David had a very successful field trip to our honeyguide study site in the Niassa Special Reserve, Mozambique, where as well as collecting data he was able to celebrate a fourth year of collaboration with our honey-hunter colleagues at our end of year ‘festa’. On this trip David was accompanied by Tom Bachmann – a masters student at Wageningen University – who has been providing valuable help with data checking and field assistance. The ‘segos’ (greater honeyguides) in the area were as eager to guide as always, and Tom and David collected data from more than thirty guiding trips. Some of the honeyguides which took them and their Mozambican honey-hunter colleagues to bees were known birds which were colour-ringed on previous trips, indicating that birds in our study population are still thriving!
In a new paper in Frontiers in Conservation Science in collaboration with Isa Gedi, we report on the honey-hunting culture with greater honeyguides of the Awer people in Kenya. Awer honey-hunters depend on wild honey as a source of income, and readily seek the cooperation of honeyguides. To attract honeyguides, they whistle on the shell of a Giant African Land Snail. We thank the interviewees for sharing their honey-hunting culture with us.