Chimpanzee filming in Uganda
Chimpanzees filming in Uganda is possible in designated places. You need to fulfil the requirements of wildlife filming from Uganda wildlife Authority.
You need to not that chimpanzees are the closest cousins of humans in the animal kingdom. They have a DNA of about 98% similar to that of humans. The behavior they displayed may be close to that of humans so you need to be very careful with your gadgets while in the wild.
Chimpanzees encounters in Uganda can only be possible after obtaining permission from Uganda wildlife Authority and National Forestry Authority. Uganda Is still one of the unique countries in the world with natural habitats where big populations of chimpanzees can still thrive.
Most Popular Gorilla Safaris
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- 5 Day Chimp and Gorilla Habituation
- 3 Day Fly in Gorilla Habituation
- 3 Day Fly in Safari to Murchison Falls National Park
- 3 Day Bwindi Double trek via Kigali
- 5 Day Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda
The Uganda chimpanzee natural habitats are located in more remote areas so accessing them may require hiring a 4×4 vehicle so as not to get stuck by the road. In case you have lots of bags and filming equipment, its best to hire an extra vehicle to carry your belongings.
Where Chimpanzees Live In Uganda
Wherever the chimpanzees live is a possible location for doing filming in Uganda depending on what you wish to gain after the entire experience.
Kibale National park
Kibale National Park is a varied tropical rain forest located in western part of Uganda covering about 795 square kilometers. Within this forest are close to 13 primate species including the chimpanzees, blue monkeys, black and white colobus, red tailed monkeys, pottos, L’Hoest’s, grey cheeked mangabey, olive baboons, bush babies to mention but a few.
Over 1500 chimpanzees live in Kibale Forest National Park in communities under the leadership of the alpha male. He is democratically voted by the community members and he has to impress the females most. They have a lot of influence on the results of the elections.
The average temperature range of Kibale National Park is about 14 degrees centigrade to 27 dregrees centigrade. In terms of altitude, Kibale National park is at about 1590 meters above sea level. In terms of rains an average of 1700 mm are received annually.
The central part of the park that is Kanyanchu area is composed of a mixture of deciduous and evergreen trees with evergreen species dominant. Its Northern tip is the wettest area and Southern section adjoins Queen Elizabeth national Park with a corridor of about 180 km of long used for migration of wildlife.
When filming chimpanzees in Kibale National park, you may get to spot wild life like an array of birds. Of As of now, about 325 bird species recorded and the list is still expanding. A few of the birds you may get to spot include shoe bill, black bee-eaters, crowned eagle, yellow spotted nicator, blue-breasted kingfisher, Abyssinian ground thrush, brown chested alethe, African pitta to mention but afew.
To capture the most interesting birding moments, you may visit the Bigodi Wetland sanctuary. This is one of the prime birding areas of Kibale National Park located in Magombe swamp. Here you may also spot primates like black and white colobus, chimpanzees, red tailed monkeys, grey cheeked mangabey, mammals like mongoose, bushbucks, forest elephants, wild forest hogs and others.
If you wish to see more birds, you can take a walk to Kihingani Wetland outside Sebitoli . it has an astounding bird list.
Kyambura Gorge In Queen Elizabeth National Park
At the floor of the rift valley of Queen Elizabeth National park is Kyambura gorge which is 100 meters deep. The Gorge was carved by River Kyambura that runs into Kazinga channel.
Filming chimpanzees in this park begins with briefing at Kyambura Fig tree camp at about 0800 hours and 1400 hours per day. Those doing chimpanzee trekking can take these two session. Filming this part of chimpanzee habitat is best in the dry season when the slopes are less slippery.
For those doing chimpanzee trekking, some level of fitness is required to hike into the valley. Ensure you pack the right chimpanzee trekking gears like safari boots, sunscreen, sunglasses, water proof bags for your cameras and others.
Kaniyo Pabidi Forest In Murchison Falls National Park
Kaniyo Pabidi forest lies in Murchison Falls National park about 8 km inside Kichubanyombo gate. When you do chimpanzee filming here you do it with in a forest containing some of the leftover grown mahogany trees of Uganda.
Within this part of the park, you can also enjoy birding areas in Murchison Falls National park. if very observant, You have high chances of capturing birds like Blue-caped Mousebirds,Vitelline Masked Weaver, Black-headed Gonolek, Green winged pytilias, Spotted Morning Thrush to mention but a few.
Ngamba Chimpanzee Sanctuary In Lake Victoria
Filming chimpanzees in Ngamba Chimpanzee Sanctuary Island walks you into the life of abandoned primates and tortured survivors of mostly human activities. This island chimpanzee sanctuary is part of Koome Islands in fresh water Lake Victoria located 23 km southwest of Entebbe in Uganda.
This conservation project is a project was set up by Chimpanzee Sanctuary and Wildlife Conservation Trust ( CSWCT) under Dr Jane Goodall.
In this chimpanzee sanctuary you find rescued , saved, homeless, orphaned chimpanzees that could not be returned to there communities. Some of the reason for setting up this sanctuary was to teach visitors, general public and the local community about the relevancy of protecting the chimpanzees and there habitats.
During filming, some of you may take part in feeding, you stand at the feeding platform and participate in giving them food. The male and adults normally grab the biggest share and the less powerful may eat the list just like the human behavior.
