Species checklist

Below is a partial list of iconic and less iconic species you are likely to see while on the trip – though nothing is absolutely guaranteed.   You will note that most of the iconic African savanna type animals are on the list, along with many more lesser known, but equally fascinating mammals, birds and reptiles.   You will also have the opportunity to get acquainted with a very wide diversity of plant species.  Plant diversity will be most pronounced during your visit to Cape Town, which is located in one of the world’s richest centres of plant speciation with very high levels of endemism (e.g. plants found nowhere else on Earth).




Trees and Shrubs

Victoria Falls area



African Buffalo


Nile Crocodile


Blue Wildebeest

Chacma Baboon

Arrow Marked Babbler

Crested Barbet

Little Bee Eater

Reed Cormorant

Coppery Tailed Coucal

Black Crake

Wattled Crane

African Darter

Fork Tailed Drongo

African Fish Eagle

Grey Go Away bird

Helmeted Guinea Fowl


Squacco Heron

Red Billed and Yellow Billed Hornbill

Sacred Ibis

Pygmy Kingfisher

Pied Kingfisher

Brown Snake Eagle

White Backed Vulture


The mist created by the massive wall of falling water in the Victoria Falls support rainforest type vegetation along its upper edges – species such as  pod mahogany, ebony, ivory palm, wild date palm, batoko plum.  Further back the vegetation reverts to the typical southern African dry woodland of mopane trees and miombo woodland, and an increasingly rare species - the Mukwa tree.

Nxamaseri vegetation is typified by Papyrus, water lilies (both blue and yellow night-flowering) as well as the elegant “Tsaro” Date Palm, and the Water BerryTree.


In Tsodilo Hills the Mongongo Tree is prized by San Bushmen for their edible nuts.


Thousands of islands support a classic array of Okavango trees: the Sausage Tree, the Africa Ebony, the Livingston Tree, the Yellow-bark fig, the Baobab and the Hypahene Fan palm . They all have edible fruits that are enjoyed by giraffe, elephants, monkeys, parrots… and people.

Waterways are carpeted with water lilies, while parasitic bladderworts on pool edges hint at low nutrient levels in the water. The river edges are framed by bullrushes and Phragmytes reeds that replace the Papyrus of the northern Delta.


Dinaka is situated in the Kalahari and vegetation  is suitably adapted to desert conditions. Prominent species include the Camelthorn acacia, the Shepherds tree and medicinal plants such as the Devilthorn. The brandy or raisin bush is used for bushman bows and arrows and the fruits eaten for their high sugar content. Bulbs are prolific and provide water, as do the Tsama melons – favoured by the San Bushmen.


Nxamaseri / Tsodilo

Vervet Monkey



Mozambique Spitting Cobra

Okavango Delta



Wild Dog




Spotted Hyaena

Red Lechwe

Vervet Monkey

Sable Antelope



Dinaka area

White rhino




Side Striped Jackal


Greater Kudu



Red Billed Buffalo Weaver

Grey Headed Bush Shrike

Jameson’s Firefinch

Pale Chanting Goshawk

Southern Black Korhaan


Double Banded Sandgrouse

Blue Waxbill

Emerald Spotted Wood Dove

Cape Town area


African Penguin

African Black Oystercatcher


Cape Floristic region is one of the world’s great centres of plant diversity.   It is home to over 9,000 vascular plant species, of which 70% are endemic (found nowhere else on Earth).

The entire  Cape Floral Region Protected Areas were designated a World Heritage site in 2004, and includes Table Mountain which extends into Kirstenbosch Botanical gardens. The Fynbos biome is the dominant floral type in the Cape.