Uganda is home to more than 1065 species of birds, representing 50% of all bird species in Africa and 11% of all species worldwide. One of the highest concentrations of birds per square kilometer in Africa is found in this little area – Uganda, which is about 90041 square miles in size (roughly the size of Britain). By covering a limited region or only bird watching for a little length of time, Uganda birding rewards with the simple sighting of numerous birds on your birding African Safari. Uganda contains roughly 24 species that are indigenous to the nation, compared to the majority of the species that are found in other nations. Additionally, there are species that are unique and only found in the Albertine Rift; Uganda, Rwanda and Congo.

Top birding spots in Uganda

Up to 34 Important Bird Areas exist in Uganda, several of which have been designed for birding excursions and observing tours. Great blue turacos, regal sunbirds, bee-eaters, grey-crowned cranes, crested cranes, shoebill storks, African green broadbills, shelley’s crimsonwings, saddle-billed storks, green-breasted pittas, jameson’s antpeckers, Nahns Francolins, Marabou storks, flamingos, and brown chested The fascinating Shoe Bill Stork is the most sought-after species. The lakes and marshes of Uganda are home to this dinosaur-like bird. There is no better site to see them, even though they are not specific to Uganda. Birdwatchers would be disappointed if they did not encounter these beautiful species when in Uganda for a birding trip. The top locations in Uganda for birding tours are listed below;

1. Bwindi Impenetrable forest National Park

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is a haven for birds despite being known as the place where half of the surviving mountain gorillas reside. Over 350 different bird species may be seen in the park, 23 of which are unique to the Albertine Rift. Bwindi was ranked among the top ten birding destinations in Africa in 2010 by the Africa Birding Magazine due to its tranquil/green environment and distinctive bird species. The list of birds that can be seen in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is extensive and includes collared pails, equatorial akalat, forest robin, African broadbill, Archer’s robin chat, Narina’s Trogon, Montane oriole, yellow-eyed black flycatcher, Pale-breasted Illadopsis, red-throated alethe, rufous napped lark, pink-backed. The Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is separated into four sectors: Buhoma, Nkuringo, Ruhija, and Rushaga because of its size. In any of these regions, gorilla trekking and bird watching can be planned.

2. Mabamba Swamp

On the borders of Lake Victoria, there is a sizable marsh that may be reached via Entebbe or Mpigi. One of the key birding habitats in Uganda is Mabamba Swamp. One of the most popular birding locations in Uganda is noted for hosting the elusive shoebill. Under the supervision of local fisherman and birding guides, the shoebills are monitored using boats. It is really exciting to paddle through this large wetland with canoes. The Wayne’s Weaver, white-spotted fluff tail, Blue-shouldered Robin-chat, Black-billed Turaco, and sooty Boubou are a few other bird species to keep an eye out for in addition to the shoebill.

3. Kibale Forest National Park

The Kibale Forest national park, dubbed as the “primate’s capital of the world” and situated in western Uganda, is home to approximately 370 different bird species. The huge tropical rain forests are ideal for the birds since they allow them to avoid predators and reproduce safely. Among other species, a birder can see pigeons, scaly francolins, red-chested fluff tails, red-winged francolins, narina’s trogons, olive long-tailed cuckoos, Abyssinian-ground thrushes, grey-throated fly catchers, African pitas, black bee eaters, and the Uganda woodland warbler.

4. Queen Elizabeth National Park

Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park is a well-liked destination for birdwatchers. The savanna park contains the most bird species in the nation, with over 600 of them making it their home. Due to the park’s abundance of wetlands, tropical rain forest, savanna grassland, and forests, birds flourish there. Some species typically found in Central Africa are drawn to it by its strategic location and proximity to other national parks in Uganda. It is advised that birdwatchers stay in the park for six suitable days in order to witness all of the significant species. The Mweya, Kasenyi, and Katwe regions are the greatest sites to go birdwatching while visiting Queen Elizabeth National Park. Lake Edward and George are only two of the park’s outstanding birding locations. One of the best spots in East Africa to see birds is the Kazinga waterway that connects the two lakes. It provides a breathtaking view of many bird species near the shorelines and Africa’s renowned big game. Maramagambo woodland and Kyambura Gorge are both distinct areas for bird watching in and of themselves. The open-bill stork, swamp flycatcher, African jacana, black-billed barbet, falcons, eagle, water-thick knee, grey-headed kingfisher, knob-billed ducks, papyrus canary, shoebill stork, squacco heron, white-winged warbler, yellow bishop, thing-tailed Nightjars, and long-tailed cormorants are among the species to keep an eye.

