AVIAN SAFARIS-TERMS AND CONDITIONS
Avian Safaris operates tours/safaris in Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda. Please read these Terms and Conditions carefully as they set out our respective obligations and form the base of your contract with us. In these terms and conditions, "you" means all persons named on the booking (including anyone who is added or substituted at a later date) and "we" and "us" means Avian Safaris. These terms are revised from time to time due to changing circumstances; the terms at the time of booking are the terms that are valid. Conditions in Africa are not the same as those in developed countries and standards of service, medical facilities, safety and security may often be lower than those in your home countries. Please note that it is the laws and regulations of the country in which services are provided which apply to your holiday arrangements and not those of your home country.
You must obtain confirmed onward or return flight tickets prior to departure to Africa. Avian Safaris cannot be held responsible for denied entry to any country through failure to supply proof of onward travel. You must accept responsibility for reconfirming all onward travel arrangements.
You are responsible for checking-in at the correct time.
All passports, visas, health certificates, or other travel documents required for the holiday must be obtained by you, whose responsibility it remains to ensure that these are in order, and to meet any additional costs incurred (whether by you or by the Company on your behalf) as a result of failure to comply with such requirements.
Any information or advice given by Avian Safaris on passports, visas, vaccinations, etc. is given in good faith but without responsibility on the part of Avian Safaris.
BOOKING PROCEDURE, PACKAGE PRICING & PAYMENT
When booked well in advance (3 months or more), there is usually no problem in securing all the desired accommodations.
A non-refundable deposit of 20% of the total trip price will reserve a place for you on our tours. The balance of the fee is due 60 days prior to departure. All prices are quoted in US dollars, and must be paid in US dollars. In case of gorilla permits a full advance payment of the permit fee is required.
Bookings made within 60 days before arrival must be fully paid at the time of confirmation.
If payment is not received in accordance with the above, Avian Safaris has the right to cancel the booking.
Payment can be made by Electronic bank transfer, VISA credit card, or Cash in any way before the start of the safari.
Regretfully, traveler cheques are not accepted as of now
The costs of international transactions (or 5% service charge in case of credit card payment) are to be fully paid by you
MOUNTAIN GORILLA TRACKING PERMITS
Only when payment has been received can permits for gorilla tracking in the relevant National Parks be purchased. Getting a gorilla permit is not a guarantee of seeing the Mountain Gorilla. Local conditions sometimes mean that access to the gorillas is made impossible at short notice. We are unable to accept liability for any circumstance that might lead to gorilla viewing being cancelled, whether it is closure of the National Park or borders; absence of the gorillas; security changes. Refunds are at the discretion of the relevant authority and we cannot accept liability for them. We shall use our maximum endeavors to obtain a refund and if a refund is paid by the relevant authority, we shall pass it on to the client,
Note that the chances of seeing the gorillas stand at 98%.
Avian Safaris shall try to ensure that the company exceeds the expectations in every area of the tour arrangements. However, suggestions are very much appreciated in order to keep improving the quality of the service.
Complaints must be reported immediately to Avian Safaris representative and to the supplier of the service in question, who will do their best to resolve the matter. If the problem is not solved to the client’s satisfaction the complaint should be reported in written form and not later than 30 days after completion of the tour.
Liability for any complaints not notified in accordance with the above described procedure can not be accepted.
ITINERARY CHANGES AND TOUR DELAY
Although it is rare in practice, Avian Safaris reserves the right to change a program's dates, itineraries, or accommodations if conditions warrant. If a trip must be delayed, or the itinerary changed due to bad weather, road conditions, transportation delays, government intervention, sickness, or other contingency for which Avian Safaris or its agents cannot be held responsible or make provision to the best of our ability, the cost of delays or changes must be paid by the customer(s).
