Anyone tracking Rushaga based groups and overnighting at either Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge or Nkuringo Gorilla Camp (both located at Nkuringo) must drive from their lodge to the Rushaga ranger post, where the briefings take place. The drive time is approximately 40 minutes. All groups below are then tracked by starting on foot from the ranger post, or taking another short drive of up to 30 minutes, depending on the gorilla family’s location on any given day.
Nshongi Group (19 members, including 3 silverbacks)
Named after the River Nshongi, this used to be the biggest group ever habituated (until Oruzogo took on this mantle) and contains the largest silverback in the park (who is also one of the younger silverbacks within the group). Please see above for logistical information, though it is worth noting that the hike to locate Nshongi is most often started on foot from the ranger post itself.
Mishaya Group (7 members, including 1 silverback)
This family was originally a splinter group from Nshongi group and is led by the silverback, Mishaya. There are currently no male blackbacks in this group, so Mishaya currently faces no challenges when it comes to his harem of females! Please see above for logistical information, though the trailhead for this group is most frequently located a short (10-20 minute) car journey back in the direction of Nkuringo.
Kahungye (20 members, including 3 silverbacks)
One of the most robust and vibrant families in southern Bwindi, Kahungye were introduced as a newly habituated gorilla family in 2011. They have rapidly gained a reputation for being one of the most fun groups to track, with their acrobatic antics and wide range of ages within the group entertaining visitors to this part of Bwindi. Please see above for logistical information, though the trailhead for this group is most frequently located a short (10-20 minute) car journey back in the direction of Nkuringo.
Busingye (7 members, including 1 silverback)
Busingye was formed in mid-2012, when a splinter group from Kahungye created a new group of habituated gorillas in the Rushaga area. Because the split is so recent, the permits are being sold locally to the park and as such, it harder to secure them in advance. Once the group is deemed permanently established, the permit sales will be centralised. Please see notes on previous page for logistical information, though the trailhead for this group is most often located a short (10-20 minute) drive back in the direction of Nkuringo. We would recommend reserving Busingye and Bwesa for last minute enquiries when other groups are not available – due to the dynamic and unpredictable nature of freshly formed gorilla families.
Bwesa (7 members, including 1 silverback)
Bwesa is another recent splinter group, this time from Nshongi family, and is therefore often reached by leaving the Rushaga ranger post on foot. As with Busingye, the permits are issued locally to the park, but once enough time has passed to ascertain the group’s permanence, the process should be centralised. We would recommend tracking Busingye and Bwesa for last minute enquiries when other groups are not available – due to the dynamic and unpredictable nature of freshly formed gorilla families.
Closest accommodations & recommended choice:
Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge (Upmarket)
Please note the lodges above are up to a 45 minute drive away from Rushaga briefing point, as the accommodation offer at Rushaga is limited and of a low standard.