About our Blog

Hello, hujambo and sawubona! It’s great to have you here. If you're as wild about African travel as we are, you’ve come to the right place. Our writers travel all over this captivating continent to bring back the best travel stories, advice and guides. So settle in and enjoy the journey.

Africa awaits!








Latest Posts

  • A diary entry from Cape Town

    By Ali Findlay |

    “This cape is the most stately thing and the fairest cape we saw in the whole circumference of the earth” — Journal of Sir Francis Drake, 1580 4.45am: My alarm goes off and jolts me awake out of a deep sleep. I resist the temptation to bury myself under the covers and somehow force myself out of bed. A few minutes later I am on my way to Lion’s Head to start the day in the best way possible; with an increased heart rate, fresh air, and incredible views. I am surprised to find that the city is already awake; the trail, though quiet, is not entirely deserted during the wee hours on a weekday. Watching the sun rise over one of the world’s most exquisite cities makes the early wake up well worth it. The morning light reveals Table Mountain, the centrepiece and crowning glory of the only city bordered by two oceans — Cape Town. In most cities, the skyline is a jagged line of skyscrapers but in Cape Town, my eyes always travel higher to the flat peak of its iconic mountain. 8am: After descending Lion’s Head, I make my way to La Belle Bistro & Bakery in Camps Bay to grab an eggs benedict breakfast while revelling in the ocean views. Cape Town’s famous picturesque sunny days are always beach days. Although it’s early, eager beach-goers are already claiming their spots. 9.30am: The sun’s warm rays encourage me to head down to the beach. After a short walk, I find myself at the sandy shoreline of Clifton, adding my towel to the skew line forming. The beach is already clogged with visitors and locals alike; colourful umbrellas dot the white sand like sprinkles on a cake. Some beach-goers let the sun bake their skin a few shades darker, others busy themselves by reading or playing Frisbee, and the brave submerge themselves in the chilly but refreshing embrace of the Atlantic. After dozing in the sun the heat forces me to sprint into the sea. I dive under an icy wave and the sudden change in temperature takes my breath away. I scurry back to my towel and let the sun reheat my skin. 12pm: Clear days are not just beach days but also Table Mountain days, perfect for riding to the peak in the rotating cable car to enjoy unobscured views. The city unfolds below me, getting simultaneously bigger and smaller with each turn of the car. Nothing can prepare you for the beauty you experience when standing on top of this Wonder of Nature. Green mountain slopes blend into the offices, shops, and homes that form a solid line winding along the natural shape of the ocean. To see Table Mountain is to see something majestic and standing on top of it is almost dream-like. To spend time in Cape Town is to have this magnificent landmark overlook your day-to-day activities. 1.30pm: Can you say that you’ve eaten a meal on a table that is over 1,000 meters high? I can. 3pm: Afternoon brings a visit to the historic Company Gardens. I stroll slowly along the paths, letting the tame squirrels eat nuts from the palm of my hand. A large coffee at the vibrant restaurant goes down well after an early start. 6pm: As the sun moves to the west and shadows lengthen, the city’s best lookout points begin to reel people in. Signal Hill is my chosen sundowner spot. As the magical dusk light spreads over the city, the yellow-gold lights begin to dot the landscape. 8pm: When evening dissolves into the night and the water-coloured sky fades to black, the city’s nightlife hubs come to life with a whoop and a roar. Although Capetonians are well known for being rather relaxed, this doesn’t mean that the city goes to sleep with the sun. On the contrary, certain areas are busiest at this time of day. Wining and dining is a big part of the Capetonian way of life; with such a large selection of top-class wines and restaurants, it’s not hard to see why. Kloof Street House, a well-known restaurant in the CBD, is my choice this evening. I sip white wine outside, while the warm summer air hangs around me like an invisible blanket; the best end to a day in the Mother City. 11pm: The taxi passes the dark gap in the city that is Table Mountain at night, but from this angle, I can see its majestic rocky walls are lit up with large white spotlights — Cape Town’s most famous resident never fails to impress.

