Wild Dogs in Savute

Author Dominic Chadbon

Set deep in the wild heart of Botswana’s Chobe National Park, the Savute region has a reputation for anything-can-happen game viewing. And for Taz, a guide at Desert & Delta’s Savute Safari Lodge, this was brought to light one spectacular afternoon this May. And in true Savute-style, the drama unfolded not on a game drive but while Taz was strolling around camp enjoying some winter sunshine. He takes up the story.

“Suddenly I heard some noise by the river front. I rushed there to witness what was happening. To my surprise I found five wild dogs tearing up a live impala in front of room six!”


Botswana is home to a third of Africa’s remaining wild dogs; Savute is one of the best places to see them.

The guests had all gone on a game drive so Taz settled down to watch. The African wild dog is one of the most sought-after sightings on safari and here was a kill playing out in front of him. But such is the speedy efficiency of these hunters that the main feature never lasts too long.

“In a few minutes they had already eaten half of the impala. One moved a few yards from the kill and began to call, and six dogs started to show up in intervals and joined the others for the feast. Unfortunately when the last three dogs arrived, it was only the skeleton and head that remained … but … they enjoyed what was left.”

The dogs feed fast while another watches for lions. Within minutes the impala is almost finished!

The dogs left almost immediately and Taz resumed his walk around camp but the drama was not quite over yet. Hyenas squabbled over the impala remains later that night, and another hyena appeared the following evening, sniffing the ground where the kill had taken place but too late for food. Next time.

To experience Savute for yourself you’ll need to join a mobile camping safari or fly into a lodge. At Savute Safari Lodge you’ll enjoy two game drives a day as well as the chance to sit and watch wildlife at the channel below camp. And as Taz will tell you, sometimes that’s where it happens in Savute.


With its thatched chalets overlooking the permanent waters of the Savute Channel, Savute Safari Lodge has the perfect location.

Hands-on Expertise

  • We’re based in Africa
  • We regularly do site inspections
  • Knowledgeable team
  • Expect great customer service

Accredited & Bonded

  • SATSA – Bonded Membership (2061)
  • Travel Safe Certificate
  • Fully Independent & Owner Run
  • Travel Support from Start to Finish



We are six older but experienced travellers who usually do our own planning. Luck led us to Safari Online and Walter. His ideas proved spot on. Throughout our planning Safari Online have been helpful, always answering emailed questions, no matter how basic, straightaway. We’ve had probably our best ever holiday in years of travel, everything went smoothly. Pickups and transfers were on time. Staff in all the places we stayed were friendly and helpful. I can’t think of one adverse remark except maybe seeing a lion that wasn’t asleep, though I think if it could have been arranged Walter would have done so.

They kept us fully informed and updated throughout planning, travel, etc.

It was excellent all around. Everything worked out well. An experience of a lifetime! The game viewing rides were fun and very informative.

Professional, patient, efficient and responsive. Met all our travel needs and requirements spot on

Communication was excellent – I asked A LOT of questions and did a ton of research myself and Walter was extremely patient with me and very responsive. he was straight forward and extremely professional.  Tour itself was excellent – an incredible experience and one never to be forgotten. Everything was spot on.

Excellent service and support for our Africa vacation

Working with Walter was a great experience. He listened to us and helped us build a vacation that exceeded all of our expectations. We really appreciated his professionalism and attention to detail.

A great tour operator that was a pleasure to deal with.

We used Safari Online to put together a mid-range Botswana trip for a group of four going to three different camps and then onto Vic Falls. We asked several operators to provide options (through this great safari bookings website) and Walter Kohrs from Safari Online was easily the most responsive and quickest to provide different but realistic options and at good prices. In the end it was a no brainer to go with Safari Online. Walter always responded to my queries quickly, with honest and valuable responses that were clear and made sense. From our perspective he tailored a good mix of places for both our budget and standard of facilities that suited us perfectly, with enough information and links to help us make our decisions. In the end each camp was different and had different aspects and strengths that made each unique. We loved it.

Above expectations

Excellent communications and service. We dealt with Sabrina and she is awesome. The safari tour was amazing, i can highly recommend going to Elephant Plains. Its a very special place run by awesome people.

Karina was absolutely instrumental to our safari success.

Our experience with Safari Online was excellent. After becoming very frustrated trying to search for a safari destination on our own, we turned to Karina for help and she was a lifesaver. She responded to our requests promptly and gave us several options with links to each option; we ultimately chose Lukimbi. She then coordinated our flights to and from the property, arranged the drivers necessary to get us from the airport to the lodge and back again, and sent the appropriate paperwork to each of us to verify each step of the process. We had an amazing safari adventure at the lodge–the experience of a lifetime–and are so grateful for her help. We literally couldn’t have done it without her!