CANCELLATIONS BY US
Occasionally we have to cancel confirmed bookings. We always endeavor to avoid canceling, but we must reserve the right to do so. We shall not cancel your confirmed holiday less than 60 days before departure unless we are forced to do so as a result of unusual and unforeseeable circumstances beyond our control, the consequences of which we could not have avoided even with all due care. If we cancel your holiday (except where you have failed to make payment or as a result of force majeure) we shall offer you the choice of purchasing an alternative holiday from us of a similar standard to that originally booked if available. If the chosen alternative is less expensive than your original holiday we shall refund the difference but if it is more expensive, we shall ask you to pay the difference. Alternatively you are entitled to a full refund of all the money you have paid to us save that paid for gorilla permits which can only be refunded if the refund has been made available to us. Except where we cancel for reasons other than those mentioned in this clause, we shall have no further liability to you. We regret we cannot pay any expenses, costs or losses incurred as a result of any cancellation.
We reserve the right, without prior notice, to terminate the holiday of any person in your party if, in our opinion or in the opinion of any other person in authority, the persons concerned behave in such a way to cause or be likely to cause danger, annoyance or distress to any third party or damage to property. In this situation, the person(s) concerned will be required to leave the accommodation or other service immediately. We shall have no further responsibility towards such person(s). No refunds will be made and we shall not pay any expenses or costs incurred as a result of the termination.
CANCELLATIONS BY YOU
Should you or any member of your party be forced to cancel, you must advise us in writing. A cancellation is not effective until we receive a copy of your written notice. To cover our estimated loss caused by the cancellation and as we may be unable to resell your holiday, cancellation fees, excluding insurance, will be levied per person as follows: Period before departure Cancellation charge (as percentage of total Tour price paid where applicable).
All cancellation requests must be made in writing and shall be effective on the date of actual receipt by Avian Safaris.
Avian Safaris reserves the right to deduct all expenses incurred from money paid.
The following cancellation charges apply to the basic program rates
61 and Above Prior to arrival 20% Charge
46 –60 days prior to arrival 30% Charge
31 – 45 days prior to arrival 50% charge
0 – 30 days prior to arrival 100% charge
No refunds will be made for any unused services, late arrival or no-show of any of the members of the tour.
We strongly recommend that you purchase trip cancellation insurance to protect your investment.
We ensure that every person is entitled to a Window seat in the vehicle. Every effort is made to ensure that vehicles are provided in a roadworthy condition but no liability can be accepted for breakdown, or any damage or delay. Our guides are instructed to follow our code of conduct for Guides (available on request), which you must not ask them to break in any way. In the event that a Guide does not follow the code, please inform the Safari Manager in Kampala. Company vehicles must only be driven by the company's Guide whose decision on all matters, such as the route taken, is final. You will be liable for any damage caused to a vehicle by any interference by you with the vehicle, including legal costs. Incase of breakdown, it's our responsibility to rectify the situation. We can either withdraw the vehicle in question, replace it or if the breakdown is minor and can be rectified, we reserve the right to do so.
Avian Safaris will make every effort to ensure that all arrangements and services connected to the safari will be carried out as specified in the most efficient and effective way possible. However, the company does not have direct control of the provision of services by suppliers and, whilst every supplier is chosen with the utmost care, Avian Safaris does not accept liability for errors or omissions of such suppliers.
Avian Safaris, shall not be liable for any loss, damage or injury of any nature whatsoever whether to person or property.
Whilst every care is taken, Avian Safaris cannot be held responsible for the direct or indirect costs of loss or damage to baggage or personal possessions.
We will take all due care to prevent your death, injury or illness being caused by the animal or insect life of the destinations.
Avian Safaris cannot accept liability or pay compensation for unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of the company or its staff, including flight delays/cancellations or force majeure such as war or threat of war, riots, civil disturbances, terrorist acts, border closure, acts of government or other authorities, strikes, thefts, epidemics, road closures, industrial disputes, natural or nuclear disaster, extreme weather conditions, fire, technical and/or mechanical problems to transport and all similar events beyond the company’s control.
It is the responsibility of the travel agency/wholesaler to ensure that all members of the tour have the appropriate passports, visas, travel permits, health certificates and other documentation required for the safari.
It is the responsibility of the clients to take proper medical and practical precautions in regard to health and safety. Medical advice should be sought well before travelling.
Clients are strongly advised to obtain comprehensive travel insurance before coming to Uganda. Local evacuation coverage is available in the unlikely event of a medical emergency while out on safari with Avian Safaris.