  • Rhino Africa Launches First 360° Virtual Safari Experience - A Morning With Meerkats

    By Matthew Sterne |

    “There’s this exciting sense of anticipation in the air as you wait for the meerkats to wake up. You get there before sunrise and the ‘meerkat whisperer’, who knows exactly which burrow the meerkats have slept in the night before, points it out to you and then you wait for them to come out and start their day,” Ryan says with a glint in his eye, fondly remembering what he calls, "one of the best trips of my life." Ryan is Rhino Africa’s Creative Director and recently visited Jack’s Camp in Botswana’s Makgadikgadi Pans to capture the meerkat experience with the video team. Due to an ongoing habituation programme at places like Jack’s Camp, it’s possible for guests to get up close and personal with these captivating creatures. They are completely wild but they are also used to the visitor’s non-threatening presence. On chilly mornings, you might find a meerkat snuggling up to you for warmth, or in the absence of a termite mound or tree, using your head as a sentry lookout post. It’s one of the most special and memorable game experiences you can encounter in Botswana.“You keep your distance and as the sun starts peeking its golden rays from over the horizon, the meerkats poke their heads out to have a quick look to see if everything is safe. The little meerkat head pops up and then goes back in, and then he pokes his head out again. He immediately stands sentry, standing up on his back legs, to make sure there are no predators nearby and then the entire mob starts to slowly make their way out. “It’s very interesting to see how much they interact first thing in the morning with each other and how playful they are. We were lucky enough to see meerkats with pups play wrestling, running around, making their unique sounds and warming up before they go out hunting.”THE IMMERSIVE 360° VIDEO EXPERIENCE Ryan and the media team spent two days with the meerkats filming and photographing them and one of the videos they captured was a fascinating 'Virtual Safari' video of the meerkat waking up in the morning. This 360° video allows viewers to navigate around the area, allowing the viewer to feel as if they are actually there. With a VR headset the experience is heightened and feels as close as possible to the real thing. “We pride ourselves on being at the forefront of travel and technology, and so we’re always looking to try new things. With the rise of 360° videos, we knew we could use this to capture the special wildlife encounters we are lucky to experience. It’s a very engaging space to be in, you can look up and down and around and we encourage people to explore to zoom in and look around. The great thing with 360° is that you can watch something a few times and keep on discovering new things to see,” Ryan explains. “We used a gorilla pod, which is a very strong and flexible tripod and covered it with grass. We made it look like one of the mounds. It can be quite tricky as your role has to shift from director to choreographer as there is no ‘behind the lens’. When the little guys started coming out of their burrow they came to the camera right away and immediately started digging at the camera. It couldn't have worked out better, we captured them playing and biting each other mischievously. We were very lucky and it makes for very engaging and special content. It really makes you feel like you’re part of the mob and you’re able to see how they interact with no humans around.” Ryan pauses for a few moments, staring out the window and thinking back to the experience, “I’ve been on a lot of safaris and it was one of those experiences that really filled me with glee. There’s no other way to say it. It was just special. It has a similar feeling to a walking safari. Meerkats are amazing creatures and to get up that close to them is a remarkable experience.”

  • Our Favourite African Dishes & Recipes

    By Melanie Du Toit |

    “One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating” – Luciano Pavarotti

