oa Botswana Notes & Records - The 'Transparent' Linear Dunes of Northwest Ngamiland, Botswana

Volume 36 Number 1
  • ISSN : 0525-5090



Northwestern Ngamiland, lying between the Okavango, the Namibian border and the NE-SW-trending Ngami graben, is a sparsely- occupied, semidesert area. The terrain is generally flat, sloping very gently to the southeast. The Aha Hills, underlain by Neoproterozoic Otavi Group carbonates, straddle the border with Namibia. These Hills are much-modified residuals of Gondwana Surface age. Elsewhere, Kalahari Beds cover almost the entire area, except for some isolated inselbergs, the Tsodilo Hills (Nosib Group quartzites) and the Gwihaba and Koanaka Hills (Otavi Group carbonates). The terrain is blanketed by broadly east-west trending linear dunes. In this area bedrock exposures are largely restricted to localities where the generally dry, fossil stream courses (mekgacha) have cut through the surface cover.

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