Mago National Park
Mago National Park is located in the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples Region about 782 kilometers south of Addis Ababa and north of a large 90° bend in the Omo River. The landscape consists of riverine forest, wetlands along the lower Mago river and around Lake Dipa. Also there are mountainous areas with great views over the bush savanna.
The 2162 square kilometers park lies on the eastern sides of a small branch of the eastern Rift Valley (Omo depression), bordering Omo National Park divided by the Mago River, a tributary of the Omo. To the west is the Tama Wildlife Reserve, with the Tama river defining the boundary between the two.
Mago National Park is the newest park of all the national parks in Ethiopia. It was established in 1979. It is located in the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ Region (SNNP) on the east bank of the Omo River.
Wildlife in Mago National Park
The wildlife including most of the typical east African fauna and offers one of the wildest and most outstanding wildlife panoramas in Ethiopia. Mago National Park is considered an important habitat for animal populations particularly Buffalo, Giraffe, Elephant (approx. 150), warthog, tiang, lewel’s hartebeests, lesser-kudu, greater-kudu, duiker, Burchell’s Zebra, Swayne’s Hartbeest, Oryx, grant’s gazelle, gerenuk, giraffe, cheetah, wild dog, lions, leopards, guereza, common baboon and vervet monkey are common & conspicuous.
In Mago N.P. 237 bird species have been recorded. Of these six are endemics namely Banded Barbet, White-Winged Cliff Chat, White-Tailed Starling, Thick-Billed Raven and Wattled Ibis. grass plains. The riverine forest along the Omo River is important for several different bird groups, including herons and egrets, kingfishers, barbets, chats and thrushes, woodpeckers, pigeons, shrikes, warblers and flycatchers.
Also there are guinea fowl, bee eater and lots of different species of eagles. One of the major attractions of thepark is the Hot Springs and areas along the lower Omo (within the park) are populated with a rich diversity of ethnic groups, including the Aari, Male, Banna, Bongoso, Hamar, Kwegu, Karo and Mursi peoples. Mago National Park is on the route from Arba Minch via Jinka to Lower Omo valley and it is a fascinating experience because of its isolated location and very few visitors and it gives a real feeling of how most of Africa was 50 years ago.
The bushbuck is the most widespread antelope in Sub-Saharan Africa and it is a common sight in Mago National Park. Also Northern Carmine Bee Eaters are common in the Park as is the Kori bustard – one of the heaviest flying birds in the world.