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Home » Information » Gorilla Families in Uganda – Gorilla Groups in Uganda

Gorilla Families in Uganda – Gorilla Groups in Uganda

Gorillas can be tracked in only four regions of interest in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Each sector or region has its gorilla group as explained below;

Buhoma sector

Buhoma found at the northwestern part of the Park facing the dark- hilly forests of the Park. This region contains three Gorilla groups.

  • Mubare Gorilla Family

Gorilla tracking at Buhoma region enables you to meet the first and oldest group of Gorillas to be habituated in 1998.

There were 12 family members in the group with a dominant silverback called Ruhondeza and later added up to 18 members but due to different circumstances like death, moving into new groups, the group lost many of its family members thus remaining with only 5 members however other 4 members joint them and making it adorable to track is gorillas. The sector is now a priority to many tourists and tour operators.

  • The Habinyanja Family

Gorilla safaris at Buhoma also gives tourists the chance to track the Habinyanja gorilla family. This group was habituated in 1997 and in 1999 it was the first group to be visited by tourists.

The name Habinyanja means body of water from the word Nyanja. It was referring to a swamp in the park were this group was first sighted.

The group comprises of 18 members with 2 silverbacks. This is because other members divided from the group and formed Rushegura group.

However this two groups cross cover each other and now the stay together and peacefully. The cause of their division was the commotion and fighting among the members for power.

  • Rushegura Group

Gorilla tracking tours at Buhoma enriches tourists experience while tracking the Rushegura group of gorillas. This gorilla group was habituated in 2000 and later opened in 2002 for tourism.

The group is a section from the Habinyanja group who divided because of conflict within the group. It comprise of 19 members including 1 silverback.

This gorilla group is very active within Buhoma and covers a broad territory and sometime crossing to the local village of Batwa. Sometimes they move to UWA park-office, Bwindi waterfall and even Buhoma camp.

Nkuringo sector

Nkurigo sector is found on the southern side of the park and became the park’s second tracking trailhead in 2004. There is only one gorilla family in this section. The word Nkrungo means ‘’round hill” in Rukiga language. This is the hill were this gorilla group was first sighted.

  • Nkuringo Family

Gorilla trekking safaris to Nkuringo sector makes tourists to encounter with this adventures gorillas. The gorilla family has 19 members with 2 silverbacks.

These gorillas are habituated because they cross to the local communities’ gardens and thus feeding on their crops like sweet potatoes, and bananas.

Opening up this gorilla family was seen as a way of protecting them from local communities since they will benefit directly from them.

Rushaga sector

This section is found in southeast of the park. It was opened for gorilla tracking safaris in 2009. And the sector has three family groups which can be tracked form this point. The Shongi trailhead descends in to the depths of the forests. The gorillas in this group includes.

  • Mishaya Gorilla Family

Gorilla tracking safaris offers tourists the choice to visit Rushaga and track Mishaya Gorilla group. This group came about when silverback Mishaya broke away from Nshongi gorilla family with about 8 members in 2010.

The group split up due to quarrel and disagreement among the family members. Like in any relationships, they gorillas fight for power and women and Silverback Mishaya is known as a strong fighter since he is the only male with female in his group.

  • Nshongi Gorilla Family

Gorilla trekking safaris gives tourists the opportunity to track the Nshongi gorilla family. Nshongi was the introduced in 2009 and was the largest group to have habituated about 36 members with 4 silverbacks.

This gorilla group was very strange in a way that the silverback heading them was not yet old and the three silverbacks lived in unity without any attempt to grab leadership.

In July 2010, the group divided and were only 26 members remaining forming the present Mishaya gorilla group.

The family divided again in 2013 and was reduced to 18members forming the Bweza family consisting of 10 individuals.

  • Kahungye Gorilla Family

Uganda safaris provide tourists with the chance to visit the Kahunge gorilla family that was habituated in 2011. This gorilla family had some misunderstandings and managed to split up giving a new group called Busingye meaning peace.

  • Busingye Gorilla Family

Gorilla tracking in Uganda is an opportunity to track down the Busingye gorilla family who split from the Kahungye family.

This gorilla family consists of 9 members including 1 silverback. Silverback Busingye surprising decided to split the group in June 2012 and created his own family. Silverback Busingye likes showing off his power and fights to grab female to add to his group.

  • Bweza Gorilla Family

Uganda safari offer tourists the opportunity to track the Bweza gorilla family who consist of 9 members including 1 silverback.

The Bweza gorilla family broke up from the Mishaya group who had broken form Nshongi family the largest group ever habituated in Bwindi National Park. The Bweza group was opened for tracking in 2012.

Ruhija sector

This section is found on the eastern side on top of a hill at 2,345m. This sector is Uganda’s highest tracking trail and one of the only two areas in the park were elephants reside. This sector has the following gorilla families.

  • Bitukura Gorilla Family

Gorilla tracking safaris to Ruhija sector offers surprises to tourists engage in tracking the Bitukura gorilla family. This family comprises of 14 members including 4 silverback.

Bitukura gorilla family named after a river where the gorilla family was sighted is was habituated in 2007 and opened for tourism in 2008.

The family was originally having 24 members but has been reduced to only 14 members due to conflict, fighting in the group which made some members to leave the group and thus were welcomed by other gorilla families.

This gorilla family share close bond and often have get- together and looks happily due to arrival of their new member.

  • Oruzogo Gorilla Family.

Gorilla trekking safaris in Uganda is advantageous has it offers tourists the chance to track the Oruzogo gorilla family having 23 members including 1 silverbacks called Tibiritwata.

The gorilla family was opened for visitors’ access in 2011. This is one of the preferred Gorilla groups by tourists because of their playful and energetic adolescents.

The only factor which can limit tourists from tracking in this sector is the limited lodging especially budget ones.



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