Hundreds of chimpanzees inhabit the trees of the Kibale Forest National Park in the west of Central African Uganda. Green Kibale Park is relatively small with less than eight hundred square meters, but it contains the largest number of primates in Africa.
The Kibale National Park is about 6 hours drive away from the capital Kampala, in the western part of the country. The park is located between Lake Albert and Lake Edward, near the famous Queen Elizabeth National Park.
In the Park, you will find a variety of primates including; black and white colobus monkeys, red-tailed monkeys and olive baboons. But the biggest reason to visit Kibale National Park is the chimpanzees.
Visit the chimpanzee
With a group of five people, you walk behind the guide. The sun is just up in the Kibale National Park. Thick dew drops on the green leaves form glittering diamonds. The fresh smell of rainforest penetrates your nostrils.
The screams of these animals can be heard everywhere, but they cannot be seen. Chimpanzees are diurnal and are especially active in the morning. The humanoid chimps often climb into the trees, where they find fruit, leaves, and nuts. They also sleep at high altitudes, on a bed of leaves and branches.
The guide points to the top. You can see something bruins move very far away. Is it a chimpanzee? You cannot see it. The jungle tour continues. Suddenly the guide puts his index finger on his lips. Without talking you walk on your toes towards a group of bushes. There you see them: two female chimpanzees.
The females are busy pleasing each other and do not care about the curious people. One female has a baby on her back. After a while, they climb a tree without difficulty and disappear from sight.
Rain in the Park
On the way back through Kibale National Park, it starts to rain hard. You quickly pull on your raincoat if you suddenly see a hornbill sitting in the tree. This bird resembles the famous toucan bird with its large colored beak.
Dripping from the tropical downpour you arrive at the tent camp of Kanyanchu. You put on dry clothes and then you are already waiting for another trek.
Six kilometers from Kanyanchu, outside the Kibale National Park, is the Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary. This project was started in 1992 to protect the nearby Magombe marsh. The project also works on the development of the local population by setting up schools and clinics.
From the guide, you get rubber boots and binoculars. Then the walk can begin. Two hundred bird species and eight different species of monkeys live in the swamp area.
Large parts of the hiking trails are made of wooden planks. In this way, the Bigodi Wetland is also accessible when it is under water.
There are palm trees and fig trees all around you. Butterflies fluttering in pairs past you. In one of the trees, you can see a big blue
Turaco bird sitting
A bit further away is a baboon family in the middle of the wooden path. You can only continue if all baboons are on the side. It is clear who is in charge here in the humid jungle.