    Our vast, beloved continent is home to different climates, landscapes, soils, fauna, and flora – resulting in a diverse array of delectable dishes to tempt any palate. In conjunction with this, Africa’s rich heritage, a pastiche of cultures, and an influx of foreigners over centuries has meant that our cuisines represent a melting pot of history and taste. We’ve compiled a list of ten of our favourite dishes from Southern Africa and other parts of the continent. Moroccan Meatballs & Herbed Couscous Hailing from the northern parts of the continent, couscous has served as a staple part of the African diet for centuries. A healthy starch, it's satisfying comfort food. This dish is often served as part of a stew (such as a tagine), as an accompaniment, and even on its own. Not to mention, it is wonderfully hassle-free to make. Take a look at one of our favourite recipes here paired with a delightfully Morrocan meatball main. Tagine With its fragrant history rising up from the North African landscape, the tagine takes basic stews to a whole new height. Cooked for hours in a traditional cast-iron cone-shaped pot - and with combinations including all kinds of meat, seafood, vegetables, and fruit - it is a winning dish for all kinds of taste buds.  A flagship combination, however, is undoubtedly lamb and apricot. You can find the recipe here. Milk Tart  This dessert and its multiple variations have been revered South African and Namibian after-dinner treats for decades. It's creamy texture laced with hints of cinnamon create a delightful combination, and it's easy to make to boot. To give it a truly South African flair, take a look at this traditional recipe given new life thanks to its citrusy zest. Roast Lamb in Harissa Paste Simple. Fragrant. And oh, so delicious. Lamb is one of South Africa's favoured meats, in no small part due to its wide availability and its delicious taste. Having long been a staple meal on the continent, the ways of eating it are absolutely endless. This recipe marries two much-loved African ingredients: lamb and north African Harissa paste. With the fat crisping up into sweet oblivion and the tanginess of the meat rounding out the flavour, this is a sinfully satisfying concoction. Jollof Rice The precursor to American jambalaya, jollof rice is a fragrant, comforting and easy-to-make dish. Often served at parties and used for entertaining purposes, several countries in West Africa claim to be the original masterminds behind this tasty take on plain old rice. No jollof rice? No party. Here's a simple, straightforward recipe to ensure you make jollof rice like a pro, first time round. Bunny Chow Packed with flavour and served in the hollowed-out part of a half-loaf of bread, Bunny Chow is one of South Africa's most iconic dishes. With its roots buried in the Durban Indian community, migrant Indian workers who laboured on sugar cane plantations in the KwaZulu-Natal Province found an ingenious way to carry their food out into the field with them. With bread acting as a bowl, and making up for the lack of traditional rotis, the Bunny Chow was born. You can try your hand at making it here. Mozambican Piri Piri Chicken Chicken is an ingredient that provides an inexhaustible array of recipe options. One such way, however, is so famous that restaurant chains dedicated to this manner have sprung up across the continent. I'm talking about piri-piri chicken, of course (or peri peri, depending on how you feel). With some of the earliest recipes coming from the continent's east coast, countries such as Mozambique have been giving chicken a decided 'bite' for a long while now, and it's certainly caught on. Learn how to make it here. Shisa Nyama Not familiar with the term? That's OK. You probably know it by a different name. Perhaps you call it a barbecue, a cookout, or even a barbie (over here we call it a braai). Either way, cooking meat on an open flame or hot coals is somewhat of a tradition for us on the African continent. The formula is simple, really: select and marinate the meat you like best. What it really comes down to, though, is knowing how to braai. Take a look at this handy braai guide. Mchicha Hailing from West Africa, this is the perfect opportunity to get your greens in a totally new and delicious way. Mchicha is, in its simplest form, spinach cooked in a peanut sauce. Easy to make with simple pantry staples such as peanut butter, stock, and tinned tomatoes, you'll be hogging this dish all to yourself. Be prepared to have friends asking where you got such an unusual and tasty idea from! (Psst, tell them it was us). Learn how to whip up this easy meal here. Mandazi Known by many different names from Ndao to Mahamri, Mandazi is a prime example of African street food. Popular in East African countries such as Kenya and Uganda, it can be found on many a street corner. At its core, Mandazi can be considered a semi-sweet doughnut of sorts, but with elements such as coconut and cardamom, its flavour proves much more complex and layered. You can learn how to make this delicious snack here. Bobotie This traditional South African dish (pronounced Bah-Boor-Tee) has roots that extend as far back as the Roman era when a combination of cooked meat and pine nuts were layered in a dish and dubbed Patinum ex lacte. That being said, the modern-day variation of this dish looks nothing like its ancient counterpart. Bobotie was later mentioned in Dutch cookbooks from the early 17th century before being adapted to its celebrated current form courtesy of the Cape Malay community. Typically, it consists of minced beef or lamb combined with curry powder, raisins or sultanas, and almonds, and is topped with bay leaves and an egg mixture. This hearty and homely dish comes in a variety of variations, but you can find one of our favourite recipes here.

