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Cuando River Flowing Across Caprivi Strip, Namibia

17.7S 23.9E

June 8th, 2011 Category: Rivers

Namibia, Angola and Botswana - May 23rd, 2011

The Cuando River (alternatively spelled Kwando), enters this image at the upper left corner. It is a river in south-central Africa, also called the Linyanti River and the Chobe River in its lower section before it flows into the Zambezi River.

As with all rivers in south-central Africa its flow varies enormously between the rainy season when it floods and may be several kilometres wide, and the dry season when it may disappear into marshes.

The Cuando rises in the central plateau of Angola on the slopes of Mount Tembo, then flows southeast along the Zambian border. Along this strech it passes through a maze of channels in a swampy corridor 5-10 km wide, as seen here.

The Cuando continues in its marshy channel across the neck of the Caprivi Strip of Namibia, visible near the image center, and then forms the border between Namibia and Botswana as it continues southeast.

The Cuando meets higher ground and breaks up into many channels and swamps (called the Linyanti Swamp) dotted with alluvial islands, nearly disappearing into the Kalahari sands like the Okavango. But instead, it diverts east and is captured by the Zambezi.

When its flow turns sharply east, still forming the border with Botswana, the Cuando changes names to the Linyanti, then again to the Chobe after flowing through the seasonal Lake Liambesi. Finally, it spills into the Zambezi just above the Kazungula Ferry.

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