Namibia`s wildlife plays a major role in its biodiversity and undoubtely contribute to the country`s beauty. At AllRound Namibia Tours & Transfers our experience is that all visitors to Namibia are greatly impressed by the quanity and various species of wildlife.
In addition, the intensiven implementation of conservation and wildlife protection strategies has greatly benefited Namibia. According to statistics and research from international organisations, Namibia is the only African country that has seen a rise in wildlife numbers over the past decades.
Due to the large variety of wildlife in Namibia, we will require more space than this page will allow to list them all. With some patience and keen eyesight visitors can expect to see the most well-known wildlife and game species including: elephants, cheetahs, leapords, rhinos, hippos, giraffes, buffalos, orxy, springbucks, hyenas, wild dogs, various species of antelope and countless bird species.
ENDANGERED AND RARE WILDLIFE SPECIES
Namibia is proud to be home to the largest herd of free-roaming black rhinos in the world.
The black rhino was classified as being critically endangered after extensive poaching between 1950 - 1996 wiped our nearly 96% of the black rhino population. The black rhino is smaller in stature in comparison to its relative the white rhino. What black rhino`s lack in size they make up for in temprament - they are much aggressive in nature. With some patience and keen eye sight visitors may be lucky enough to view these endangered animals in their natural environment. Approximately half of the world`s black rhino population is found within Namibia and more specifically within the Etosha National Park. The black rhino has survived remarkably well on communal lands that are not fenced and has no special conservation strategies. Ongoing and intensive conservation and anti-poaching strategies are still being implemented in Namibia to protect these critically endangered animals.
The world`s fastest land animal, the cheetah is also found in Namibia. These great cats numbers diminished significantly due to a loss of habitat as lands are cleared for agricultural and industrial human activities. It is estimated that there are approximately 2000 - 3000 free roaming cheetah in Namibia, representing one-fifth of the total cheetah world population. Extensive research and implementation of conservation strategies by activists in Namibia has seen a gradual increase in these endangered animals` numbers.
Africa is synonymous with elephants and the same holds true for Namibia. It is especially Namibia`s desert elephants that been attracting more attention from international organisations. A specific group of elephants have managed to adapt extremely well to the extreme and arid conditions of the desert. Although the Namibian desert-dwelling elephants are no different from other savannah elephants - Loxodonta africana - they have evolved to live within the rocky mountains, sandy desert and gravel planes that they explore in search of water and vegetation. The desert-dwelling elephants reside mainly in the Kunene region. As from 1995-96 the desert-dwelling elephants have started migrating towards the dry southern part of Namibia, Ugab River. These desert-dwelling elephants has been classified as a top protection priority by ICUN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature). For more information on Namibia`s desert elephants visit: Elephant Human Relations Aid.
Visitors coming to Namibia will also have the unique opportunity to engage with the African wild dog, also known as the Lyacon. These animals are sadly on the brink of extinction and many dedicated organisations and research teams within Namibia are working tirelessly to restore the wild dog population numbers. The African wild dogs` numbers have reduced dramatically over the past century because of habitat encroachment, infectious diseases and human conflict. Very few wild dogs can be found roaming freely in Namibia`s national parks and reserves. Wild dog packs are nowadays located within private parks and reserves such as Erindi, Harnas and N/a`an ku se.
Namibia`s most best kept secret are the desert lions. It was initially believed that Namibia`s desert lions were wiped off the face of the earth in the 1980`s due to human-lion conflict. However, reports surfaces that lions were seen in a remote and arid area of Namibia, Palmwag. A pioneer in the field of the conservation of desert lions, Dr Stander has extensively researched these majestic animals. By means of intensive observation of these desert lions, they have been seen crossing sand dunes and scaling steep cliffs in search of prey. To read more about Dr Stander`s extraordinary research follow the link: Desert lion Conservation.
MARINE AND COASTAL WILDLIFE
Namibia’s Atlantic ocean is filled to the brim thriving marine life. Visitors to the coastal town can embark on a catamaran, ski-boat or kayaking tour to view Namibia`s so called Marine Big 5.
The Namibian coastal waters have gradually seen an increase in numbers of whales as they are migrating back to historical breeding grounds. The two most common species of whales that are sited nowadays at flourishing town of Walvis Bay (Bay of Whales) is the humpback whales and southern right whales. Visitors will most likely be treated to a view of the the humpback whale with these majestic sea creatures showing off their impressive length and size.
The Heaviside`s dolphin - or also known as the Benguela dolphin - is another marine animal that visitors often get to see. These playful dolphins are often seen frolicking in the cold Atlantic ocean, and are endemic to southern Africa. They are the smallest of all dolphin species and prefer shallower waters. These dolphins will often swim along kayaks, ski-boats and catamarans to the delight of visitors.
Cape fur seals are abundant along Namibia`s coast. There numbers range in the thousands and Namibia has one of the largest breeding sites of these seals in the world - Cape Cross Seal Reserve. They can become quite tame if enticed with food, and often they will board the tourist boats. They are specifically accustomed to the very cold conditions of the Atlantic ocean and have a beautiful, black-brown fur coat. These animals are unfortunately a point of controversy - they are culled during a certain period of the year to control their numbers in order to protect the fish stock.
The depths of the ocean often surprise us with mysterious and strange looking creatures and Namibia offers its fare share of these marine oddities. The sunfish - also known as Mola mola - can be found within Namibian`s waters. They prefer warmer ocean waters, but in cooler waters - such as that of the Atlantic ocean - they will come to the surface and "sunbathe" with its largest side basking in the sun. They can grow to become impressively large and heavy, but most specimens documented in souther African waters are smaller and lighter in size and weight.
The most rarely sighted of the Marine Big 5, is the shy the leatherback turtle. There has been a steady rise in the number of leatherback turtles along the Namibian coast.