Uganda’s Conservation Areas
Uganda’s list of gazetted conservation areas encompasses 10 national parks, 8 wildlife wildlife reserves, 4 wildlife sanctuaries and 6 Ramsar sites. National parks are accorded, a higher status and conservation priority than other reserves, and from the visitor’s point of view they are generally, better developed for tourism.
Bureaucratic considerations aside, the most meaningful way to categorize Uganda’s various national parks and reserves is on the basis of the type of habitat they protect. We concessionary refer to some national parks as game or savanna reserves, forest reserves and montane reserves. In this sense, the term ‘game reserve’ applies to any reserve or national park that protects a savanna habitat and supports typical plains animals, whereas the term ‘forest reserve’ refers to any reserve or national park that protects a forest environment and associated animals.
The three montane conservation areas considered national parks can in some circumstances be bracketed with forest reserves, since they all support montane and bamboo forests up to around 3,000 meters above sea level, at what point the habitat gives way to Afro-montane moorland at higher altitudes.
National Parks in Uganda
- Bwindi Impenetrable | 310km2 | Forest | mountain gorillas, forest birds
- Kibale Forest | 766km2 | Forest | chimpanzees, monkeys, forest birds
- Kidepo Valley | 1,344km2 | Savanna | dry-country antelopes, predators and birds
- Lake Mburo | 256km2 | Savanna | wide variety of antelope and waterbirds
- Mgahinga | 33km2 | Montane | mountain gorillas, golden monkeys, hiking, volcanic peaks
- Mount Elgon | 1,145km2 | Montane | hiking, forest birds
- Murchison Falls | 3,900km2 | Savanna | Murchison Falls, big game, waterbirds
- Queen Elizabeth | 1,978km2 | Savanna | big game, chimps, 612 bird species
- Rwenzori Mountains | 996km2 | Montane | hiking, forest birds, Afro-montane plants
- Semuliki | 220km2 | Forest | hot springs, Rift Valley setting, 45 birds found nowhere else