The Ituri Rainforest is a rainforest located in the Ituri Province of northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo formerly called Zaire. The forest's name derives from the nearby Ituri River which flows through the rainforest, connecting firstly to the Aruwimi River and finally into the Congo.
The Ituri Rainforest is about 63,000 square kilometers in area, and is located between 0° and 3°N and 27° and 30° E. Elevation in the Ituri ranges from about 700 m to 1000 m. The average temperature is 31°C (88°F) and the average humidity is about 85% (Wilkie 1987). About one-fifth of the rainforest is made up of the Okapi Wildlife Reserve, a World Heritage Site.
It is also the home of the Mbuti pygmies, one of the hunter-gatherer peoples living in equatorial rainforests characterised by their short height (below one and a half metres, or 59 inches, on average). They were the subject of research by a variety of outsiders, including Patrick and Anne Eisner Putnam who lived on the banks of the Epulu River at the edge of the Ituri. They were also the subject of a study by Colin Turnbull, The Forest People, in 1962.
- Wilkie, David. S. 1987. "Impact of Swidden Age and Subsistence Hunting on Diversity and Abundance of Exploited Fauna in the Ituri Forest of Northeastern Zaire". Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, Department of Forestry and Wildlife Management, University of Massachusetts.