Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary

Whereas majority of travelers flock into Kibale Forest National Park and Bwindi National Park for primate adventures, there is a lot more captivating for you to explore that will boost your primate experiences while you are on safari in Uganda. And Bigodi wetland sanctuary features among the very few most remarkable safari destinations that shouldn’t miss out in your bucket list.

Bigodi wetland sanctuary is situated within Magombe swamp and it is famous for its intense primates that make it one of the best sites for primate walks. The notable primates for you to catch a glimpse at while on primate safari to Bigodi sanctuary include the blue monkeys, grey cheeked mangabey monkeys, black and white colobus monkeys, vervets, red tailed monkeys, the rare L’Hoests monkeys, baboons, red colobus monkeys and many others.

There are also many mammal species like the sitatunga antelopes, bush pigs, bush bucks, otters, mongooses and others. For visitors on chimpanzee adventure to Kibale Forest National Park, this is one of the most amazing primate sites that you should add in your travel plan. For excellent community based tourism experiences, Bigodi wetland sanctuary is one of the destinations that you should consider to visit while you are on your safari in Uganda.

For bird enthusiasts, Bigodi is undeniably birders haven. Over 200 bird species call Bigodi their home most of which include the Great blue Turacos (Corythaeola cristata), the papyrus gonolek, white winged warbler, white collared olive back, papyrus canary, white spotted fluftail, hairy breasted barbet, yellow spotted barbet, western nicator, grey winged robin chat, white tailed ant thrush, brown backed scrub robin, black and white shrike fly catcher, brown throated wattle eye, brown crowned tchagra, superb sunbird, bacage’s bush shrike, black bee eater, white thighed hornbill, yellow ramped tinker bird, little greenbul, black bishop, white breasted Negrofinch, black crowned waxbill and many more. About 82 Guinea Congo forest biome species and 32 afro tropical highland biome species also thrive within this area and they include the bar tailed trogon, fin banded woodpecker, red faced crimson wing, white bellied crested flycatcher as well as several Lake Victoria biome species like the Nahan’s francolin. Birding safaris in Bigodi wetland sanctuary start at 7:00am.

Bigodi wetland sanctuary features lush vegetation cover most of which include the wild palms, polita fig trees, papyrus as well as many plants, trees, flowers and many more. This swamp is managed by the Kibale Association for Rural and Environmental Development (KAFRED) and it is of great value to the community around Kibale Forest National Park. The word Bigodi a Rutooro word denoting Kugodya meaning to walk tiredly or wearily. It is believed that when travelers arrived to Bigodi swamp on foot, they became very tired to continue up to the forest and hence rested at this area.

The conservation efforts of Bigodi sanctuary features its own benefits as it receives over $150000 per year as money earned from visitors who come to explore the different tourist attractions at the swamp. Part of this money was used to facilitate the construction of Bigodi secondary school and nursery school as well as paying salaries of the teachers. Bridges have also been built over the swamps and streams around the village. Some of the locals have also turned their homes into African homesteads for most visitors to explore more about the lifestyles of the local people around the swamp.

Bigodi Women Group comprises of over 40 members most which deal in making the best beads using recycled paper and other materials that are harvested from the wetland especially the raffia and phoenix palm leaves that are used for weaving baskets and making bags specifically. This conservation initiative has also helped to minimize poaching practices where most of the ex poachers have turned to be local guides in the area as they take visitors through community walks in the villages. Bigodi sanctuary is forms part of the mighty Magombe wetlands that feature as one of the most significant eco systems in Uganda.

In conclusion, Bigodi Wetland Sanctuary features among Uganda’s most spectacular swamp offering refuge to most incredible primates, birds and many mammal species. After chimpanzee trekking adventures in Kibale Forest National Park, you can visit Bigodi wetland sanctuary for more primate exploration but a 4×4 car is highly recommended especially in rainy season.