Undiscovered Treasures Of Yola: Gashaki Gumti National Park
The sleepy town of Yola at the northeastern edge of Nigeria bordering Cameroun has plenty of underrated attractions nearby.
The Gashaki Gumti National Park in Serti is within a day’s drive and its home to an extensive variety of flora and fauna.
The park was gazetted from two game reserves in 1991 and is Nigeria’s largest national park. Its total area covers about 6,402 km2. Much of the northern GGNP is savannah grassland, while the southern GGNP sector of the park has a rugged terrain characterized by very mountainous, steep slopes as well as deep valleys and gorges, and is home to montane forests.
It is an important water catchment area for the Benue River with an abundant river flow even during the markedly dry season. Enclaves for local Fulani pastoralists exist within the park boundary that allow for farming and grazing.
The fauna of the national park is very diverse recording about 103 species of mammals and over 1 million bird as at the last censuses conducted.
It would amaze you to know the park is officially labelled as one of Africa’s “Important Bird Areas” with more than 500 species found, and visiting bird watching enthusiasts are constantly adding new species to the list.
The mammal Species found at the park include the yellow-backed duiker, African golden cat, African elephant, klipspringer, west African wild dog, hartebeest, the world’s largest antelope, the rare Adamawa mountain reedbuck, the African buffalo, and also the largest population in Nigeria of chimpanzee are found within the boundaries of the national park.