Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is located in Uganda and is one of the two sanctuaries for mountain gorillas in Central Africa’s rainforest region. Located in southwestern Uganda, it is part of the larger Bwindi impenetrable forest near the Virunga National Park in DR Congo. Accessible only to trekkers, the Park spans over 330 kilometres. The park is home to hundreds of species of animals, insects, flora and fauna. The park is on the edge of the Albertine Rift where the mountains are the result of tectonic movements.
Bwindi National Park hosts gorilla trekking throughout the year and is famous for its expansive natural landscape of rainforests and mountains. Bwindi National Park is designated as a UNESCO heritage site and it provides habitat to 120 species of mammals, 348 bird species, 1000 flowering plants, 163 species of trees and 104 species of ferns. The designation was provided in the year 1994.
Apart from half of the world’s population of the mountain gorillas, the park is a sanctuary for colobus monkeys, chimpanzees, and many birds such as hornbills and turacos. 14 habituated mountain gorilla groups are open to tourism in four different sectors of Buhoma, Ruhijja, Rushaga and the Nkuringo all under the management of the Uganda Wildlife Authority.
The highest sought-after location to enter Bwindi Park is through the Buhoma gate. The park was named a UNESCO world heritage site because of its ecological importance as one can notice the marvels of the plain and mountain forest connections.
Uganda gorilla tours are very famous with adventure travellers and wildlife tourists who flock to the Bwindi National Park throughout the year. Gorilla trekking is also an important way to contribute to the conservation efforts of this gentle beast. About 400 gorillas live in this Park, which is half of the world’s population of mountain gorillas making it an ideal venue for gorilla trekking tours in Uganda.
Facts about mountain gorillas
- Mountain gorilla is a subspecies of the eastern gorilla and was discovered by scientists in the year 1902. It is also the world’s smallest population.
- Mountain gorillas can grow up to 5 ½ feet when standing on both feet and weigh up to 440 pounds.
- According to the WWF, the endangered mountain gorilla only survives in Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and the Virunga Massif a chain of volcanoes stretching 174 square miles across Rwanda, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
- They live at elevations of 8,000 to 13,000 feet and have a lot of thick furs when compared to other gorilla species. The fur helps them to survive in a habitat where temperatures often drop below freezing.
- The mountain gorillas have endured extreme conditions including ongoing war, conflict, deforestation, a dwindling habitat, human threats including poaching and disease
- Although the mountain gorillas are designated as an endangered species, their population has improved slightly by climbing to more than 1,000 in the entire African region of Uganda, Rwanda and DR Congo.
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