What’s the appeal of Ruaha National Park?


What’s the appeal of Ruaha National Park?

Answer ( 1 )

  1. Ruaha National Park is perfect for people looking for ‘off-the-beaten-track’, camp fire and cultural experiences.

    Ruaha National Park is Tanzania’s largest National Park at 20,300km2. Activities in Ruaha centre around the Ruaha River, with its spectacular river systems, pools and rocky kopjes.

    Huge baobab trees stud the landscape and tall palms and riparian forest line the river which follows the south-east boundary for 160km. Other habitats include swamps, grasslands, and acacia woodland.

    Ruaha has a hot, dry climate particularly between June-Nov, with the hottest period generally being Oct and Nov before the rains break leaving the Ruaha River dwindling with pools of water swarming with crocodiles and hippopotamus and dry rivers of sand.

    The rain mainly falls between Oct-May and towards the end of the wet period the Ruaha River becomes a flooded torrent. Game viewing is at its best from June-Nov when the animals concentrate around the Ruaha River, but the bush is greener and prettier from Jan-June and the birding is best during the European winter months of Dec-April.

    And the wildlife…

    Ruaha is an ecological meeting point; it is the only protected area in which the flora and fauna ofeastern and southern Africa overlap.

    It lies at the southerly extent of the range for east African ungulate species such as lesser kudu and Grants gazelle but it also harbours a number of antelope species that are rare or absent in northern Tanzania such species include greater kudu, roan antelope, and sable antelope.

    The elephant population is the largest of any Tanzanian national park with some 12,000 elephant individuals migrating trough the Greater Ruaha Ecosystem. Ruaha is an excellent national park for predators. There can be close sightings of lions of over 20 individuals to a pride.

    Cheetah are resident in the open plains particularly in the Lundu area north east of the Mwagusi River and leopard is also frequently spotted. Over 100 African wild dog inhabit the Greater Ruaha Ecosystem. Visitors have the chance to spot one pack of African wild dog, consisting of approximately 40 individuals, as they move into the Mwagusi River area.

    Other predators include black-backed jackal, spotted hyena and the striped hyena (rare to spot as it is at the southern limit of its range). Ruaha’s most common ungulates include giraffe, zebra, buffalo, impala, waterbuck, bushbuck, reedbuck, eland, dik-dik, and warthog. Other wildlife includes mongoose, porcupine, wild cat, and civet.

    Ruaha is an excellent birding destination with over 450 species recorded and has a good mix of southern and northern species.

    In particular, the Tanzanian endemics black-collard lovebirds and ashy starlings are found at their southerly extent of their distribution while the crested barbet, a southern African species, inhabits the park replacing the east African red and yellow barbet. Eurasian migrating birds flock to Ruaha twice a year (March-April & Oct-Nov).

    Visitors can enjoy game drives, and depending on the lodge/camp guided game walks based at a lodge/camp, and mobile walking safaris between mobile fly camps.

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