Uganda Wildlife Conservation

Community and Conservation

UWA recognizes the local community as a key stakeholder in ensuring the protection of wildlife both inside and outside Uganda’s protected areas. Traditional conservation approaches largely excluded the communities from protected area management. In contrast, community conservation, which has been employed since the 1990s, aims to harmonize the relationship between park managers and neighboring communities, allowing these communities access to protected area resources. It also encourages dialogue and local community participation in planning for and management of these resources. UWA’s Community Conservation Unit implements a number of activities, some of which are detailed below:


Conservation Education and Awareness

This program aims to raise awareness of the value of conservation and how communities can both participate in and benefit from it. In order to facilitate visits by school children and organized groups to some of the parks, low-cost accommodation has been created to enable pupils to spend a weekend viewing and learning about wildlife. Facilities currently exist in Lake Mburo Conservation Area, Queen Elizabeth National Park, Murchison Falls Conservation Area, and Mt. Elgon National Park.

Resource Access

Communities have regulated access to some key resources that may not be found outside the protected areas, such as medicinal herbs; papyrus, and vines for handcrafts; fish; firewood; bamboo; beehives; and water access in the dry season or drought.

Research and Monitoring

The goal behind the Monitoring and Research Program is the provision of information for planning, decision-making, and evaluation in biodiversity conservation and sustainable management of wildlife resources.

Research and Monitoring Priorities

  • Ecology: species, habitat, fire, hydrobiology, and disease
  • Biodiversity: inventories, vegetation dynamics, and mapping
  • Social-economics: local communities, human-wildlife interactions, and cost-benefit sharing
  • Development: policy, tourism, use rights, and trade
Similarly, monitoring activities are prioritized under the fields of:
  • Ecology: wild animals, vegetation, and meteorology
  • Social-economics: demographic and resource use
  • Management: illegal activities, problem animals, and patrol coverage
  • Development: concessions, tourism, and pollution
Detailed priorities for each of the Protected Areas are available at UWA headquarters and are provided on request by the Monitoring and Research Unit.

Services available at the Research and Monitoring Unit

  • Information on wildlife management areas
  • Management Information System (MIST)
  • Library
  • Research database for easy retrieval of information on all research projects, research organizations, and personnel.

Monitoring and Research Funding

The Monitoring and Research Unit receives operational and capital development funds from UWA and externally funded projects. These funds are not sufficient to cover all the research and monitoring required. To increase its financial resources, UWA has established a Research Fund into which it contributes part of its non-research revenues and all application and user fees plus any applicable royalties.


UWA operates a research grants scheme depending on availability of funds. To access the guidelines for the grants scheme, use the link

Your Contribution to Research

Uganda Wildlife Authority is committed to conserving the country’s biodiversity through research and monitoring and would be glad to receive your contribution towards improved conservation and management of Uganda’s wildlife.

Procedures for Clearing Research Proposals

Anyone applying to conduct research in UWA’s protected areas must follow the procedures outlined below:
Anyone intending to conduct research in Wildlife Protected Areas or on wildlife in general must fill in application forms, attach a detailed proposal and CV and submit them in duplicate to UWA.

Obtain research application forms from UWA HQ, PAS, the Internet or any other place UWA may designate. Application forms will be submitted together with copies of research proposals and a CV of the principal researcher atleast 3 months before the proposed date of commencement of the research.

The application form will be completed in duplicate (one copy deposited at UWA’s HQ and one sent to the protected area where the research is to be carried out).

Students in higher institutions of learning wishing to conduct their research in UWA protected areas will need a letter from their institutions of affiliation, certifying their studentship. So do students from outside Uganda.

The proposals will be vetted by the protected area of interest and experts in the particular field of concern, before research approval by UWA. The experts could be within or outside of the organization. Proposals from undergraduate students will be vetted by UWA HQ alone since these are usually for a very short period of time and do not involve detailed research methods or in- depth analysis to be of much use to park management . Note: Foreign researchers are required by law to seek clearance from Uganda National Council for Science and Technology after approval from UWA

All researchers are to submit progress reports to UWA at specified intervals and a final report at the end of the research.
Foreign researchers are required to pay a refundable deposit of US $300 at UWA HQ. This will be given back on submission of the final report. A researcher, whether local or foreign, who fails to submit a report will not be accepted to carry out any other research within UWA’s Protected Areas again.

Conservation Challenges in Uganda

Human encroachment on wildlife habitats is one of the biggest challenges to UWA and conservation in general. The main cause of this is changes in land use and the increasing search for farmland which lead to a decrease in the wildlife range.UWA has a team of skilled staff to respond to reports about crop-raiding and threats to livestock and to communities. These are dealt with using methods such as scare shooting to chase the problem animals back into the protected area; capturing and translocation; and sensitizing the communities.As a last resort, individual animals that fail to return to the protected area may be sport-hunted or killed in order to reduce the threat. Those killed under sport hunting generate revenue for the communities through hunting fees, which in turn discourages poaching and contributes to conservation.