Avian Ecology

Professor P. Mundy (PI), Josphine Mundava, TawandaTarakini, Lovelater Sebele

About us
The group promotes scientific studies involving birds and practically contributes to the conservation of species and maintenance of biological diversity by advocating for sustainable use and conservation education.

Research focus
The avian ecology research group focuses on ornithological research, exploring topics on the ecology of birds and resource use, raptor conservation and pathogens in wild birds among others. The group is particularly involved in African vulture conservation initiatives, and is part of the Vulture Action Group in Zimbabwe. In addition to the higher degrees being undertaken in avian ecology, there are also several undergraduate projects that add value to the objectives of the group.

Current activities

  • Avian influenza and wild waterbirds – investigating host ecology on pathogen dynamics.
  • Wetlands and waterfowl resources in and around Hwange National Park: access versus sustainability in the face of climate variability. Read More
  • Natural rodent control by Barn owls Tyto alba in the face of local superstition. Read More
  • Vulture use in traditional medicine. Aimed at reducing the use of vultures in traditional medicine and conservation of the species.

Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife, CIRAD, CNRS,BirdLife Zimbabwe.  

Recent Publications

  • Nsikani MM, Mundava J, Mundy PJ. 2015. Size of black patches and spots on the upperwing and underwing greater secondary coverts in selected feathers are not good indicators of age and sex in Cape Vultures Gyps coprotheres.Vulture News 69: 23-32.
  • Cumming GS, Harebottle DM, Mundava J, Otieno N, Tyler SJ. 2016. Timing and location of reproduction in African waterfowl: an overview of >100 year of nest records. Ecology and Evolution 6: 631-646.
  • Mabhikwa NT, Mundava J & Mundy PJ. 2014. Vulture poisoning incident - Fort Rixon. Honeyguide 60: 5-6.
  • Capelle J, Caron A, Mundava J et al. 2014. Empirical analysis suggests continuous and homogenous circulation of Newcastle disease virus in a wide range of wild bird species in Africa. Epidemiology and infections. doi:10.1017/S095026881400185X