The second largest river in the world, after the Amazon, is the Congo River in Africa, with depths of up to 250 meters in some sections, This comes close Lago Tanganica and crosses twice Ecuador and tern¡mine flows into the Atlantic Ocean.
The Congo River (also known as Zaire) It is the largest river in Central Africa, It has a length 4.380 km, making it the second longest in Africa (after Nile) and the eighth worldwide, its basin covers an area of 3.700.000 km², It is representing more than one-tenth of Africa's surface and includes the territories of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Republic of Congo, and a large part of the Central African Republic and some part of the territory of Zambia, Angola, Tanzania, Cameroon and Gabon. The river and its tributaries run through the second largest rainforest in the world, after the Amazon. The Congo is also the second largest river in the world after the Amazon, with 41.300 cubic meters per second, approximately.
It has its birth in the Democratic Republic of Congo, which it gives its name as well as the neighboring Republic of Congo (Brazzaville). In this high course, in which called the Lualaba River, follows a steady path towards the north, to reach the falls Boyoma, at the height of the city of Kisangani, moment that turns west, forming a wide curve.
The Boyoma Falls, formerly known as Stanley Falls are a group of seven waterfalls which extend for over a hundred kilometers on the Lualaba River, cerca de Kisangani (before Stanleyville) in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The total drop is 61 meters. In the lower part of the falls, the Lualaba becomes the Congo River. A railway line crosses the divide which causes cataracts and prevents inland waterways, linking the cities of Kisangani and Ubundu.
Congo twice through Ecuador and is easily navigable sections of large distance, in particular between Kisangani and Lake Malebo, in which during 1.685 km river is wide and deep. This lake is a widening of the river, are the capital Kinshasa and Brazzaville. A little west of Kinshasa current narrows and falls cataract chain created by a series of deep canyons, known as «Livingstone falls», where it flows violently, Congo only calm to Matadi (a 116 from the Atlantic Ocean) y Boma (to some 70 km in a straight line). Eventually flows into a narrow floodplain through an estuary (one channel) which has almost 5 km wide near the small town of Muanda.
Although Livingstone Falls prevent access to the inland area of Congo from the sea, There is a railway bridges the gap. Much of the trade of Central Africa passes through this railway, carrying goods from the port of Boma to the navigable part of the Congo.
Before the Portuguese colonization of the area, the natives called it the river, Credentials Nzadi, which in the language of the ethnic group I Bakongo, meant «the river that swallows the other rivers». El Portuguese explorer Diogo Cão, which it was the first European who crossed its mouth, He called Zaire river, by deformation of the name given by Indians. This name persisted until the eighteenth century, it started to be named as Congo River, by ethnicity or bankongo Congo, which dominated almost the entire river basin.
Between 1971 Y 1997, the government of Zaire, name that had the DRC during the dictatorship of Mobutu Sese Seko, I wanted to change the name of the Congo river to river Zaire, but that change was ignored by many countries, among which include the neighboring Republic of Congo.
The mouth of the Congo was known to Europeans since the Portuguese Diogo Cão reached its waters 1484. In the nineteenth century nobody could imagine that the Lualaba, advancing relentlessly toward the north and the Congo river that runs to the south-western part flows into the Atlantic, after passing through the half of the continent, were the same river, it was thought that the first could be part of the mainstream of the Nile, This thesis was defended among others by explorer David Livingstone, that crossed the Lualaba on his expedition 1866, while the second was mistaken for the mouth of the Niger River by the explorer and naturalist Mungo Park that between the late eighteenth and early nineteenth, He toured the Niger River.
European exploration continued with the British attempt to James Kingston Tuckey in 1816, He tried to go up the Congo River from its mouth, making progress 480 km in the river but failed to overcome the Livingstone Falls that slowed their progress. Until 1877 no exploration of the river would be completed, when Henry Morton Stanley ran him completely, starting from Lualuba up to Boma, on the Atlantic coast.