    Thanks to the following food bloggers and writers for generously allowing us to reference their recipes and use their images to showcase these delicious African creations:

    African Bite

    Aftrad Village Kitchen

    Cook Sister

    Drizzle & Dip

    Immaculate Bites

    Le Creuset

    Michael Olivier



    Veg Kitchen with Nava Atlas

  • 12 Wildlife Instagrammers You Should Be Following

    By Ali Findlay |

    Africa’s animals are kind of a big deal. Between the Big 5, the Little 5, thousands of birds, insects, reptiles, amphibians and everything in between, this continent is home to some of the most majestic creatures on the planet. Whether you’re impatiently biding the time until your safari trip, reminiscing over past journeys or simply dreaming of Africa, here are some of the top wildlife Instagrammers you should be following: 1. Shannon Benson: @shannon__wild  Shannon Benson is an Australian wildlife photographer, cinematographer, author, and conservationist based in Africa. Her feed largely features African wildlife and behind-the-scenes shots and videos of her trips. Shannon holds photographic safaris and workshops all over the world and is an ambassador for organisations such as WildAid, Wild Tomorrow Fund, and The Perfect World Foundation among others. If you’re into animals, location shots, and conservation, Shannon’s feed will be right up your street.

    2. Russ McLaughlin: @russ_wildlife  Wildlife film-maker and photographer, Russel McLaughlin is a South African with an obvious love of Africa and her animals. His black and white or colour images tend to feature African animals the most, but also show off the various animals he encounters on his travels. Russel has filmed documentaries for National Geographic and Animal Planet, is an expert guide with both photographic and environmental knowledge, and is also a passionate conservationist, working closely with WildAid, an organisation with a mission to end illegal wildlife trade. 
    3. Will Burrard-Lucas: @willbl UK wildlife photographer and innovator Will Burrard-Lucas has an Instagram feed that is, for the most part, dedicated to African wildlife. He is the founder of Camtraptions, a company that has developed BeetleCams and Camera Traps — products that help photographers capture wildlife in new ways. Will is also the founder of WildlifePhoto.com, a website that offers resources, services and products for wildlife photographers. His feed is dominated by spectacular colours and unbelievable close-up images, many of which have been captured using his innovative products.

    A beautiful Impala photographed in Namibia.

    A photo posted by Will Burrard-Lucas | Wildlife (@willbl) on

    4. Margot Raggett: @margotraggettphotography  After buying her first DSLR camera in 2010 for a trip to the Maasai Mara, Margot Raggett fell in love with wildlife photography and with Africa. She is the founder of the Remembering Elephants project, a fundraising book that combines photographs taken by 65 of the best wildlife photographers — 100% of the proceeds go towards fighting elephant poaching.
    Sometimes you know little ones are up to no good! ❤️🐘 #rememberingelephants @world_wildlife A photo posted by Wildlife By Margot Raggett (@margotraggettphotography) on
    5. Marina Cano: @marinacano Although she is based in Cantabria, Spain, Marina Cano’s Instagram feed features plenty of African wildlife. She has published two books as well as an e-book and hosts numerous photographic workshops in Spain as well as safaris in and around Africa.


