Virunga National Park birding trips – Virunga National Park occupies a large area encompassing a variety of habitats. It is situated in north-eastern DR Congo, and is contiguous with Semliki, Rwenzori and Queen Elizabeth National Parks and Mgahinga Gorilla Park respectively) in Uganda and Volcans National Park in Rwanda It extends from the Rwenzori range, south through Lake Edward (the DR Congo part of which is entirely contained within the park) and the chain of volcanoes, just north of the town of Goma, to Lake Kivu. Some of the volcanoes are still active; Nyiragongo, the highest on the DR Congo side of the border, last erupted in 1977. Altitudes vary between 798 m in the lower plains and 3,470 m on the top of the Nyiragongo, to 5,110 m on Margherita Peak (Mount Stanley), Africa’s third-highest mountain, in the Rwenzori range. Rainfall is equally diverse, averaging between 500 mm per year at Lake Edward to more than 3,000 mm on the slopes of the Rwenzori. The variety of altitudes, soils and rainfall produces very diverse habitats, comprising lakes, marshy deltas and peatbogs, grasslands and wooded savanna, lava-plains, transition forest, montane rainforest, bamboo forest and high-altitude areas finally, glaciers and snow-fields. A significant portion of the Semliki Forest, shared with Uganda, occurs within the park, where it is known locally as the Watalinga forest. The steep western slopes of Rwenzori, which meet abruptly with the alluvial plain of the Semliki, are one of the wettest areas in the country, with frequent rain even during the ‘dry’ season and an average annual rainfall of more than 3,000 mm. Hot springs occur in the Rwindi plain. The park is known to support a greater biological diversity than any other single protected area in Africa. So for this reason Virunga national park is home to some Albertine rift endemics such as handsome francolin, Ruwenzori turaco and Ruwenzori batis, Ruwenzori double-collared sunbird, and Archer’s robin-chat. Grey Throated Barbet, Yellow billed Barbet,Double toothed Barbet, double-toothed barbet, Narrow tailed starling, Madagascar Bee Eater
Virunga national park has become to spot the several bird species. The beautiful sounds and voices of the enormous bird species which arise from the trees as early as 5:00 am compels visitors to get out of bed since the sounds heard are so pleasant and persuasive, which is so rare to hear from anywhere else than Virunga National Park. Congo has become a popular birding destination in these recent years and tourism is being actively encouraged.