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Tuesday, August 30, 2016 at 8:03AM
Michael Schwartz
The old coalition of Omukama, Papa, and Rudi were sighted in the Ishasha area! This is where they were born and where they lived before venturing to the northern sector of Queen Elizabeth National Park as young adults in 2009.
We had not seen them for several weeks, even after spending significant time searching throughout their territory. This was highly unusual in seven years of monitoring them. So, to know they simply migrated back to Ishasha after so many years in the north is a big relief.
Migration is crucial for genetic diversity. However, with human encroachment into wild areas increasing and wildlife corridors disappearing as a result, it is sadly becoming less possible - all over the world, not just in Uganda.
These three would have had to avoid conflict with humans in several areas on their journey to the north 7 years ago and then again as they headed back south recently. That’s in addition to the conflict they avoided in the north for the last seven years. Such marvelous examples of animals who have learned to adapt and survive in a human dominated landscape.
Ishasha is not currently in our core study area as it is too far away for us to travel to regularly. We will miss seeing Omukama, Papa, and Rudi on a frequent basis. They are a truly amazing coalition. But who knows – perhaps they will venture back north one day. We will be on the look-out for them!
Thanks so very much to our friend Clori Alves of KANANGA for alerting us to this and for sending the photos!

 

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