During the rainy season, the seasonal wildlife visitors scatter over a 12,500 sq miles range until they exhaust the green plains and the river calls once more. The swamps, tinged green year round, are the focus for over 550 bird varieties, the most breeding species in one habitat anywhere in the world. On drier ground the Kori bustard, the heaviest flying bird; the stocking-thighed ostrich, the world’s largest bird; and small parties of ground hornbills blustering like turkeys.

More ardent bird-lovers might keep an eye open for screeching flocks of the dazzlingly colorful yellow-collared lovebird, and the somewhat drabber rufous-tailed weaver and ashy starling – all endemic to the dry savannah of north-central Tanzania.