Storks in Uganda, 15 days birding tour in Uganda

15 days birding tour in Uganda

Peter Scott was a participant  on a 15 days birding tour in Uganda. We are going to explore Uganda in 15 days. We have a chance to see some forest birds, mountain birds, savannah birds and some community birds. We have a chance to see one of the endemics of Uganda, the Fox’s weaver.

We shall take the eastern circuit through to Pian Upe, Kidepo Valley National Park then Murchison Falls National Park. This circuit will yield a bird count of over 550 bird species.

Timed during the Second half of February, meaning this is supposed to be prior to the rainy season – although being a tropical, equatorial country, rain is a possibility throughout, and there of course several days when we had rains but fortunately it only affected us on a minor basis.

Another testament to the excellent birding on this tour, was the number of days where the daily total of over 100 species – even on days that were primarily centered on forest birding, such as our day birding the Royal Mile in the Budongo Forest. We also had memorable encounters with four sightings of Leopards!

There were 40+ mammal species seen, which included the ‘Big 5’ and so many others. We managed to see most of our targeted species on this birding tour and the detailed species list is below in the report.

Day 1: 24th Feb 2019- Arrival and Briefing at Entebbe International Airport. Dinner and overnight stay Protea Hotel. BB

Day 2: 25th Feb 2019 – Birding to Mabira Forest

After early breakfast we started our journey to the East, Kampala was cold and no traffic as voting had just taken place, we drove through smoothly to Mabira an isolated forest by the surrounding banana and sugar plantations, this remarkably productive forest is possibly the richest in the country, and well-maintained wide trails that made birding easy expect a few motorcycles that disturbed the activity. We started with sightings of the African Pied Hornbill, Plain Greenbul, Shinning blue Kingfisher around the first pond on the Buwola trail which seemed unbothered with the boda boda riders as we got close and had good photographing opportunities, we had good views of the Sooty Boubou, Black Crowned Waxbill, Tambourine Dove, African Emerald Cuckoo, we found a mixed flock Weyn s Weaver, arguably the most attractive of the group in the canopy accompanied with loud calls of the Dusky Longtailed Cuckoo with the Yellow-rumped and Speckled Tinkerbird, Yellow Spotted and Yellow billed Barbets did go without being heard we had good views of the Purple Throated Cuckooshrike, Toro Olive, White Throated and Red Tailed Greenbul, Grey and Yellow Longbill, Brown-eared Woodpecker and the drizzle started which saw us off to the Rainforest lodge for our lunch, as we waited on we saw the Grey Throated Tit Flycatcher, and after lunch we spent some time looking into the forest and spoting great species like the Orange Tufted Sunbird, our night at Sunset Hotel Jinja. FB

 Day 3: 26th Feb 2019 – Birding to Mt Elgon National Park and stay at Rafiki Lodge Sipi

We started with a great breakfast at the Hotel and later joined by Ibra for our journey of to the east. We had no definite route but decided to use Tororo as it exposes us to numerous swamps and many wading birds. As we start at the hotel, we had great views of the resident Speckled Pigeons, Splendid and Ruppells Glossy Starling, Northern Black Flycatcher, Red Chested and Mariqua Sunbird with the Shikra, off through Jinja town to see once the most industrialized town of Uganda then further east where we stopped for the Open Billed Stork, and a flock of feeding Abdmin s Stock, Barn Swallow, Pied and Yellow Wagtail, Woodland Kingfisher, we drove through Iganga into Tororo Malaba road our first stop was after Bugiri which produced the Blue Headed Coucal, Black Crake, African Jacana, White Faced and Fulvous Whistling Duck, Long Toed Lapwing, Black Winged Stilt, Marsh, Green and Common Sandpiper, Spur Winged Goose, Black Headed and Grey Heron, Northern Brown Throated, Slendr Billed and Black Headed Weaver, amazing flocks of the Back Heron than seen before, Fantailed Windowbird to mention but these, we continued and stopped at the Kibimba rice scheme currently called Tilder, but we had seen most of the spp at the previous stop, but added the Eurasian March Harrier and a pair of White Stork.  We continued and had our lunch at Crystal Hotel Tororo where I went to school, we were wished a nice lunch by the Red Winged Starling which we expected tobe higher than here, what a surprise, after we continued via Mbale with sigtings of the common Buzzard, Grey Headed and Striped Kingfisher, we later checked in at Lacalm Lodge. Birding around the dining area produced the reichenowi race of the Baglafecth Weaver, Cardinal and Grey Woodpecker, Red Windged Starling was a common spp of the evening, Willow Warbler, Lead Collard Flycatcher, Bronze Sunbird and the White morph of the African Paradise flycatcher wished us a nice dinner.

Day 4: 27th Feb 2019 – Birding Mt Elgon National Park

We start early for a whole day birding and upon our entrance we were welcomed by the Purple Throated and Black Cukooshrike, Green Headed and Northern Double Collard Sunbird, Mountain and Grey Wagtail, as we prepared to hit the man trail, we were flagged off by the Ludher s Bush-shrike, White Bellied Tit, sweet melodies and later sigthing a pair of the Abyssinian Ground Thrush, Black Faced Rufous Warbler and into the forest interior we had the African Emerald Cuckoo, Cabanis s and yellow Whiskered Greenbuls, Grey, Black Collard, Black Throated and Chestnut Throated Apalis, Red Winged, Slender Billed ad Wallers Starling, African Blue Flycatcher,  Grey Cuckooshirke with greater excitement of the Spotted Creeper which we all declared but of the day as there have been no recent records and having less than 5 documented records are present even our ranger Alex had never cited it in here, thanx to the great eyes of Paul Tamwenya and Ibra, even if we had ended here, we were all happy at it but we continued  round to the revelations of the great displays White-starred Robin Chat, we sighted Olive Pigeons feeding in the fig, Black billed and Brown Capped Weaver, White Tailed Crested Flycatcher, Montane Oriole was nesting close by ad in reach of our Cameras, croaky sounds and glimpses of the Hutlubs Turaco which is one of the commonest here but was playing hard to get today, Great Blue Turaco, as we got over the forest, we had great views of the Mountain Buzzard, and the entire forest we descended in again to a treat of  Natural honey by one of the locals and later our picnic lunch. We continued with finding of the Pink Footed Puffback, White Headed Wood Hoopoe, Common Bulbul, Collard Sunbird, Black and White Casqued Hornbill, it was getting late and we decided to use the shorter route through the cave which requires great fitness as it is soo steep down wards, we did not regret as the Hotlubs Turaco was in great views, further down we had the real Grey Headed African Hill Barbler, and a flock of Stallman s starlings, just as we turned to look over the upper cliff we saw the Golden Winged Sunbird which was another bird od the day, Baglafecht Weaver, White Eyed Slaty Flycatcher, Bronze Sunbird and this saw us off to the starting point, where we boarded our car back for our dinner and overnight at Locam Lodge

Day 5: 28th Feb 2019 – Birding to Pian Upe Game reserve

After along and wonderful day birding Mt Elgon National Park, we chose to have breakfast at 1:30 and had a slow start, but as we almost started off, there was a pair of Cassin s Hawk Eagles flying over the Lacalm Lodge giving us a great goodbye and probably come back again, driving down the foothills to the great dry savannahs we were welcomed by a variety of species including the Superb Starling, Wire Tailed Swallow, Dark Chanting Goshawk, a flock of White Storks ganging up probably to make their journey back home, Rufous Tailed Rock Thrush, Rufous Sparrow, Wailing Cisiticola, Buff Bellied Warbler, Black Shouldered Kite, Tawny Flanked Prinia, Mariqua Sunbird Whinchat, Lesser Kestrel,  and as we entered the Pian Upe game reserve we were welcomed with a flock of 6 Ostriches with non in the breeding plumage, we checked in for  late lunch and later drove out for a late evening walk which produced the Fan Tailed Raven, Fox Kestrel, Whited Crested Helmeted Shrike, the rare Grey Batis, Black Headed Batis, Yellow Spotted Petronia, White Headed Barbet, Violet Backed Starling, Moustached Grassland Warbler, Black and Brown Crowned Tchagra, Grey Woodpecker, Bru Bru, Clapperton s Francolin, Northern Crombec and the day was crowned by sighting a Leopard by our ranger Simon. We later drove back to our Camp for dinner and overnight stay.

Day 6: 1st March 2019 – Birding Pian Upe Game Reserve and transfer to Soroti

We started in the morning birding around the lodge after breakfast before we started our journey to Soroti, we had great views of the Violet Backed Starling, Yellow Spotted Petronia, Hunter s Sunbird, White Headed Barbet, Grey Crowned Crane and on our way out the main focus was the very localized Karamoja Apalis which we successfully saw in a flock of about 4. We continued and encountered the Black Billed Barbet, Eurasian Buzzard, Rufous Chatterer, flocks of D Anaud s Barbet, Beautiful Sunbird, African Grey Flycatcher, we had our lunch in Mbale and later drove to Soroti where we had thorough search at Awoja bridge with hopes of getting the Fox s waver but in vain, all we saw were Nothern Brown-Throated Weavers. We had good views of the other race of the Short Toed Snake Eagle – Beaudouin s, Red Billed Oxpecker, White Browed Sparrow Weaver, Piapiac, Hartlaub s Widowbird and Abbyasinian Roller on our way into Soroti. We checked into the Soroti hotel for 2 nights.

Day 7: 2nd March – 2019: Birding to Lake Bisina and the Environs – Fox’s Weaver

After and early morning breakfast we drove to Kapir the turn off to Lake Basina in search for Uganda s only endemic spp the Fox s weaver, we joined by 3 locals who were waiting for us after a prior appointment with them on a locally peddled canoe, off we went and while on the lake, we had great views of the Barn Swallow, Northern Brown Throated Weaver, Black Crake, White Faced and Fulvous Whistling Duck, the uncommon Little Bittern, Purple and Goliath Heron, Blue Cheeked Bee-eater, African and the uncommon resident of wetlands in western, south and eastern Uganda- Lesser Jacana. Village weavers were on the far lake showers, our search was not successful we switched to another point where our local guide thought we could have luck, but it was too hot but we had great scope views of the Lesser Moorhen, BlueBreasted Bee-eater on our way back to the car we had the Singing Cisticola, we took the afternoon off at the hotel then resumed later extensively exploring the Awoja bridge again with views of the Blue Headed coucal, Spur Winged Goose, Long Toed Lapwing and African Openbill. We later drove back to Soroti hotel for dinner and overnight stay.

Day 8: 3rd March 2019: Birding to Kidepo

Today was a long drive so we started from Soroti Hotel at 6:30 with the Peregrine Falcon, this northeastern part of Uganda, is drier with grasslands inhabited by giraffes and cheetahs as well as traditional pastoral people. Due to the long hostility behavior of the inhabitants, the area has not been accessed by most travelers in Uganda until of recent. Our drive had a few stopovers at Mashes of interest which saw us find the Senegal Coucal, Fantailed Widowbird, Hamerkop, Sacred Ibis, Reed Cormorant, Cattle and Great Egret, Purple and Black Headed Heron, Woolly-necked, Abdim s, Saddle Billed and Open Billed Stork, Fulvous and White-Faced Whistling-Duck, Black Shouldered and Black Kite, Western, African, and Montagu s Harrier, had the Great Spotted Cuckoo fly over us and the slender vivid blue Abyssinian Roller close on the wire as we entered Lira town. We did a little shopping in Lira and carried on with our journey where we hard to drive round due to a broken bridge and saw many Lizard Buzzards, African Hobby, Long Crested Eagle and Shikra, Palm and African Swift, we reached Kitgum and topped up our gas as there would be no other fuel station. There was a drizzle as we drove out of town which cooled of the dust of the past days. We shortly stopped for lunch and had the Black Crowned Tchagra, Grey Backed Fiscal, Black-bellied Firefinch, the uncommon Red-pate Cisticola, we carried on birding enroute with great views of the Grasshopper Buzzard, Lesser, Grey and Fox Kestrel, a pair of White Crested Turaco was feeding in the fig, D Arnaud s Barbet, we had great views of the Kidepo scenery as we entered the park, viewing large herds of Cape Buffalo and loose societies of Giraffe, feeding female Abyssinian Ground Hornbill, Eurasian and Green Wood-hoopoe, Yellow Billed Shrike, Bronze-tailed Glossy-starling, Foxy Cisticola, Sooty and Whinchat,  Blackbreasted Snake Eagle, Crested and Clapperton s Froncolin, White Rumped Shrike, towards the lodge we found a small pond which produced great views of the Common Moorhen, Black Crake, Squacco Heron and closed the day with a Superb Starling. We checked in at Apoka Bandas for our dinner and overnight stay.

 Day 9 & 10: 4th & 5th March 2019 – Birding Kidepo Valley

On the first day we explored the Narus valley and Bomas, we start with a morning breakfast at 6:30 and off we went finding a flock of the Crested Francolins by the road, Clapperton s Francolin, Piapiac, Fantailed Raven, Pied Crow, Pale and Towny Flanked Prinia, Little Weaver, White Rumped Shrike, Brubru, the emerald-green Rose-ringed Parakeet, Abyssinian Roller, Fork Tailed Drongo, Isabelline Wheatear, Red-winged Lark, White-bellied Bustard, Meyer s Parrot, Montagu s Harrier, African Harrier-Hawk, closer to the pond we found the Common Snipe, Black winged Stilt, White Stork, African Jacana, lots of Comb Ducks, Wood and common Sandpiper Grey Crowned  Cranes, African Spoonbill, Yellow Billed Stork, good views of the Red-Throated Pipit by the bank of the pond, African Pipit, Yellow Throated Longclaw, African Pied and Yellow Wagtail, Wing-snapping, Red-Pate, Rattling, Foxy, and Croaking Cisticola, we continued and hiked to Amin s in search for the Stone Partridge but in vain, however, we had great views of the Cliff and Familiar Chat, Greater Honey and Lesser Guide, Silverbird, we later drove back to Bandas for a lunch break and started later to the Bomas which produced the Black Headed Lapwing, Woodchat Shrike, Eastern Plantain Eater, Mottled and African Palm Swift, White Browed Coucal, Vinaceous Dove, Northern Crombec, Pearl Spotted Owlet, Three Streaked Tchagra, Slate-Coloured Boubou, Jacksons and the Northern Red-billed Hornbill, as we drove ahead we chanced into a pair of Four-banded Sandgrouse, we turned round and on our way back in the dark we hard great views of the Pennant-winged Nightjar and a hunting Spotted Eagle Owl. We retired to our Bandas for dinner and overnight stay.

On our second day we started after breakfast and drove up to the hot springs, we spent the whole day out and had a real birding exploration on Kidepo with great sightings of the Red and Yellow Barbet, White-bellied Go-away-bird, White Crested Turaco, Pallid Harrier, Blue-Naped and Speckled Mousebird, African Grey, Jackson s, Abyssinian Ground and Northern Red-billed Hornbill,

White Bellied Tit, D Arnoud s, White headed and the conspicuous Black Breasted Barbet, White Bellied and Black Bellied Bustard, Flappet and Redwinged Lark, Brown-backed Woodpecker, Rufous-tailed Rock-thrush, Foxy and Croaking Cisticola, Pale Prinaia, Red-backed Scrub Robin, Whinchat, Northern, Isabelline and Heuglin s Wheatear, Purple Grenadier, Yellow Breasted Apalis, Yellow Belllied Eremomela, Yellow Spotted Petronia, African Grey Flycatcher, Silverbird, Rufous Chatterer, Grey Headed Batis, White Browed Sparrow, Speckle-Fronted and Little Weaver, White-Billed and White

Headed Buffalo-weaver, Kenya Violet Backed Sunbird, Abyssinian Scimitarbill,

Wattled Starling, Parrot Billed-Sparrow finding the solitary hunting Secretarybird was a big highlight, Sooty Falcon, Yellow-necked Francolin, Crowned and Wattled Lapwing, we later found a flock of Mouse-Coloured Pendulin-tits, White Helmet and Yellow Billed-Shrike, Kenya Yellow Rumped Seed-eater, Black-billed Wood-dove, Meyer s Parrot and Rose-ringed Parakeet, European Bee-eater, Abyssinian and Rufous Crowned Roller, we closed the day with the Gaber Goshawk and headed back to the Bandas for dinner and overnight stay. FB

Day 11: 6th March 2019- Birding to Northern Murchison Falls National Park

After an early breakfast we started our drive to the northern part of Murchison Falls National Park, the drive was long and the birding slow with morning views of the regular Palearctic Common Redstart, Crested and Clapperton s Francolin, Red-winged Lark, Abyssinan Ground Hornbill, Towny Eagle, Ruppell s Griffon, the Chin-spot Batis led us out of the park and birding was now on road with views of the Yellow Bishop, Croaking and Foxy Cisticola, Black Bellied Fire Finch, Green Wood Hoopoe, African Grey Flycatcher, Rufous Chatter,  a couple of Dark Chanting Goshawks along the wires as we drove on, Black Headed and Squacco Heron, Hamerkop, African Openbill, Western Marsh and Montagus Harrier, Lizard Buzzard, Grey Kestrel, Long Crested Eagle, Meyer s Parrot, African Paradise Flycatcher as we got closer to we stretched out and heard the melodies of the Black Cuckoo, it was about 7:30 when we checked in for dinner and Overnight at Pakuba Safari Lodge. FB

Day 12: 7th March 2019: Birding Murchison Falls National Park

Today, after our early breakfast, we started birding a few meters from the lodge and had views of the Red Faced Crombec, Northern Puffback, hundreds of African Green Pigeons, Grey Backed Fiscal, Yellow Breasted Apalis, Red Faced Cisiticola, Grassland Moustached Warbler, we got surprised by the rare Thick Billed Cuckoo and shortly the small glossy Black Scimitarbill, Brown Babbler and Black Rumped Waxbill, Northern Wheatear, as we continued towards the gate, we found a pool that produced the Goliath, Black Headed, Purple, Grey and Squacco Heron, African Openbill and Yellow Billed Stork, Marsh, Common, Wood and Green Sandpiper, Black Winged Stilt, Common and Little ringed plover, Pink Backed Pelican, Reed Cormorant, Red Backed Shrike, wat a stop!! Off we went and entered the park, we were welcomed by a decoration of the common Intra African migrating Abdim s Stork, they were everywhere we went in the park, probably regrouping to fly further north where they breed. We also encountered couples of the threatened Abyssinian Ground Hornbill, Martial Eagle, Brown Snake Eagle, lots of Grasshopper Buzzard, Yellow Fronted Tinkerbird, Temminck s Courser, Zitting Cisticola, Grey Headed Kingfisher and as we approached our lunch area we had great picture moments for the Red Throated Bee-eater. After lunch we headed for the boat towards the top of the falls, it was cool compared to the ride in the car and quite smooth, finding great schools of hippos, and a big herd of African Elephant, nesting Red Throated Bee-eaters, African Fish and Banded Snake Eagle, African Darter, Glossy Ibis and the Giant Kingisher which posed for shots and a wanted spp for this boat cruise as Konrad had missed it on our last trip. The biggest surprise of the trip was finding the Shoebill which I had personally not seen in this area on all the boat trips I have done there, we got close and he didnt mind us, great shots and breathe taking moments. We continued and found a pack of crocs lying with their open Mandibles waiting for prey, at the end we had the Rock Pratincole, we road back and did a late drive which gave us the White Browed Coucal, Black Billed Barbet, Eurasian Thicknee, Grey kestrel, Grey Crowned Crane, Saddle Billed Stork, Blue Cheecked Bee-eater, African Wattled Lapwing, Sulphur Breasted Bush-shrike, Black Crowned Tchagra, we continued for our dinner and overnight stay at Pakuba Safari Lodge.

Day 13: 8th March – 2019- Transfer to Masindi via the Escarpment

After breakfast with our packed lunch, we started early towards the 9:00 o clock ferry that we used to cross and carry on with our journey south of Murchison, we zeroed on a few spp we had the previous day and of course the Abdims Stork were numerous, Black Headed Heron, Cattle and Little Egret, Yellow Billed Stork, Ruff, Sacred and Hadada Ibis, Spur-winged and Egyptian Goose, Comb Duck, after the pond we saw encountered the Grass-hopper

Buzzard, Black Bellied Bustard, Brown Snake Eagle, African Harried Hawk, Bateleur, at the dock as we waited on the ferry to cross, we had great photographic moments of the Red Throated Bee-eater and seeing the Redwinged Grey Warbler made our morning, off we got onto the ferry and crossed to the southern sector, after a short drive, we took a short walks which gave us the Cardinal Woodpecker, Yellow Breasted Apalis, Spotted Palm Thrush, we headed back to the car and carried on with our drive birding enroute we had the African Red Warbler, a pair of Red Chested Cuckoo, Banded Snake Eagle, Black Billed Wood-dove, Short Toed Snake Eagle, Black Cheeked Waxbill, Black Headed and Vitelline Masked Weaver, Heuglin s Robinchat, Black Headed Gonolek, Spot Flanked Barbet,  Sulphur Breasted Bush-shrike, Black Billed Barbet, Spotted Flycatcher, Beautiful Sunbird, we ascended from the escapement into the forest and had a stop over which gave us good views of the Forest Robin only heard on our last trip, Grey Headed Sunbird, excellent views and digital scoping the Chocolate Backed Kingfisher, we saw the Purple Headed Glossy Starling, Wooly Necked Stork as we headed to Masindi Hotel for our diner and overnight stay. FB

Day 14: 9th March – 2019- Whole day birding Royal mile. Dinner and overnight at Masindi Hotel. 

After breakfast we set off at 6:30 with our packed lunch, enroute we had great views of the Wahlberg s Eagle, Yellow Shouldered Bishop, Ruppell s Glossy Starling, Woolly Necked Stock, Yellow Fronted Canery, Grassland Moustached Warbler, as we approached the royal mile we had a flock of White Thighed Hornbills in the fruiting figs then proceeded to the Royal mile being welcomed by the Blue Throated Roller, we had the best of the Scaly Breasted Illadopsis ever with opportunities of photographing it. We continued and encountered the Green Hylia, Blue-breasted, African Pygmy, Dwarf and Chocolate-backed Kingfisher, a selection of Tinker birds – Yellow Throated, Speckled and Yellow Rumped, Yellow Spotted Barbet seen well and the Yellow Billed heard, Yellowcrested Woodpecker and Brown-eared Woodpecker, Yellowbill, Forest Flycatcher, Black Headed Paradise Flycatcher, Chestnut-capped Flycatcher, Western Black-headed Oriole, Purple headed Starling, Green and Superb Sunbird, Lemon Bellied Combec and Green. Towards our lunch break we had the distinct silvery notes of the Uganda Woodland Warbler which we followed and had great views, at our lunch we had the Chocolate Backed Kingfisher join us. The biggest surprise of the day was the biggest troupe of chimps with over 50 member crossing the road, coupled with the Blue Monkey, Red-tailed Monkey, and Black and white Colobus Monkey to mention but these. We continued to the river and had managed to view the Rufous Crowned Eremomela, Yellow Browed Camaroptera, Sabine s Spinetail, at this point we heard the piercing calls of the Ituri Batis, looked him up but flew further away from our sight. We turned round and birded our way back which gave us a view of Crested Guineafowls crossing the road, the Rufous Flycatcher Thrush. FB

 Day 15: 10th March 2019 – Transfer to Entebbe onwards

Being our last day, we started with a late breakfast at 7:00am and continued birding to Entebbe, at the hotel, we had a Spotted Flycatcher wave us off, as we drove through Masindi town, there were lots of Barn Swallows, Rock Pigeons and Ruppels Glossy Starling. We had numerous stops before Kafu river which produced the Banded Snake Eagle, Black Headed and Purple Heron, African Openbill, African Cuckoo, Tropical Boubou, Grey Headed Bushshrike, Wood Sandpiper, White Faced Whistling Duck, Squacco Heron, Red Headed Weaver, Mariqua Sunbird, Lesser Blue Eared Starling, we continued and had a break at Kabalega dinners for a cold drink and while waiting the African Black Headed Oriole have us good picture moments we proceeded for our lunch in Luwero where we had the Woodland Kingfisher close to out lunch table.

From here we drove straight to the Entebbe Botanical gardens birding as we closed in on Konrad s flight at 8:00pm, we managed to grab up the African Pygmy Kingfisher, Eurasian Hobby, Grey Kestrel, Reed Cormorant, Striated Heron, Broad Billed Roller, Gull Billed Tern, Orange Weaver, Black Headed, Slender Billed and Viellot s Black, Yellow Billed Duck, hundreds of pied Kingfisher hovering over the lake, Snowy Crowned Robinchat, Scarlet Chested and Green Headed Sunbird, Yellow Fronted Tinkerbird, loud calls of the Vanga Flycatcher and later waited for the Bat Hawk to wish us the best but in Vain. Off we drove to the airport and saw Konrad off. We look forward to birding with him again!!

Given the habitats and time spent at each destination and finding 505 bird spp, I think the tour was largely very successful. Uganda is a very different mix of activities and to my thinking of potential priorities to Kenya or Tanzania. The possibility of seeing other mammals and highly sought after birds is quite an eclectic mix! We managed to successfully combine some of these in about 2 weeks. Finding game and birds is always difficult anywhere in the world and requires good spotting, luck and perseverance. There are always going to be some species seen well and others not at all in any single visit, so it is just about impossible to mop up all wanted species. This can be frustrating if you don t take a more philosophical approach and count on the positive side of the special and localized elusive spp seen on a single trip. Much as there is a need for greater travelling over generally poorer roads as we did in some parts of the country. Tourism has taken a knock at times through Uganda s recent turbulent past, so lodge infrastructure isn t quite on the same level of service and beautiful as Kenya and Tanzania plus other tourist destinations you might have been to – but would be great if you booked this kind of tour.

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