Birding in Uganda / Birdwatching Uganda; Truly, Uganda is hoven for birders because it ranks more than 1,100 bird species thus making it among the top birdwatching destination in Africa. The total number of species ranks 10% of all the world’s bird species and is home to 24 Albertine rift endemics with the rest found in DR Congo, Rwanda, and Burundi.

In those past years, birds were under protection because of the cultural norms attached like being totems for clans or believed to communicate messages from the gods and seasons.

Currently, Uganda boosts with Central Africa and East Africa making it home to species from both areas. Birding happens both in protected areas and in private areas, the habitats of birds include wetlands, papyrus swamps, forests, savannah, agricultural lands, woodlands, rock ridges, and Afro-pine moorland. Well, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park is one of the greatest birding spots with over 23 of the 24 Albertine endemics found in Uganda, followed by Semuliki National Park.

Murchison Falls National Park is also one of the best birding sites in Africa, hosting over 450 bird species as well as Queen Elizabeth National Park boosts with more than 600 bird species thus worthwhile a birding trip to Uganda.

Some highlight sites for birding in Uganda include; Kidepo Valley National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, Lake Mburo National Park, Mgahinga National Park, Semuliki National Park, Mount Elgon National Park, Rwenzori Mountains National Park and Kibale National Park.  Other birding sites include; the Maramagambo forest, Katonga forest, Mabira forest, Budongo forest, Kalinzu forest, Echuya forest, Pian Upe game reserve, Mabamba Swamp, Nyamuriro swamp, and several agricultural lands.

Bird Watching Sites in Uganda : Albertine Rift Endemics in Uganda;

These are the adrenaline birding area with various notable bird species within including; Semiliki National Park home to only Guinea Congo Biome endemics in central East Africa, Rwenzori Mountains National Park, part of Queen Elizabeth sounds as the second largest in Uganda with a corridor to Kibale Forest, Bwindi bordered with very productive birding forest – Echuya forest reserve and   Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Here are some of Albertine endemic bird species; Red-faced woodland warbler, Neumann’s warbler, Graurer’s swamp warbler, grey yellow-eyed Black Flycatcher, Creepy Strange Weaver, Shelley’s Crimson wing, Dusky crimson wing, Rwenzori Double-collared sunbird, Purple-breasted sunbird, Handsome Francolin Pairs, Black Faced Apalis, Rwenzori Batis, Hornbills, Greenbuls, White-headed and Spot-flanked Barbet, Livingstone’s Turaco, Crested, Black-collared, Orange brown among others.

Bird Watching Sites in Uganda : Birding in wetland habitats in Uganda;

In the papyrus swamp and mashes, Uganda’s inlands also boosts with a globally threatened bird species, and the most sought after can be encountered highly in the Mabamba swamps and Namugabo wetland close the capital and are great habitats for the shoebill on Lake Albert, Lake Bisina, Opeta, Awoa wetland, the Victoria Nile as well as Mash bird species including the widespread and local Lesser Jacana, the charcoal grey Rufous Bellied Heron, Crakes, Moorhens, Ducks, Sandpipers, Shanks, Plovers, Papyrus Canary and Yellow warbler, Stilts, the large and plain dark brown white-winged Warbler, Carruthers’s Cisticola, they are locally shy species. Papyrus Gonolek are difficult to observe and grey-eyed orange weavers are always spotted on the northern shores of Lake Victoria and many other species.

Bird Watching Sites in Uganda
Rufous Bellied Heron

Best time to do a birding tour in Uganda;

Depending on your interest in going on a birding trip to Uganda, you can visit any time of the year there are intra-African migrants which are vertical from southern Africa and early arrival bird species in Uganda tend to start from July through August to September among other numerous cuckoos like the low-level foraging but canopy calling Barren Long-tailed Cuckoo which takes most of the summer in the southern countries of Malawi and Mozambique and globally threatened Blue Swallow, which breed in high altitude grasslands of south Africa, southern Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Malawi many more. Although the best birding time in Uganda starts from the month of April to June and November is best to spot migratory bird species. This is because during the month of April to May, fruits can be plenty in the birding inhabitants.

What essentials to carry on a birding trip to Uganda;

One choosing Uganda as the best birding destination is the greatest decision that should highly impact the experience you will gain and all you need is to get prepared for your birding trip to Uganda. Here are some of the essentials you shouldn’t leave behind along your birding safari including; Right clothing, waterproof shoes -hiking boots, Field guidebooks, Medications, and first aid kit, a Pair of binoculars, and a spotting scope, a water bottle, flashlight, documents like copies of passport, travel insurance policy, flight itinerary, yellow fever vaccination proof among others.

Toiletries items like lotion, toothpaste, tooth brush, hand sanitizer, and hair gels among others.

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