Floating through the Okavango Delta in dug out canoes, listening to lions roaring and hippos honking in the distance is undoubtably one of the highlights for Quest teams on the Southern Africa Expedition. A new book, “Okavango Delta: Floods of Life” is being published in March this year for World Wetland’s Day and provides a fascinating insight into this beautiful region.
Beginning with an explanation of the functioning of the Delta, the book describes (with the aid of many excellent graphics), the catchment areas in Angola and the passage of the Okavango River through Namibia, and goes on to reveal the physical, hydrological and ecological processes governing the working of the Delta itself. Subsequent chapters reveal the value of the Delta in terms of its diversity of plants and animals, and their use and reliance by people is revealed through many wonderful photographs and descriptions. Finally, current and future threats to the Delta are reviewed, and a range of management actions for ensuring the future of the Delta are discussed.
The delta is a unique phenomenon that acts as an oasis for wildlife in an otherwise desert area, most notably big game such as lion, hippo, hyena, elephants, giraffe and buffalo and thousands of other smaller creatures. It is hugely valuable to humans both for tourism and as a rich provider of food, fuel and building materials. The Delta, however is under threat from expanding elephant populations, climate change and wildfires. The book has been described as an inspiration to decision makers throughout the region to work together to ensure the survival of one of the world’s most beautiful and valuable wetlands.