Wildlife & Animals – Bangweulu Wetlands

Alan Murphy
Expert
By Alan Murphy

Alan is a renowned Africa expert and has authored many Lonely Planet guidebooks, including the guide to Zambia.

Alan is a renowned Africa expert and has authored many Lonely Planet guidebooks, including the guide to Zambia.

Alan is a renowned Africa expert and authored the Lonely Planet guidebook to Zambia.

Alan has authored the Lonely Planet guide to Zambia.

The wetlands' main attraction is the thousands of endemic black lechwe. Sitatunga also loves this habitat, but they are shy and rarely seen. Elephant and buffalo can sometimes be spotted. Predator sightings are rare, but spotted hyena and jackal are often heard at night. The water channels are home to many hippo and crocodile lurking in the reeds.

Abundant
Common
Occasional
Rare
None
ElephantOccasional
HippoCommon
BuffaloOccasional
ZebraCommon
WildebeestPresent
LionNone
LeopardVery Rare
HyenaRare
Wild DogVery Rare

Wildlife Highlights

The park is known for its black lechwe, but some other unusual antelope species are found here as well. The fastest of all antelope is the tsessebe and hundreds of this uncommon species can be seen on the grassland, fringing the floodplains. Pairs of dainty oribi are particularly common as well.

Best Time for Wildlife Viewing

The wetlands' area is very seasonal. The best time for seeing the lechwe and other antelope species is in June and July when the water recedes and antelope can be found grazing on the exposed grassland.

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