Kibale National Park Animals are the wildlife that is found in the park premises that includes mammals, primates, birds and reptiles. Kibale national park is a unique eco-community with a range of animal species, birds and insects. Kibale national park creates an extension from Queen Elizabeth national park of about 180km which acts as a link between Queen Elizabeth national park and Kibale national park. It should not be surprising if you find the lions and buffaloes in Kibale forest because the Kibale wildlife corridor helps the animals to move freely from Queen Elizabeth national park to Kibale national park. Kibale national park acts as an interconnecting ecozone which links the southern parks to the parks in northern Uganda like Murchison falls national park.
Kibale national park is found in western Uganda and it covers districts of Kabarole and Fort Portal among others. Kibale national park is found just a few kilometers away from fort portal town, about 20 kilometers, and 24 kilometers East of the magnificent Rwenzori mountains. Kibale national park covers quite an area of about 795 sq.km. Kibale national park is part of the vast Kibale conservation area which consists of Semliki national park, Semliki- Tooro wildlife reserve and Katonga wildlife reserves. This is enough evidence to illustrate the importance of Kibale national park as a home of nature and wildlife.
Kibale national park sits on an elevation of about 1590m above sea level on its highest altitude point, and 1100m above sea level as the park’s lowest elevation. That is within the western rift valley floor. The different elevation levels within the national park premises consist of varying ecosystems which harbor a wide range of animal species in Kibale national park, for example, swamps, forests, savannah and shrubs among others.
Kibale national park is mainly known for being a vast primate empire with over 13 species of primates. Kibale national park receives a lot of visitors for chimpanzee trekking and habituation. Kibale national park harbors over 1500 chimpanzees some of which are habituated and ready for you to have some interaction together. Besides the chimpanzees, Kibale national park is home for 12 more species of primates, some of which are greatly endangered and endemic to Kibale national park. Kibale national park harbors the largest community of primates in East Africa and perhaps the whole of Africa at large.
It would have been Congo since it has the largest forests but the political unrest and uncontrolled poaching drastically reduced the primate population. On the other hand, Uganda is a relatively peaceful country. This has allowed the primates in Kibale national park to multiply. Kibale has the highest concentration of primates both in terms of species and population.
Kibale national park acts as a refuge for the largest population of L’hoest’s monkeys of east Africa. You stand an 85% chance to see the L’hoest’s monkeys during your hike through Kibale national park. It is in Kibale national park where you stand a golden chance to easily spot the night primates also called the nocturnal primates. These include the pottos, Demidov’s dwarf galago, the eastern needle clawed bush babies among other night creatures that bring Kibale forest to life when the sun falls.
Kibale is naturally endowed with a lot more mammal species that you will get surprised to spot during your nature walks through the forest. The fact that Kibale national park is a part of Kibale-queen Elizabeth wildlife corridor, it is so easy for the animals to move between the two national parks. You can find some elephants, buffaloes roaming around the forest as you carry on in your nature walk or a hike in Kibale national park.
Other animals in Kibale national park include the forest hogs, warthogs, bush pigs, the blue and red duiker, peter duiker, bushbucks, and the rare sitatunga antelopes which can be found in the marshy areas of Kibale national park. It is also very possible to find a leopard in Kibale national park and sometimes a lion too. For this reason, it’s good to stay in a group and restrict walking alone in the forest.
Chimpanzee trekking is the most common activity done in Kibale national park. It involves hiking through the forest following a particular trekking trail until a community of chimps is found. Then, an hour’s duration is left for you to interact and observe the chimpanzees in Kibale national park. The one hour you spend with these apes is rewarding enough and compensates the entire long hike you might have trekked to get to the chimpanzees in Kibale national park.
Kibale national park is the only place where you can enjoy your chimpanzee habituation with quite a range of chimpanzee communities to learn about. Chimpanzee habituation is more intimate compared to chimpanzee trekking in Kibale national park. The habituation process involves getting the chimpanzees familiar to human encounters. It takes a whole day of getting really close to the chimpanzees and learning their habits and style. Chimpanzee habituation is mainly done in the rare season or the low tourist season, when there are a few people in the national park, possibly the wet season.
Best time to visit Kibale National Park
Kibale is always open all through the year for any activity from chimpanzee trekking to night walks and camping. However, the best time for visiting to view the animals in Kibale National Park, and other national parks in Uganda, is the dry season. Chimpanzee trekking is favorably done in the dry season, which is during the months of July to September and January to February. The dry season is also the peak season of tourism in Uganda and therefore, it is characterized by high visits to Kibale national park.
Despite the thrill in the dry season, Kibale national park is also awesome and it the wet season. The wet season is the best time to plan your budget vacation to Kibale national park. During the wet season, most of the lodges in Kibale national park and around are always sold at a discount. Therefore you can enjoy all your Kibale national park fun at low cost and in a free space. It is also in the wet season that chimpanzee habituation is done; therefore you might book yourself a Kibale national park gorilla habituation permit at a low cost.