The respective laws of the country govern Avian Safaris liability to passengers carried in its own vehicles. All claims are subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of the country in which the cause of action arises.
It is a requirement when booking your holiday that you arrange personal travel insurance which is relevant and effective. Persons not fit for long trips due to heart disease, chronic illness, physical handicap, advanced pregnancy or mental illness are advised not to participate in such rigorous travel programs. The insurance should cover death, injury, theft of the clients' personal property and medical expenses. Activities with the greater risk such as White water rafting and Mountaineering should be covered.
My advancement of a deposit to Avian Safaris declares that I have fully read and understood the content of the Terms and Conditions.
On the advance of a deposit to Avian Safaris, the depositor, his or her family and beneficiary agree to be bound by the above Terms and Conditions.
Diet: Mainly feeds on fish, frogs and crabs, but also on small birds and reptiles.
The Saddle-billed Stork breeds in forested waterlands and floodlands in tropical lowland. The female lays one or two white eggs weighing about 146g each. The incubation period is 30–35 days, with another 70 – 100 days before the chicks fledge.
Birds grow to 150 cm height,142 cm length and 2.4–2.7 m wingspan. The male is larger and heavier than the female, with a range of 5.1–7.5 kg. The female is usually between 5 and 7 kg. It is probably the tallest of the Storks.
The long bill measures from 27.3 to 36 cm.
Sexes can be readily distinguished by the golden yellow iris of the female and the brown irises and dangling yellow wattles of the male.
(Gorilla beringei beringei)
Mountain gorillas are the largest living primates and the world's most endangered apes with a population of less than 800 individuals world over- none in zoos. They are found in Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)
They share 97% DNA with human beings! They are our closest living cousins after the Chimpanzee.
They have up to 25 vocalization for communication
Mountain Gorillas are shy, social and very active during day. They live in families of 8-25 members with one leading male (The Silver Back).
Gorillas have a lifespan of 50 years in the wild. They reproduce at a very slow speed with a gestation period of approximately 8.5 months and an interval of four years to the next birth.
Diet: Mainly herbivores eating fruits, herbs, leaves, stems, roots and shoots. Sometimes ingest small insects like ants and termites.
Village Weaver (Ploceus cucullatus)
The Village Weaver is a stocky 15–17 cm bird with a strong conical bill and dark reddish eyes.
This weaver builds a large coarsely woven nest made of grass and leaf strips with a downward facing entrance which is suspended from a branch in a tree. 2-3 eggs are laid. This is a colonial breeder, so many nests may hang from one tree.
Village Weaver feeds principally on seeds and grain, and can be a crop pest, but it will readily take insects, especially when feeding young, which partially redresses the damage to agriculture.
The calls of this bird include harsh buzzes and chattering.
Hamerkop (Scopus umbretta)
This sedentary medium-sized wading bird of 56 cm long, weighing 470 gm is know to occur from Africa to coastal southwest Arabia wetlands.
Hamerkops feed during the day, the main diet consists of amphibians and fish. Sometimes, they eat shrimp, insects and rodents. They walk in shallow water looking for prey, shuffling one foot at a time on the bottom or suddenly opening their wings to flush prey out of hiding.
Hamerkops, of all birds make the biggest nest in the trees, sometimes more than 1.5 m across, comprising perhaps 10,000 sticks and strong enough to support a man's weight. A mud-plastered entrance 13 to 18 cm wide in the bottom leads through a tunnel up to 60 cm long to a nesting chamber big enough for the parents and young.
They lay 3 to 7 eggs that start white but soon become stained. Both sexes incubate for 28 to 30 days. The chicks leave the nest at 44 to 50 days.
In culture, the bird is associated to bad omen; Some cultures in Uganda believe, when the bird patches on ones house then they are likely to be struck by lightening. In some places, when it calls over the house, people know that someone close to them has died. The Kalahari Bushmen believe that the inimical god Khauna would not like anyone to kill a Hamerkop. According to an old Malagasy belief, anyone who destroys its nest will get leprosy, and a Malagasy poem calls it an "evil bird". Such beliefs have given the bird some protection.