Situated within eastern Uganda, Makanaga wetland is part of the extensive Mabamba wetland system, one of Uganda’s most endowed Ramsar sites and a perfect site for spotting the elusive shoebill storks. The destination is approximately 60 kilometers drive from Entebbe and can be reached via the Kampala-Masaka road before taking the road down from Kamengo trading Centre.
Just like Mabamba wetland, Makanaga wetland is also a Birding Paradise with over 300 species of birds among them being the globally threatened bird species including the Papyrus Gonolek, papyrus swamp warbler and the grey crowned cranes. Additionally, the site is a stopover for a number of Palearctic migrants. Other species not to miss in this destination include White-faced Whistling Duck, Spur-winged Goose, Yellow-billed Egret, Long-tailed Cormorant, Saddle-billed Stork, Greater Cormorant, Common Moorhen, Purple Swamphen, Swamp Flycatcher, Long-toed Lapwing, Common Ringed Plover, Malachite Kingfisher, Blue-breasted Bee-eater, Yellow-billed Duck, White-winged Tern, Yellow Wagtail, African Marsh Harrier, Winding Cisticola, Northern Brown-throated Weaver, Black-headed Heron, Speckled Mousebird, Hottentot Teal, African Open-billed Stork, Barn Swallow, Fulvous-whistling Duck, Purple Heron, Red-chested Sunbird, Common Squacco Heron, African Jacana, African Fish Eagle, Common Bulbul, Black Crake, Vieillot’s Black weaver, Wood Sandpiper, Cattle Egret, Angola Swallow, Augur Buzzard, Lesser Jacana, Pied Kingfisher, Hammerkop, Gull-billed Tern, Sand Martin and Black Kites among others. Therefore, the main activity within this destination is bird watching.
What to carry when visiting Makanaga wetland
Some of the important items to pack/carry for bird watching within Makanaga wetland include a pair of binoculars, a camera, a backpack, birds guidebooks, long sleeved shirts, long trousers, shorts, short sleeved shirts/T-shirts, strong hiking boots, sandals/flip-flops, a sweater/jumper, a hat, rain jacket, snacks and enough drinking water among others.
Best time for birding watching within Makanaga wetlands.
This site can be visited all year round but the perfect time for birding is the rainy season because there are higher opportunities of spotting the Palearctic migrant species from several African countries such as Kenya and South Africa and as far as Europe. This destination is a perfect stop center for tourists who wish to participate in birding, not far away from Kampala (it is found within close proximity of Entebbe district, about 45 kilometers from the City).