My Wildlife Guiding and Interpretation Course in Uganda
Highlights of a Ugandan Wildlife Guiding and Interpretation Course
02 Feb 2018
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I recently completed my Wildlife Guiding and Interpretation Course in Uganda, under Uganda Safari Guides Association. The course was held at Lake Mburo National Park in the Community Education Centre, and one of the things I enjoyed was meeting participants from neighbouring countries, i.e. Kenya and Rwanda.
Lectures were started by USAGA chairman, Herbert Byaruhanga, who has long been involved in training of guides in Uganda. Herbert always encouraged us to go birding for an hour in the early mornings, before breakfast. He impressed on us the need for guides to have multiple skills, like communications, driving and walking skills. He showed us how to conduct ourselves in terms of posture and positioning when in the field with clients - so if, say, you are in charge of a group, all the participants can see exactly what you are showing them and explaining to them, and everyone can hear you clearly.
In the same week we were visited by both the Hon Mr Ephraim Kanuntu, Minister of Tourism in Uganda - and and Ambassador from Japan who gave us a positive overview about tourism in Uganda. They encouraged us to keep on learning because there is a need for good guides in the industry.
In the second week of the course we hosted the Chairman of the Kenya Professional Guides Association (KPSGA). Paul Kiruri, who shared his knowledge and experience of guiding and client care as well as educating us on animal behaviour. In three days, we really learned a lot from him.
One morning on a game drive, during which we saw Zebra, Topi, Buffalo, Impala and Warthogs - it was magical. I learned that Giraffe were recently introduced into Lake Mburo and that there are no Elephant or Kob in the park - all things that were new to me. Other good lecturers we met were Muruhura Herbert, who taught us about plants and Mathew Yusurfa who taught us about bird identification. Accommodation and meals during our training were perfect. I really thank Craig and Derek for having helped me to complete this training course.