African Honeyguides

Research on a remarkable
human-animal relationship

Honeyguide fieldwork in South Africa

Dec 19, 2020

Chima Nwaogu and Jessica van der Wal with greater honeyguides

Claire and Jessica, together with colleagues Dr Chima Nwaogu and Dr Gabriel Jamie, carried out pilot fieldwork at Honeywood Farm alongside Grootvadersbosch Forest in the southern Cape, South Africa. We were delighted to catch several greater and lesser honeyguides and look forward to returning for further fieldwork. Thank you to John and Miranda Moodie for their warm welcome to work on their beautiful farm. It was thrilling to see so many honeyguides so close to our home base at the University of Cape Town (and to be doing fieldwork again)!

Here Chima holds one of the young greater honeyguides we caught, in their distinctive bright yellow immature plumage.

















David presents at the Apimondia Africa Symposium

David Lloyd-Jones recently gave a talk on what honeyguides and honey-hunters have taught us about Niassa’s wild honeybee ecology at the Apimondia Africa Regional Symposium held in Durban. He was honoured to pay further tribute to Ricardo Guta and his contribution to bee research in Niassa Special Reserve. Many...

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In memory of our colleague Ricardo Guta

Ricardo Guta, our dear colleague and friend in our research team, tragically died on 1 December 2022 following a swimming accident in the Cape mountains. All our thoughts are with his wife, Lailat, and their children Adrielle and Piotr. Ricardo’s life was honoured by his colleagues in a memorial at the University of Cape Town on 9 December 2022. He will soon be laid to rest by his family in his home city of Beira, Mozambique.

Ricardo’s warm and generous personality and passion for natural history touched everyone he met. He was much loved and respected at Gorongosa National Park where he worked as an entomologist, at the University of Cape Town where he had just completed his MSc studies, and at the Niassa Special Reserve where we recently carried out a wonderful field trip together. Ricardo had just begun his PhD in our research team, studying the influence of honeyguide-human mutualism on honeybee ecology. We are heartbroken to have lost a wonderful scientist, conservationist and human being, and we miss him deeply.

Ricardo’s legacy will live on in our team as we remember his joy and optimism, and his remarkable capacity to bring people together.

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