Birdwatching Tour to Murchison Falls National Park - 6 Days

African Elephant

Tour Highlights

Departs: Entebbe International Airport Tour Length: 6 Days Focus: Birding | Game Viewing Key Species: Shoebill Stork, Orange Weaver, Pel's Fishing Owl, Giant Kingfisher Expected # of birds: 250 Birding Pace: Relaxed Physical Difficulty: Easy Group Limit: Maximum 8 Bird Photography: Worthwhile Possible Extensions: Chimpanzee Tracking

Murchison Falls National Park protects a variety of untamed African savannah with a Checklist of more than 460 bird species. The 9th ranking of Africa’ birding spots, is 90km from Masindi town in the north-western part of Uganda. This is the largest amongst all national parks in the Pearl of Africa.

Day 1: Arrival for Murchison Falls National Park Birding Tour

Avian Safaris bird guide will pick you from the airport to your hotel, depending on the time of arrival, we bird Entebbe Botanical Gardens

Overnight at Entebbe Traveller's Inn

Day 2: Uganda Birdwatching Safari to Murchison Falls National Park

After breakfast, we bird to Uganda’s largest National Park. We stop in Masindi for lunch then proceed to the top of the spectacular falls.

Overnight at Paraa Safari Lodge | Red Chilli Safari camp (FB)

Day 3: Whole Day Bird Watching on a Game drive

We have an early morning breakfast then go birding on a game drive, we take the best trucks and to the delta, we bird. We carry packed lunch with us so we will waste no moment if we are to see a bigger number of savanna birds along with other wildlife. Among the many species you should expect include; The Secretary Bird, The Giant, Pied, Malachite, Stripped, Chestnut-bellied, Blue-breasted, Woodland and the African Pygmy Kingfishers, House Martin, African Rock Martin, Lesser Stripped Swallow, Ethiopian Swallow, Angola Swallow, Red-rumped Swallow, Rufous-chested Swallow, Nightingale, Rock Thrush, Pied Wheatear, Whinchat, Common Redstart, White-fronted Black Chat, Sooty Chat, Isabelline Wheatear, Common Bulbul, Cameroon Sombre Greenbul, Yellow-throated Greenbul, the Black, White-breasted, and Red-shouldered Cuckoo Shrikes, the Black and Penduline Tits, the Arrow-marked, Black-lored and Brown Babblers, Nubian Woodpecker, Cardinal Woodpecker, Brown-backed Woodpecker, Lesser Honeyguide, Scaly-throated Honeyguide, Black Scimitarbill, Green Wood Hoopoe, a number of Buzzards, Barbets, Rollers, Harriers, Vultures, Eagles, Bee-eaters, Warblers, and so forth.

Standard-winged Nightjar

Overnight at Paraa Safari Lodge | Red Chilli Rest camp (FB)

Day 4: Bird Uganda on a Nature Walk and a Launch Cruise

Wake up early, bird on foot with a game ranger for the early and late morning active birds. We get back to the hotel for lunch then take a launch cruise to the bottom of the falls. Here, your list shall include; The Shoebill Stork, Little Grebe, Great White and the Pink-backed Pelicans, Red-knobbed Coot, African Water Rail, Allen’s Gallinule, Black Crake, African Crake, Black-crowned Crane, Southern Pochard, The Egyptian, African Pygmy, and the Spur-winged Gooses, Storks like; the Saddle-billed, Open-billed, Abdim’s, White, Yellow-billed, Marabou, and the Woolly-necked, the Little and Dwarf Bitterns, Night Heron, Black Heron, Goliath Heron, Purple Heron, Green Backed Heron, Common Squacco Heron, Great White Egret, Cormorants, the African and Eurasian Spoonbills, the Lesser Flamingo, Lesser Jacana, African Finfoot, Painted Snipe, Wattled Plover the list is very long.

Overnight at Paraa Safari Lodge | Red Chilli Rest camp (FB)

Day 5: Bird Tour to Kampala

After an early morning breakfast, we bird on a game drive and in the afternoon bird to Entebbe- lunch enroute.

Overnight at Entebbe Traveller's Inn

Day 6: Departure - End of Murchison Falls National Park Uganda bird watching tour

Mountain Gorilla (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.

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.

Grauer's Broadbill (Pseudocalyptomena graueri)

Kingdom: Animalia, Phylum: Chordata, Class: Aves, Family: Eurylaimidae, Genus: Pseudocalyptomena, Species: Pseudocalyptomena graueri

The Grauer's Broadbill or African Green Broadbill (Pseudocalyptomena graueri) is an actual broadbill, one of only a few African representatives of a primarily Asian family. It is bright green with a blue throat and vent and a small bill, quite unlike those of the other broadbills. It is endemic to the Albertine Rift Mountains of Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests where it forages in canopies.

It is one of the African Big Five bird species, highly sought after by ornithologists but very elusive.

The species is both globally endangered and endangered according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

TOP