The Uganda Tourism Board has propelled a campaign to promote birding in Uganda through the conservation and preservation of the country’s rare bird species. Birding is a popular tourism activity in many eco-tourism destinations in the world activity. Uganda is one of the popular sites look at for the bird watchers. Uganda has 11% of the total bird species in the world with 1060 species recorded in the motherland. The popular destinations for bird watching in Uganda are Queen Elizabeth National Park, Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Mabamba swamp area, Mabira forests and Murchison Falls National Park.
Birding in Uganda has been a dull tourism activity but the last couple of years, we have seen a mammoth of tourists coming into the country to seek and watch the birds. With more tourists interested in bird watching, the Uganda tourism board last week launched a campaign at Mabira forests to promote birding in Uganda. This campaign pulled lots of important people in the tourism industry to witness what the project was to bring into play in the tourism fraternity.
At the campaign the executive director of Uganda tourism board Lilly Ajarova said, “Birding will provide employment as we will need bird guides, we need more youths to be trained and this is an opportunity to address the problem of unemployment.” “We need to develop more sites for birding because to be able to do birding you need to have more trails that are created in specific destinations.”
The Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife Antiquities, The Uganda Tourism Board, The National Forestry Authority and Tour Operators are now putting more emphasis on conserving the endangered fox’s river a bird that was rediscovered after being elusive for some good years. The Uganda wildlife authority official said,” we thought the bird (fox’s river) had got extinct, one of our colleague took a photo of it unknowingly and posted it. We realized it was fox’s river and we are working on establishing its area of operation (habitat)”. It is now for in Pian Upe area, Lake Bisina, Lake Opeta in Karamoja region, it stays around those areas.
According to tour operators and bird guides, tourists who do bird watching often spend more time in the country than other visiting tourists hence spending more money. Uganda is trying to improve its tourism put putting emphasis on high spenders like birders who bring in a large sum of forex.