Ride a Mokoro in the Okavango Delta
How many teeth does a hungry hippo have? More than you can comfortably count while skimming the reed-fringed waterways of the Okavango Delta in a dugout canoe. To call a mokoro ride a casual cruise is to minimize the perception of peril involved. Traditionally crafted from ebony or other hardwoods (and now typically made of fiberglass), these shallow, pole-propelled skiffs appear to offer no protection from crocodiles lingering beneath the murky surface. Fortunately, expert guides with a mental map of the channels, lagoons, and islands of the Moremi Game Reserve can easily navigate mokoros for safe sightings of bathing elephants and oup-close observations of egrets, cranes, and other waterfowl. When water levels are high enough, usually between April and August, Xigera Camp is a mokoro paradise; it's a place to relax and soak in the sensations of a marshy ecosystem that presents an aquatic perspective on Botswana's safari splendor. And about those hippos: Adults have 36 choppers.
Region: Northern Botswana
Wild file: Lions, leopards, and cheetahs prowl the region, but researchers come from around the world to study this habitat's large population of threatened African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus).
This piece was written by George Stone. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter.
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