Tours & Travel

PICTORIAL: Govt Chief Whip Tayebwa tracks Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

Government Chief Whip Thomas Tayebwa during an encounter with Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (PHOTO /Courtesy)

KAMPALA — Government Chief Whip, Thomas Tayebwa on Sunday tracked the majestic Mountain Gorillas of Bwindi ‘Impenetrable’ Forest, in Rushaga, southwest of Uganda.

Tayebwa who was in company of his wife Anita Rukundo and Mr. Dickson Kateshumbwa the Sheema North Member of Parliament said local tourism is the way to go.

Tayebwa tracked Gorillas in company of his wife Anita Rukundo

“What a fulfilling experience tracking gorillas today morning at Rushaga, Bwindi,” Tayebwa wrote on Twitter.

He added: “Me and my wife Rukundo Anita will make this part of our annual itinerary. Local tourism is the way to go”.

On his part, Kateshumbwa wrote:
“Great encounter with our closest cousins in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. One cannot describe the feeling until you experience it”.

Dominant Silverback

Mountain gorillas can only be found in Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). These giant apes live in isolated areas of the Virunga massif and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

Because of their sheer size, endangered status and the thrill of finding them, gorilla trekking is an incredible experience – an experience that one remembers for the rest of their life.

Destination Uganda, also dubbed the ‘’Primate Capital’’ is home to 53.9% of the World’s remaining mountain gorilla population that resides alongside human nature in the dense vegetation of Uganda’s tropical rainforest at Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park – a UNESCO World Heritage site.

According to the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) 2018 Gorilla census, numbers were 1,004 individuals with two populations although there has been a baby boom recently with over 15 new born babies born since January 2019 according to the Uganda Wildlife Service (UWS) and five new baby gorilla births registered by Uganda Wildlife Authority in 2020, not forgetting the demise of arch Gorillas such as Mizano and Rafiki silverback gorillas.

Tracking Gorillas is not only a must do because of its distinctiveness, the tracking activity takes place in five Uganda’s most pristine, scenic and beautiful mountain range spots in the World as these comprise; Ruhija, Nkuringo, Buhoma, Rushaga, and Ntebeko in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park.

In the wake of COVID-19, the Uganda Wildlife Authority recently implemented tight Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as launched in June 2020 by the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities led by then former Minister of Tourism Col (Rtd) Tom Butiime while he unveiled SOPs for the hospitality sector and Tourism facilities in Uganda, therefore; Wearing a mask, sanitizing, maintaining a distance of upto 7 metres while tracking, limited numbers of upto 8 people per hour and maintaining silence is essential during the gorilla tracking activity.

Note that a Camera flash light may lead to charge of the gorillas so tourists are encouraged to switch them off while tracking.

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