    A photo posted by Marina Cano (@marinacano) on

    6. Keith Connelly: @ingwe911 Keith Connelly’s Instagram can be described as a combination of close-ups, dramatic lighting, soft colours and black and white. He started his career as a wildlife guide and is now a professional photographer and photographic guide specialising in, you guessed it, wildlife and nature photography.
    7. James Sutter: @jamessuter Both a photographer and a film-maker, James Sutter’s Instagram features both stills and video of African wildlife. He is a photographic guide and a co-owner of a film production company, Black Bean Productions, in Cape Town.
    8. Gerry van der Walt: @gerryvanderwalt Gerry van der Walt’s feed has a bit of everything; wildlife from Africa as well as from other parts of the world, videos, stills, and even the occasional Snapchat. The South African is a specialist photographic safari guide, wildlife photographer, educator, public speaker, and co-founder of Wild Eye, a photographic safari company.
    9. Elliot Neep: @elliottneep Although he doesn’t only focus on African wildlife, Elliot Neep’s Instagram is a must-follow. A professional photographer and ORYX photography safari guide, Elliot’s photographs tend to fit into three broad categories: intimate portraits, action-filled behaviour imagery, and wildscapes. He also has his own column in Practical Photography magazine, one of Britain’s leading photography monthlies.

    Sitting in my hotel room, waiting for my flight home. So, I'm just having a quick look through the last week's shots from the #masaimara 😊 Was a short but very sweet #photosafari with great clients. Can't wait to return. Thinking of running a specialist 'predator' safari for 2017. Comment below or message me if you're interested 👍 -------------------------------------------- Beautiful fine art prints now available 🖼 Like what you see? Join the other 18K+ followers and follow me for a dose of stunning #wildlifephotography 👍 Visit my gallery and tap the ⏺⏺⏺ to be notified when I post every shot. Image copyright © Elliott Neep/elliottneep.com 🌍 Please respect copyright and do not repost/share without tagging and crediting, thank you 🙏 View over 500 beautiful images on my IG gallery ‼️ Always #wild and free 🐾 -------------------------------------------- #⃣ #africansafari #bigcats #lion #african_portraits #lioness #lioncub #naturephotography #cuteanimals #beautifulnature #cutecatcrew #motherhood #motherlove

    A photo posted by Elliott Neep (@elliottneep) on

    10. David Lloyd: @davidlloyd David Lloyd manages to capture both the harsh and soft side of nature in his “fine art wildlife photography” — something that comes through strongly on his Instagram. His best piece of advice is “to stay with your subject for as long as possible”.
    Mother's Touch A photo posted by David Lloyd | Wildlife (@davidlloyd) on
    11. Burak Dogansoysal: @burakdogansoysal A self-proclaimed Africa addict, Burak Dogansoysal’s Instagram mostly features African wildlife, with occasional portraits of people and location shots scattered in between. Starting out in business, Burak is now a professional photographer and has travelled through 64 countries.

    Thoughtful... // Düşünceli... [Kinigi, Rwanda] #gitmeklazim

    A photo posted by Burak Dogansoysal (@burakdogansoysal) on

    12. Brendon Cremer: @brendoncremer A professional wildlife photographer, Brendon Cremer leads photography safaris, tours, and workshops. Brendon has a passion for and deep understanding of big cats, something that comes through strongly in his feed.

