Mandusi Swamp is a marshy floodplain formed by the Munge Stream. The swamp is a special habitat, a refuge for elephants and hippos, a hunting ground for predators, a cover for small animals, a reserve grazing for the large herds of wildebeest and zebra, and a nesting site for birds. With a size of three square miles, Mandusi Swamp is home to a variety of species, including Elephant, Hippo, Side-Striped Jackal, Reedbuck, Serval Cat, Buffalo, and Bat-Eared Fox.
In this article, we’ll explore the unique features of Mandusi Swamp, its main species, and why it’s known for its striking Hippo Pool, Side-Striped Jackal & Serval Cat, colorful flocks of birds, and courtship displays by Jackson’s widow-bird. We’ll also answer some frequently asked questions about the swamp and its inhabitants.
The Topography of Mandusi Swamp
Mandusi Swamp is located in Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area, close to the famous Ngorongoro Crater. The swamp is situated at an altitude of 1,400 meters above sea level and is surrounded by dense forests, grasslands, and hills.
The topography of Mandusi Swamp is characterized by marshes, floodplains, and riverine areas. During the rainy season, the swamp floods, and the water level rises, creating a haven for aquatic species such as hippos and crocodiles. In the dry season, the water level recedes, and the swamp becomes a grazing ground for herbivores such as zebras and wildebeest.
Wildlife of Mandusi Swamp
Mandusi Swamp is home to a diverse range of species, with elephants and hippos being the most prominent. The swamp has about 70 different bull elephants that are regular visitors to the Crater floor and Mandusi Swamp. Breeding herds of elephants (cows and calves) wander only through the rim forests and are rarely seen on the floor.
Hippos are another significant species that inhabit Mandusi Swamp. The swamp is known for its striking Hippo Pool, which is a gathering place for hippos during the day. The pool is also home to several other aquatic species, including crocodiles and waterbirds.
Other species that can be found in Mandusi Swamp include Side-Striped Jackal, Reedbuck, Serval Cat, Buffalo, and Bat-Eared Fox. The swamp is also a nesting site for various bird species, including colorful flocks of birds and Jackson’s widow bird, known for its courtship displays.
The Best-Known Features of Mandusi Swamp
Mandusi Swamp is a unique habitat that offers a range of experiences to visitors. Here are some of the most popular features of the swamp:
Striking Hippo Pool
The Hippo Pool is one of the most striking features of Mandusi Swamp. It’s a gathering place for hippos during the day and offers visitors an opportunity to observe these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. The pool is also home to several other aquatic species, including crocodiles and waterbirds.
Side-Striped Jackal & Serval Cat
Mandusi Swamp is also home to a variety of predators, including Side-Striped Jackal and Serval Cat. These elusive creatures can be spotted during game drives or while on a walking safari.
Colorful flocks of birds
Mandusi Swamp is a paradise for birdwatchers, with a variety of bird species nesting in the swamp. Visitors can spot colorful flocks of birds flying overhead or perched on branches.
Courtship Displays by Jackson’s Widow-bird
The Jackson’s widow-bird is a small bird that is famous for its dramatic courtship displays during the breeding season. The male bird grows long, flowing tail feathers and performs aerial acrobatics to attract a mate. Visitors can witness this stunning display during the breeding season in Mandusi Swamp.
The Mandusi Swamp spans over three square miles, making it a significant wetland in the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area.