Dropping water levels support breeding - Namibia Safari and Lodges - Gondwana Collection

Namibia with Heart and Soul: Take our hand and let us introduce you to this awe-inspiring country. Come and stay with us, experience Namibia.

WELCOME TO GONDWANA COLLECTION

Where the Namib Desert stretches languidly from the Atlantic Ocean and wild land extends into infinity, dreams become real. At this place where fantasy meets reality, you'll find the Gondwana Collection safely positioned.

Take our outstretched hand and let us introduce you to our extraordinary country, Namibia. From the massive chasms of the Fish River Canyon, the fossilised dunes of the Namib Desert and the red sands of the Kalahari Desert to the waterways of the Kavango and Zambezi, there are countless marvels to behold. Explore this awe-inspiring wilderness from the warmth of our lodges, created with conservation cognizance and ample character. And return to relax after an exciting day of discovery.

This is the Gondwana feeling: Namibia with heart and soul.

Come and stay with us, experience Namibia.

About us

Namibia2Go Car Rental

Experience Africa like never before. Explore Namibia your way with our well-maintained and fully inclusive rental vehicles. Easy. Hassle free. Unforgettable.

We offer a comprehensive travel service including car rental, accommodation, safaris and self-drive itineraries and day trips. Interested?

Boxed2Go Self-Drive Safaris

Let us spoil you with Gondwana Collection’s exceptional self-drive safari packages including accommodation, vehicle and a detailed route map guide. Make use of our comprehensive travel services to book an unforgettable safari. Discover the spectacular secrets Namibia holds. more

GO EPIC - Experience Namibia’s famed locations (11 days)
GO BIG - Discover Namibia's main attractions (13 days)
GO WILD - Track Namibia's awesome wildlife (12 days)

Safari2Go - The easiest way to travel the country!

10-Day Namibian Highlights Tour
Enjoy Namibia’s most popular destinations on this compact guided tour that incorporates visits to the Kalahari and Namib deserts – including the famed Sossusvlei dunes, the intriguing coastal town of Swakopmund, the Twyfelfontein rock engravings and Etosha National Park. more

3 Day / 2 Night – Sossusvlei Safari Shuttle
Exciting adventures await those who partake in this exhilarating safari to Sossusvlei, one of the most spectacular sites in the world. The magnificent star dunes are a photographer’s dream and the spectacular landscape will leave memories to last a lifetime. more

Namibia Road Map 2018/19

Anyone touring Namibia should definitely take our road map along. It is available from Gondwana free of charge, or as pdf download. This map features fascinating experiences plus recommended accommodation. At the same time it is an ordinary road map with all the essential information of the official Namibia road map by Prof. Uwe Jäschke and the Roads Authority of Namibia.

Gondwana's Newsroom

Dropping water levels support breeding

Avatar of inke inke - 25. September 2018 - Environment, Gondwana Collection

The lower mandible of the African Skimmer is two to three centimetres longer than the upper one. The birds fly low over the water and “plough” it with the lower mandible. The bill snaps shut as soon as it touches a fish and the prey is tightly sandwiched in-between.

Dirk Heinrich

When the mighty Zambezi River overflows its banks, additional habitats with an abundant food supply are created for many bird species. Young fish thrive in the shallow warm water and countless insect larvae are also found there. For African Skimmers, however, an important habitat is lost: the white sandbanks disappear under the masses of water and with them the sleeping and resting places as well as the nesting sites.

The total population of this bird species in Africa is estimated to be around 10000. In Namibia, this inter-African migrant is found only in the northern parts of the Kavango regions and in the Zambezi Region. African Skimmers are threatened with extinction in southern Africa. Thus it is all the more pleasing to discover nests with eggs, chicks and juveniles in the vicinity of Zambezi Mubala Lodge and Zambezi Mubala Camp. After the level of the Zambezi River dropped by several metres during the last months, many white sandbanks reappeared along the main stream and around the islands.

This chick lies well-camouflaged in the hoof print of a cow. The fledgling birds dig a little depression for themselves and seek shelter there when they are threatened. Pressed flat to the ground they stay put motionless until their parents sound the all-clear.

On a sandbank west of the lodge and the camp a flock of slightly over 50 young skimmers can be seen spending the day there with adult birds. Some ten kilometres downriver a few more of these strange-looking birds are nesting on a white sandbank. At the end of August (2018) there were at least two nests, each with three brown-speckled eggs, on the fine sand and at least three well-camouflaged chicks were seen lying in flat hollows: next to dry cow dung, in a hoof print of a cow and in brownish sand on a sandbank. Fledged juveniles were waiting on the riverbanks for their parents to go fishing again and bring back treats.

African Skimmers have a unique way of fishing. At dusk and at night, and not only in moon-lit nights, these birds skim the surface of the water with their beak open and the lower mandible, which is two to three centimetres longer, partially submerged at an angle of 45 degrees. They “plough” the water for a distance of 50 to 100 metres, then turn and fly the same length again. Their wings never touch the water. When the bill touches a fish it snaps shut in a flash, giving the prey no chance to escape. Fish no bigger than 80 millimetres are caught and eaten this way. An African Skimmer weighs around 160 grams, and the wingspan is a little more than one metre.

The speckled eggs may seem conspicuous in the flat nesting hollow on the white sand, but plant debris and the droppings of other birds have accumulated everywhere on the sandbank. Since the colour is similar the eggs and nests are protected by this excellent camouflage.

Comments are disabled for this post.

0 comments

Explore the Gondwana Blog

Subscribe to our blog and receive email notifications of all our latest articles & stories.

View the Blog

Canyon Klipspringer Trail

Hiking in almost pristine nature, this slack packing trail only runs from April to September.

Read more

Stay up-to-date with our monthly 'Gondwana Tracks' Newsletter Sign up Today