Gorillas, Biggest Foreign Earner in Uganda

there geneva; font-size: small;”>“The foreign earnings Uganda gets from Gorillas contributes about 9 percent NDP and if they continue increasing, health the earnings might take over every other tourist attraction in the country, sales ” said Mutagamba.

She told journalists today Tuesday during a press briefing at Uganda Media Centre that there has been a considerable increase in the mountain gorilla population in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park .

This follows a three-week census that carried out in the park in September and October 2011.

“The population of mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda has been confirmed to stand at a minimum of 400 according to results from the census that was carried out by Uganda Wildlife Authority with assistance from the International Gorilla Conservation Program (IGCP), Institute for the Conservation of Nature (ICCN) in DRC and RDB from Rwanda,” she said.

The census results showed that currently there are 36 gorilla families in Bwindi and 16 solitary males. Of the 36 families, 10 are habituated for tourism and research.

Mutagamba said that the two censuses carried out in Virunga Massif and Bwindi in 2011, confirm that the world’s population of mountain gorillas stands a total of 880.

2010 census results showed that there were 480 mountain gorillas in the Virunga Massif which comprises Mgahinga Gorilla National Park(Uganda), Volcanoes National Park (Rwanda) and Virunga National Park (DRC), and the 400 which has been confirmed in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park which is entirely in Uganda.

“Among the three countries; Uganda, Rwanda and DRC, Uganda is still the lowest in tourism attraction but it is doing very in tourism conservation. All we need to do is put more effort in conservation,” said Mutagamba.

Uganda always conducts a census every after four years. “We have a census every after four years because gorillas have babies once in four years,” said Dr. Gladys Kalema, Chairperson Planning and Research Committee of UWA.

Mutagamba added that the last census that was carried out in Bwindi in 2006 showed that the total number of mountain gorillas was 340, while an earlier census that was carried out in 2002 showed the population was 320.

“The increase in the population of mountain gorillas in Bwindi is testimony to the sound natural resources management policies that are being implemented in the protected areas,” she said.

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