It is common knowledge that every day is primates day in Uganda so they is no reason to miss out on these beauties which are found in the Bwindi impenetrable forest. Below are some of the most awesome primate species you are bound to run into on your trip
Primates all over Africa are on the list of endangered species and Primate conservation in Uganda is proving to be a success story considering the rise in the number of Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi, the “Impenetrable forest”. The mountain Gorillas have grown in number from 380 in 1994 to a whopping 1000 and more animals in June 2018. The mountain gorilla is highly social and live in groups of 6 to 20 with a male silverback as the leader of the group. The groups are not territorial and the silverback defends its group instead of the territory.
The world awaits this exciting experience as it is one of a kind. The Gorilla trekking is the most popular tour activity in Uganda. The experience entails walking in the thick rain forest on a guided walk looking for the primates. On finding the family, you will observe them for an hour, take pictures and then return to the briefing point.
Gorilla trekking is done in two parks in Uganda; Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga national park. Uganda has in total 20 families available to be trekked; 19 in Bwindi and 1 in Mgahinga national park.
These gorillas have been habituated to ensure that they are not violent when you meet them. The habituation exercise lasts for four hours and is done by expert researchers and trained park rangers. The exercise is now available for all tourists who would like to be part.
Chimpanzee tracking is another wildlife adventure that stands out in Uganda. They share 98.7% of the DNA with the human race. This exercise gives you a hand-in-hand walk with the chimpanzees in the wild. You will get to see how they interact as they communicate, solve conflicts and even hold meetings. Uganda has various forests where one finds these primates and a registered number of about 5600 chimpanzees making it the highest population in Africa. Therefore here, one finds the greatest opportunities to see Chimpanzees.
Chimpanzees are very social primates and therefore form groups with as many as 100 individuals called communities. They can be tracked in various parks including: Budongo forest in Murchison falls National Park, Kyambura gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park, Kibale forest National Park, Kalinzu forest and Toro-Semuliki wildlife reserve.
Chimpanzees can also be viewed without tracking. This is in Uganda wildlife education center and Ngamba island.
The golden monkey
Another primate species is the Golden monkey and can be seen in the Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. They are in the Virunga mountain ranges which are shared among the three countries; Uganda, Congo and Rwanda. This part is covered by the Mgahinga national park. They happen to be the most beautiful monkeys with golden fur on their back and face. They live in large social groups called troops and feed on mainly of bamboo, fruits and berries. They can be tracked just as the chimpanzees and they are mostly found nearer to the base of the mountain as they pick bamboo shoots and feed.
Red tailed monkey
This primate like its name suggests is black with a red or orange tail as the coloration increases from the bottom to the top of the tail. They have apouches in their mouths which they use to store food during gathering before they go into hiding to eat in peace. They mainly feed on fruits and insects. You can find them in Kibale Forest, Queen Elizabeth, Semliki and Bwindi impenetrable national parks. They are social primates and the females raise the offspring together.
Despite its name, the blue monkey is not very blue and is actually more grey, has little hair on its face which sometimes gives it a blue appearance. It is also called Cercopithecus miti and is mostly found in East and Central Africa. Usually found on Uganda safaris. It stretches from 50 to 60cm in length excluding the tail whose length is as long as the body alone. Males weigh 8kg and females upto 4kg. They prefer shady, very humid places and co-exist with colobus monkeys and the red tailed monkeys. In Uganda, they can be found in Kibale forest National Park.
Grey cheeked Mangabey
The grey-cheeked mangabey is known to live in swampy areas, primary forests as well as secondary forests.in groups of 5-30 with and a single dominant male or several male without any particular dominant one. You can see them on your visit in Bigodi Swamp, Semliki National Park.
The olive baboon is named for its coat, which, at a distance, is a shade of green-grey. At a closer look, the coat is multi colored due to rings of yellow, brown and black. Males have a longer manfood pouches in their mouths for food gathering.
Ugandan Red Colubus
The Ugandan red colobus has a coat that black face although the babies are born with a black face they have very long dark and light tails which they rely on for balancing while jumping between branches. This works hand in hand with their long feet as they leap long distances. These can be sighted in Kibale National Park, edges of lake victoria. Like all colobus monkey, they have a very reduced thumb size it almost nonexistent which helps them in branch to branch movement. They move in groups ranging from 5-85 but mostly in forties. The males weigh up to 13kilograms and females at 9 kgs.
This species is only foun in Uganda in the Minziro forest reserve over the Border of Tanzania, Mabira forest, Bujuko forest, Bukasa forest and near Kibale to the east of the albertine rift Valley. It feeds on fruits and seeds which explains why they most of their time in Upper canopy.