Mountain Gorillas, Facts – Everything you need to Know about
Mountain gorilla is a species of eastern gorilla favorably endangered African primate. Like all gorillas, mountain gorillas are big, great animals which have a black fur and a hairless face with black skin. Mountain Gorilla arms are longer than its legs and it has gloomier and thicker hair than that of other gorillas and gorilla subspecies.
Mountain gorilla has a scientific name called beringei beringei and it is believed that a male mountain gorilla has a height of 1.5 m (4.92 ft) and a weight of (195 kg) whereas a female weighs (100 kg) with a height of (1.3 m, 4.26 ft).they are social animals and they live in groups commonly known as troops which contains up to 30 or more individuals.in their troops, they are led by a single dominant male which is called the silver back.
Usually the silver back takes most of the responsibility in the troop for example it fights to death in order to defend the troop from predators and leopards plus the other male gorillas which come to attack the young ones. They also do social activities such leading the foraging, eating, nesting and traveling.
Mountain Gorillas Reproduction;
After researching about the reproductive behavior of mountain gorilla, it has been found out that their reproduction is quite similar to that of humans whereby a female gorilla gives birth after a gestation period of 8.5 month to 1/2 off springs per delivery. A baby gorilla weighs about 1.8 kg and just like humans they also spend their first few weeks/month with their mothers and when they reach 8 month, they start to eat solid food.
Someone may wonder how gorilla babies live after birth; well even though gorillas are large animals, the newborn babies rely on their mother by clinging on their back for until when they are 4 month old and also when they have stopped nursing at the age of 2 to 3 years.
Where are Mountain Gorillas found;
surprisingly mountain gorillas are found just in two remote areas and that is; Virunga volcanoes covering the borders of Rwanda, Uganda and democratic republic of Congo and the other one is in Bwindi impenetrable national park in Uganda located in kigezi region south western in the district of Kanungu and Kisoro, they are highly found in high-altitudes forests where they mainly eat leaves and shoots.
Therefore for those planning to have a gorilla safari tour in Uganda, Bwindi national park is a good ideal for those interested in trekking gorilla.
The forest has more than eleven habituated gorilla families available for trekking and these consist; Nkuringo, Busingye, Rushegura, Nshonji, Mishaya, Mubare etc. gorilla trekking in Uganda is said to be one of the most exciting safari tours and moving experience you can ever have due to its giant primates where you can observe and have a close look at them while they also observe you.
What do Mountain Gorillas feed on;
Majority of the mountain gorillas depend on (85.8%) of leaves, shoots and stems, flowers (2.3%), it also feeds on bark (6.9%) as well as fruits.
A male mountain gorilla can eat up to 34 kg a day, whereas a female one can eat up to 18 kilograms of vegetation a day. But also their feeding can depend on what their habitat provides and on the time of the year because in dry season, only a few juicy fruits are available which lowland gorillas mainly feed on a lot.
Sometimes, gorillas feed on soil and ash in a small amount that possibly helps in regulating their gastric system and occasionally, they eat insects like ants and termites.
However, mountain gorilla rarely drinks water.so they are given herbal tea and sugarcane. Each gorilla has a different number of plant species and insects they consume for instance, the western gorilla ingest a high fiber diet including foliages, barks, piths and soil.
Similarly to humans, mountain gorillas also have their favorite fruits such as dialium, landolphia, tetrapleura as well as guava, apple, banana etc. Whereas they don’t eat dairy products, meat and eggs or flesh of other animals.
The atmosphere of the trek through the jungle vapor is incredible. Gorilla trekking in Uganda is unlike any other experience in Africa, the trek involves getting a bit dirty and attacking through thick jungle with the guide to find a group of habituated gorillas. Therefore in case of a gorilla safari tour, Bwindi impenetrable national park is one the most magical in all of Africa.
And since it is the most park for trekkers, Bwindi is divided into 4 regions and they are highlighted below: Nkuringo region, Rushaga region, Buhoma region and Ruhija region.
Therefore if you’re booking your accommodation, make sure your permit for trekking gorilla is issued.
While trekking the gorillas, are specified number of 8 people are allowed to trek in order not to overwhelm the gorillas and it is easier to manage.
And you are also recommended to mind about what you pack for your gorilla safari tour, since it is green (pretty green forest) come prepared for wet conditions and muddy in the forest, a rain jacket, safari boots, long hiking socks, walking sticks, binoculars, gardening gloves, cameras, insect repellent, bottled water.
Gorilla tracking is absolutely ranked as an exciting adventure to travellers who come to Africa; it is an activity that consists hiking through the jungles of Uganda in search of the gorillas. The excitement which travellers experience while seeing the gorillas eye to eye in the wild, is not only memorable but also a life time experience.
Today Uganda is blessed to be one of the world’s best destinations to experience the pleasure of a gorilla safari and game viewing in a non-crowded national park.
Because in Uganda we only have two national parks that have gorilla habituated groups that a open for tourists young and old. That is Bwindi impenetrable national park and Mgahinga national park. Therefore for those interested in an amazing wildlife safari, you can combine mountain gorilla watching tour and the golden monkey tracking, game viewing as an exciting trip.
Therefore our safari tour guides are ready to give you the most of African wildlife safari tours and gorilla safaris in Uganda.