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The bird fauna of Bururi Forest, Burundi

Vande weghe, J.P. and Loiselle, B.A. 1987.
The bird fauna of Bururi Forest, Burundi.
Le Gerfaut, 77: 147–164.


Bururi Forest Reserve in southern Burundi is known to contain 129 bird species. One of the southernmost montane forests of the Zaire–Nile divide, Bururi Forest contains considerably fewer species than forests in northern Burundi and Rwanda. This species paucity is due in part to its small size, contracted altitudinal range, and its uniform vegetation. Bururi Forest contains significantly fewer forest birds but more non-forest birds than Nyungwe Forest, a large montane forest to the north. Two species found at Bururi and not at Nyungwe represent a southern or southeastern influence. Species missing at Bururi include lowland forest birds and many birds restricted to montane forests. Absence of these species is most likely due to isolations from lowland forest or other montane forests. We suggest that the dry Mulembwe Valley acts as a barrier to colonization of montane birds at Bururi from northern, richer, montane forests of the Zaire–Nile divide. Although nearly all species shared at Nyungwe and Bururi are believed to be of the same subspecies, we found differences in the vocalizations and morphology between the two populations of some species. Finally we discuss the ecological distributions of a few species and suggest the expanded niche exhibited by some species at Bururi allows for their coexistence, whereas at Nyungwe they are separated by either habitat or altitude.

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