The Okavango Delta effectively functions as a wildlife funnel. During the wet season the waters of the Delta spread out like the roots of a tree, but as the dry season bites the waters begin to recede, pulling many migratory species and their predators back towards the north-western corner of Botswana, and leaving many others to roam a maze of island havens further out in the Delta.
The Moremi Reserve’s floodplains and waterways dominate the central and eastern areas of the Okavango Delta. Here, the Mopane Tongue and Chief's Island stand out as the major landmasses – and they are veritable animal magnets in the dry season. It is here that you are most likely to see the Big Five, as well as rare antelope such as the swamp-swimming sitatunga. Chief’s Island is also the prime place to see rhino and big cats – lions, leopards and cheetahs are all regularly sighted here.
Just north of the Moremi Reserve are the Duba Plains, where a National Geographic team observed a pride of lions predating on a herd of buffalo over a two-year period. According to the report, every month the lionesses of the Tsaro pride killed on average 22 buffalo (from a herd of more than one thousand animals) – literally running straight at their prey in the gathering gloom of night.