel.