Birding in Gishwati Mukura National Park

Birding in Gishwati Mukura National Park

December 30, 2021
Safari Tips

Birding is one of the great activities done in Gishwati Mukura National Park Rwanda. The forest hosts many species of beautiful birds, 232 birds have been recorded in Gishwati while 163 bid species have been seen at Mukura. 7 of them are Albertine rift endemics and 2 have been listed on IUCN.

Gishwati Mukura is one of newest national parks in Rwanda. The park is well known for being a home to over 60 species of trees, a number of Rwanda wildlife and 84 different bird species.

The park is destined in Ngororero and Rutsiro districts; western province of Rwanda, covering an area of about 3,558 hectares.  Many Rwandese used to hide in these forests during the 1994 genocide consequently, this reserve was faced by massive human wildlife conflict through farming, deforestation and illegal mining activities. In September 2015, The Rwanda government proposed and passed a law to have a joint National Park, hence the Gishwati Mukura National park.

List of Bird species in Gishwati Mukura National Park

The following is a list of birds found in Gishwati Mukura; Regal Sunbird, Grauer’s swamp warbler, Ruwenzori Batis, Mountain Yellow Warblers, Woodhoopoe, Purple-breasted Sunbird, Martial Eagle, Strange weave, Lagden’s Bushshrike, Dusky Crimsonwing, Red-throated Alethe, Grey Crowned Crane, Ruwenzori Turaco, Hooded Vulture, Gray Crowned-Crane, Grauer’s Swamp Warbler, Tawny Eagle, Mountain Buzzard, Blue-spotted Wood-Dove, Gray-headed Kingfisher, Rwenzori Batis, Black-billed Turaco, Black Cuckoo, Gray Crowned-Crane, Hadada Ibis, Augur Buzzard, Narina Trogon,Tropical Boubou, Black Cuckooshrike, Pied Crow, Angola Swallow, African Yellow-Warbler, Black-throated Apalis, Dusky-brown Flycatcher, Stuhlmann’s Starling, Blue-headed Sunbird, Abyssinian Thrush, Western Citril, Strange Weaver, Dusky Crimsonwing, Black-crowned Waxbill, African Pipit, Cape Wagtail, Northern Double-collared Sunbird, Malachite Sunbird, Purple-breasted Sunbird, African Stonechat, Rwenzori Hill Babbler, White-browed Crombec, Lagden’s Bushshrike, Tullberg’s Woodpecker, Black Goshawk among others. Beside birds Gishwati Mukura National Park is home to a number of primate species including the Chimpanzees, baboons, the Blue monkeys, L’Hoest’s monkeys, Golden monkeys and other animals like the duikers.

Best Time to go birding in Gishwati Mukura National Park

Birdwatching in Gishwati Mukura National Park Rwanda can be done throughout the year however the park is always wet. Therefore, the best time to go birding in Gishwati Mukura National Park is during the dry season that runs from June to August, and December to February when rains are less expected. This is also the best time for chimpanzee tracking and other park activities. Migratory birds are present from November to April.

How to get to Gishwati Mukura National Park for birding

Gishwati Mukura National Park is located on the highest ridges of the Nile Congo Watershed and the Albertine Rift in the western part of Rwanda.

Gishwati Mukura National Park can be accessed by either road or by air transport. If you are planning to use road transport; you may opt to use public or private means however; we always recommend to book your transfer through a trusted tour operator like Africa Adventure Vacations or car hire companies.

Other Activities to do in Gishwati Mukura National Park

Besides birding tour in Gishwati Mukura National Park, travelers can engage in the following activities;

Chimpanzee Tracking in Gishwati-Mukura National Park

Hiking and Nature walks

Cultural experiences in the communities adjacent to the forests.

Biking or Walking the Congo-Nile Trail Birding

What to pack for birding tour in Gishwati Mukura National Park

Are you ready for your birding safari in Gishwati Mukura National Park Rwanda? Check on what to pack for your birdwatching experience in Rwanda with Africa Adventure Vacations. These include the following;

  1. Binoculars for zooming small birds from a distance
  2. Good camera to enable you take as many photos as possible
  3. Field Clothes such the rain gear, gardening gloves, hiking boots/shoes among others. We strongly encourage birders to pack light, closed and waterproof shoes.
  4. Several toiletries like tissues, hand sanitizer, toothbrush, hair gels and sanitary wear for the case of women.
  5. Pack insect repellants to protect you from dangerous insect bites
  6. Extra batteries and power bank to avoid your gadgets from blacking out in the middle of the experience
  7. Several toiletries like tissues, hand sanitizer, toothbrush, hair gels and sanitary wear for the case of women.

Where to stay in Gishwati Mukura National Park on your birding tour Rwanda

Gishwati Mukura is a new national park in Rwanda hence it has few accommodation facilities however, you don’t have to get worried on where to stay if you are planning for a birding trip in the park. Yes, the park has Gishwati lodge which offers luxurious services to birdwatchers and other adventure travelers in Rwanda who wish to go activities like chimpanzee tracking, nature walks, photography and local encounters.

Gishwati lodge is elegant and comfortable accommodation with a total of 6 rooms, accommodating a maximum of 12 guest on sharing basis.

The park also has several campsites to accommodate budget travelers interested in camping safaris.

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