Nyungwe forest National Park camouflaged in an enormous tropical forest consisting of a variety of tree species like the tall old mahoganies, ebonies and giant tree ferns tower above you, whilst orchids and other epiphytes cling to every branch. To the park more enjoying, there is an introduction of the canopy walk which is one of the new and wonderful birds viewing plat form in East and central Africa.
Nyungwe is most famous for its primates. Other tourist attractions to see on a primate safari in Nyungwe forest National Park include brightly coloured birds flit around, butterflies are everywhere, and walking quietly you may encounter larger forest residents.
Nyungwe Forest is, in fact, the largest swathe of montane forest left in East or Central Africa. It harbours about 275 different birds, hundreds of butterflies and orchids, and over 75 different species of mammals – including 13 primates about a quarter of all Africa’s primates.
Other primates of Nyungwe Forest
Apart from the chimpanzee there are 11 more species of primates in Nyungwe Forest. With a bit of luck, these primates can be seen during any hike in the park. In case you want to find a specific species, then this can be organized by the park. Some primates such as the galago and potto are nocturnal and can only be seen at night.
There are also almost 100 other mammal species in Nyungwe Forest ranging from small dykers to leopards. For an extensive list and description of other species in Nyungwe Forest, go to the page Animals of Nyungwe Forest or Birding in Nyungwe Forest. There is also a comprehensive guide on Primate Tracking in Nyungwe Forest.
Apart from primates, Nyungwe foresnt national park also host other mammals include; Giant Forest Squirrel, Mountain Sun Squirrel, Boem’s Squirrel, Lord Darby’s Flying Squirrel, Giant Forest Hog, Bush Pig, Tree Hyrax, Lestrade’s Duiker, Black-fronted Duiker, Yellow-backed Duiker, Leopard, Golden Cat, Serval Cat, Wild Cat, Side-striped Jackal, African Civet, Two-spotted Palm Civet, Genet Servaline, Large-spotted Genet, Slender Mongoose, Marsh Mongoose, Ichneumon Mongoose, Congo Clawless Otter and many more.
Whether you are an ardent bird watcher or an amateur, Nyungwe National Park offers enthusiasts a fantastic variety of species including the great blue turaco, the paradise monarch and the bizarre appearance of the gigantic forest hornbills. The priority of serious enthusiast will depend to a certain degree on their experiences elsewhere in Africa. For instance at least half of the species will be new to visitors from southern Africa, whereas the 24 species endemic to the Albertine Rift will be the most appealing for those who have already experienced east Africa.
Birds in Nyungwe forest National park include, all the 25 species of the Albertine Rift mountains Endemic Bird Area that occur in Rwanda, Chapin’s Flycatcher and Rockefellers’s Sunbird (both globally threatened, restricted-range and biome-restricted). In addition, 11 of the 23 species of the Guinea–Congo Forests biome and 71 of the 74 species of this biome of Afrotropical Highlands that occur in Rwanda have been recorded at this site.
Nyungwe holds many Albertine Rift endemics, including seven of the 12 species of Soricidae, one species of bat, Rousettus lanosus, two species of squirrels, Funisciurus carruthersi and Heliosciurus ruwenzori, five of the 12 species of Muridae and the chameleon Chamaeleo johnstoni. An amphibian is endemic to Nyungwe, the caecilian Boulengerula fischeri. Two species of butterfly are endemic to Nyungwe Bebearia dowsetti and Acraea turlini while Papilio leucotaenia, restricted to a small area of the Albertine Rift, occurs commonly in Nyungwe.