Compiled by André Wagner

Hunting has been prohibited for over 30 years in the Republic of Uganda, a country in east-central Africa. It has an area of 241 038 km², which is similar to that of the United Kingdom.

Uganda is landlocked and is bordered to the east by Kenya, to the north by South Sudan, to the west by the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to the south-west by Rwanda and to the south by Tanzania.
The southern part of the country includes a substantial portion of Africa’s largest freshwater lake, Lake Victoria, shared with Kenya and Tanzania.
Uganda is located in the African Great Lakes region and is situated within the Nile basin. The country lies on the Equator, and at an altitude of 1 200 m and above, the temperatures vary between 20º C and 30º C year round. To the north, the nights are cool and at times cold, and the days slightly hotter. Rains occur from March to April and from October to November.

Population: 42 729 036 (2018)
Area: 241 038 km²
Languages: English and Swahili
Currency: Uganda shilling
Economy: Uganda is endowed with significant natural resources, including ample fertile land, regular rainfall and mineral deposits. Economic focus is on agriculture, transportation, mining, petroleum and tourism
International airports in Uganda: Entebbe International Airport is the major international airport
Covid-19 regulations: Reconsider travel & exercise extreme caution
Foreign representation in Uganda: The capital, Kampala,  currently hosts 41 embassies / high commissions
Drinking water: Bottled water
Mobile communications are available throughout the country from any of five active mobile operators
Malaria prophylaxis: Uganda has the third highest global incidence of malaria cases (5%) and the seventh highest level of deaths (3%). Extreme caution should be exercised at all times

Conservation in Uganda is based on the protection and sustainable use of the country’s rich natural resources. It became a significant philosophy during the British colonial period in the early 20th century and continues to play a major role in Uganda’s economy, as it underpins the tourist industry, which accounts for a fifth of the country’s exports.
Uganda’s 60 protected conservation areas are home to populations of numerous critically endangered species, including mountain gorilla, rhinoceros, red colobus monkey, chimpanzee, African wild dog, African elephant and lion.

The number of wild animals found in Uganda is impressive. Travellers used to flock to this east African country prior to the Covid-19 outbreak. Uganda, known as the Pearl of Africa, is richly endowed with a variety of tree species, plant life, beautiful landscapes and abundant wildlife, including the great apes (chimpanzee & mountain gorilla) and the Big Five.
The country enjoys perfect weather throughout the year, and the tropical climate is ideal for wildlife viewing. In fact, Uganda has over 350 species of mammals in all sizes. They range from large (such as gorilla, rhino, buffalo, lion and elephant) to small ones (like bat, bush baby and shrew).
Tourism contributes significantly to Uganda’s gross domestic product, provides significant investment opportunities and employment, and is a major source of foreign currency. The contribution of tourism to Uganda’s economy in 2011 was 3,2% of GDP valued at $682 million, with estimates for 2021 at 3,1% of GDP, valued at $1 198 million. (Source : World Travel & Tourism Council 2011)
Ecotourism in Uganda dates back to the early 1990s. It includes activities such as guided nature walks, bird watching, village / community walks, forest walks, butterfly watching, sport fishing, mountaineering / hill climbing, gorilla tracking, chimp tracking, game viewing, boat cruises, canoeing, caving, scenery viewing / nature photography, primate watching / walk, and other aspects relating to nature and cultural and rural tourism.
The ecotourism destinations include the 10 National Parks in various parts of the country. These are home to a wide variety of mammals and birds. Murchison Falls National Park is the biggest of all the parks, while the Semiliki Valley National Park is the smallest.

Sports hunting has been gradually reintroduced since the late 2000s. After being prohibited for over thirty years, five wilderness areas, including the renowned Karamoja, have been reopened for hunting.
These concessions are vast, each being approximately 27 000 km² (10 000 square miles). They are truly free-range hunting areas as you would have experienced them in the early 1900s. They present you with the rare opportunity to hunt the real Africa, and to experience the traditional hunting grounds with local tribesmen.
The Uganda Wildlife Authority has agreed to allow hunting in these areas and, most importantly, these agreements stipulate a profit sharing of the trophy fees in a ratio of 75%:25%. This means that the largest part of trophy fees accrue directly to the local communities, while the Government retains 25%. By making the local communities the major beneficiaries of sport-hunting revenues, wildlife is transformed from a serious threat to local communities – to be poached to extinction – into a valuable resource.

