Wildlife & Animals – Nsumbu NP

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.

Wildlife densities in the park are quite low, but a variety of animals can be seen. Hippo are quite common in the lake, and they come out to graze on the shore in the evening. Big crocodiles, up to 6m long, lie on the sandy banks. Herds of buffalo roam through the park and elephant sometimes come to drink at the lake. Bushbuck, puku and warthog frequent the beaches as well, while eland, roan and sable stick to the hills.

Abundant
Common
Occasional
Rare
None
ElephantOccasional
HippoCommon
BuffaloOccasional
ZebraOccasional
WildebeestOccasional
LionVery Rare
LeopardVery Rare
HyenaVery Rare
Wild DogRare to none

Wildlife Highlights

The rare blue duiker is a forest-dwelling species and one of the unusual inhabitants of the park. So is the swamp-loving sitatunga antelope, which is shy and rarely encountered. Aside from the big Nile crocodile, the endangered slender-snouted crocodile can sometimes be spotted as well.

Best Time for Wildlife Viewing

Nsumbu can be visited throughout the year, but general wildlife viewing is best in the Dry season, from July to November, when the bush has dried out, and animals make their way to predictable water sources. The vegetation thins out as well during these months, which makes spotting animals easier.

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