The Okavango Delta in Botswana is a very large and swampy inland delta where the Okavango River reaches a tectonic trough in the central part of the endorheic basin in the Kalahari. This delta comprises permanent marshlands and seasonally flooded plains. It is one of the very few major interior delta systems that do not flow into a sea or ocean, with a wetland system that is almost intact.
The delta region of the Okavango can vary in size from 15,000 km squared during drier periods to a staggering 2,2000 km squared during wetter periods.
It is the fourth longest river in southern Africa running southeastward for 1,600 km from central Angola where it is known as The Kubango to the Kalahari desert in northern Botswana, where the river terminates in an immense inland delta know as The Okavango Delta.
The Okavango river takes its name from the Kavango people of northern Namibia. Soon after entering Botswana, the Okavango begins to widen as it enters the flat swampy track in which it terminates. About 40 km inside Botswana the river spreads out to form a triangular shape delta.
The North Western corner of the Okavango swamp is the Moremi Wildlife Reserve which covers about 3800 km squared.
Its teeming wildlife include lions, Leopards, cheetahs, buffalo, wildebeests, hippopotamuses, zebras, wild dogs, crocodiles, impalas, thomsons gazelles, spring bocks, warthogs, puff udders, tortoises, monitor lizards, hyenas, jackals among others species.
Birds include marabou stocks, ibis, herons, eagles, cranes, weaver birds, vultures, among other species.
Due to availability of water, it’s also home to ducks, geese and quails. Marine life is also present as there is a variety of fish which include bream, pike, barbels and tiger fish.
Wonder of the World:
On February 11, 2013 the Okavango was declared one of the seven Natural Wonders of Africa in Arusha, Tanzania, due to its scale and magnificence. It was officially inscribed as the 1000th site on UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 2014.