Moremi Crossing

Moremi Crossing, July 2022

Our regular game drive routes gradually grew wetter and muddier as the month progressed due to the rising floodwaters, but guests were rewarded with the abundant game that Chief’s Island is so famous for.

Moremi Crossing

Raised above the water level by tectonic activity, this island is where wildlife retreats as Okavango floodwaters rise, making it home to a dense concentration of wildlife. Game drives provided front-row seats to an astonishing plentitude of fauna. Impala, Giraffe, Plains zebra, Cape buffalo, African elephants, Chacma baboons, Warthogs, Tsessebe, Common reedbucks and Red lechwes, Hippos and Nile crocodiles were all abundant across the floodplains.

What did we see on a boating safari?

This influx of water has allowed us to resume boating, and one morning, we spotted three lions from the water as they rested peacefully at the base of a termite mound. As well as offering an elevated outlook from which to spy their next meal, these towering mounds often draw antelopes because the soil nourishes some of the most nutritional grass species in the bush.  

Okavango delta boating safari

We enjoyed many leopard sightings in the Moremi Crossing area and came across handsome males, and regularly saw a female leopardess with her sub-adult cub. Spotted hyenas and Black-backed jackals were seen on almost every drive.

Small mammals such as Servals, Cane rats, Porcupines and Honey badgers were seen with the help of the spotlight during night drives.

African openbills and bell-like bats

Common resident bird species logged include the striking black and white Swamp boubou, White-browed scrub robin, and Rufous-naped larks. Several threatened bird species, such as Wattled cranes and Southern ground hornbill, were observed, and guides also detected growing flocks of African Openbill storks. These birds are governed by the water levels of these sprawling seasonal floodplains and look for retreating waters that expose their favourite snail snacks. Incredibly, these birds can shake a mollusc free of its shell with vigorous headshaking in 15 seconds. They foraged in groups and were often seen with African sacred ibises.

As guests retreated to the tents at night, the soft beeps of Peter’s Epauletted fruit bats tinkled through the trees. Unlike most other bats, these fruit bats don’t rely exclusively on echolocation to navigate. Instead, they use their enormous eyes and a keen sense of smell to find their way and locate food.

(Please note: For the safety of the animals, we do not disclose the location of either rhino or pangolin sightings. Accompanying pictures are from our Kwando Photo Library which consists of all your great photo submissions over the years, it may not be the most up to date, but we felt it was worthy of a feature alongside this month’s Sightings Report!)

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