During the colonial era big steamers were transported piece by piece on the shoulders of porters from the coast to the inland of the Congo to save the fearsome Livingstone Falls.
The first boat propulsion steam Congo was carried by the issuance of Stanley 1878. Stanleyt explore this vast territory of Central Africa on behalf of rey Leopold II, King of Belgium. He 24 November 1878 the king, which actually it was the personal owner of the Congo, since these territories had bought with his personal fortune (the article does not say who) roganizar decided a voyage of discovery through the area of rio Congo, started from the west coast. It was an end and estavblecimientos establish colonies along the journey. Zaire or Congo River is navigable for ocean-going vessel to Matadi, but thereafter it is not possible due to rapid, you see in the picture above these rapids abajo.Rio, the vast domestic territory of the Congo is best reached by river in the Grand River Congo.
The Congo River originates in the mountains of the Great Rift Valley, in East Africa, like lakes Tanganyika and Moero, that feed the river Lualaba, which it becomes the Congo below the falls Boyoma. The Chambeshi River, in Zambia, It is generally regarded as the source of the Congo, according to the common criterion of the most remote source of the mouth, such as Nile.
The Congo flows generally, west from Kisangani, just below the falls, then gradually turns south-west, passing by Mbandaka, joining with the Ubangi River, and hurtling at Lake Malebo (Pool Malebo, antes Stanley Pool ). Kinshasa (formerly Leopoldville) and Brazzaville are on opposite sides of the river at Lake Malebo, where Congo contracts and descends through a series of waterfalls created by deep canyons and collectively known as cataracts Livingstone. Then, runs towards Matadi and Boma, and then flows into the Atlantic Ocean in the small town of Muanda.
Tradicionalemtne, Congo has been divided into the following sections:
Headboard: the Lualaba River — source Kisangani, where cataracts end Boyota: considered the upper course, with 1.800 km. The river is often narrow, tortuous and cut by waterfalls or rapids because of the mountains and plateaus that crosses, always runs north.
midcourse: It includes the Upper Congo and the Middle Congo. In this tour 1.700 km around, the river turns west forming a great bend and crosses the vast central plains of the country. The course is slow and is dotted with islands and sandbanks. Its width can reach 25 a 30 km, en prescribed, forming a network, along with its tributaries about 13.000 km of waterways.
high Congo, which runs from Kisangani to Mbandaka.
Middle Congo, desde Mbandaka a Brazzaville/Kinshasa.
lower course or Low Congo, from Brazzaville / Kinshasa to the mouth. It is divided into two parts:
Kinshasa Matadi (350 km), The river flows through the Montes de Bangu, also it called Crystal Mountains and has 32 waterfalls that make navigation impossible.
Ocean Matadi (137 km), calm river boats can be traced sea. Between Boma and Banana, et low marshy islands divide the river into multiple arms.
In the Congo river Several of the rarest species in the world here you have some.
Goliath Tiger Fish
Habita,in the open waters of Central Africa, primarily in the river Congo, which is where larger parts are given, We also find, Sanyati in the Zambeze and rivers which are tributaries of Lake Kariba, on the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Catfish of the Congo
Electric catfish, electric catfish belong to the family, several species of freshwater fish pez cat with the ability to produce more than electrocution 350 V, using an electric organ electroplaques. Their electric organs consist of a membrane of nerve endings that extend over the entire back.. These fish are found in various parts of Africa, usually nocturnal and other fish primarily aliemntan, incapacitating their prey with electric discharge. They can reach 9 dm de long. Y 18 kg. This family have no dorsal fin or end. It is known from several millennia ago in ancient Egypt.
these fish, like the American group Gymnotiformes, electric organ have a low intensity discharge (AGE), which serves to communicate, identify objects, fish and other creatures that are in the water, which it is especially useful in the muddy water and reduced visibility they inhabit, adapting well to the great depths of the Congo River. It also allows them to function very effectively at night, total absence of light.
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