Life Waters: wetlands and climate change

Carmen Revenga, Colin Finlayson

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter

Abstract

If one is asked to imagine a landscape teeming with life, a desert is not the first thing that comes to mind. But what a difference some water can make. In southern Africa, the Kalahari desert lies along the Okavango River and after every rainy season, waters flow here from the central Angolan highlands 680 miles (1,100 km) away. Life springs from the river as it moves down to northern Botswana, where it replenishes the 5,790 square mile (15,000 km<+>2<+>) Okavango Delta, an inland alluvial fan. In this season, the Okavango wetlands expand as if by magic into a lush mosaic of permanent and temporary channels, grassy islands, and banks that crisscross the landscape. At its peak, this magnificent wetland complex can expand to 10,800 square miles (28,000 km<+>2<+>)--an area the size of Massachusetts.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationState of the Wild 2010-2011-- A Global Portrait
Place of PublicationWashington, DC, USA
PublisherIsland Press (with the Wildlife Conservation Society)
Pages160-166
Number of pages7
Volume3
EditionPart 3. 8
ISBN (Print)9781597266772
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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