Published on 17 March 2014
Written by Etienne Marais


The small town of Unguane, located in the Inhambane province of central Mozambique, is the area where the local population of the highly localised Green Tinkerbird was rediscovered by Greg Davies and Hugh Chittenden in coastal thicket in early 2013. The Green Tinkerbird was only recorded from Mozambique from a single skin that was collected in the 1950’s. Since its rediscovery in the recent past, only a few hundred people have been privileged to view this legendary bird. While the primary purpose of a visit to this site is to locate the Green Tinkebird, there are some other regional specials worth looking out for.

The coastal thicket around Unguane is excellent birding habitat for East Coast Akalat, Black-headed Apalis, Chestnut-fronted Helmet-shrike, Livingstone’s Flycatcher and Plain-backed Sunbird. Search around the numerous Boababs for Bohm’s Spintails.


Green Tinkerbird.

Chestnut-Fronted Helmet-Shrike


Chestnut-Fronted Helmet-Shrike.


Unguana is located c. 30 km to the north of Massinga, Inhambane Province. Travel north of Massinga for 2.3 km turning left at 23º 02 37.8S, 35º 15 37.0E. Travel along this road for 7.4 km turning right at 23º 04 00.9S, 35º 11 33.9E. Travel westwards along this track from 23º 04 00.9S, 35º 11 33.9E onwards. Territories of Green Tinkerbirds were found by Hugh Chittenden and Greg Davies at between 23º 03 39.4S, 35º 10 52.7E and 23º 03 39.8S 35º 05 43.0E. This is a well populated farming area with numerous dirt roads and unmarked tracks, which may result in navigation being a problem. The use of a GPS is highly recommended. The nearest good accommodation is at Morrungulo, on the coast about 30 - 40 km se of the town of Unguana (13 km east of the tar road, and a few km north of Massinga). 

Livingstone's Flycatcher

Livingstone's Flycatcher.

Grey-Backed Cameroptera

Grey-Backed Cameroptera.

Birding at Unguane

Succesful birding at Unguane.