BOU Check-list No. 13. A complete systematic list of the avifauna with status and distribution details. Introductory section covers natural history, climate, vegetation, breeding, migration, conservation, taxonomy, and history of ornithological activity. A detailed account of the birdlife of this volcanic island group sat off the bulge of West Africa. Their position relative to the continent is comparable with the Galapagos Islands off South America. Unlike the Galapagos Islands, which are rich in endemics, the Cape Verde Islands have very few and the present avifauna represents only a remnant of its former birdlife.