Uganda hunting season
There is no set hunting season in Uganda but the rainy seasons are best avoided. The best time to hunt buffalo and antelope is between December through to April; thereafter it becomes difficult due to the tall grass.

Firearms and ammunition
Each hunter is allowed to travel with two rifles. There is no stipulated maximum amount of ammunition permitted into Uganda. However, this will be restricted by airline regulation (usually 11 pounds). Handguns, semi-automatic or automatic firearms are prohibited.

Permits and licences
All sports hunters entering Uganda have to obtain a hunting licence and a rifle import permit prior to their arrival. A daily conservation fee of US$100,00 per hunter and US$ 40 per non-hunter is charged by the authorities.

Uganda hunting areas map
Uganda used to have about 12 protected Controlled Hunting Areas (CHAs) but they have gradually been degazetted. In CWAs (Community Wildlife Areas) local people are allowed to live, graze livestock and conduct other regulated activities provided these do not adversely affect wildlife.
However, trophy hunting may be conducted in the following locations:
● Community Wildlife Areas in Karamoja – Iriri CWA Map No 43
● Karenga CWA Map No 2
● Amudat CWA Map No 42
● Pian Upe Wildlife Reserve Map No 41,
● Matheniko Game Reserve Map No 45
● Bokora Game Reserve Map No 44
Some other wilderness hunt locations in Uganda include:
● Kabowya Wildlife Reserve Map No 12
● Lake Mburo Map No 27
● Katonga River Map No 20
● Ajai Wildlife Reserve Map No 6

Getting to your hunting area
The majority of hunters will arrive at Entebbe Airport. Depending on the schedule you may need to overnight in either Entebbe or Kampala. Your onward journey to the hunting area will generally be by road. Be vigilant and keep your possessions secure at all times.

Hunting accommodation
As most hunting takes place in protected areas, accommodation consists of either tents or small fly camp tents. However, there are some outfitters that offer more permanent thatched chalets.

Uganda hunting terrain
This all depends on where you hunt. If you are after a sitatunga, expect large stretches of papyrus swamps. Otherwise the terrain is not particularly physically challenging and consists of rolling grass hills, small valleys and light forest. Near rivers you will find typical dense riverine forest.

Uganda hunting laws
As can be expected in protected areas, and to promote interaction between local communities and foreign hunters, there are rules that must be adhered to in order to ensure continued sustainable hunting operations. Care must be taken when travelling to these areas, and all regulations must be respected at all times. When one person abuses the system, it can be lost to hundreds in the future.
● All trophy hunting to take place within the hours of daylight.
● Shooting from or within 50 m of a motor vehicle (boat, aircraft) is not permitted. Vehicles must not be used to drive or stampede any animal.
● Use of a radio communication system to locate any protected species is not permitted.
● Hunting with dogs is not permitted.
● Hunting with lights / flares / night vision equipment is not permitted, excepting in the case of certain species, like bush pig and leopard.
● Hunting permits must be issued prior to the hunt commencing.
● A separate permit is required for each individual hunting client.
● No minors (under 18 years) are allowed to hunt or handle firearms.
● Bow hunting is permitted in wilderness hunt areas.

Uganda game species
Dangerous game:
● Buffalo – Cape
● Buffalo – Nile
● Hippopotamus – CITES II
● Leopard – CITES I

Plains game:
● Baboon – Olive
● Bushbuck – East African
● Bushbuck – Nile
● Bushpig – East African White-faced
● Dik-Dik – Gunther’s
● Duiker – East African Bush
● Eland – Patterson’s
● Hartebeest – Jackson’s
● Impala – East African
● Kob – Ugandan
● Monkey – Vervet
● Oribi
● Reedbuck – Chandler’s Mountain
● Reedbuck – Eastern Bohor
● Sitatunga – East African
● Topi
● Warthog
● Waterbuck – Defassa
● Waterbuck – East African
● Zebra – Burchell’s
● Spotted Hyena
● Striped Hyena
● Black-Backed Jackal
● Side-Striped Jackal
● Klipspringer
● Lesser Kudu
● East African Greater Kudu
● East African Impala ASM

Photos: Chapungu- Kambako Uganda wildlife safari