Uganda wildlife Education Center ( UWEC)
In case you wish to film chimpanzees at a more close range and in restricted area, the Uganda wildlife Education center is the location to choose. This is the former Entebbe zoo where most animals in the National parks of Uganda are reserved.
These wild animals live in exhibits with environment similar to that in the wild where they live. you may spot other animals and birds like ostriches, chimpanzees, hyenas, lions, cheetahs, leopards, zebras, waterbucks, cape buffaloes, wild cats, elephant, zebras, giraffes to mention but a few.
Kalinzu Forest serve
Kalinzu Forest serve lies at the edge of Queen Elizabeth National Park. Most of the time these chimpanzees are mainly visisted for research but you may be allowed to film them during peak seasons.
You need to request for this in advance so that preparations are done in time.
Filming Requirements For Chimpanzees In Uganda
The chimpanzee filming crew need a filming authority from the respective authorities and bodies concerned. In case you are filming chimpanzees in National parks, you need permission from Uganda Wildlife Authority and follow its terms and conditions.
Each filming crew member need a chimpanzee trekking permit which is similar to the normal permit. The chimpanzee trekking permit allows you just one hour in the presence of the chimpanzees when you locate them.
Alternatively, you may opt for chimpanzee habituation permits for each crew member which allows 4 hours in filming the chimpanzees.
The booking personnel must write a letter to Uganda wildlife Authority requesting to do filming chimpanzees in a particular location.
When an application form is forwarded to you, you need to fill every possible detail, accompany it with a copy of screenplay, filming schedule and synopsis..
Later these are sent the authority responsible for approval.
Uganda Media Accreditation
Through Uganda media council, each filming crew member is required to fill form G that is used to attain permission for obtaining information to be documented from Uganda. Media Accreditation is very important before any content from Uganda is produced.
After every one fills details on form G, they must scan a copy of it, attach scanned copy of passport showing the front and where personal details are found. scan one passport photo to attach to the media cards
Obtain a letter of good conduct from the international Police ( Interpol) in your country.
Our filming fixer team send this to Uganda media council for perusal and a approval. It takes about 2 to three days to get feed back.
Uganda Customs Clearance
Everything you carry with you must be temporarily cleared by customs on arrival. Note that Uganda is not a Carnet member so no carnets are allowed .
Uganda revenue Authority levies some tax on all the equipment you travel with and offers a temporary Import permit for this. Through a bonded Agent, you can make clearance of your equipment on arrival faster.
At the moment, about 10% non-refundable fee of the total value of your equipment is levied as tax. Its for the safe entry and exist of your equipment.
To avoid long clearing time on arrival at the Entebbe customs, forwarding us the list of what you hope to carry makes everything faster.
Alternatively, you may opt to outsource from the local filming crews in case you explain to use the details of what you wish to obtain in time. Remember not so many latest filming gadgets are in the country or even obtaining them is most in Kampala the business center of Uganda.
Accommodation When Filming the Chimpanzees In Uganda
You need to stay within or closer to the destination where you are to do filming in Uganda. This enables you to capture the great moments. Even the chimpanzees may pay an early morning visit to your lodge which is a unique moment for your collection.
Each destination which is a potential location for chimpanzee filming has different lodge and other facilities. Ensuring that your filming equipment is safe is one of the priorities you may consider.
Hire a vehicle To used at The chimpanzees Filming Location
Since most filming crews travel with a lot of delicate equipment, hiring a car to carry there gadgets is vital. Remember most chimpanzee destinations are in remote area with bumpy and at times slippery road. Your delicate gadgets must be stored in safe bags.
The vehicle hired must have good shock absorbers. Hiring a 4×4 vehicle could be one option for better transportation.
What Is The Best time For Chimpanzee Filming In Uganda
Chimpanzees are very charming primates but during the wet seasons they tend to stay in the tree branches. To capture the great shots and moments of the chimpanzees in Uganda, the drier months that is June to October and December through January would be a great option.
Note That the dry months are peak seasons too so expect to find chimpanzee trekkers or even chimpanzee trekking permits get sold out since they are limited. Only 6 chimpanzee trekking permits released per day for every group. Only two sessions that is morning and afternoon chimpanzee trekking times are allowed per day.
What Is the Topography Of the chimpanzee Destinations In Uganda
To capture the best moments of the wildlife filming you need great location and topography matters too for placing your gadgets. Most of the chimpanzee habitats in Uganda have generally flat ground. The forest has limited under growth and trails constructed by regular visitors make movement more quicker.
You need to bring or hire stands for your gadgets so that you get the best content. Carry some rain gears including those that can cover your equipment in case it rains.
What Are The Rules Of Chimpanzee Filming In Uganda
- Never provoke the chimpanzees because they have human trails and may turn against you or may go into hiding
- Feeding the chimpanzees is for bidden because they are wild animals that must look for own food.
- Using flash photography and filming gadgets with sound is forbidden, it scares the chimpanzees.
- Never enter the forest without an escorting ranger guide because there forest has other inhabitants that may cause you harm.
- Littering the forest is forbidden because its food for the chimpanzees and other forest dwellers.
- Only an hour is allowed with the chimpanzees when you locate them or obtain a chimpanzee habituation permit.
- In case you wish to ease yourself as the rangers with you to dig a 30 cm deep hole and cover beyond recognition.
Contact us for more information about filming chimpanzees in Uganda.