Ruaha's great diversity of birds is a function of its location, which is transitional to the acacia savannah of East Africa and the miombo woodland belt of southern Africa. The park has a checklist of 450 birds. The crested barbet – whose persistent trilling is a characteristic sound of the southern bush – occurs in Ruaha, alongside central Tanzanian endemics (restricted to Central Tanzania) such as the yellow-collared lovebird and ashy starling. Migratory birds are present from November to April. The birdlife in Ruaha is good year-round, but at its best from November to April when the migratory birds from Europe and northern Africa are present. At this time, many resident bird species are nesting and are in breeding plumage. For wildlife viewing, the middle and end of the Dry season, from June to October, is best for visitors to the park.
Ruaha National Park
Ruaha National Park is the second largest national park in Tanzania, after the Serengeti. It is a remote bastion of spectacular wilderness, undisturbed wildlife, and breath-taking scenery and also combines well with the Selous Game Reserve. A major attraction here is the fact that it is one of the least visited parks offering a personal and private safari experience. Ruaha offers one of the largest populations of elephant in any African park, and the vast open areas are teeming with antelope and buffalo followed by the predators especially lion and potentially leopard, as well as African hunting dog and numerous giraffe and zebra. Historically, Ruaha was not a sought after destination for tourists due to the arid environment and the tsetse fly population; however, nowadays, the tsetse flies are under control and wildlife abounds. The best part is that it is still an uncrowded and undiscovered reserve.
Ruaha National Park is home to an enormous variety of animals, plants and birds with an estimated 20 000 elephants in the park. The birding is spectacular with a recorded 530 different species of birds, which is almost half of all bird species found in Tanzania. The park has one of the biggest counts of large mammal species compared to any other park, as well as having the second largest population of wild dog in Africa. The park's wildlife includes elephant, huge herds of buffalo, giraffe, zebra, impala, eland, hippo, crocodile, lion and leopard. Sable antelope can sometimes be seen in the Miombo areas and in the springs in the Western part of the park. Roan antelope are also sometimes seen in the eastern area of the park. In Ruaha, guests can enjoy superb walking safaris with an armed guides from one of the lodges and gain huge insight into the ecology of the area. Classic game drives take place on a daily basis and guests will find there are not many other visitors in the park at one time.