Best places for birding in Uganda
Uganda is a mind-blowing bird watching hub with flourishing avi-tourism as the country is hosts approximately 50% of the African continent’s bird count and 11% of the world’s bird species. Uganda is home to several bird species that live in various habitats ranging from forest, savanna, water, air, swamps and wetlands. The country rewards birders with lots of rare bird species such as the prehistoric Shoebill, the Red-faced Barbet as well as the common ostrich which with the world’s living bird. Birding in Uganda can start pretty soon as you get off the plane with several sightings even on a short drive, however, there are top spots that can reward birders with great bird watching opportunities.
The famous and rewarding places for birding in Uganda include both national parks and other places. Uganda safari parks include; Queen Elizabeth National Park, Murchison Falls National Park, Lake Mburo National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Kibale Forest National Park, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, Mount Elgon National Park, Semuliki National Park and Kidepo Valley National Park.
Other reserves and places for best bird watching in Uganda include; Semuliki wildlife reserve, the Pian-Upe wildlife reserve, the Bokora wildlife reserve, Matheniko reserve. The best forests for Uganda birding safaris include mabira forest, Mpanga forest, and Budongo forest whereas Lutembe and mabamba ramsar sites are great wetlands for birding.
All of these birding spots can be tailored in different forms of trips but most especially long birding safaris in Uganda. For short excursions or day trips, a visit to Entebbe Botanical gardens, Mabira forest, Lutembe bay offer a great birding excursion checklist with over 20 bird species in a single excursion.
Lutembe bay on the shores of Lake Victoria is a ramsar site of interest because it’s a special stopover for European migratory birds which include terns (White-winged and Caspian), spotted flycatchers and the Grey-headed gulls. They are present here from October till March as they keep away from winter. Other bird species that can be sighted here include the Termnicks stint and Hottentot teals.
Some of the bird species seen while birding in Uganda
Uganda has over 1,070 confirmed bird species in her boundaries and some of the birds seen on Uganda birding tours include; Marabou storks, Long Crested Eagle, Black Bee-Eater, African Spoonbill, Knob-billed duck Yellow-billed Oxpecker, Chocolate Backed Kingfisher, Saddle-billed Stork, Green-Breasted Pitta, Helmeted guineafowl, Vulturine guineafowl, Standard-Winged Nightjar, Karamoja Apalis, Black Breasted Barbet, Rock pigeon, Bruce’s green-pigeon, African green-pigeon, Bar-tailed Trogon, White-backed duck, stone partridge, Nahan’s Francolin, and many more.
Uganda prides itself as a destination with an endemic known as the Fox’s Weaver, only seen in the country within the Eastern sub-region.
Popular and Recommendable bird watching in Uganda itineraries – Birding in Uganda
For avid birders or seasoned bird watchers, here are the best bird watching in Uganda itineraries to choose from;
- 16 Days bird watching safari in Uganda
- 3 Days Murchison Falls Safari Uganda Tour
- 3 Days Gorilla Safari Uganda Bwindi Impenetrable Park Tour
- 3 Day Queen Elizabeth National Park Safari
- 4 Days Kidepo Valley National Park Uganda Safari
- 3 Day Jinja City Tour Uganda Safari
- 8 Days Uganda Wildlife Safaris Tour
- 9 Day Uganda Wildlife Safari Tour
- 12 Day Jungle Uganda Safari
- 14 Day Uganda Safari Eco-explorer
- 15 Days Uganda Wildlife Safari Kigali City Rwanda Tour
- 18 Day Best of Uganda Safari