Climate of Uganda

Climate of Uganda

Climate is the average weather condition of a place studied and recorded for a long period (30 – 35 years).

NB: Weather is the state of atmosphere of a given place for a short time.

Climatic regions of Uganda

  • Tropical climate
  • Equatorial climate
  • Mountane climate
  • Semi- arid climate

Map showing climatic zone

Climate of Uganda
  1. Equatorial climate
  2. It is described as hot and wet throughout the year.

Characteristic of Equatorial climate

  • There are two rainfall seasons (double maxima)
  • Temperatures are high throughout the year.
  • Heavy rainfall is received throughout the year.
  • It is mostly experienced in areas along the equator.

Areas that experience equatorial climate

  • Shore of lake Victoria
  • Wakiso
  • Kampala
  • Jinja
  • Masaka

Human activities carried out equatorial climate

  • Farming
  • Tourism
  • Hunting
  • Lumbering
  • Mining
  • Fishing

Crops grown in areas of Uganda which experiences equatorial climate

  • Oil palm
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Cocoa
  • Bananas
  • Rubber
  • Sugar cane


  1. How is equatorial climate described?
  2. Mention any two characteristics of equatorial climate
  3. State two human activities carried out in equatorial climate.
  4. Why is equatorial climate describe as hot and et throughout the year.
  • Tropical climate
  • It is described as wet and dry
  • It covers the largest part of Uganda because Uganda lies within the tropics

Characteristics of tropical climate

  • It is wet and dry in some seasons
  • Rainfall is moderate
  • Temperatures are high

Table showing tropical climate


Human activities in tropical climate

  • Mining
  • Crop farming
  • Pastoralism
  • Bee keeping


  1. How is tropical climate described?
  2. Mention any two characteristics of tropical climate
  3. Identify any two human activities carried out in tropical climate
  4. Name the climatic region that covers the largest part of Uganda
  5. Why do most parts of Uganda receive tropical climate.
  6. Mention any two economic activities carried out in tropical climate.
  1. Semi desert
  2.  It is described as hot and dry.

Characteristics of semi arid climate

  • It is hot and dry
  • Temperatures are higher throughout the year.
  • Rainfall is very low.
  • There is usually cold nights and hot day.

Human activities in semi arid

  • Nomadic pastoralism
  • Irrigation farming
  • Mining
  • Tourism

Districts which experience semi arid climate

  • Kaabong
  • Napak
  • Kotido
  • Nakapiripirit

Problems faced by people who live in semi arid areas.

  • Shortage of water
  • Cattle rustling
  • Animal diseases
  • Montane climate
  •  It is received in high land areas of Uganda.
  • Places on the leeward side receive little rainfall.
  • Why – it receives dry winds
  • Places of windward side receive heavy rainfall
  • Why – it receives warm moist winds
image 64

Human activities carried out montane climatic region

  • Mining
  • Quarrying
  • Crop farming

Crops grown in mountane climatic regions of Uganda

  • Arabic coffee
  • Wheat
  • Irish
  • Bananas

Districts that experience montane climate

  • Mbale
  • Kapchorwa
  • Sironko
  • Kabala
  • Kisoro
  • Bundibugyo

Factors that influence the climate of Uganda

  1. Vegetation cover
  2. Areas with thick vegetation receive heavy rainfall while areas with scattered vegetation receive little or no rainfall.
  3. Relief/ Altitude
  4. Areas on higher altitude are cooler than those on a lower altitude.
  5. (The higher you go, the cooler it becomes)
  6. Distance from large water bodies
  7. Areas near large water bodies receive heavier rainfall than those far away.

NB: convectional rainfall is received.

  • Latitude (Distance from the equator)
  • Places near the equator are hotter than places far away  from the equator.
  • Areas near equator receive heavier rainfall than areas far away from the equator.
  • Human activities
  •  human activities that affect the climate positively include the following
  • Afforestation
  • Reforestation
  • Agroforestry
  • Human activities which affect the climate negatively include
  • Deforestation
  • Bush burning
  • Industrialization

NB: – places where large forests are planted receives heavy rainfall.

  • Places where people have cut down trees on a large scale receive little rainfall.


  1. Mention any wo factors that influence the climate of Uganda.
  2. How do the following factors affect the climate of an area. i). altitude  ii). Latitude iii) vegetation cover  iv) human activities
  3. State two human ativities that influence the climate positively
  4. Why is kabala cooler than arua ?
  5. How does clearing of vegetation affect the climate.

Effects of climate on people

  • Climate determines human activities and settlement
  • It determines the way of dressing
  • It determines the way of building


There are three types of rainfall

  1. Cyclonic rainfall/ frontal rainfall
  2. It is received in plain area
  3. It is formed when warm moist air (winds) meets with cold dry winds at a front
image 65
  1. Convectional rainfall
  2. It is received in areas around water bodies and forested areas
  3. It is formed when the sun heats the water body and forests causing evaporation or transpiration.
  4. The warm moist air is forced to rise and later condenses to form clouds that results into rainfall.

Diagram showing convectional rainfall

image 66


Vegetation is the plant cover of an area.

