Albertine Rift Montane Forest Ecoregion
The topography of the Albertine Rift is characterized by mountains and escarpments, and their associated valleys and flanks.
The higher elevations support afromontane and sub-montane forests, grasslands, and – on the highest peaks – afroalpine moorlands.
The Albertine Rift is an area of exceptional endemism, and contains many species threatened with global extinction, particularly within the mountain forest habitats.
Over 50% of birds, 39% of mammals, 19% of amphibians, and 14% of reptiles and plants found in mainland Africa occur in the Albertine Rift.
The Albertine Rift forests are most famous for their population of mountain gorillas protected in a number of national parks including Virunga, Bwindi, and Mgahinga. WWF has been working with some of these gorilla populations for a long time.
The region is one of the most densely populated areas in Africa and therefore suffers from a high degree of direct and indirect threats to the entire ecosystem, such as unsustainable timber extraction, general forest clearance and conversion to agricultural land, grazing, hunting and firewood collection.
- the Albertine Rift Conservation Society (ARCOS),
- the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF),
- the Diane Fossey Gorilla Fund-International (DFGF-I),
- the International Gorilla Conservation Programme (IGCP),
- the Institute of Tropical Forest Conservation (ITFC),
- Makerere University Institute of Environment and Natural Resources (MUIENR),
- the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), and
The Core Group has analysed the remaining large patches of habitat in the Albertine Rift, and identified the 88 most important conservation sites.
7 of these sites are high in priority for conservation intervention. These sites are the:
- Bwindi Impenetrable,
- Semliki, and the
- Itombwe Massif.
- Rwenzori Mountains (Uganda)
- Kibira (Rwanda) National Parks, and the
- Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve (Uganda).