202 images Created 11 Jul 2014
The name Kalahari is derived from the Tswana word 'Kgala' meaning "the great thirst" - it is a vast area covered by red sand without any permanent surface water. Some know it as the Kalahari Desert, but it is not actually a desert as it does receive a small amount of rainfall each year. It is a semi-desert with large tracts of land that are excellent for grazing. Numerous pans exist within the Kalahari including the Makgadikgadi Pan which is a large salt pan that becomes filled with water during the rains causing wildlife to gather during this time. The Kalahari is home to large predators such as the famed Kalahari lions, cheetahs, leopards, spotted and brown hyenas. Other animals include wildebeest, springbok and other antelopes. The San people (San Bushmen) have lived in the Kalahari for over 20,000 years as hunter-gatherers. They still hunt game with bows and poison arrows and gather edible plants such as berries, melons, tubers, nuts and even insects. The San get most of their water from plant roots and desert melons found on or under the desert floor. They live in huts made from local materials such as branches, long grass and thatch. The San people are the ultimate conservationists in that they never stay in one place long enough to deplete the resources. They live in harmony with the land and animals and honor them both with their daily life.