DumaTau Camp in the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve
DumaTau Camp lies under a shady grove of mangosteen trees, raised off the ground to overlook a large hippo-filled lagoon. The tents are spacious, under thatch with canvas walls, en-suite bathroom facilities and an outside shower. Guests can enjoy the night sounds of Africa from the comfort of their rooms, and shower under the stars! There is a dining room, pub, lounge, swimming pool and a special guest bathroom with a fantastic view.
DumaTau Camp has all the habitat diversity to make it a haven for wildlife, and is well-known for its elephant concentrations as they congregate along the waterways and lagoons during the dry winter months. General wildlife viewing is excellent year round including impala, wildebeest, red lechwe, Burchell’s zebra, giraffe, Cape buffalo, chacma baboon, vervet monkey, and warthog. Predator sightings of lion, leopard, cheetah, wild dog and spotted hyaena are good.
Wildlife viewing is the primary activity at DumaTau Camp, either on day and night game drives or while on foot and on the water (levels permitting). Short nature walks can be taken along the Linyanti River and Savute Channel, while the camp’s boat takes visitors along the waters of the Linyanti, with hippo and waterfowl alike to entrance. There are also a number of platforms and hides from which to view and photograph animals and birds. One of the best hides is right at the source of the Savute and many species of game and birdlife can usually be seen from this hide.
Facts: 90% game drives, 10% water activities.
- Land game drives in open 4×4 Land Rovers – the camp has 4 x 10-seater Land Rovers, maximum of seven guests per vehicle.
- Night drives
- Game walks and hides
- Motorboat, 1×6-seater (no mokoro)
DumaTau Camp Game Viewing
The 125 000-hectare (308 000-acre) private Linyanti Concession bordering Chobe National Park’s western boundary is an enormous, wildlife-rich area, shared between just three small camps (DumaTau Camp, Kings Pool Camp and Savuti Camp), which creates an unrivalled atmosphere of remoteness and space.
There are three main features of the Linyanti Concession: the Linyanti River, the woodlands of the interior and the well-known Savute Channel, famous as a sporadic and unusual watercourse. The Savute Channel last flowed in 1980; today it is an open grassland and home to a wide variety of animals. With two-thirds of the Savute Channel located in the concession, Wilderness Safaris guests have private and exclusive access to its abundant game.
These three features together with the floodplains, woodlands, grasslands, palm islands and scrub vegetation of the area harbour one of the densest dry season concentrations of elephant in Botswana – at times the Linyanti must have several thousand elephants roaming around. This phenomenon is one of the main attractions for travellers to northern Botswana, but the area is also important in holding good numbers of predators, providing an integral stronghold for species like the critically endangered wild dog, as well as lion, cheetah and spotted hyaena. The roan antelope found in the area can provide an equal thrill however, as can the high concentration of birds of prey, seasonal zebra congregations and the cathedral-like woodland of mature mopane trees.
Aside from roan, other plains game includes red lechwe, Burchell’s zebra, blue wildebeest, impala, common waterbuck, sable, eland, southern giraffe, chacma baboon, vervet monkey, warthog, hippo and Cape buffalo. Nocturnal species often seen are lesser bushbaby, spring hare, aardwolf, serval, large spotted genet and if you are extremely lucky the elusive pangolin!
Birding is outstanding here ranging from the Okavango specials, such as Slaty Egret, Hartlaub’s Babbler, African Skimmer, Allen’s Gallinule and Wattled Crane, to the drier mopane woodland species like Racket-tailed Roller, Bradfield’s Hornbill, White-breasted Cuckoo-shrike, Bennett’s Woodpecker, Swallow-tailed Bee-eater and Arnott’s Chat. This area is also excellent for Kori Bustard, Ostrich, Secretarybird, and Ground Hornbill with Southern Carmine Bee-eaters in summer. The Savute Channel is famous as an area with a high concentration of eagles and raptors and this area is internationally recognised as an IBA (Important Bird Area), particularly for birds of prey like Dickinson’s Kestrel and waterbirds. There are also various owl species to be seen here such as Verreaux’s (Giant) Eagle-Owl and African Scops-Owl.
The many varied habitats within these areas – marshes, waterways, riverine forests, dry woodlands and grasslands – and the prolific and diverse wildlife and spectacular scenery together form a wonderful contrast to the Okavango. Adding this area to a Botswana itinerary makes for a varied and balanced experience of the country and in many ways it is an essential complement to a visit to the Okavango.