Queen’s Pavilion in Elizabeth National Park

18

Apr
2019

Frequently asked questions about gorilla tourism and Uganda

Posted By : superbeo/ 82

Is Uganda safe?

Yes, Uganda is safe to visit anytime of the year. Between 1979-1988, the country suffered series of guerilla wars that crippled its economy and slowed its social and political progress. Hundreds were killed and thousands left homeless for close to 10 years. Having learn’t alot the hard way, the country is now united and determined to ensure they don’t go back to zero. To this effect, the country’s army and police force have created effective structures and systems that ensure the protection of both citizens and tourists. One such is the tourism police, an arm of the counter-terrorism department that goes above and beyond to ensure the country is not under threat.

The Uganda Equator

One of the things that make Uganda one in a million is its strategic location at a latitude of 1° 22′ 14.63” N and longitude of ‎32° 18′ 11.67” E. In between there is an Equator line which bisects the country into two zones, at.  Simply put, it is one of the only 11 countries in the world where you can experience how life on the Northern hemisphere compares to the Southern hemisphere. If you visit lakes and rivers in its Northern section, you will be wowed with how forces of nature influence currents to move clockwise. On the other hand, the ones in the Central/Southern zone rotate counter-clockwise direction. There are four vantage points from which you can experience this charm, Mountain Rwenzori, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Masaka-a district in central Uganda and an Island in found in the Entebbe wing of Lake Victoria, Africa’s biggest freshwater lake. If you wish to visit any of these destinations or have any further inquiries, Gazelle Safari Company is just an email away.

KwitaIzina

Kwita Izina is an international gorilla naming ceremony that Rwanda hosts annually in an effort to facilitate the conservation and protection of its critically endangered gorillas and their habitat like Volcanoes National Park. Established in 2005, the vibrant social event attracts over 10,000 nature lovers and A-list celebrities from different corners of the earth such as Presidents, Actors and Musicians. It is organised by the Government of Rwanda, through the Rwanda Development Board, and in collaboration with various conservation partners and local communities. Attendance of the event is open to the public and free of charge.

What do Mountain gorillas eat?

Gorillas are 100% omnivorous animals with a preference for stems, bamboo shoots and wild fruits like berries. Unlike their close cousins, Western lowland gorillas, mountain gorillas don’t have a big appetite for termites and ants.

How long do gorillas live?

The average life expectancy of mountain gorillas is 35-40 years, but is common for individuals to live up to 60 years.

How big are gorillas?

While adult male gorillas weigh an average of 440 pounds and can reach a height of six feet when standing on two legs. Females have an average of 200 pounds and are slightly shorter than males. This heavy weight isn’t a surprise considering that males can eat up to 34 kilograms (75 lb) of vegetation a day, and females 18 kilograms (40 lb). This makes them 4-9 times stronger than the average man. For instance, while a male gorilla can lift up to 800 kg (roughly 1750 lbs) of deadweight, man can only lift a maximum of 350 kg.

Characteristics of mountain gorillas

Despite having the ability to suck life out of anything that crosses their path, gorillas are peace loving primates that only put up a fight when they feel threatened. They are gentle, calm and full of good intentions. This explains why over 10,000 nature lovers from different corners of the earth travel to Africa to trek gorillas.

Why are gorillas going extinct?

The habitats of mountain gorillas are surrounded by over populated communities, most of which are impoverished. In a desperate attempt to survive, they encroach on parks in quest for land where they can grow food crops for sale and to feed their families. This encroachment on park land reduces the abundance of food for wildlife, forcing gorillas to depend on the community farms by eating off available produce. In turn, this leads to inter human-wildlife conflicts which leave the gorillas vulnerable.

Why do Silverback gorillas fight?

Gorillas live in a very harsh environment where only the strongest survive.To be exact, an environment where rival gorilla groups and solitary gorillas are fond of making surprise attacks. That aside, most females are more comfortable living in groups where they and their babies feel more secure. Under these circumstances, Silverback gorillas are inclined fight whoever threatens to overthrow them or destroy their family.

How to save Mountain gorillas?

One of the most effective ways of saving gorillas from extinction is by visiting them/going gorilla trekking. Financial proceeds from this venture is used by the part authorities to pay ranger guides for the 24/7 protection of habitats of the gorillas. By the same token, 20-25% of the amount you pay for gorilla tracking is used to fund the creation of alternative sources of income. This reduces their dependency on the parks through vices like poaching.