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Ian Fulton | profile | all galleries >> African Galleries >> Gabon >> Birds of Gabon - Individual Species galleries >> Hartlaub's Duck tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

African Darter | African Finfoot | African Pied Hornbill | Black-headed Bee-eater | Blue-breasted Bee-eater | Blue-spotted Wood-Dove | Cassin's Flycatcher | Cattle Egret | Chocolate-backed Kingfisher | Congo Moor Chat | Damara Tern | Forbes's Plover | Giant Kingfisher | Gosling's Apalis | Hartlaub's Duck | Lesser Striped Swallow | Little Greenbul | Long-legged Pipit | Palm-nut Vulture | Pel's Fishing Owl | Pin-tailed Whydah | Royal Tern | Rufous-naped (Malbrant's) Lark | Slender-billed Weaver | Sooty Flycatcher | Swamp Bulbul | Swamp Nightjar | Vermiculated Fishing Owl | Vieillot's Black Weaver | White-crested Hornbill | White-crested Tiger Heron | Yellow-rumped Tinkerbird

Hartlaub's Duck

(pteronetta hartlaubii)
The Hartlaub's Duck was one of my 'most wanted' birds of the Gabon trip as I had failed to see it on a couple of previous opportunities. It is Africa's only true forest duck and is generally accepted as the most difficult African duck to find. Its range is restricted to West and Central Africa and within these areas it is found in forested streams lakes and ponds, similar in its habits to the elusive Finfoot.
Our first view was of a pair flying off in the dark as we were spot-lighting for owls on the Mpivie River, hardly a satisfactory lifer tick. Fortunately we connected with the species again the next day at the Akaka inlet where four birds were feeding in a swampy lagoon just off the main channel. Our best views however were the next day when we found five birds in the Mpivie River - the views were great though the photographs are mediocre.
Hartlaub's Duck, Akaka-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Akaka-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Mpivie River-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Mpivie River-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Mpivie River-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Mpivie River-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Mpivie River-Loango NP, Gabon
Hartlaub's Duck, Mpivie River-Loango NP, Gabon