Khaudum National Park
Khaudum National Park is an isolated Nature Reserve situated in the Kalahari Desert at the west of the Caprivi Strip in northeast of Namibia. It is a very remote and inaccessible reserve but is home to some magnificent animals such as the lion and the hyena. The park also has a campsite for visitors.
The Khaudum National Park is located in Kalahari Desert. The three largest dry rivers (known as omiramba) — Nhoma, Cwiba and Khaudum — run through the wildlife park. They play an important ecological role when they run during the rainy season.
The Kavango Region has a long dry season from April to November and a subsequent wet period from December to March. In the dry season in winter, the humidity is at 30% and the daily maximum daytime temperatures are above 25 °C. The temperature on cold nights can fall to less than 5 °C, but is usually around 12 °C. The rainy season in summer is marked by a humidity of 60% and daily highs typically between 30° and 40 °C. Even at night the temperature does not fall below 15 °C. The annual precipitation average is 550 millimeters, with 80% during the months December to March.
The dominant vegetation in the park is species-rich, high and short dry forest and dry acacia forest. Trees can reach a height of up to 10 m and have a relatively dense undergrowth. The species range includes Pterocarpus angolensis,Baikiaea plurijuga, Burkea africana and Guibourtia coleosperma. In contrast to the dry high forest the trees in the lower forest reach less than 5 meters height. Species include Lonchocarpus neisii and Terminalia serica, interspersed with Faidherbia albida and Grewia. Along the Omiramba is denser acacia dry forest, often with very large population of thorn bushes including Acacia erioloba, Acacia fleckii, Acacia hebeclada and Acacia tortilis together with occasional Combretum imberbe and Combretum hereroense. The bed of the Omiramba is peaty-boggy and consists of dense Reed including Phragmites and more infrequently, water lilies. Terminalia prunoides (blood fruit trees) also dominate.
The unspoiled nature of the reserve encourages a rich and varied wildlife in the dry forest. The ideal time for seeing wildlife is from June to October. From November to March more than 320 species of birds inhabit the area, including parrots and more than 50 birds of prey.
Big game can be found in the park occasionally, more than 500 African bush elephants, many Angolan giraffes and many antelope, including roan antelope, kudu, lyre antelope, eland and reedbuck. Even the stock of prey animals is high. Besides the smaller cats, there is a larger population of lions, but also leopards, spotted hyenas, jackals, occasionally cheetahs and even Cape wild dogs.
Khaudum is isolated. Both the camps and the whole National Park were closed in May 2013 until further notice.
- IUCN Cat Specialist Group (2006). Conservation Strategy for the Lion Panthera leo in Eastern and Southern Africa. IUCN, Pretoria, South Africa.
- Khaudum National Park closed. TourBrief.com, 21 May 2013 checked on 22. May 2013