  • My Trip|A Photographic Journey through Botswana and Namibia

    By Matthew Sterne |

    Jeremy Instone, from Woking in the UK, says he used to have mundane holidays but the travel bug bit about ten years ago and since then he has been to a range of exciting destinations. He first travelled to Botswana and Namibia in 2015. "I had an extended holiday and hopped around from place to place with the help of Rhino Africa’s guidance. I had asked for a holiday based almost entirely around photography and the strong factor that I did not want to put up or take down my own tent. "After my 2015 experience, I decided that I would go again and definitely with Rhino Africa. I originally thought I’d return three to four years after my first trip. A few months later I reckoned I might struggle to do this after I retired so I’d better do it again quick," so 2016 saw Jeremy pack his bags for Africa again. Picking a couple of locations that to him, as a photographer, hit all the right buttons as well as the level of comfort and food that he was looking for. Pom Pom Camp – Okavango Delta – Botswana "Using Johannesburg as a jumping off point, I took a short flight to Maun in Botswana. After passing immigration, my pilot was waiting to meet me and other travellers to fly us up into the Delta. There are no in-flight movies on these flights, but some stunning views of the landscape. "I spent six very entertaining days at Pom Pom Camp. It’s a small camp so almost all the meals are communal where you can compare sightings of the day. A mixture of land-based safaris, mokoro rides and motorboat trips gave us a great feel of the variety of wildlife from kingfishers and crocodile to lions, cheetahs and leopards. "This leopard cub sat on a termite mound waiting for its mom. This was a perfect example of how safaris work. We sat and watched it for about 15 minutes. No other group saw it and despite an extensive search three days later, even to the extent of racing away from our coffee and tea break after our guide heard promising noises, we made no other sightings that week. "During the stay, I was lucky enough to see three different lion groups. Two males whose territory we were in, a female and her 2.5-year-old cub who hadn’t been chased off and a family of two females each of whom had two cubs. From Botswana to Namibia "I took the short hop from Pom Pom airstrip back down to Maun and flew onwards to Windhoek, the capital of Namibia. I picked up my rental car at the airport and spent an overnight stay in Windhoek before the drive to Etosha. That was a good idea as the road north is fast and unlit. I completed this in one drive, but last year stopped in a number of different and photogenic locations such as Sossusvlei, Deadvlei and Swakopmund. "On this occasion, I stayed in a camp at the entrance to Etosha called Andersson's. The camp, accommodation, food and wine were great. They have their own waterhole, which, although not littered with animals, gets a suitable mix such as kudu, giraffe and lions to keep it interesting. Note that Etosha and camps inside the park shut at sunset so you do need to be out of Etosha by this time. If you want to see animals at one of the bigger waterholes in the park in the evening you need to stay at one of the campsites inside the park."Andersson's Camp is in the Ongava reserve, which has lions and rhino and you can book both afternoon and evening game drives. I visited two waterholes. Okaukeujo, the first camp which is easy to reach as the roads are tarmac from the gate to the camp and Hilali which is another 60km from Okaukeujo. The first camp is quite crowded with tourists but has regular herds of animals visiting that come down a slope from the north. If you visit, move around as far as possible towards the viewing stand, as the light from that direction is considerably better. "Rietfontein waterhole, 60km on, is also well worth a visit if you up are to the long drive over unmade roads. The wildlife there is stunning in terms of numbers. "Go visit and have a great holiday. I’m looking forward to going in 2-3 years time but Rhino Africa has already said they look forward to seeing me next year. What a conundrum." If you would like to go on a similar African trip, simply send us a message and we'll help the plan the exact holiday you want. 

