Back to Budongo …

By that evening we were home again, and it really did seem like home. What could be more natural than encountering chimpanzees or a troop of baboons between the house and the dunny?

By this stage we had also found the hang outs of some of our nocturnal neighbours and could walk around after dark and say hi to the Civet, the Servaline Genet and the Bushbuck., whilst listening to the Tree Hyrax – to get the full effect turn the volume up as high as it will go …

and they look exactly as you see them in the video!

We would have two more full days at Budongo.

In times past the forests of tropical Africa were far more extensive, the human population far smaller.

The monthly household income in rural Uganda, including the value of goods received in kind, is (2009/10, Uganda Bureau of Statistics ) 142,700 Ugandan Shillings or $40 US. Put another way, two parents will have an annual income of $480 to support themselves plus perhaps three children and a grandparent.

Subsistence agriculture is the main activity for rural people. An increasing population requires an increasing area of land.

The biggest threat to wildlife in Uganda and many other places is habitat loss. The biggest threat to subsistence farming is the wildlife.

Hunting was an honourable pursuit in the past, it provided much needed protein and a little cash income. In Budongo it is now illegal, timber getting likewise.

I and the folk working at Budongo, and I’m sure, all my first world readers want to see chimpanzees and all that surrounds them secure in a living forest. But none of us want a child to starve.

Tomorrow after a morning on primate watch we would visit the adjacent village. The day after that would be snare patrol.

Stay tuned.

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