January sits within the Okavango Delta’s wet season, a time where the watery floodplains that define the Delta are depleted. In May, as the water that fills the Delta arrives from the Angolan Highlands, water levels will begin to rise - bringing with them an immense variety of wildlife.  

Wildlife sightings in the month of January were certainly varied, featuring some incredible moments in the company of hippos, lions, cheetahs, zebras, giraffes and more. The incredible creatures who find their homes in the verdant surroundings of the Okavango Delta bring our guests and our team members so much joy. Take a look at some of the remarkable images captured by our Xigera safari guides during the month of January. 

hippo xigera january

Picture by Oratile Gotshajwang  

sunset xigera january

owl xigera january

Pictures by Mike Myers 

This Pearl Spotted Owl is a tenacious predator. Their kills are substantial – these owls have been sighted taking down gerbils of equal size – and their calls can be heard throughout the area.  

lion from safari vehicle

Picture by Mike Myers 

At Xigera, it is possible to remove our safari vehicle canopy on request. This is particularly helpful for birders, as birds in flight can often be missed whilst the canopy is up and its removal allows everyone on the vehicle the same view. 

kingfisher xigera january

owl xigera january

lechwe xigera january

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

The rain in early January led to plenty of new greenery and many excellent sightings to the east of the Xigera camp. Our safari guide, Ike, managed to capture these two impressive photographs of a marsh owl and a woodland kingfisher, alongside a heard of lechwes.  

lion lying down xigera

lion walking xigera january

leopard in tree

warthogs xigera january

lions xigera january

cranes xigera january

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

The Xigera lion cubs have been sighted chasing red lechwes and spoiling the hunt for the females. It looks like the cubs are beginning to learn to hunt, mimicking the adults out on the open floodplains.  

lion lying down

lions lying down family

lion lying down

Pictures by Quest Maundo 

We caught up with the Xigera pride again to the east of the lodge, nearby to the Jao-Boro River. 

zebras january xigera

birds xigera january

flowers xigera january

buffalo xigera january

mushroom xigera january

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

The colourful bird you see above is a lilac breasted roller, just one of the beautiful bird sightings we have witnessed this month.  

rain scenery shot xigera

Picture by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

lions on floodplain

lion cubs walking

Pictures by Mike Myers 

flowers xigera january

vulture xigera january

bird xigera january

flowers xigera january

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

We are seeing a lot of flowers such as poison apple and hibiscus on our game drives, alongside plenty of close bird, leopard and lion sightings. The colourful bird you see pictured above is a white fronted bee eater.  

lions and safari vehicle

lechwe xigera sunset

lion cubs playing

lion cubs xigera

lions and mother xigera

Pictures by Mike Myers 

We saw some fabulous pride interactions at Xigera in late January. Meanwhile, the floodplains to the east of camp were full of lechwe. The lion cubs are playful in the late evening light, but the lionesses do get frustrated with their antics from time to time. 

birds xigera sunset

lechwe xigera

lechwe xigera january

lion xigera kill

lion xigera kill

lion xigera kill and vultures

birds taking flight

lion cubs resting on log

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

Everyone believes male lions do not hunt, but this is certainly not the case at Xigera Safari Lodge. 

leopard golden hour

Picture by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

Tshameko (pictured above) is very much part of our Xigera story. She was the last cub to our original female leopard Madiphala. After she had raised two cubs to adulthood, she produced one more. She was a very shy cub initially, but we found her with her mother one day and she relaxed. Tshameko’s name comes from a Setswana word meaning "playful", named by Marian Myers after her first sighting.

Tshameko was eight months old when her mother disappeared. After that, Tshameko lost weight and began spending time by the lodge, until she was chased away by another leopard, Motlalepula. After a long time away from the lodge, Tshameko returned and is looking happier than ever.  

leopard warthog kill

Picture by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

Above, you can see Motlalepula’s male cub hunting to the west of Suite One. 

giraffe cloudy skies

lioness and cubs with kill

birds in flight xigera

lions surrounding kill

birds xigera flying

lions lounging xigera

safari vehicle and lions

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

This beautiful selection of images truly reflect a perfect day at Xigera. Late January provided typical summer skies, green landscape, and plenty of animals out to greet us. 

pels fishing owl

lions on open plain

lion walking in front of lechwe

lechwe lion hunt

lion in grasses xigera

leopard xigera tree

Pictures by Ikalaheng Mogalakwe 

Game viewing is at its peak in the Xigera camp and the team is thoroughly looking forward to hosting guests in February 2022.

Take a look at our land excursions page for more information on the types of safaris we offer.