Mongoose Tracking in Queen Elizabeth National Park : Mongoose is seen almost in every region that has the savannah as well as woodland kind of vegetation cover. In particular however, the banded mongoose is very common in places that have lots of termite mounds because they are the ones that they excavate to make burrows for their families.
In Uganda, a high population of banded mongoose is found in Queen Elizabeth national park and Murchison falls national park. There are about 5 different mongoose species like the banded mongoose, the marsh mongoose, the savannah and the Egyptian The banded mongoose is a type of mongoose that is commonly seen in the east and central regions of Africa. They are very small in size and prefer staying in the savanna areas, in the open forests as well as grasslands well as the white-tailed ones. And here are some amazing facts about them.
FACTS ABOUT BANDED MONGOOSE IN UGANDA
Social Behavior of Banded Mongoose in Uganda
They prefer living in large groups called colonies. They are often very large groups of up to 40 members but the leaders include just 1 breeding male and about 4 breeding females although sometimes there are more than 1 breeding male. Among mongoose, their hierarchy is more based on the size, age and attitude more towards protecting their kind sex. The males are very aggressive compared to the female and there are always there to protect their territory. During the time of mating, there is usually aggressiveness from both the males and the females.
The males or an older female will have the group split into smaller groups when she thinks the group is over whelming big therefore becoming hard to control and protect. There is always a lot of aggressiveness when two groups meet each other in many cases, they kill and serious injure one another. Despite the tension between groups, during this fight is the time breeding female mate with a male from the other rival groups, Mongoose Tracking in Queen Elizabeth National Park
Like Civets, they also use scent to mark their territories and it is also a communication to other groups not to intrude. They sometimes create inter species relationships for instance in Kenya, mongoose are often found in company of baboons. They hunt together and they seem to like each other’s company as a huge group for tighter security against predators. They also associate with warthog and often are seen picking tick and other parasites off warthog.
Banded mongoose diet
Mongoose feed on various stuff like termites, small vertebrates, the lizards, millipedes, crickets, mice, birds and their eggs. They also feed on earwigs, spiders, ants, toads and also snakes. The vertebrates make a small portion of their diet and the additional is water which they consume by licking wetted paws.
Banded mongoose feed in groups but during the search, they do that alone. Feeding begins in the morning for a number of hours and then they rest under the shade in the afternoon and return later in the afternoon/evening to feed before dark, they will go back to their burrows.
Shape facts of banded mongoose.
Banded mongoose have rough grayish-brown fur; they have very clear bands at the back, a long tail almost the length of the whole body and huge head but a dark face as well as legs. You can see these amazing animals on our thrilling Safaris in Uganda
Growth, Breeding and Reproduction of banded mongoose
Female mongoose is considered mature and ready to breed at 11 months old. Once it has conceived, it will have a gestation period of 2 month and then give birth to usually 4 little ones and are normally born during the wet season. Mother suckle their newly born, they are born without sight but eyes open after 9 days and in just 4 – 5 weeks, they are ready to leave the den and join the rest of the group when they go out. Usually, all females in the banded mongoose group breed at the same time which is not the case with others and so all females give birth on the same day or just a few days after another meaning there may be about 6 litters in one territory. They will go through estrus once again within only 10 days after giving birth. A dominant male will try to mate them all but on many occasions; the females escape and find other males from other groups because in-breeding is not their first choice.
Usually, male trains the little one survival skills which they will need once they start hunting themselves which doesn’t take so long. Mongoose have got life span of 8 years and unless they have been killed off by their predators, they can live up to their full life span
These are fascinating creatures to visit and sight while on a Uganda safari.
Other activities to do on a Uganda banded mongoose track safari
Based in and around Mweya Peninsula, in the Queen Elizabeth National Park, western Uganda. Queen Elizabeth National Park is managed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority and protects a variety of different habitats, including open savannah, vast crater lakes, swamps and extensive areas of forest. The park is home to a diverse array of fauna, including lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo, hippo, chimpanzee and more than 600 species of bird. Therefore there are so many activities you can carry out at the place and these can include.
Game Drives: This is the most popular activity allowing you to see 95 percent of the mammals you would see includes forests, savanna grasslands, swamp lands, acacia woods, crater lakes, gorges and the nearby Rwenzori Mountains. The 3-4 hour games drives start in the early morning to any of the three sectors – the Kasenyi plains (near Kazinga Channel), Ishasha sector (tree climbing lions) or the Katwe crater fields. The crater lakes region has beautiful landscape with large craters and salt lakes that were formed thousands of years ago. The crater floors are a water source that attracts elephant’s flamingos and other creatures during the drier season. The Kasenyi plains in the northern part of the park are arguably the most scenic and best places to spot wildlife in Queen Elizabeth national park.
Bird watching: Queen Elizabeth National Park is a top birding destination on Uganda. The full list of the birds in the park can be found at the Bird Observatory in Mweya. Birders on a tour of Queen Elizabeth National Park will be greatly impressed with numerous species inhabiting the forests like Budongo, the Kazinga Channel, the plains, craters and gorges like Kyambura. Birding in Queen Elizabeth National Park during certain seasons of the year, millions of migratory birds come to escape the harsh winters in Europe making the park a true birders heaven. Among the bird species to look out for are the Yellow-backed, Yellow wagtails, Yellow throated Cuckoo, Yellow backed Weavers, Wood sandpipers, Winding and Carruther’s Cisticolas, White-winged Warbler, White-winged Terns, White-tailed Lark, White-faced Whistling, White and Abdim’s Storks, Whalberg’s Eagle, Water Thick-knee, Verreaux’s Eagle Owl, Swamp Fly-catcher, Spur-winged and African Wattled Plovers, Spotted Redshank, Slender-tailed Mourning Dove, Slender-billed, shoebill stork, Sedge warbles, Saddle-billed Storks, Ringed Plover, Red-chested Sunbirds, Pin-tailed Whydah and very many others, Mongoose Tracking in Queen Elizabeth National Park .
Spot Tree Climbing Lions: The Queen Elizabeth national park hosts the rare tree climbing lions in the Ishash sector. They are not a sub-species or any different from the lions found in Kasenyi sector or other national parks in Uganda. Tree Climbing Lions in Queen Elizabeth National Park It happens that the lions here have adapted to life spent climbing the numerous fig trees after hunting in the morning or during the afternoon heat. Scientists have not come up with a clear explanation of why these lions climb up the trees but there are theories that they do so because of the insects and parasites (like Tsetse flies) on the ground. Game drives are organized to the Ishasha sector with the main purpose of spotting the lions up on the trees. Apart from the lions, the Ishasha sector also has mammals like warthogs, buffaloes and elephants. The Ishasha sector is located near the highway leading to Bwindi and hence a perfect stopover for those intending to see the lions and gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable forest National Park.
Chimpanzee Trekking at the Kayambura Gorge: Chimpanzees are one of the most intriguing primates on earth. They are very intelligent compared to even the larger gorillas. Chimpanzees can be tracked at the Kyambura Gorge of Queen Elizabeth National Park. The Kyambura gorge is a depression/valley in the western section of the park that was created by the strong waters of river Kyambura. The Gorge is 16 Kilometers long, 100 meters deep and 500 meters wide.
And all these give you a fascinating period on your Uganda safari; in case one wants to have such a tour he or she can use a well trusted Uganda safari.