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In January 2023 Praveen Moman, Founder Volcanoes Safaris, hosted ‘The Future of Gorillas and Chimpanzees in the Albertine Rift’, a panel discussion to mark our 25th anniversary.
Dr. Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka (Conservation Through Public Health), Kirsten Gilardi (Gorilla Doctors), Peter Appell (Jane Goodall Institute), Ian Redmond (Ape Alliance and The Gorilla Organisation), and Nicole Simmons (Chimpanzee Researcher Kyambura Gorge) joined Volcanoes Safaris at the Royal Overseas League in London. Each speaker provided a unique perspective into the challenges and successes of working in great ape conservation in the Albertine Rift.
This event followed an informal retreat in November 2022 held a Mount Gahinga Lodge in Uganda, with a number of conservationists and partners, where the ‘Albertine Apes Group' was created to support collective action and advocacy to support responsible ecotourism, improving community livelihoods, protecting habitats, health and disease issues. You can read more about the aims of the group here.
Thank you to our special guests Nimisha Madhvani, High Commissioner of Uganda, and Emmanuel Rahumuliza from the Rwanda High Commission, for joining us for the evening.
Tracking chimpanzees in their natural habitat, as they swing from the branches in the canopy high above the forest floor is nothing short of exhilarating. The chimps effortlessly cross and scamper through the trees above the gorge, and visitors on the other hand must cross the river using natural bridges in order to keep up with the chimps. So although the walk usually lasts only 2–3 hours, descending the steep gorge and crossing the log bridges over the river requires some agility and fitness.
Chimpanzee tracking is also available in nearby Kalinzu, a forest reserve 30 minutes drive from Kyambura Gorge Lodge where there is a community of about 40 habituated chimpanzees.