by Megon Venter on September 19, 2018
3 min read

The Victoria Falls region is abundant with life, hosting some creatures stranger than others. Explore the forest enclosing the falls, uncovering the special species that call it home. A UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site, this extraordinary African wonder is known for its lush flora and fascinating fauna. Read below to discover a few of our favourite sightings on the spectacular wonder of the Zambezi River.

Trumpeter Hornbill

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Bernard Dupont

Residing in the rain forest area of the Victoria Falls the trumpeter hornbill is a strange-looking bird with a remarkable beak. They make a call that sounds like the cry of a baby and the female hornbill incubates the eggs for up to 94 days, taking great care of their young.

Baobab

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Michael Jansen

This special species supports whole ecosystems in its branches, in its trunk and with its leaves. The source of many Khoi-San legends, the baobab is seen as a magical tree that supports a glorious cornucopia of life and then falls over, returning to dust when it dies.

Leopard

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Simon Watson

A surprising fact about the leopard is that, unlike lions, they are very solitary animals. They exhibit interesting behaviours such as dragging prey up into trees and storing them for later meals, out of reach of other predators.

Painted Reed Frog

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Bernard Dupont

Despite the general rule of thumb about colourful frogs, these little creatures are not poisonous. As in the picture above, they can be spotted clinging onto reeds but they are fond of finding bodies of water to immerse themselves in. They lay their eggs directly into the water and make full use of the warm and moist environment.

Cape Clawless Otter

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Mark Paxton

This shy animal thrives in both marine and freshwater habitats. Its waterproof fur keeps it warm while it swims in cooler waters and because of its highly intelligent nature. The otter also acts as a masterful predator and effective protector of its group.

Verreauxs’ Eagle

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Derek Keats

This elusive bird of prey breeds in the gorges of its environment, hiding its nest high up, away from other predatory species. Its diet consists mainly of the rock hyrax or dassie because of its abundance in rocky areas.

Flame Lily

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: John Skewes

The flame lily is the national flower of Zimbabwe but is highly poisonous to humans and most animals. However, there are known uses for it in traditional medicine where the properties can be used as poison against another ailment, thereby curing the sufferer instead of harming them.

Elephant

Victoria Falls Special Species

Photo Credit: Simon Watson

The mighty elephant operates in a matriarchal herd, with males roaming the plains as bachelors until they find their own group once they reach maturity. These gentle giants also communicate at low frequencies, making noises to signify different emotions or warnings.

Jet off to the captivating Victoria Falls to witness these marvellous animals and absorb the serenity of the Zambezi. Create your dream African adventure by visiting Zimbabwe, Zambia and more.

Featured Image: Simon Watson