Attractions in Kidepo Valley National Park

Wild life in Kidepo Valley National Park

Wild life in Kidepo Valley National Park  
Kidepo National Park has a great diversity of animal species compared to other protected areas in Uganda. In the year 1971, almost an estimate of 80 species of mammals was stated and 28 of which were not identified to occur in any other Ugandan park. The Carnivore species which are said to be unique and only found in Kidepo in Karamoja region include the striped hyena, cheetah and hunting dog, bat-eared fox, aardwolf, caracal. Kidepo for long suffered illegal hunting during the Amin regime and it’s trying to recover from years of poaching that affected most of the wild animals. cheetah-kidepo

For instance the Lesser Kudu, striped Hyena, Grant’s gazelle and Beisa Oryx are not sited in these present times and are assumed to be locally extinct. Elephant, bush pig , Rothschild giraffe, Burch ell’s zebra, warthog, cape buffalo, eland, jackson’s hartebeest, bush duskier, bohor reed buck, and oribi are few of the other game herds species a long with the cat family species i.e. leopard ,lion, common zebra, Buffalo, and a range of small cats, spotted hyena, Kangoni, side-striped jackal-commonly seen and black-backed jackal. Five species of primate are also got in the park for example the Kavirondo bush baby being endemic. Guenther’s Dik Dik. Senegal Galago may be also got in the rest camp at night and the common White-tailed Oribis is common in the Narus Valley, while the dry thickets marked with thorns are present in the north with counts of mongoose which is always encountered on night game drives while on safaris in Uganda. Kidepo also has a very rich and diverse reptile fauna.

kidepo girraffe 2

The park also provides high opportunities of watching the tree climbing lions that always sits on the rock just as you enter the Apoka Park Headquarter or sit on sauces trees along Narus valley

Bird Species in Kidepo Valley National Park

Bird Species in Kidepo Valley National Park. The park is blessed with numerous bird species and some of these include Vinaceous Dove , Abyssinian Ground, Long-tailed and Standard-winged Nightjars, Mosque Swallow, Eastern Yellow and Jackson’s Hornbills, Nubian Woodpecker, Ruppell’s and Superb Starlings, Pygmy Falcon, Scarlet-chested Sunbird, Red-cheeked Cordon-bleu, Little Weaver, White-bellied and Hartlaub’s Bustards, Orange-winged, Green-winged, and Red-winged Pytilias.

Others include: Yellow-necked Spur fowl, Eastern Pale Chanting Go-shawk, Bruce’s Green Pigeon, Rose-ringed Parakeet, Fox Kestrel, Stone Partridge, Pied, Isabelline and Heuglin’s Whea-ters Ethiopian Swallow, Singing Bush lark, White-bellied Tit , Heuglin’s and Clapperton’s Francolins, Violet-tipped Courser, Abyssinian and Rufous-crowned Rollers, Black-headed Plover, Four-banded Sand Grouse, Red-winged Lark, Ostrich, African Grey Flycatcher, Fan-tailed Raven, Slate-coloured Boubou, Little Green Bee-eater, Black-breasted and Red-fronted Barbets, Superb Starling, Brown-backed Woodpecker, Karamoja Apalis, Red billed Oxpecker, Red pate and Foxy Cisticolas among others.
Apoka Tourism Centre. The Centre is overlooking the game-rich Narus Valley which is rich wild game and habitat to an upmarket lodge called Apoka lodge and also simply -run cottages, by UWA and this form tourism hubs.
Most of the ranger guides are found at Apoka these escort tourists on interesting game drives and scenic view. The tourists who use public means always hire park trucks. The center also has a craft shop fully packed with books, souvenirs; and besides there is place where one can get bottled water, sodas and alcoholic beverages. For most cases food is prepared upon visitors’ request and also things like cooking gas, utensils can be hired by individuals who are prepared to cook for themselves.

Kidepo Valley and Kanangorok Hot Springs

Kidepo Valley and Kanangorok Hot Springs.

Kidepo Valley is dry for most part of the year which makes it to have a lesser wildlife concentration compared to Narus Valley. However, one can note that it is thrilling to drive along the valley exploring the dry Kidepo valley with its 50m wide white sand bed lying amidst banks that are covered with borasus palms. Kidepo literally translated as picking from below and the valley was visited by people coming to gather fallen borassus fruit for fermenting to make palm beer. The Hot Springs known as the Kanangorok is estimated to be lying 11km over the Kidepo River which is on the Sudan border. This is a favorable view point where one can sit and view the mountains beyond the frontier.

Narus Valley in Kidepo Valley National Park.

Narus Valley in Kidepo Valley National Park. Narus Valley is grassland rolling plain amidst the shield of overlooking distant mountains. The Narus Valley is gifted with permanent water sources which pulls great concentrations of wildlife to keep with the valley for the most of the year. No wonder the area is equipped with game tracks including the four loop circuits that stretch to enable valley exploration round Apoka. A range of wild life including lions, Jackson’s hartebeest, giraffes, buffaloes, reedbucks and oribis can be explored around the valley. The cheetahs and leopards are not easily encountered. The water hole near the Tourism Centre and the Narus dam present ideal observations points for the range of game most especially during the dry season. Towards the southern stretch of Katurum loop, the Katurum kopje is an enchanting site that offers the impressive views to the north across the Narus valley heading to the Morungule mountain range.
Mount Morungule
morungule kidepo
Mount Morungole is located at 2,750m above sea level and is crossed by the Narus and Kidepo Rivers that supplies the park’s wildlife as well as natural habitat as a whole with water. The Morungole Range forms the southern corners of the park and rises from the plains a few kilometres northeast of Apoka. This special region can be visited on foot with a ranger and the mountain slopes are home to the IK tribe which is the smallest ethnic group in Uganda, with their specific –unique culture.
Namamukweny Valley Namamukweny is a word derived from Napore people and it means a lonely place with few people mostly in regard to the birds the valley is inhabited by a large number of bird species such as the White-crested Turaco, Common Bulbul, Abyssinian Roller and Eastern Paradise Whydah, Green Wood Hoopoe among others. It is situated in the north-west of Kidepo Valley Park and can be reached by car or on foot.
namamukweny full view
Lomej Hills the Lomej Hills are a short drive from the headquarters. They are best viewing point for wildlife and birds with even the mountain reedbuck.
Local people. Kidepo valley National park is surrounded by the Karamajong pastoralists and the indigenous Karamajong who are cultivators that were occupying the park before it was gazetted into park. The pastoralist communities around are well known for their nomadism though they have started to copy up new farming mechanisms which needs to settle on one place.  They have a lot of historical heritage that can be of interest even to a second time traveler including their Manyattas and their art and craft.

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