Birding in Uganda

Shoebill Stork Uganda

Uganda is a birding paradise boasting a massive bird list of more of than 1073 recorded bird species making up 50% of Africa’s bird species and 11% of the world species. This huge bird list is contained within a small territory of only 90041 square miles (about the size of Britain), hence having one of the highest concentration of birds per square kilometers in Africa. Birding in Uganda rewards with easy spotting of many birds by covering just a small area or birding for a short period of time.

The incredible diversity of habitats that no other area in Africa can match is the reason Uganda harbors such a huge diversity of birds and collects so many migrant birds during the year. Uganda lies in a unique position where she shares Africa’s major ecological zones (apart from the sea) and each has associated bird species, including many that are range restricted.

Top birding spots in Uganda

Uganda has up to 34 Important Bird Areas (IBA) many of which have been developed for birdwatching and birding tours. Also, the birding community in Uganda continues to identify other new bird-rich spots across the country and establishing birding trails. Found at most of the birding spots throughout Uganda are local site guides that have been trained in bird identification and can identify all the site’s resident species.

Below are the most visited spots for birding tours in Uganda:

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – Africa’s number one birding spot according to the African Bird Club

Mabamba Bay Wetland – Best spot to see the Shoebill in Africa

The Entebbe Peninsula

Lutembe bay wetland – bird hotspot near Kampala and Entebbe

Makanaga wetland – another Shoebill spot and great wetland birding

Lazarus Forest, Bethany Land Institute – a birding gem not for from Kampala. Though the forest which is under restoration is at the center of attention, it is the environs of bushland, swamp, garden and woodland, that make this a rare place near Kampala where someone wanting to see a variety of local birds can go birding comfortably.

Kibale Forest National Park

Rwenzori Mountains National Park

Kidepo Valley National Parka

Lake Mburo National Park

Queen Elizabeth National Park

Semuliki National Park

Budongo Forest – The Royal Mile trail and Busingiro

Murchison Falls National Park

Mabira Forest Reserve

 Mpanga Forest Reserve

The top ten Birds of Uganda (Most sought after on birding trips in Uganda)


Green Breasted Pitta

Rwenzori Turaco

African Green Broadbill

Brown-chested Lapwing

Jameson’s Antpecker

Nahan’s Francolin

Black Bee-eater

Karamoja Apalis

Puvel’s Illadopsis

Birding tours in Uganda – Out tailored trip itineraries

1 day birding trip to Mabamba Swamp and Mpanga Forest

7 days Birding and Wildlife tour in Murchison Falls National Park and Budongo Forest

8 day birding and gorilla tour to Bwindi National Park

14 days western Uganda birding and wildlife tour

28 days hardcore birding in Uganda

24 days Uganda and Rwanda combined birding tour

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