gambia birding tour

Fathala Wildlife Reserve is one of the safest animal reserves that is situated in the south of Senegal which is in the Fatick region between the border with Gambia and Toubacouta. It covers over 6000 hectares of original and protected forest, visitors can experience some of the Tourism is permitted over the area of 2,000 hectares. It is located in the Fathala protected forest ( 11,800 acres) which is equivalent to the terrestrial area in the Saloum Delta national park. The plan to include the Saloum delta on the world heritage list also includes the Fathala forest zone.

Birds of Fathala Wildlife Reserve

Plans and Trees​​​​

In this dry forest, the northernmost in West Africa, around 400 plant species have been counted, including Daniellia oliveri , Cordyla pinnata , Parkia biglobosa , Khaya senegalensis and Sclerocarya birrea. 

Daniellia oliveri

The presence of Daniellia oliveri, a remarkable botanical species that adds to the diverse tapestry of flora within Fathala Wildlife Reserve make it more specific than any other reserve. 

Cordyla pinnata

Coordyla Pinnata is one the botanical wonders that is found in Fathala Wildlife Reserve. This tree has a great ecological importances in the reserve. The large size greenish-yellow fruits of Cordyla pinnata have different features. These fruits not only add visual interest to the landscape but may also serve as a food source for certain wildlife species within the reserve.

Parkia biglobosa

Parkia biglobosa , also known as”nere” is one of the species of tree in the family of Mimosaceae which is also known as Fabaceae which is a subfamily Mimosoideae as per the classification phylogenetic indigenous in the Sahelian as well as Sudanian zones.

Khaya senegalensis

Khaya Senegalensis ( cailcedrat ) is a kind of tree belonging to the family of Meliaceae which is also known as “Senegal mahogany” or “cailcedrat”. It is also found in the reserve.

Sclerocarya birrea

The tree has one trunk that develops into an elongated crown that is the shape of an elongated crown. It is distinguished by its gray-colored bark. The tree may grow up to 18 M at height, mostly in lower latitudes and in open in the highlands, mainly in low latitudes and open. The imparipinnate leaves of the plant disappear during dry seasons to conserve the water. 


The Fathala Wildlife Reserve, located in the center of Senegal, is a haven for biodiversity and home to an amazing variety of wildlife that captures the attention of both safari adventurers and nature lovers. Let’s examine some of the fascinating residents of Fathala in more detail.


The reserve is home to the majestic African elephants, which command awe with their presence and gentle demeanor. Visitors can see these famous giants in their natural setting at Fathala, which serves as a sanctuary for them.


Giraffes move through Fathala’s savannah landscapes with elegance. Against the background of the African wilderness, their imposing necks and distinctive spotted coats make for a captivating sight.

Giraffes of Fathala Wildlife Reserve


Numerous antelope species, such as the attractive roan antelope and the nimble bushbuck, can be found in Fathala. These graceful animals give the savannah and woodland ecosystems a sense of vitality.

Baboons and monkeys

Baboons and monkeys playfully swing through the trees, giving the canopy a vivacious energy. Visitors frequently enjoy watching their acrobatic antics and social interactions.

Rare Birdlife​​​​​​​

With its diverse avian population, Fathala is a bird watcher’s paradise. The reserve is a bird lover’s paradise, offering countless opportunities for birdwatching and photography, with everything from vividly colored parrots to majestic eagles.

Amphibians and reptiles

Reptiles and amphibians can find a home in Fathala’s wetlands and waterways. The ecosystem of the reserve is heavily influenced by crocodiles lazing on riverbanks and frogs choralizing to the nighttime symphony.


There are carnivores like lions and leopards in Fathala as well as herbivores. These predators, despite being more elusive, are essential to preserving the reserve’s ecological balance.


Hippos live in the waterways, where their enormous bodies are partially submerged in the ponds and rivers. For visitors, seeing these semi-aquatic mammals is a singular experience.

Wildlife of Fathala Wildlife Reserve

​​​​​​​Fathala Wildlife Reserve safari senegal accommodation

In the heart of Senegal, the Fathala Wildlife Reserve stands as an example to the enormous beauty of the African wilderness. A safari experience here is not just about encountering wildlife but also about immersing oneself in the serene comfort of Fathala’s exquisite accommodations. There are Safari Lodges, Tented Camps,  Treehouse Retreats available for accommodation. In conclusion, a safari adventure at Fathala Wildlife Reserve in Senegal is not just a journey into the wild; it’s a holistic experience that combines the thrill of encountering exotic wildlife with the tranquility of luxurious accommodation.



1. What is the best time to visit Fathala Wildlife Reserve?
-The ideal time to visit is during the dry season, from November to April, when wildlife is more active.

2. Are there accommodations within the reserve?
-Yes, Fathala offers comfortable lodges and camps for visitors who wish to stay within the reserve.

3. How can I contribute to Fathala’s conservation efforts?
-You can support Fathala through various initiatives, such as donations or participating in volunteer programs.

4. Are guided tours mandatory, or can I explore the reserve independently?
While guided tours enhance the experience, independent exploration is allowed in designated areas.

​​​​​​​About the author:

Karanta Camara

Karanta Camara
A photographer experienced bird tourguide
for over 18 years experience across The Gambia
and Senegal also doubled as the President BWA
Facebook link          Instagram link

Read also: 

The Gambia Tours
Gambia River Tours
Birding and Photography in The Gambia and Senegal
Best Time For Birding In The Gambia
Birds Of Senegal And The Gambia
Birds of Senegal 
Discover the Enchanting River: Gambia River Cruise Day Tours
Wildlife of The Gambia
Wildlife Tours in Senegal 
Kiang West National Park: A Journey into Nature’s Heart   

​​​​​​​To book your Senegal & Gambia tour Please contact with the link.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *