Akagera National Park workers get a new unifrom
Text and Pictures by Friends of Akagera National Park
Akagera National Park, New infrastuctures, New products, New vision
Video directed in January 2013
Akagera National Park is Rwanda's largest national park and one of the most diverse and scenically-attractive savannah reserves in Africa. Akagera has had a colourful history. Gazetted in 1934, it was among the first National Parks in Africa. At the time the park covered an area of over 2,700 km², amounting to nearly 10% of the total surface area of Rwanda. In 1997, 3 years after the genocide, the park was significantly reduced to its current size of 1,120 km², surrendering large areas on the western boundary to free up much-needed farming and grazing land for the returning refugees from Uganda and Tanzania.
From a wildlife management point of view the park lost much of its best grazing land; however, what remained as Akagera National Park retains the most stunning landscapes, with rolling views across the hills to the swamps and lakes that make up the largest protected wetland in Central Africa. For a park of its size, the biodiversity of Akagera is extraordinary; the list of over 500 bird species confirms this. Altitudes vary from 1,300m to over 1,800m in the Mutumba hills.
Vegetation varies from stretches of lush, bird-rich riverine vegetation along the lakes through thick dry forest, patches of evergreen woodland on the bare hillsides to vast open savannah plains. Akagera is unique to Rwanda as the only protected savannah environment in the country. With the habitat come the species, and large herds of buffalo and impala, zebra and topi are commonly seen. Smaller antelope such as oribi, klipspringer, bushbuck and reedbuck exist widely throughout the park.
A découvrir aussi
- Aerial Census at the Akagera National Park [August 2013]
- Nkombo Island: Lake Kivu’s hidden jewel
- Postcards from readers: Kwitonda silverback in Rwanda