Bangweulu Wetlands

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Bangweulu Wetlands
Bangweulu Swamps
Bangweulu Swamps.jpg
View of the wetlands
Map showing the location of Bangweulu Wetlands
Map showing the location of Bangweulu Wetlands
Location of the Bangweulu Wetlands in Zambia
Coordinates11°36′S 30°05′E / 11.600°S 30.083°E / -11.600; 30.083Coordinates: 11°36′S 30°05′E / 11.600°S 30.083°E / -11.600; 30.083

The Bangweulu Wetlands are a wetland area in north-eastern Zambia.

Overview[change | change source]

Bangweulu, which means "where the water sky meets the sky", is found mostly within Zambia's Northern Province and known by the Ramsar Convention as one of the world's most important wetlands.[1] The 9,850-square-kilometre (3,800 sq mi)[2] region has flood-plains, seasonally flooded grasslands, woodlands,[3] andswamps, fed by rivers near it.

Animals and plants[change | change source]

The ecosystem has Cyperus papyrus, floating grasses, miombo woodland,[4] and reeds that support a lot of crocodiles, fish, and water birds. Some mammals in the Bangweulu Wetlands are buffalo, zebra, elephants, hippopotamus, hyenas, jackals, lechwe, sable antelope, and sitatunga.[1][3][5][6] Millions of straw-coloured fruit bats go to Bangweulu's Mushitu swamp forest, in Kasanka National Park.[7] In 2016, African Parks partnered with Fondation Segré to help 600 animals, including hartebeest, impala, and puku, into the wetlands.[8]

Bangweulu has been called a "Important Bird Area" by BirdLife International.[9] The wetlands are home to more than 400 bird species,[4] including cormorants, ducks, egrets, Geese, herons, ibises, pygmy goose, and waders.[1] Other animals found in Bangweulu include the great white pelican, saddle-billed stork, spoonbill, and wattled crane.[10]

Human–wildlife conflict[change | change source]

House in Bangweulu's swamps, 2006

Bangweulu holds several villages, and around 50,000–90,000 people depend on the wetlands, resulting in human–wildlife conflict.[1][11] The ecosystem could be damaged by habitat burning for farming, overfishing, and poaching. 75 poachers were arrested in 2010, and 115 were arrested in 2011. The use of mosquito nets for fishing has lessened fish populations in Bangweulu and Zambia.[12]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Boyes, Steve (7 December 2012). "Working for Water: The Bangweulu Wetlands and Africa's Shoebill…". National Geographic. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  2. Gray, William (2007). Zambia and Victoria Falls. New Holland Publishers. p. 91. ISBN 978-1-84537-813-4. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Bangweulu Wetlands "Where the water meets the sky"". United Nations Development Programme. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Planet, Lonely; Grosberg, Michael; Holden, Trent; Morgan, Kate; Ray, Nick; Waters, Richard; Waters, Richard (1 June 2013). Lonely Planet Zambia, Mozambique & Malawi. Lonely Planet. p. 204. ISBN 978-1-74321-645-3. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  5. Chisha, Christine (23 October 2016). "Malama set to make a difference". Zambia Daily Mail. Retrieved 11 October 2017.
  6. Kamweneshe, Bernard Mwila (2002). Ecology, Conservation and Management of the Black Lechwe (Kobus Leche Smithemani) in the Bangweulu Basin, Zambia. University of Pretoria. Retrieved 11 October 2017.
  7. Weaver, Tony (11 November 2011). "Eight Million New Wonders of the World". Cape Times. Cape Town: Sekunjalo Investments. Archived from the original on 3 April 2018. Retrieved 11 October 2017 – via HighBeam Research.
  8. "Bangweulu Wetlands Wildlife Reintroduction Project". Fondation Segré. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  9. "Bangweulu Wetlands "Where the water meets the sky"". United Nations Development Programme. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  10. Kamweneshe, Bernard M. "Status of Ecology of Wattled Cranes in Bangweulu Basin, Zambia" (PDF). pp. 261–265. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  11. McIntyre, Chris (5 July 2016). Zambia. Bradt Travel Guides. p. 336. ISBN 978-1-78477-012-9. Retrieved 11 October 2017.
  12. Gettleman, Jeffrey (24 January 2015). "Meant to Keep Malaria Out, Mosquito Nets Are Used to Haul Fish In". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. OCLC 1645522. Retrieved 11 October 2017.

Other websites[change | change source]

External video
Video: Zambia's Bangweulu Wetlands, National Geographic Society