Kabobo Nature Reserve

Kabobo Nature Reserve is one of the outstanding Protected Areas in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It was gazetted in December 2016 after the approval of Governor of a Province within the Democratic Republic of Congo and this came handy after over a decade of participatory planning process involving principles if free prior as well as informed consent. It currently covers an area of 570 square miles (1477 square kilometers) hence making it one of the newest in the country. This is interestingly the first Protected Area to be set up within the new Tanganyika Province to protect some of the country’s endangered and endemic species.

kabobo-natural-reserveThis stunning Nature Reserve together with the adjacent Luama Katanga and Ngandja Reserves protect closely to 7000 square kilometers of significant habitat for rich wildlife species, natural watersheds as well as natural forests along the western shores of Lake Tanganyika. This Reserve forms the core of a Conservation landscape comprised of montane rainforest as well as savannah woodlands that are centered on the Kabobo massif, a 62-mile mountain range that is one of the Continent’s most biodiverse places in the country. Interestingly, this Protected Area also forms the largest forest as well as water catchment on the Tanganyika which makes it an important source of fresh water to the surrounding local communities in addition to playing a wonderful role in maintaining the health of fisheries within Lake Tanganyika-Africa’s deepest Lake

Attractions within Kabobo Natural Reserve

Flora and fauna

Kabobo Nature Reserve is home to numerous land animals that total to 558 species as well as about 1410 plant species. Present in this Reserve are 34 globally threatened species as well as 110 species that are endemic to the Albertine Rift region. Must see creatures are the Prigogine’s black and white colobus monkeys, Foai red colobus monkeys. Some of the endemic bird species in this Nature Reserve include the Kabobo Apalis. The strategic location of this beautiful Nature Reserve close to several other Reserves will boost the protection of numerous important wildlife species hence making it one of the most biodiverse Eco regions in the African Continent.

The Kabobo Nature Reserve together with adjoining Ngandja and Luama Katanga Reserves are estimated to shelter over 2500 chimpanzees and forest elephants, Hippos and lions among others.

Cultures and traditions of the people

Before Kabobo Nature Reserve became what it is today, it was home to the Batwa, who make up about 20% of the population of Kabobo Massif who live in about 37 villages. Some of these places are exclusively for the Batwa and others for the Bantu people. The former are locally renowned for their diverse ecological knowledge as well as active stewardship of the Tropical rainforest that maintains the integrity of the Protected Area’s natural ecosystems. Visitors get the chance to learn about their ancient ways of life when they still lived in the forest.

Things to do in Kabobo Nature Reserve

Guided nature walks

Guided walks through Kabobo Nature Reserve introduce travellers to the rich diversity that include unique plant species, Amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals (that include chimpanzees, Hippos and leopards among others).

Bird watching

Bird watching tours through Kabobo Nature Reserve make it possible to see some of the Area’s endemic and Albertine Rift endemics. While here, expect to see the Kabobo Apalis, strange weavers and Rwenzori Apalis among others.

Cultural tours

There is no better way to learn about the cultures and traditions of surrounding Batwa and Bantu community than taking a guided cultural tour where their ancient ways of life will be brought to life. Activities like traditional hunting demonstrations with bow and arrow, fire making with sticks, local dances and so much will be introduced to visitors.