  • The 10 most fascinating birds in Southern Africa

    By Matthew Sterne |

    If it's your first time in the African bush you'll most likely be too mesmerised by the Big 5 and other animals to take too much notice of the birds. But that would be a fowl up that you might egret. For birds are not just... for the birds. They are just as fascinating and beautiful and intriguing as mammals. And if you do develop an interest in African birds, every game drive and bush walk takes on an extra dimension and becomes even more exciting. To give you an idea of what the bird kingdom holds, here are 10 of Southern Africa's most fascinating birds. 10. Wandering AlbatrossThe wandering albatross is immense. It's one of the largest birds in the world and has the largest wingspan of any living bird, typically ranging from 2.5 to 3.5 metres. As a result of its wingspan, it’s capable of remaining in the air without flapping its wings for several hours at a time and travels 22 metres for every metre it drops. It’s also one of the most far-ranging birds. Some wandering albatrosses have been known to circumnavigate the Southern Ocean three times in one year, covering more than 120,000 km, which is about 75,000 miles. 9. African Bearded VultureBearded vultures, or lammergeiers, are pretty intense birds. They’ve developed a unique and clever method of eating carcass bone marrow. The vultures pick up bones from a carcass as heavy as themselves, fly off and drop them from a tremendous height to shatter the bones into bite-sized pieces and get access to the marrow. This bone breaking technique can take seven years to perfect! Bearded vultures even have favourite breaking spots that are called ossuaries. Not only that but they also rub soil into their feathers to look more intimidating. They apply the dirt with their claws and then preen for about an hour to ensure a bright orange glow. Told you they were intense. 8. African SkimmerThe African skimmer has a unique bill structure; the lower mandible is much longer than the upper mandible, and is flattened sideways like scissor blades. This is to help them feed. As the name implies, the African Skimmer flies just above water level, with its lower mandible just breaking the surface. When the mandible touches a fish, the skimmer snaps its mouth shut. Its food is small fish, mostly 2-5 cm long. They feed mostly at dawn and dusk. Click here to watch a video of their unique feeding technique. 7. Black Heron The Black Heron stands out for its ingenious hunting method. The crafty bird wades in water and creates shade with its wings like an umbrella. The fish go to the shade to cool down and as the fish move into this shady location, the black heron scoops down and gulps up the nice, tasty meal. It’s simple yet effective and is a fascinating sight, as you can see in the video below. While some herons prefer to hunt on their own, on average they will hunt in groups of 50 individuals. And the largest flock of Black Herons on record is 200. 6. Pennant-winged Nightjar This gorgeous bird must be on most birder’s bucket lists. The pennants of the pennant-winged nightjar refer to the spectacular long white wing streamers, like white handkerchiefs trailing from the tips of their wings, that males develop during breeding season. These pennants grow to greater lengths in successive years, up to twice the body length. They are dropped or broken off quickly upon completion of breeding. You can see a video of this striking bird in flight below. 5. Kori BustardWeighing in at a fairly hefty average of 18 kilograms, the kori bustards is said to be the heaviest flying bird in the world. The Kori Bustard is like the fat kid in gym class who was too embarrassed and too lazy to get involved with the climbing net. When alarmed, they’d rather puff themselves up to appear even larger than they are, bark like dogs or run from danger than bother flying. Sometimes kori bustards are found with  bee-eaters riding on their backs as they stride through the grass. The bee-eaters pick the insects from the bustard's back that irritate the bustard, a classic interspecies win-win. 4. SandgrouseThere are few desert birds more finely attuned to living in arid zones than sandgrouse. Their diet consists of dry seeds so they desperately need regular access to fresh water and their chicks are particularly vulnerable. They developed an ingenious solution - carrying water in their belly feathers to take back to their young and will fly up to 60 kilometres to get it. Weight for weight, they hold more water than a kitchen sponge. Once they get back to the nest, the chicks drink their fill from the wet feathers, a little like kittens nursing from their mother. If that wasn’t impressive enough, they also baffle scientists by being able to predict which days are going to be especially hot and adjust their schedules. 3. Sociable Weaver Sociable weavers construct the world’s largest nests and perhaps the most spectacular structure built by any bird. As many as 300 to 400 hundred birds will live in a single megastructure. The nests are cooler in the day and warmer in the night to help the birds with the extreme temperatures of the African bush. Their nests are instantly recognisable, massive and resemble huge apartment blocks. The nest structures can reach heights of up to 4 m. From a distance, the nest may typically look like a haystack stuck up on a large tree or telephone pole. Photographic evidence has proven that some of these nest structures are over 100 years old. The nests are also commonly used by several other bird species, most commonly the pygmy falcon. 2. African Shoebill This prehistoric-looking bird is a very large stork-like bird and derives its name from its massive shoe-shaped bill. To go with its enormous beak, the shoebill has big feet and is very, very tall for a bird. Despite weighing as much as 6 kg, the birds can often be found perched on floating vegetation, from where they do their fishing. Shoebills are found in marshy areas in countries like Sudan, Zambia, Rwanda and Uganda. 1. Greater Honeyguide This has to be one of the world's most intriguing and innovative birds. Greater honeyguides are so named because they show people where to find bees’ nests, which the people harvest for their honey. The birds then feed on the wax combs left behind. There are multiple tribes across Africa that have developed their own calls and whistles to communicate with their local honeyguides. As the narrator describes in the video below, “It’s the most developed, co-evolved, mutually helpful relationship between any mammal and any bird.”