Duba Plains is located inside the private 77,000-acre Duba Plains Reserve in northern Botswana’s Okavango Delta. During the delta’s dry season, vast plains of golden grass stretch as far as the eye can see, dotted with stands of date palms, acacia, and marula trees. Annual flooding transforms the landscape into a patchwork of bright blue and vivid green, with glittering waterways crisscrossing the lush grasslands, creating a thriving oasis in the center of the Kalahari.
The Okavango Delta is the culmination of an extraordinary environmental process beginning in the rocky highlands of Angola, where summer rainfall runs together into the slow-moving ribbon of the Okavango River. These life-giving waters gradually spread out over an area of thousands of square miles formed by a tectonic trough in the midst of the Kalahari Desert. Rather than flowing into a lake or ocean, the delta’s water comes to a stop before evaporating under the heat of the African sun. The high-water season turns the plain into a shining maze of pools and streams, a haven for huge herds of plains game, hundreds of bird species, and many of Africa’s most iconic predators.
Humans have roamed the Okavango for over 100,000 years; today, the unique ethnic groups that live around the delta maintain a close relationship with this extraordinary landscape. Since the 20th century, the government of Botswana has worked diligently to protect the Okavango ecosystem and promote local engagement with conservation. In 1963, the Moremi Game Reserve, one of the largest in the delta, became the first African reserve established by local residents. Today, more than 17% of the country is protected land, patrolled by the anti-poaching arm of the Botswana Defence Force. Those who call the Okavango home understand the vital importance of protecting the delta and its surrounding environments for future generations of residents and visitors, human and wildlife alike.
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