Environmental Biology of Fishes

, Volume 43, Issue 2, pp 109–119

Community ecology and conservation of the fishes of the Okavango Delta, Botswana

  • Glenn S. Merron
  • Michael N. Bruton

DOI: 10.1007/BF00002478

Cite this article as:
Merron, G.S. & Bruton, M.N. Environ Biol Fish (1995) 43: 109. doi:10.1007/BF00002478


The Okavango Delta is a large inland swamp in northern Botswana which receives an annual flood from the highlands of southern Angola. There are distinct fish taxocenes in the Okavango which can be separated from each other by the physical characteristics of the different habitat types with which they co-evolved. An account is given of the ecology and conservation of the fishes of the Okavango Delta. Their response to the annual flood regime, and the environmental factors that limit their distribution and abundance, are described. In the northern riverine floodplain and perennial swamp a higher species richness and ichthyomass was recorded than in the seasonal swamp and drainage rivers. Suggestions are made on the conservation of Okavango fishes taking into account the ecological characteristics of the Delta.

Key words


Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Glenn S. Merron
    • 1
  • Michael N. Bruton
    • 1
  1. 1.J.L.B. Smith Institute of IchthyologyGrahamstownSouth Africa