Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda
Bwindi impenetrable national park is the most important national park in Uganda and the world at Large. This is because; the park hosts almost half of remaining mountain Gorillas in the world and the park. The park is situated in south western Uganda – approximately 8 hours drive from Kampala – the capital city of Uganda. It is situated along the Democratic Republic of Congo border next to the Virunga National Park and on the edge of the Albertine Rift. It comprises 331 square kilometres (128 sq mi) of jungle forests and contains both montane and lowland forest and is accessible only on foot. The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site.
Bwindi Impenetrable national park protects 120 species of mammals, 348 species of birds, 220 species of butterflies, 27 species of frogs, chameleons, geckos and many endangered species. Floristically Bwindi is amongst the most diverse forests in East Africa and Africa at large, with more than 1,000 flowering plant species including 163 species of trees and 104 species of ferns.
The park protects more than ten Groups of mountain Gorillas found in the four tracking trails like Buhoma Gorilla tracking area, Nkuringo Gorilla trekking trail, Rushaga Gorilla trekking section and Ruhija Mountain Gorilla tracking trail.
Gorilla groups in Buhoma tracking section include:
Bubare Gorilla family or M- Group- was among the first habituated group in Bwindi impenetrable National park in 1991.
Habinyanja gorilla group – was habituated in 1997 and started receiving visitors in 1999.
Rushegura Group – was formed after the power struggle in habinyanja group leading to separation into two groups.
Gorilla families in ruhija tracking trail include:
Bitukura group – it is among the newest gorilla group in Bwindi impenetrable National Park.
Oruzogo group – Family size: 23 members including 1 silverback. The Oruzogo group one of the recent gorilla families opened for visitor access in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
Kyaguriro gorilla group – this group is not visited by tourist yet but reserved for researchers for study purpose.
Gorilla Groups In Rushaga Include:
Nsongi group – the group was named after River Nsongo and was the largest habituated gorilla group which was officially introduced to tourists in September 2009. It was late split to form Mishaya gorilla group.
Mishaya Gorilla family – it was formed in 2010 after the power struggle in Nsongi Group – the group slit from Mishaya.
Kahungye group – The size of this group is 13 members with 3 silverbacks which are the only ones named. The dominant Silverback is called Rumansi followed by the other two old male gorillas named Rwigi and Ruhamuka. The group was opened for visitors and gorilla tracking in 2011 but in less than a year the group split, creating the new Busingye Gorilla Family.
Bushingye group – Busingye Gorilla Group is another splitter gorilla family having broken away from Kahungye Family back in June 2012. It was Silverback Busingye who decided to split and create his own family.
Gorilla Groups In Nkuringo Tracking Centre:
Bweza gorilla group – Bweza Gorilla Family is one of the Nshongi Group that used to be the largest ever habituated in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. However, due to the July 2010 Silverback Mishaya decision to leave the group and start his own family, he left with reasonable number of them including the Silverback Bweza. Towards the end of 2012, Bweza chose to be independent; he walked away with about 6 other members from the Mishaya Gorilla Group.
Nkuringo gorilla family – Nkuringo group was launched in 2004 after the 2 year habituation process.