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Posted by  Simba Saturday, 27 January 2007 14:26

Mamili National Park

Mamili National Park

The secluded wilderness of this vast swamp area is unique in Namibia. The park is criss-crossed by waterways, some of which make it all the way to the Linyanti River. Densely wooded islands as well as patches of tall reeds or wide grass plains are typical for this park. During the rainy season large parts of Mamili are flooded and cannot be accessed. Even in the dry season you should attempt this area only in a convoy of at least two vehicles. Right at the start, when you enter the park, you have to cross a rivulet which will give you a faint idea of the difficulties ahead. Nights are spent at rudimentary camping sites in the middle of the bush.

Mamili is particularly known for its birds. With a little luck you will also encounter Buffalo, Tsessebe, Lechwe and Sitatunga as well as Hyena, Lion or even Leopard.

The 320km² Mamili National Park is the the largest wetland area with conservation status in Namibia.

Mamili is centered on the Nkasa and Lupala islands on the Kwando and Linyanti rivers in the south-western corner of East Caprivi. During the dry season the islands can be reached by road, but after rains 80% of the area becomes flooded, cutting them off from the mainland.

Vegetation is dominated by species accociated with floodplains and termitaria. Floodplains provide ideal protection for swamp and floodplainmammals such as the sitatunga and red lechwe, buffalo, wild dog and it is the last stronghold of the remnant population of Puka. Wattled cranes have been recorded breeding here.

For campers who like to rough it, Mamili offers basic camp sites at Nzalu and Lyadura in the east and south east of the reserve. Please keep in mind, however, that there are no facilities whatsoever at these camp sites, so visitors have to be completely self-sufficient in terms of water, food, fuel, and so on. Entry permits for the park are obtainable at the MET office in Katima Mulilo.

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