In Uganda, we only have two conservation parks that are homes to only few remaining gorillas in the world and these include Bwindi impenetrable national park in Kanungu district and Mgahinga national park in Kisoro district between the border of Uganda and Rwanda.
Mountain gorillas are apes (Gorilla beringei beringei) and are one of the two subspecies of the Eastern gorillas (other group is Gorilla beringei graueri), these are listed as threatened and endangered species by IUCN. Other parks which have Mountain gorilla population include Volcanoes national park in Rwanda and Virunga national park in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Studies have it that an estimated number of 1000 primates of mountain gorilla population are remaining in the whole world. Bwindi impenetrable has the huge population of mountain gorillas in Uganda with an estimated figure 340 populations and followed by Mgahinga national park with fewer gorilla populations. Bwindi is the most highly visited park in Uganda, at least 72 tourists visit the park on a daily basis and in a group of 8 tourists each.
Bwindi national park has 8 habituated gorilla families with two subdivisions that is the southern part of the park and the northern part of the park. The southern part has 3 families comprising of Nshongi group, Nkuringo group, Mishaya group whereas the northern part of the park has Bitukura group, Oruzogo group, Mubare group, Habinyanja group and Rushegura group.
Mgahinga national park has only got one habituated group comprising of 9 members with 3 silverbacks. This is a migratory group which crosses borders between Uganda and Rwanda thus making it difficult to track this group.
Note: Gorilla families are led by a dominant silverback and they so much fight for their families than territories.
Bwindi national park overwhelms Mgahinga national park for it has the majority gorilla groups and highly visited park in Uganda. During the peak season, gorilla permits tend to sell out very fast hence causing scarcity in their demand.
Bwindi national is endowed with a variety of luxurious accommodation facilities which are close to famous gorilla families in the areas of Buhoma, Ruhija, Rushaga and Nkuringo like Mist camp, Ruhija gorilla lodge, clouds and many more hence saving the trekker’s time. Mgahinga has few accommodation facilities for example Amajambere Iwacu community camp (Budget) and Mount Gahinga (Mid range).
Booking for gorilla permits is very much important since it prevents last minutes disappointments, relieves a traveler from the burden of looking for money as well as time saving.