Bird watching in Kasanka National park – Kasanka is a home to over 300 bird species some of the notable species include Bohm’s bee-eater, wattled crane, pels fishing owl, African crowned eagle, ross’s turaco, African broadbill, African blue quail, African pitta, fuelleborn’s longclaw and African finfoot.
This peaceful sanctuary, situated on the south western edge of the Lake Bangweulu basin, is one of Zambia’s smallest national parks. It’s 450 km2 however, are so well endowed with rivers, lakes, wetlands, forests, lagoons, meadows and dambos that it supports a uniquely wide range of animals and abundant birds and fish.
Do not expect to see large herds of animals round every corner, but it is surely one of the most picturesque parks in Zambia with superb birdlife.
About ten years ago Kasanka was in danger of becoming yet another defunct national park due to rampant poaching. David Lloyd, a British expatriate, who had lived in Zambia for many years, visited the Park in 1985 and heard the crack of gunshots. He concluded that if there was still poaching there must still be animals there and set out to save the Park from total depletion. He teamed up with a local farmer, sought funding and along with much of their own resources applied for official permission to rehabilitate the Park. They built tourist camps, roads and bridges and set up the Kasanka Trust to raise funds for this community based project. Slowly it began to earn a little money from tourists to help cover costs. Three years later the National Parks and Wildlife Services Department were sufficiently impressed to sign a 10 year agreement with the Trust allowing full management of the Park in conjunction with National Parks & Wildlife Services and to develop it for tourism in partnership with the local community.