5. Bigodi wetland sanctuary

This is a small wetland in western Uganda that is close to the Kibale forest. It was primarily gazetted to safeguard avian and tiny primate species. Despite being smaller than the Mabamba Swamp, the Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary is home to 200 different kinds of birds. The great blue turaco, papyrus gonolek, ibris, blue-head coucal, and black-faced rufus warbler are the most interesting species to watch out for when in the wetland.

6. Budongo Forest

The Murchison Falls National Park has this woodland. With more than 360 bird species, it is one of the most well-known birding locations in Uganda. Some of them are unique to the area, such as the yellow-footed flycatcher and Puvel’s illadopsis. Other fascinating bird species to keep an eye out for in the Budongo forest include the crowned eagle, dusky long-tailed cuckoo, lemon-bellied crombec, forest flycatcher, and fire-crestyed alethe.

How to enjoy birding expedition in Uganda

A tourist must be prepared to spend many hours in the birding region in order to truly appreciate the birding excursion. Birds are airborne and nimble species, which makes it more difficult to observe them than game. For the finest experience, one needs to pay attention, observe, and be patient. There are migratory bird species. Continually travelling from one nation to another depending on the time of year. Birdwatchers shouldn’t have great hopes of seeing them because of how unpredictable they are. The birding guides will still make every effort to locate a particular species, but there is no assurance that they will be successful. Despite this, considering the abundance of birds in the nation, there is a very good probability of spotting a particular bird.

What to pack for birding tour in Uganda

Water proof Field bag

For carrying your birding necessities, such as a camera, a pair of binoculars, energy-boosting snacks, and other goods that fit throughout birding through various habitats and terrains.

Field guidebook

Depending on how many days you want to spend birding, a field guidebook is a valuable item to bring for your next birding safari in Uganda. It will help you preserve the knowledge you learn while birding. With the assistance of the tour operator you used to plan your birding excursion, you can obtain a guidebook from the local Ugandan book stores. In addition, you have the option of downloading the manual to prevent hauling heavy items.

Wide brimmed hat

You should always have a wide-brimmed hat with you so that you can protect your head from the intense tropical sun.

Hiking boots

You will need decent hiking rubber shoes if you plan to go across the many bird habitats, which range from marshes, woods, and savannah plains.


Never try to leave your camera behind when on a birding safari because having your camera with you is the finest way to record a variety of bird species for your future memories. When birding, a camera with spare memory cards, batteries, and other supplies is essential. When hunting in wetlands, you will have the opportunity to photograph the shoe-bills stork or an African fish eagle in flight. Ensure that the camera you carry has the ideal balance of power, mobility, a super zoom for low-light situations, and weight.

Light rain jacket

A light rain jacket should always be included in your luggage while visiting Uganda for a birding tour, rain or shine. This is because the weather is so unpredictable and may start to rain in the morning and stop in the afternoon.


You might encounter too-small species during your birding trip in Uganda, and the best way to see them is through a pair of binoculars. Some bird species will go above and above to carry backup binoculars in case their primary ones are lost.


Using a flashlight while out at night is essential for observing nocturnal bird species and identifying birds in poorly lit environments.

Bottle of Water

Never forget to bring enough mineral water bottles on your Uganda birding safari excursion so that you can stay hydrated. Since birding typically entails natural hikes and your body must be physically strained, you must always drink water.


The standard things to carry are clothing, shoes, and a camera. Lotions, tooth paste, toothbrushes, hand sanitizer, and hair gels are also excellent choices for toiletries.

Charger, Cables and Power bank

Remember to bring cables and chargers for your phone, camera, laptop, tablet, or iPad, as well as some rechargeable batteries.


When traveling to distant birding locations, it is a good idea to bring your prescription with you if you use medication or have a physical illness. Always take your prescribed medication along with anti-malarial, anti-diarrhea, and anti-cough medications.

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