African national parks close to protect gorillas and chimpanzees from coronavirus

All gorilla tracking destinations in Africa have responded to the spread of the Corona pandemic by closing their National Parks especially those harboring the Chimps and mountain Gorillas. Rwanda, Uganda and DRC have responded by suspending all primate tourism and research activities in all protected areas for Gorillas and chimpanzees.
It is clear that human diseases are a great threat to these endangered apes, the Corvid-19 pandemic has however not been proven in relation to the gorillas and chimps. The temporary closure of the national parks that harbor the gorillas and chimps is to protect them from potential transmission of this deadly Corona virus that has been spreading at a high speed.
DRC closed its Virunga National park until 1st June 2020, Rwanda closed volcanoes, Gishwati Mukula and Nyungwe have been closed. Uganda also suspended all primate tourism and research in Bwindi, Mgahinga, Kibale and Chimpanzee tracking at the Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National parks until 30th April, 2020. It’s not surprising because even if the parks were to remain open, there would be no visitors since there’s restriction of movement in all the countries.
The major purpose however remains avoiding human interaction with gorillas which could lead to transmission of Covid-19 virus to the protected animals.
Cost of Gorilla permits
The cost of Gorilla permits in Uganda is now at 700USD for Non residents, 600 USD for Foreign residents and 250,000 UGx for East African residents. Rwanda charges 1500 USD for each person intending to watch the mountain Gorillas in the Volcanoes National Park. this charge does not recriminate residents and none residents. the purpose of the high charge was to set Rwanda as a high-end travel destination. DRC on the other hand offers the cheapest cost for Gorilla tracking at only 400 USD per person in Kahuzi Beiga National Park. These permits can be acquired through Shoebill safaris by just getting into our inbox by Mail.
Where to see the Mountain Gorillas
Mountain Gorillas live in the high Virunga ranges of Rwanda in Volcanoes National park, Mgahinga Gorilla National park in Uganda, Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and in Kahuzi Beiga in the DRC. The gorillas live in large groups headed by a dominant male known as a silverback. A young female gorilla will be mature at about age 6 and can be able to give birth to another Gorilla. The Gorillas spend their day feeding on the forest vegetation, leaves, seasonal fruits, ants and plant roots.
Gorilla Trekking
Gorilla Trekking involves searching for the habituated mountain Gorillas in their natural habitat. They live in small families and their daily lives are guided by the availability of food in the different locations they are. Tracking them is a bit difficult since they keep moving from Place to Place in search for enough quantities of food for them to eat to capacity.
Gorilla Habituation
Gorilla Habituation is more impressive as it involves training the Gorillas to get used to the presence of human beings in their natural habitat without causing trouble to them. the exercise also involves naming the Gorillas after taking a keen understanding of the behavior of each of the family members. Visitors are allowed to carry on th9is exercise of habituating the Gorillas with researchers from Uganda Wildlife Authority. This exercise normally takes 2 to 3 years before the Gorilla family is opened for tracking. Participating in this mind-blowing experience is the most exciting event for any African trip and visitors are allowed 4 full hours in a face to face contact with the forest giants.
Where to do Gorilla Habituation
Uganda is apparently the only place where Gorilla habituation is done in Bwindi Impenetrable forest National Park. A special Gorilla group was set aside for this activity and visitors who wish to engage in this exercise are allowed to carry on. Gorilla Habituation is charged 1500 USD in Uganda and visitors are given 4 full hours with the mountain Gorillas.
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