The Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Tom Butime has said Uganda has been ranked among the top most biodiversity rich countries globally.
Butime made the remarks ahead of commemoration of United Nations World Wildlife Day 2022 in Uganda.
On December 20 2013, the Sixty eighth session of the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed March 3 of every year as World Wildlife Day to celebrate the many beautiful and varied forms of wild fauna and flora and to raise awareness of the several benefits that conservation provides to humanity.
Uganda will therefore join the rest of the world to celebrate this day under the theme “Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration” and the celebrations will be held at the Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre (UWEC) in Entebbe, Wakiso district.
“It [Uganda] is host to 53.9% of the world’s remaining population of Mountain gorillas, 11% of the world’s recorded species of birds (which is 50% of Africa’s bird species richness), 8% of the global mammal diversity (which is 39% of Africa’s mammal richness), 19% of Africa’s Amphibian species richness, 14% of Africa’s reptile species richness and 1,249 recorded species of butterflies,” Butime said.
Due to enhanced integrity of the protected areas, arising from political stability and associated sustainable security, Butime said there has been a general increase in wildlife population.
He said between 1983 and 2021, buffalos have increased from 25,000 to 44,163, elephants from 2000 to 7,975 and Giraffes from 350 to 2,072. Similarly, mountain gorillas have increased from 320 to 459 between 1999 and 2022.