October 6 2023

5 Fish to Catch at Ichingo Chobe River Lodge

If you are looking for the ultimate safari fishing experience on the Chobe River, then Ichingo Chobe River Lodge is the place for you! Here are 5 fish species to catch during your stay at Ichingo!

Words by Gero Lilleike

Visitors to this wild and beautiful place will not only be spoilt with abundant wildlife sightings but those seeking fishing thrills will be challenged to catch a variety of fish. Fishing conditions on the Chobe River vary greatly throughout the year but every season offers its own unique fishing opportunities.

More so, your stay at Ichingo is all-inclusive which means that all your food and drinks are included and importantly, you get your own dedicated river guide and boat to explore the Chobe River to your heart’s content! Conventional fishing tackle is available at Ichingo but fly fisherman are advised to bring their own fly gear. Anglers of all ages and experience levels are welcome!

People from all over the world come to the Chobe region to hunt Tigerfish but there are other fish species that are worthwhile targeting too.

Take a look at 5 key fish to catch during your stay at Ichingo Chobe River Lodge. Note that Ichingo operates on a strict catch-and-release policy.

What fish can you catch at Ichingo?


The ferocious Tigerfish, or “striped water dog” as it’s commonly named, has a reputation for putting up a formidable fight and it’s one of the reasons why anglers travel far and wide to hunt this sharp-toothed predatory fish. Tigerfish can be caught throughout the year with prime-time fishing from June to November.

Tigerfish can be targeted using various fishing methods including fly fishing, conventional tackle, trolling and drift-baiting.

The Chobe River, including the Kasai channel, offers top-notch tiger fishing and access by boat provides the necessary flexibility to ensure a high catch rate.

Book your tiger fishing adventure at Ichingo Chobe River Lodge today!

Bream and Tilapia

Numerous Bream and Tilapia are plentiful in the Chobe River and while they are generally similar in appearance, they are differentiated by their diets. Bream species are typically predatory, feeding on small fish, crabs and worms while Tilapia are plant eaters, feeding primarily on algae.

Anglers visiting Ichingo Chobe Rover Lodge have boat access in the Kasai channel which is the ideal habitat for Nembwe or Yellow-belly Bream which can be targeted on fly or conventional tackle.

If you’re lucky, you might even hook into the shy and rarely-seen Pink Happy Bream (pictured above) which also lives in these waters. More so, the three-spotted Tilapia, or “Threespot”, is perhaps the most common Tilapia in the Chobe River and it’s the main food source for people who rely on the river for sustenance.

Catfish (Barbel)

If catching Catfish (barbel) is on your fishing to-do list then make sure you visit Ichingo from August to October when countless barbel engage in feeding frenzies in the Kasai channel thanks to the abundance of bait fish. Catfish can be targeted using conventional tackle or fly fishing.

Barbel are opportunistic feeders with a varied diet that includes, small fish, molluscs, insects, snails, larvae, frogs, animal remains and plant matter. Catfish are prey to Crocodiles which are plentiful in the Chobe River.

Upper Zambezi Yellowfish

The Upper Zambezi Yellowfish is found in the Chobe and Zambezi River ecosystems and typically lives its life in the rapids where it feeds mostly on insects and crustaceans. Its habitat is generally difficult to access by boat and the Upper Zambezi Yellowfish is therefore a difficult fish to catch but remains a sought-after target species for many anglers. Fly fishing is considered to be the most effective fishing method for catching Upper Zambezi Yellowfish.

African Pike

Alongside the Tigerfish, the African Pike is also a predatory fish, albeit smaller. While African Pike is found in the Zambezi and Chobe Rivers, it’s most common in the Congo River further North. The African Pike feeds on small fish and adult specimens typically weigh less than 1 kg and are most active during the day. African Pike can be fished either in the rapids or in shallow, calm waters with vegetation or structures which they use to ambush their prey. African Pike can be caught on fly or conventional tackle.


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