Elements of vegetation

  • Trees
  • Flowers
  • Crops
  • Shrubs
  • Grass
  • Papyrus


  1. Natural vegetation. This is the type of vegetation that grows on its on.

Examples of natural vegetation

  • Natural forests
  • Thickets
  • Grasslands
  • Swamp vegetation
  • Planted vegetation
  • Planted forests
  • Crops
  • Planted flowers
  • Planted grass


  1. Equatorial / Tropical rainfalls
  2. Savanna
  3. Semi desert
  4. Montane vegetation
KEY   xxx         Mountain Vegetation                  Semi-arid Vegetation              Equatorial climate  
Tropical Climate
image 67
  1. Equatorial vegetation
  2. it is also known as tropical rainforests.
  3. It grows mainly along the equator.

Characteristics of equatorial vegetation

  • Trees take long to mature
  • Trees have broad leaves
  • Trees have thick undergrowth
  • Trees are ever green
  • Trees grow tall
  • Trees form canopies
  • Trees have buttress roots

Examples of Equatorial forests

  • Mabira
  • Budongo
  • Bugoma
  • Marabigambo
  • Maramagambo

Tree species in the equatorial vegetation

  • Mahogany
  • Mvule
  • Rose wood
  • Ebony
  • Africa walnut

Economic activities carried out in equatorial vegetation zone.

  • Farming
  • Hunting
  • Lumbering
  • Tourism
  • Mining
  1. Savanna vegetation
  2. It covers the largest part of Uganda.
  3. It is found in the tropical climate region

Characteristics of savannah

  • Trees shade off their leaves
  • Trees have soft wood
  • It has tall grass
  • Trees have narrow leaves.

Tree species in the savanna vegetation

  • Acacia
  • Baobab

Human activities in savannah vegetation

  • Cattle keeping
  • Bee keeping
  • Tourism
  • Hunting
  • Mining


  • Semi desert vegetation
  •  it is located in areas which receive little rainfall
  • It  is made up of bushes and thickets
  • Much of North Eastern Uganda is made up of this vegetation.
  • Trees here have thin leaves which reduces the rate of vegetation
  • Cattle keeping ( pastorialism) is the major economic activity.

Districts which have semi desert vegetation

  • Abim
  • Moroto
  • Kaabong
  • Kotido
  • Montane vegetation
  • It grows mainly in mountainous areas
  • It changes with variant in altitude.

Diagram showing mountain vegetation

image 68

Factors That Influence the Vegetation Distribution

  • Vegetation distribution is the way different kinds of plant cover are spread in an area.

The factors that influence vegetation distribution include;

  1. Rainfall distribution
  2. Areas that receive heavy rainfall have thick vegetation while areas that receive little rainfall have short and scattered vegetation.
  3. Human activities
  4. Human activities such as afforestation, agro- forestry, and reforestation promote the growth of vegetation in an area.
  5. Human activities such as deforestation, bush burning, swamp drainage, etc lead to poor vegetation growth in an area.
  • Latitude
  • Areas near equator have thick and tall vegetation while areas far from the equator have short and scattered vegetation.
  • Type of soil
  • Areas with fertile soils have short and scattered vegetation.

Importance of vegetation

  • Vegetation attracts tourists who bring income
  • It acts as a natural habitat for animals.
  • Vegetation helps in rain formation
  • Vegetation is source of herbal medicine
  • Vegetation is a source of wood fuel
  • It is a source of food
  • It is a source of wood for timber


  • Wildlife refers to plants, animals, insects and birds that live in their natural habitats.

Categories of wild animals

  1. Herbivorous. These are animals that feed on grass e.g buffalo, giraffe.
  2. Omnivorous. These are animals that feed on both grass and flesh.
  3. Carnivorous. These are animals that feed on flesh.

Game parks and game reserves

A game park is a large area of land gazzeted by the government to conserve wild life.

Examples of game parks in Uganda

  • Murchison falls NP (Crocodiles)
  • Queen Elizabeth NP (Hippos)
  • Bwindi Impenetrable NP (Mountane gorillas)
  • Kidepo Valley (Ostriches)
  • Mahinga NP (Mountane gorillas)
  • Mountain Elgon NP
  • Mountain Rwenzori NP
  • Lake Mburo NP

Game reserves in Uganda

Game reserves are areas set aside by local authorities to conserve wild life.

Examples of game reserves in Uganda

  • Ajai
  • Bugungu
  • Mathemiko
  • Kibale forest pian upe

 Map showing game parks and game reserves in Uganda

image 69

Importance of game parks

  • They promote tourism
  • Helps to preserve wildlife for future use
  • It creates jobs
  • They act as research centre’s
  • They promote development of infrastructures

Dangers faced by game parks

  • Poaching
  • Out break of wild fire
  • Encroachment
  • Out break of diseases
  • Prolonged drought


This is the illegal hunting of animals in game parks.

Reasons why people carryout poaching

  • To get met
  • To get ivory
  • To get hides and skin
  • To get medicine

Dangers of poaching

  • It leads to death of animals
  • It leads to extinction of animals
  • It leads to migration of wild animals

How poaching can be controlled

  • By setting and enforcing strict laws against poaching
  • Teaching people the importance of wild life.
  • Employing trusted game rangers.



