Elephants in Akagera

In 1975, 26 elephants were shifted into Akagera National Park from Bugesera – Kigali, these 7 year old elephants included 14 males and 12 females. Of these, just 3 were habituated and these included Mutware-the Chief, Mwiza and Hélico; while the rest remained wild. With time, Mwiza and Hélico followed the wild elephants leaving Muware to remain in a solitary life.

Muware the elderly Akagera Elephant

With time, Mwiza and Hélico followed the wild elephants leaving Muware to remain in a solitary life. He became rather destructive especially to nearby farmlands and thus gaining popularity among the locals. 

Actually several stories are told about Muware Elephant, and because people did not hear stories about the other elephants, some have lived to think that there is just one elephant within Akagera National Park.

Today Mutware is over 40 years old, and weighs approximately 6.2 tons. He is one of the oldest elephants among the hundreds living in the park.

Park wardens in Akagera park maintain that this elephant is very friendly to people and it responds to the commandments of its guard. Visitors to the Park can easily take photos with it but they advise that visitors should avoid direct contacts with it especially in the months of June, July as well as August when Mutware wants female elephants.

Unfortunately Mutware lost his two ivories during the 1994 civil war that took place in Rwanda. Today he is among the leading tourist attractions and people travel from different parts of the country, and people travel from all parts of the continent to visit him.