Ethiopia and Eritrea have a fascinating and unique avifauna. Poorly known in comparison to many parts of Africa, knowledge on bird distribution in the two countries is scattered throughout the literature. For more than 35 years, the authors have been painstakingly collecting bird records in the region and plotting them on half-degree maps, including published records, data from museum specimens, sightings from their own extensive travels and, more recently, records from the many birdwatchers that now visit Ethiopia. The resulting atlas provides, for the first time, an accurate assessment of the distribution of each of the 870 species known from the two countries, including valuable information on breeding. The succinct text summarises the results and discusses distribution to subspecies level. Extensive introductory chapters cover topics such as topography, geology, vegetation, climate, habitats, conservation, migration, breeding seasons, bird ringing, and the history of ornithology in the region. This groundbreaking book fills a large hole in the literature for one of the most diverse and least known areas of Africa.
John Ash is a distinguished ornithologist who spent much of his career on bird-related research in Africa, including many years in Ethiopia and Eritrea. He has travelled extensively in the region and was senior author of the acclaimed Birds of Somalia (Pica Press, 1998). John Atkins lived in Ethiopia for several years while working for the British Council, travelling widely and developing a deep knowledge of the region's birds.