Tourism is the business of providing services like transport, entertainment and accommodation to people who visit places of interest for pleasure or study purpose.

Services provided to tourists

  • Accommodation
  • Transport
  • Entertainment
  • Security
  • Medical care
  • Food

Examples of tourist attractions in Uganda

  • Climate
  • Culture
  • Sceneries
  • Beaches
  • Historical sites
  • Wild life
  • Hot springs
  • Museum

Factors that promote tourism

  • Good security
  • Good transport
  • Presence of many tourist attractions
  • Improved accommodation

Why tourism is called an industry

  • It generates income
  • It creates employment

Why tourism is called invisible export

  • It generates foreign income yet no physical goods are taken out side the country.

Examples of invisible exports

  • Tourism
  • Electricity
  • Skilled labour
  • Insurance

Importance of tourism

  • It earns income
  • It creates jobs
  • It improves on infrastructure
  • It creates market for locally made good.

Problems facing tourism industry

  • Poaching
  • Poor transport network
  • Insecurity
  • Poor accommodation

Solutions to the problems

  • Improving on security
  • Advertising tourist attractions on international media
  • Enforcing laws against poaching
  • Improving on infrastructure


 A natural resource is anything in the environment that man uses to satisfy his needs and exists on its own.

Types of natural resources

a). renewable resources. These are resources that can be replaced naturally after use.


  • Plants, animals, land, climate, water.

b). non renewable resources. These are resources that can not be replaced naturally after use.


  • Minerals


These are valuable substances found in the underground.

Types of minerals

  • Metallic e.g copper, gold, cobalt
  • Non metallic e.g salt, lime stone, sand
  • Fuel minerals e.g crude oil, natural gas.

Minerals mined in Uganda

mineralsArea/place  districtproduct
Lime saltUsukuru hills HimaTororo KaseseCement
Natural gasAlbertine regionHoima BulisaGas
PhosphateUsukuru hillsTororoArtificial fertilizers
SaltLake katweKaseseCommon salt
Crude oilAlbert regionHoima BulisaPetrol Diesel Kerosene  


Mining is the extraction of minerals from where they exist.

Methods of mining

  • Open cast
  • Drilling method
  • Underground mining

Reasons why some minerals are not mined

  • Low technology
  • Shortage of skilled labour
  • Lack of modern machinery
  • Shortage of capital.


Land is the surface of the earth that is not water.

Reasons why land is considered as the most important resource.

  • Most resources are found on land
  • Most economic activities are carried out on land.

Uses of land

  • For farming
  • For mining
  • For settlement
  • For road construction

Land degradation

This is the lowering of quality of land

Ways of degrading land

  • Over grazing
  • By deforestation
  • By brick making
  • By bush burning
  • By over mining

Land conservation

 This is the practice of protecting land against degradation

Ways of protecting land

  • By afforestation
  • Re- afforestation
  • By agro- forestry
  • By bush fallowing



They are referred to as resources because they provide labour.

Forms of human labour

  • Skilled labour
  • Semi skilled labour
  • Un skilled labour

Water as a resource

Water is got from the following sources.

  • Rain
  • Lakes
  • Rivers
  • Swamps
  • Streams
  • Tank

The main economic activity carried out on water bodies is fishing.


Fishing is the catching of fish from water bodies

Commercial fishing is on the rise in Uganda today due to an increase in demand for fish and its products.

Traditional methods

  • Use of spears
  • Use of fishing baskets
  • Use of hooks
  • Use of local herbs
  • Use of fishing rods
  • Use of bows and arrows

Modern method

  • Use of fishing nets
  • Use of trawling
  • Use of drifting method

Reasons why modern methods are used on large water bodies.

  • To catch a lot of fish at ago
  • Presence of deep water
  • To preserve young fish species
  • They are easy and effective to use.

Examples of fish species caught in Uganda lakes

  • Tilapia (commonest)
  • Nile perch (the largest)
  • Mud fish (commonly in swamps)
  • Lung fish

Modern methods of fish preservation

  • Tinning  (canning)
  • refrigerating (freezing)
  • deep frying

Traditional methods of preserving fish

  • smoking (commonest)
  • sun drying (cheapest)
  • salt

Uses of fish to man

  • source of food
  • it is a source of employment
  • fish bones are used to make animal feeds

Problems facing fishing industry

  • poor transport net work
  • poor fishing method
  • shortage of storage facilities
  • water weeds
  • Piracy.


  • by constructing better roads to  landing sites
  • by enforcing laws against poor fishing methods
  • by providing fishing storage facilities


Problems created by natural resources

  • death
  • attacks from wild animals
  • collapsing of mining sites

How people misuse resources

  • through poor disposal of wastes
  • through  over cultivation
  • through bush burning
  • through over grazing
  • through deforestation

How people care for natural resources

  • through watering
  • through spraying plants
  • through immunizing animals
  • through cleaning water sources
  • through fencing water sources