Gorilla tours in Uganda are done in two beautiful national parks Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga national park.
Bwindi impenetrable national park is located in southwestern Uganda and is home to half of the remaining mountain gorillas in the world. Bwindi impenetrable national park is divided into four sectors where gorilla tracking can be done while on a Uganda tour.
The Rushaga Sector is one of the most visited sectors and has about 8habituated gorilla families 7 for gorilla trekking safari and 1 gorilla family reserved for gorilla habituation experience.
Brief details of gorilla families in the Rushaga gorilla sector
Bweza: Bweza gorilla family is composed of 12 individuals, 2 silverbacks, 2 female black blacks female adults, and infants and is headed by the dominant silverback kakemono. The group split from the Nshogi family due to many fights, the gorilla group was habituated in 2012 and opened for tourism in 2014.
Nshogi; the Nshogi gorilla group was once the largest gorilla group with about 35 members at the time it was first sighted at river Nshogi. Due to many fights in the family families like Bweza split and formed their families. The family currently has about 7 members that include 1 silverback, 2 female blackbacks, 1 subject, and infants Mishyaya also runs away with 10 members.
Mishaya; Mishaya gorilla family split from Nshogi after the fights and Mishaya run away with 12 individuals. Mishaya was known as a strong gorilla that would fight his fellow wild gorilla and grab the members of his family, the group started in 2010 under the leadership of Mishaya, he died in 2014 at age of 28 years and now the family is headed by dominant silverback Mwine
Bikyingi; this gorilla family was opened for tourism in 2018 after two years of habituation the family is composed of 15 individuals the
Rwigi; it’s one of the new gorilla trekking families in Rushaga sector the group also separated from the kahungye family and it comprises 6 members that include 2 female adults 2 juveniles 1 infant and headed is by dominant silverback called Rwigi.
Kahungye; kahungye gorilla family was the first sight at the hill in the Rushaga area called kahungye the group had about 27 members at the time of sight due to many fights and splits of families like Busingye currently the family has 17 individuals that includes 3 silver backs, 3female adults 6 juveniles and 4 infants. It’s head by dominant silver back known as Rumanzi, followed by Gigi and Ruhamuka
Busingye; Busingye gorilla family derived its name from the local word Busingye which means peace. The gorilla family was known for fighting fellow gorillas to grab members and add to its group. The group separated from kahungye in 2012 and it comprises 9 members including 1 dominant silverback, 3 female adults 1 juvenile and the 4 infants.
Mucunguzi; Mucunguzi is the youngest and newest gorilla family in Rushaga sector it is split from the Bweza family and its name means savior. The family has 8 members.
Activities in the Rushaga gorilla sector
Besides gorilla safaris, the Rushaga gorilla sector offers other tour activities like birding, nature walks, and cultural tours among other things.
Gorilla habituation experience
Rushaga gorilla sector is the only sector that offers gorilla habituation experience, Kutu gorilla family is the family that is special of for habituation and is only limited for only four permits a day and visitors can spend four with these gentle apes either doing research unlike in gorilla trekking the habituation permit goes for about 1500$ it’s only done in Rushaga sector in Bwindi impenetrable national park.
Bwindi impenetrable national park offers the best of birding watching safari while on a Uganda tour, the forest has about 200 varieties of bird species a half of them migratory birds that move from DRC to Uganda and others are natives Bwindi impenetrable forests African big-headed blue bill, African blue turaco bird yellow thinker bird crested guinea fall, pastis cuckoo shrinker, white-headed swing, Rwenzori baits, white-headed saw swing among others the birding watching trails in Bwindi are at mubwindi swamp, buhoma falls among other trails.
On special arrangements, the with a tour operator, cultural tours can be arranged and the neighboring community around the park is Batwa. The Batwa people are famously known for living and surviving in the forest for more years but they were resettled for the forest to be used as the park, things to enjoy are to learn their stories, and encounter their dances among other things.
How to access the Rushaga gorilla sector
Rushaga gorilla sector is found in the south of Bwindi impenetrable national park in southern Uganda and can be accessed from Kampala city the capital by road its about a 9-hour drive and about 500 km and it can also be accessed from Kigali city Rwanda about 50 km and 3 hours drive through kyanika border.