Okavango Delta Wildlife boasts a myriad of species that thrive in the rich and diverse ecosystem comprising floodplains, woodlands, lagoons, channels and palm-fringed islands. From majestic elephants to elusive leopards to vibrant birdlife, the Okavango Delta hosts a great number of wild animals both permanently and seasonally.
Situated in the heart of Botswana, the fascinating inland delta Okavanga is blessed with an astounding variety of flora and fauna. This offers a truly captivating experience to both nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts. While Okavango Delta Safari is a perfect gateway to uncovering the natural wonders within its ecological haven, Botswana Safari Tours can simultaneously bring you up close to the vibrant ecosystem. So, let’s take you on a journey to Okavango to experience its remarkable wildlife.
Falcon Insight: During the wet season, mainly the large animals of Okavango go far from the Delta to graze on the luscious green grass that surrounds it. As the grazing comes to get over in the dry season or winters, the animals tend to get back to the delta. This seasonal shift of Okavango Wildlife between the arid region that surrounds the delta and the delta itself is dynamic and influences the timing of your Okavango Delta Safari.
Many travellers are eager to catch a glimpse of the legendary big Five on Botswana Safari. Especially for them, a visit to Okavango Delta can be quite fruitful. The Delta shelters all the species of the Big Five including the critically endangered rhinoceros. Look at the table below for some more information on the Big Five in Okavango Delta.
Members of the Big Five
Elephants are an integral part of the ecosystem of Okavango. They are credited for carving channels that ease the flow of water further into the Delta. Around, 130,000 individuals are present, although officials claim the number to be much higher.
At least 60,000 Savanna Buffalos are present. They are often located near permanent water sources such as rivers, channels, and floodplains, where they graze on grasses.
Okavango lions are special as they have adapted uniquely to the wetland system.
You are going to spot a pride of lions, three to thirty members on your Okavango Delta Safari.
Primarily found in wooded areas and on islands, where they can find cover and ambush prey.
Both black and white rhinos are rare in the delta. They can be found in protected areas of Chief’s Island.
There are more white rhinos than black rhinos in the Okavango Delta. Black rhinos are only 40 in number.
Note: The distribution of these animals may vary due to seasonal changes, availability of food, and water resources. For the best wildlife viewing experiences, come for Botswana Safari Tours in the dry season. Also, you can check out our Botswana Safari Packages for a comprehensive safari experience.
The Plains Zebra resident population occurs in Okavango. While Serengeti takes the honour of the largest Zebra migration, not many know that the second largest migration of Zebra happens to be in Okavango Delta. Around 25,000 zebras are known to migrate annually. These animals are often found in the drier areas of Okavango.
Southern giraffes are found throughout the system. But, they are known to favour the region with acacia trees more. Also, it has been found that giraffes native to Okavango are known to suffer from a strange eye infection. Scientists are currently studying and researching it. So, it’s advisable to always observe a safe distance from wild animals on your Okavango Delta Safari.
Common Hippopotamuses are widely spread across the delta. You might not spot other prominent animals on an Okavango Safari, but you are always going to spot hippos and that too, abundantly. It is believed that there are around 2500 hippos in the Delta region and is more often spotted lazing around the water.
The predator's list Of Okavango Delta Wildlife includes lions, leopards, cheetahs, spotted hyenas and a great population of African wild dogs. In fact, Okavango is one of the best places in the world to spot wild dogs. It is because the area of northern Botswana is one of the remaining regions where a viable population of wild dogs exists. Other small carnivores of Okavango are dwarf, and slender mongooses
Some of the popular antelope species of Okavango include:
Other antelope species of Okavango are blue wildebeest, Tsessebe, greater kudu, southern reedbuck, bushbuck, sable and roan antelope.
Okavango is a famous birding destination with a record of more than 530 bird species. As walking along with guides is one of the main activities that is carried out on Okavango Delta Safari, simultaneous birding tends to be productive too. Also, guests to Okavango can take a view of the spectacular birdlife while gliding through the channels in a mokoro (dugout canoe).
Although the best time for birdwatching in Okavango is throughout the year, still the ideal time is believed to be in the wet season when summer migrants march onto the delta.
Key Takeaway: It is possible to even spot around 140 specific birds on a single day of Botswana Safari to Okavango.
Some of the most iconic species of birds located on Okavango Delta Safari Packages include Pel’s fishing owl, African Jacana, Slaty egret, White-backed night heron, malachite kingfisher, Pygmy goose and wattled Crane.
Other notable species of Okavango are flamingoes, lilac-breasted roller, kori bustard, bateleur eagles, southern ground hornbills and rock pratincole.
Our Tip: For the best possible birding experience, go through our Okavango Delta Safari Packages that will take you on the best safaris to the delta.
Among reptiles, the most obvious ones are Nile Crocodiles that occurs along the lake edge and river mouths. Apart from that, the delta is home to several snake species, including venomous species like the black mamba, puff adder, and Mozambique spitting cobra. Some non-venomous species such as the African rock python and the brown house snake are also found.
