Mucunguzi Gorilla Family

Mucunguzi Gorilla Family in Rushaga Sector of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest

Mucunguzi gorilla family is a habituated gorilla group in Rushaga sector of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, one of the gorilla parks in Uganda. Mucunguzi gorilla group derives its name from a silverback Mucunguzi and the word Mucunguzi locally means the savoir.

Mucunguzi gorilla family consists of 12 members and the majority of the group members are female gorillas. The family separated from Bweza gorilla group after a severe fight. Today, Mucunguzi is the leader of this gorilla family.

Mucunguzi gorilla group broke away from Bweza under the leadership of Silverback Mucunguzi who was chased and left to be a solitary male after a serious scuffle that broke out between the governing silverback in Bweza group. Mucunguzi being the third youngest silverback in the family at the time, he left. Following a longer lone stay, Mucunguzi overran Bikingi gorilla group, went away with some females to start his own family unit.

Largely, mountain gorillas are organized in families of 5 to 30 and above members and each group is headed by a principal silverback. Gorillas are shy primates, humble and gigantic in sizes. Trekking safaris to visit Mucunguzi gorilla family begin from Rushaga region of Bwindi forest and last about 2 to 6 hours including one hour of enchanted happenstance.

Other Gorilla Groups in Rushaga Sector

Apart from Mucunguzi group, Rushaga gorilla trekking region also comprises of more habituated gorilla families that Mishaya, Kahungye, Mukiza, Kutu, Bweza, Bikyingi, Nshongi and Busingye groups. All pre gorilla trekking briefings take place at Rushaga sector wildlife office where visitors are allocated families to trek and given guidelines to follow during trekking and while with the endangered primates.

Gorilla Permits

There are 12 gorilla permits available for trekking Mucunguzi gorilla family members in Rushaga area. Each of the permits is at US Dollars 700 to all foreign nonresidents. One may choose to either do gorilla trekking or gorilla habituation experience within Rushaga region US Dollars 1500 per person. With gorilla habituation experience, one stays with gorillas for 4 hours in their midst unlike 1 hours under the normal gorilla trekking.

Things to carry to trek gorillas

Anyone planning to trek mountain gorillas in Uganda should pack essential items to properly enjoy the adventure. Among the things one must have consist of energy giving snacks, long-sleeved shirts, sunscreen,  waterproof hiking boots, camera with not flashlight, insect repellents, first aid kit, sun glasses, bottled water, gardening gloves, passport, visa, valid gorilla permit and many others. Before you visit gorillas, it’s always important to observe carefully things to pack for the gorilla trip.

Accommodation Facilities around Rushaga Area

The best way to visit Mucunguzi gorilla family in particular or any other habituated gorilla family in Rushaga is by having a night in the proximate lodges. Some of the lodges for comfortable stay around Rushaga sector include Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Camp, Nshongi Camp, Gorilla Safari Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Lodge and more.

Access to Rushaga Sector

To access Mucunguzi gorilla family, you need to drive to Rushaga region in the south of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Rushaga is accessible after a 10-hour drive from Kampala through Masaka – Mbarara – Kabale and Kisoro before reaching the area.

Alternatively, one may take approximately 3 to 4 hours from Kigali in Rwanda via Katuna border point to Kabale or through Canika border post to Kisoro then to Rushaga. A third aption is to fly from Entebbe International Airport or Kajjansi Airfield to Kisoro Airstrip and then transfer by road to Rushaga sector.