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Kitulo National Park: Plant specialists call it the 'Serengeti of Flowers'

Locals refer to the Kitulo Plateau as "Bustani ya Mungu" ("The Garden of God").

Kitulo National Park: Plant specialists call it the 'Serengeti of Flowers'

Locals refer to the Kitulo Plateau as "Bustani ya Mungu" ("The Garden of God").

15 November 2017 Wednesday 13:20
Kitulo National Park: Plant specialists call it the 'Serengeti of Flowers'

Kitulo National Park is a protected area of montane grassland on the Kitulo Plateau in the southern highlands of Tanzania.


Locals refer to the Kitulo Plateau as "Bustani ya Mungu" ("The Garden of God"), while botanists have referred to it as the "Serengeti of Flowers".


The park is at an elevation of 2,600 metres (8,500 ft) between the peaks of the Kipengere and Poroto mountains and covers an area of 412.9 square kilometres (159.4 sq mi) lying in Mbeya Region and Njombe Region.


The park is administered by Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) and is the first national park in tropical Africa to be established primarily to protect its flora.


Protection of the Kitulo Plateau's unique flora was first proposed by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), in response to the growing international trade in orchid tubers and increased hunting and logging activities in the surrounding forests.


In 2002, President Benjamin Mkapa announced the establishment of the park.


The park was formally gazetted in 2005, becoming Tanzania's fourteenth national park.


TANAPA has stated that the park could be expanded in the future to include the neighboring Mount Rungwe forest.


In 2005, field scientists from the WCS discovered a new species of primate on and around Mount Rungwe and in the Livingstone Forest area of the park.



Initially known as the Highland Mangabey, later changed to its Tanzanian name of Kipunji, it is one of the 25 most endangered primates in the world.


Apart from the Kitulo Plateau, the Southern highlands of Tanzania includes Mount Rungwe, Uporoto, Ngosi, Ukinga, the Mbeya range, the Livingstone Mountains, Umalila and Ufipa Plateau.


The Mbisi Forest Reserve is the eastern-most portion of Congolese forest in Tanzania and it is here that the central African Red Colobus monkey may be seen.


Due to the high altitude and resulting lower temperature, this population has grown longer coats than those found elsewhere in Africa.


Flora/Fauna - Almost 2,000 species of flowers occur in the southern highlands, many species of flora and fauna are endemic to this area.


Flowers include ground orchids, red-hot pockers, gladioli and irises.

Birds include Blue swallow, Denham’s bustard and many others. Southern Highlands colobus monkeys exist on the plateau’s edge.

Azania Post

Updated: 16.11.2017 10:14
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