Various species of lizards and geckos inhabit the delta, including the striking flap-necked chameleon, the giant-plated lizard, and the barking gecko. These reptiles have adapted to thrive in the diverse environments found within the delta.
The Okavango Delta's wetlands are also home to numerous frog and toad species, such as the painted reed frog, the African bullfrog, and the guttural toad. These amphibians play a vital role in the ecosystem, acting as both predators and prey.
The delta's waters are teeming with various fish species, supporting a complex food web. Some of the most common species include tigerfish, bream, catfish, and yellowfish. Fish play a crucial role in the Okavango Delta's ecosystem, serving as a vital food source for birds, reptiles, and mammals. They also help maintain the water's quality by feeding on algae, detritus, and other organic matter
As an integral part of Botswana Wildlife, the Okavango Delta Wildlife presents an unparalleled opportunity to witness the incredible synergy of flora and fauna in this awe-inspiring region. A journey to this vibrant oasis will leave a lasting impression while connecting visitors with the exceptional wonders of nature.
Also, to ensure a seamless and memorable trip, consider selecting customized Okavango Delta Safari Packages or broader Botswana Safari Packages with us. These expertly curated options cater to your needs, allowing you to look into the captivating world of Okavango Delta Safari and explore the diverse wonders of Botswana's stunning landscapes.
The Okavango Delta is home to a wide variety of species, including African elephants, lions, leopards, cheetahs, hippos, African buffalo, giraffes, zebras, and various antelope species such as red lechwe and sitatunga. The area also hosts a large number of bird species, making it a birdwatcher's paradise.
There are several ways to explore the Okavango Delta, including game drives, guided bush walks, mokoro (traditional dugout canoe) excursions, and motorboat safaris. Each of these activities provides different opportunities for observing and interacting with the delta's diverse wildlife.
Yes, it is generally safe to view wildlife in the Okavango Delta, especially when accompanied by experienced guides. However, it is Important to follow safety guidelines and maintain a respectful distance from animals to ensure both your safety and the well-being of the wildlife.
The Okavango Delta is home to several endangered and vulnerable species, including the African wild dog, the white and black rhinoceros, and cheetahs. Conservation efforts are ongoing to protect these and other species within the region.
The Okavango Delta is a haven for birdwatchers, boasting over 530 recorded bird species. Some notable species include the African fish eagle, Pel's fishing owl, saddle-billed stork, wattled crane, and various species of kingfishers, herons, and bee-eaters. The rainy season (November to April) is particularly rewarding for birdwatching, as migratory species arrive in the delta.
Yes, responsible wildlife viewing practices are strongly encouraged in the Okavango Delta. These include maintaining a respectful distance from animals, not feeding or disturbing them, and adhering to the guidance of your professional safari guides. Additionally, choose eco-friendly lodges and tour operators that prioritize sustainable practices and support local conservation efforts.
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We travelled with Falcon Safaris in Zimbabwe and Botswana for 16 days. Falcon designed a wonderful trip with private guide to the most interesting sites in both countries. The organization of the whole trip was excellent, flights within the country, accommodation and activites. The guides were very knowledgable and told us a lot about the countries, their history, people, economy and much more. Wevisited the Great Zimbabwe Ruins, the Victoria Falls and a number of national parks in both countries.
Rhino tracking was a real adventure! We had tremendous further game drives and saw very many animals - we did the Big Five. We had much more activities than planned and enjoyed very much.We strongly recommend Falcon Safaris to everyone planning a trip to Southern Africa and East Africa.
Our Consultant Vimbai was very helpful and accommodating. We stayed at the Elephant hills hotel which was nothing short of amazing.Our activities included a helicopter flight, dinner cruise as well as a morning game drive. All the activities were absolutely amazing.
We worked with Gertrude to schedule and organize everything and she did an excellent job. I asked a lot of questions via e-mail and she answered everyone in a timely helpful manner. Our guide at Victoria Falls was also great. He met us at the airport, provided a thoughtful tour of the Falls and got us to our next guide in Botswana. Our lodgings at River View Lodge were just as described- very comfortable and excellent food. All the staff were so pleasant and helpful. If I had to do it again I would arrange a morning boat ride as well. We only did the sunset boat rides and they were the high point of our entire trip- we saw so many animals and our guide was very knowledgeable. Just a great experience. Our lodgings at Oddball's Enclave was rustic and we loved it. So great to disconnect from the world for a bit. Leo, our guide, was the best - got us out and about, saw fantastic wildlife and got back to camp safely each time. Doc manages the camp so well. This whole trip was planned and organized by Falcon Safaris and we could not have been happier.
Falcon safaris have given my the correct advice with excellent service. The only suggestion will be to work closer with the lodges to confirm bookings as soon as possible. We have booked and pay our deposit a year in advance. We have only receive our final convermation from Chobe Safari lodge a week before departure. I do realize its not within your controle but with limit alternatives and a group of 14 people it becomes an issue to find alternative accomodation if the booking was cancelled.
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