Location: South Luangwa National Park

General Information

Quarter degree square: 1231B3, 1231D, 1331A, 1331B, 1331C1

Country: Zambia

Habitat: Much alluvial floodplain, miombo on the sandy soils, mopane woodland on the river terraces, and a mosaic of riverine vegetation types on the floodplain.

Altitude range: 500-1550 m

Annual rainfall: 750-950 mm

Location (short): situated in the Mpika, Serenje

Location (detailed): National Park No I, gazetted 1972, area 9050 sq km, situated in the Mpika, Serenje, Chipata and Petauke Districts. The second largest and probably the most famous of Zambia's national parks. It encompasses a portion of the mid-Luangwa Valley and a 250km section of the Luangwa River. It lies mainly on the west bank of the river and stretches to the lower foothills of the Muchinga Escarpment. Most of the area lies between 500-900m, but the central part of the park's western boundary follows the lip of the escarpment where several areas reach 1000m and the highest is 1550m. The climate is hot and the rainfall relatively low. It is separated from North Luangwa NP by a corridor 30- 40km wide, the Munyamadzi Corridor.


The active, meandering river has created many oxbow lakes and when the water level is low, sand cliffs and sand bars are a prominent feature of the main channel. Bordering the river is a mosaic of riparian habitats including levee thickets and areas of fIoodplain. There are also groves of woodland on alluvial soil characterised by trees such as Diospyros mespiliformis, Acacia albida, Trichilia emetica, Kigelia africana and Khaya (nyasica) anthotheca. Further from the river are large areas of drier thicket, scrub and woodland. Baobabs Adansonia digitata are numerous and there is some munga, but mopane is dominant and in the north it forms a wide belt, covering almost half the park's width. Beyond this, the land begins to rise gently and various miombo formations cover the majority of the remaining area, becoming richer at higher altitudes. Similarly, the riparian forest that lines many small streams verges on being mushitu in some of the higher gorges on the escarpment. Scattered grasslands are more common in the north, the largest being the Chifungwe Plain.

Useful links

View a list of records for South Luangwa National Park

View a list of unique taxa (excluding cultivated plants) for South Luangwa National Park

View a list of unique taxa (all taxa whether cultivated or not) for South Luangwa National Park

View map showing records

View a list of recorders who have visited this location

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave 2007-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Mozambique: Location details: South Luangwa National Park .
https://www.mozambiqueflora.com/speciesdata/location-display.php?location_id=90, retrieved 18 July 2024

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