Seeing a sunset is pretty special anywhere in Africa, but here in Banhine National Park it is spectacular as this remote landscape slowly starts to be rejuvenated through conservation efforts by Peace Parks and partners.
Banhine is a critically important component of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area as it lies within an ancient wildlife corridor stretching from South Africa’s Kruger National Park, through Limpopo National Park and all the up to Zinave National Park in Mozambique.
Last year an elephant bull that was collared in Limpopo National Park, walked to Banhine through a section along the Limpopo River that has been kept clear of human development. This gave scientific evidence of the functionality of corridor and the importance of linkages between the national parks. Similarly, two hippo moved from the Limpopo National Park to Banhine’s central pan system where they enjoyed the park’s hospitality before moving on.
During the rainy season, Banhine’s arid landscape is transformed into a myriad of crystal-clear lagoons teeming with fish and it becomes a safe haven for thousands of migratory birds that either stop to breed, or rest on their way up further north. Seeing large flocks of pelicans and flamingo is only matched by frequent calls of fish eagle in its ability to inspire those who live and work here.
It was established in 1973 to conserve the giraffe and ostrich populations found there. Unfortunately, these, as well as other wildlife populations, were nearly eradicated during years of turbulence and commercial poaching activities. This is being turned around now as a partnership between the Government of Mozambique and Peace Parks Foundation is intensifying protection and development in Banhine.
The 700,000 ha Banhine National Park is situated in central southern Mozambique, midway between Pafuri in the west and Vilanculos in the east.