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What are the chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Mgahinga gorilla park

What are the chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Mgahinga gorilla park? park is small and only one family has been so far habituated there

What are the chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Mgahinga gorilla park

What are the chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Mgahinga gorilla park:  The 33.9sq.km piece of land is found in the southwestern part of Uganda in Kisoro district near the borders of Rwanda and DR Congo. Mgahinga national park was gazetted in 1991 by the Ugandan government to protect mountain gorillas that were slowly getting to extinction at that time.

What are the chances of seeing mountain gorillas in Mgahinga gorilla park

The Batwa were evicted from the forest to settle in areas nearby and the park was gazetted so that habituation activities could start. In 1991 Nyakagezi mountain gorilla family started its habituated prices and in 1993 it was opened officially for trekking. Since Mgahinga national park is small and mountain gorillas are not so many, only one family has been so far habituated there.

Nyakagezi mountain gorilla family comprises 10 members and the number will keep on increasing because of the new births by the mature female. Members of Nyakagezi gorilla family move to different areas of the park every day but there are specific points where they concentrate because of plenty of food around there. The armed ranger guides know about these places and while taking you around the jungle they will always pass by those areas.

The chances of seeing mountain gorillas are 95% according to Uganda Wildlife Authority which controls and manages the park.  Mgahinga national park is the smallest national park in the country covering 33.9 sq. km. The national park is home to over 100 mountain gorilla species living in different areas of the park. It’s believed that the park is of a good size and tourists will be able to meet the mountain gorillas wherever they are.

There are trekking trails within Mgahinga national park and these are what tourists use when searching for mountain gorillas. The fact that these trekking trails connect animals to different areas of the park means that eventually, one will be able to meet a mountain gorilla family. Ranger guides usually use footprints and leftover food when tracing the mountain gorillas.

Mgahinga national park has enough armed ranger guides trained by Uganda wildlife Authority and these are deployed around the park. The rangers are ever in the forest monitoring mountain gorillas, their health, and new births among others. By the time trekkers head into the jungle, there are trackers who see the mountain gorillas very early in the morning. The trackers communicate with the ranges where the mountain gorillas are and the shortest routes to use.

With armed ranger guides entering the jungle knowing the direction of the park where the mountain gorillas are, it’s always a sure deal locating the apes. They will use the routes to the directions where they were last seen and if they find that they have moved already they will search for footprints as well as leftover foods to locate where the mountain gorillas are.

How much does a gorilla permit to see mountain gorillas of Mgahinga national park cost?

For any traveler to encounter mountain gorillas in Mgahinga national park they need a gorilla trekking permit. A gorilla trekking permit comes at a fee that is used for the conservation of these endangered mountain gorillas. Each of the gorilla trekking permits in Mgahinga national park costs $700 for foreign non-residents, $600 for foreign residents, and UGX250,000 citizens of East African member states.

How to acquire gorilla permits for Mgahinga national park

Gorilla permits for Mgahinga national park are issued by Uganda wildlife however the best way to acquire them is using a local tour operator. There are so many local tour operators in Uganda and you need to be very keen on whom you are using. Licensed local tour operators such as Africa Adventure Vacations are licensed by Uganda Tourism Board to carry out tourism activities.

To book with a local tour company, you need the dates of the year and the month they would love to trek mountain gorillas. These are used to check for the availability of permits at the Uganda Wildlife Authority. When permits are available you are asked for your personal details and the money for the gorilla permit to be booked. Gorilla permit booking for Mgahinga national park is normally done 3 to 4 months or more in advance because a few permits are available.

When best can one go gorilla trekking in Mgahinga national park?

Tourists that want to have the best of gorilla trekking can visit Mgahinga national park during the dry season and which is from June to September and December to February. This is the best period to visit Mgahinga because the park is receiving little or no rainfall which keeps the trekking trails dry and easier to navigate, vegetation is short with good views of wildlife, and roads leading to the park are in a good state.

Tourists especially those who love discounts can visit Mgahinga national park during the rainy season to enjoy discounts on the lodes and tour packages. The rainy season however is characterized by too much rainfall and this makes the trekking trails are dry and slippery, roads are slippery as well as and the vegetation is tall with unclear views of wildlife.

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