Venture into the jungles as you carryout chimpanzee tracking through the forest, listen quietly for the frenzied hooting of excited chimpanzees well before you catch sight of them swinging swiftly through the trees. You will often hear them long before you see them as they whoop and holler and break branches high up in the dense forest canopies they inhabit.
There are very few places left where you can still see chimpanzees in the wild with the best countries to see these endangered creatures being Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania.
Most chimpanzees’ families in these places are wild, though many groups have become fully habituated to humans. Besides that, along with your guide you can get much closer to them to study their behaviour and to take photographs.
Chimpanzee tracking also known as Primates walk begins at 08.00 for the morning exercise, 15.00 for the afternoon exercise and lasts 2 to 3 hours according to where the chimpanzees are located and how fast they are moving. Chimpanzee are the most sought-after primate by visitors, but you should look out for the black & white colobus, red tailed monkey or the grey cheeked mangabey.
Chimpanzee Habituation Experience
Chimpanzee Habituation Experience is a lifetime experience therefore it allows you to accompany researchers for habituation of the chimpanzees as they go through their daily activities, thereby getting used to human presence without changing their nature. During your tour, expect coming across the chimps de-nesting (in their nocturnal nests) between 05.30 to 06.30, follow them throughout the day till they make new nests and the night around 19.00. The Habituation Experience can only be experienced in Kibale Forest in Uganda.
Chimpanzees are our closest living relatives because they share 98% of human DNA, they are Sociable, intelligent, communicative and have the ability to utilize tools like rocks for crushing nuts, empty pods for hollowing out water plus sticks for capturing termites from their holes. The average weight of an adult well grown male chimpanzee is between 35 and 70 kilograms, with a height of approximately 3 meters whereas tan adult female chimpanzee weighs between 26 and 50 kilograms and a height between 2 and 4 feet.
Where to Trek Chimpanzees in Uganda.
While trekking the chimpanzees, it is not a guarantee that you will see the impressive clients though Kibale forest offers a 95% of viewing the chimpanzees. Uganda is a primate hub with over 13 different primates and the chimpanzees being among them and they can be viewed in the places below;
Kibale forest national park
Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Toro-Semliki wildlife reserve
Ngamba Island Chimpanzee sanctuary
Uganda wildlife Education centre
Enjoy the sight of chimpanzees going about their daily life, eating fruit, watching and grooming each other. Tracking chimpanzees is a less tiresome compared to tracking gorillas since the landscape in the above areas is not strenuous though they move faster and are often high up in the trees.
In Uganda today, efforts to conserve the chimpanzees are extensively acknowledged and well supported by the Jane Goodall Foundation which has played a major role in the overall conservation of not only these Chimpanzees but the Gorillas as well found in Uganda.
What to carry while Chimpanzee Trekking
Wear comfortable shoes with a good grip, suitable for climbing steep moist muddy slopes
Wear clothes that are long sleeved as this will protect them from the pricking thickets as you move through the verdant jungle
Carry a rain gear, since the weather here is highly unpredictable
Bring enough drinking water plus energy snacks to keep your energy levels high
Carry a pair of binoculars to view the chimpanzees at a distance.
Carry a camera for taking photos but remember to remove the camera flashes as they are strictly not permitted.
Rules and regulations of Chimpanzee tracking
Chimpanzees though habituated are still wild animals that when provoked they will become aggressive to define their territory. Below are some guidelines to follow while trekking the chimpanzees and while in their company.
A distance of just about 8m is very important between you and the chimps.
People with diseases such as flu or diarrhea may not allowed in the park.
Avoid eating near the chimps.
Children below the age of 12 are prohibited from entering the park.
Guide is the only one to help get access to the forest.
Chimps need freedom therefore no provoking them once you enter the park.
Flash photography are not allowed in the park.
Chimpanzee tracking is fascinating experience where you spend time in the natural jungle tracking the impressive creatures. Ganyana Safaris will organise for you a tailor-made safari where you will be allowed to spend an hour with our mesmerizing relatives, as you observe them swing from one tree to another, feed, play about or progress speedily on the ground right in front of you.