The 776 sq-km Kibale Forest NP is full of lakes, marshes and grasslands and offers both swamp and forest walks. It’s Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary claims 335 bird species. The forest is habitat to the rare giant forest hog and forest elephant. The forested slopes of lowland tropical rainforest, deciduous forest and mountain forests are perfect for the world’s highest concentration of primates …
Our drive to the 488,000-acre Queen Elizabeth National Park will pass through Ishasha region, with its unusual tree-climbing lions. In shadow of Rwenzori Mtns, this park forms a saddle between the northeast shores of Lake Edward (the larger lake) and southwest shores of Lake George (the smaller lake). Its ecosystems include open savanna, rainforest, papyrus swamps, and crater lakes full of pink-backed flamingos.
Today I arrive at Bwindi Impenetrable National Forest in the southwest corner of Uganda for a couple days. This World Heritage Site is a dense rainforest still intact from the last ice age. On these Albertine Rift Valley ridges there are many gorges, streams and waterfalls, habitat to 90 mammal species, 100 fern species and 23 endemic forest bird species, including more than half of the world’s remaining population of mountain gorillas.
For the next 15 days NWNL will be investigating conservation and stewardship in the vulnerable White Nile River Basin. This month’s devastating mudslides in Uganda’s White Nile headwaters are said to be due to uncontrolled deforestation and settlement. The human impacts of these disasters range from no access to water, to water-related diseases, and conflicts over natural resource usage.
This morning I will begin NWNL’s focus on the impacts of disease, human settlement and infrastructure here at the source of the Nile. Watershed issues NWNL is studying here include: The headwaters face deforestation, dams and increasing settlement; pollution and invasive species threaten the livelihoods of 30 million lakeshore inhabitants; and increases in floods and droughts are greatly impacting this watershed.