Jan 30

Ethiopia Wildlife (What you can see & where)

Ethiopia isn’t traditionally known for it’s wildlife, but I saw much more than I thought I would see in my 40 days in Ethiopia.  This is a pictorial guide to commonly seen Ethiopia Wildlife:

Southern Ethiopia

South Omo Valley Region:

Dik Dik

Dik Diks are small antelopes, with large eyes, that always seem to run in packs of two.  We saw these animals all over the Omo region.

Vulturine Guinea fowl


Several Species of Guinea fowl can be seen.  This is the Vulturine Guinea fowl with it’s unique cobalt blue feathers and black and white striped plumage.


This eagle has a serious mohawk.  It was spotted in Mago National Park

Mago National Park does have some large game animals such as Kudu and Water Buffalo, but you must take a safari vehicle to see them.  We visited the park primarily to see the Mursi tribe.  Click here to learn more about Omo Valley.

Arba Minch:

Nile Crocodile


The best way to see aquatic animals and birds in Lake Chamo is to catch a boat ride to the “Crocodile Market”.  Here you can see crocodiles up to 6 meters in length.

Fish Eagle


There are lots of birds in Lake Chamo including this Pelican and Fish Eagle.  Fish Eagles are similar to American Bald Eagles with their white head and black bodies.


Lake Abaya is the lake northeast of the city of Arba Minch.  It’s dirtier than Lake Chamo but is home to many beautiful birds.  I saw several types of colorful birds including parrots and kingfisher varieties.

Click here to learn more about Arba Minch.


Mother and Baby Hippo


Lake Hawassa is home to a few hippos.  The numbers of hippos are dwindling but I was happy to see this baby following it’s mother around.  The best way to see them is by boat tour, but I saw a few from the shore on a couple occasions.

Swimming Lizard



There are many lizards that like to swim in front of the Progressive International Hotel.  You can sit at the water front and enjoy a meal or drinks and watch the wildlife here.

Hawassa lake is also a great place to see aquatic birds.  Click here to learn more about Hawassa.

Bale Mountains:

I did not have time on this trip to get over to the Bale Mountains, but it’s tops on my list if I ever visit Ethiopia again.  The Bale Mountains is the best place to view the Ethiopian Wolves.

Eastern Ethiopia


Harar Hyena feeding

Harar is a charming walled city with cobblestone alleyways with a world unique wildlife experience – feeding wild hyenas.  The “Hyena Men” have been feeding them raw meat nightly for many years.  When you go to witness this nightly event, you have a chance to feed the hyenas yourself.   Hold a short stick in your hands or your teeth and hope they don’t accidentally bite you!

Click here to learn more about Harar.

 Northern Ethiopia

Simiens Mountains National ParkGelada Monkey


Simiens Mountains National Park is home to many Gelada monkeys.  While they look like baboons, they are classified as monkeys.  Both the males and the females have bare pink spots on their chests, the the males have a unique mullet “haircut.”

Humans watching monkeys

These monkeys are quite accustomed to people.  They will continue to eat their body weight in grass as tourists sit among them.


If you are lucky, you might see these antelopes that jump from rock to rock, thus giving their names as klipspringers.   We saw three or these cuties.


Ostrich couple


Described as the more inhospitable place on earth, there was some wildlife in the Danakil Depression.  This depression in the earth is one of the hottest and lowest places on earth.   A few pairs of Ostriches roamed freely in the Danakil.

Ethiopia Butterfly


I was surprised to see hundreds of butterflies when we stopped by the side of the road to take in the view of the mountainous Danakil Depression.

Click here to learn more about Danakil.

If you’re on your way to Ethiopia, this guidebook is an absolute must for planning and traveling around this fascinating country:


If you liked this post on Ethiopian Wildlife, check out my pictorial guide to Ethiopian Food & Drink.

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Ethiopian Wildlife



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  1. The pink and turquoise blue birds are the most beautiful bird I have ever seen! We would love to visit Ethiopia one day and it is great to know there is so much wildlife to see.

  2. OMG you had me with the first pic. I just LOVE dikdiks!!! I discovered them during our safari in Tanzania and totally fell in love. They’re so cute! Your monkey pics are amazing too. I didn’t see these ones in Tanzania. Oh, and I cannot believe they feed hyenas… I don’t think I’d feel comfortable with that!

    1. The hyenas were surprisingly graceful and not as scary as I thought. One was about 8 inches from my face!

  3. OMG that guinea fowl is ridiculously beautiful.

    • Michelle on February 3, 2018 at 3:24 am
    • Reply

    Wow you saw so much! Those monkeys are incredible!

  4. So great to see a post about Ethiopia 🙂

    I met the hyenas in Harar too, I was laughing uncontrollably with nerves when one was at my back with his paws on my shoulders! I didn’t see any creatures in Danakil apart from working camels but loved the wildlife in Simien – it’s one of my favourite trekking destinations.

  5. Safari is my passion and loved seeing these pictures from Ethiopia! I need to stop going to just Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa and explore the other countries as well!

    • Amanda Tran on February 4, 2018 at 1:02 am
    • Reply

    WOW!! You were able to see so much wildlife, truly incredible! Hyenas!! And how cute are those klipspringers – I haven’t hears of them before but they’re so damn adorable.

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