Types of gorillas; First of all, gorillas are the largest land dwellers and one of our closest relatives after bonobos and chimpanzees. However, they share 98% of their genetic code with humans which display their unique emotions common with humans like sadness and laughter. Wild Gorillas can only be found in some of African’s tropical forest, marshes, wetlands, highlands and mountains. More then, gorillas are the most powerful primates with muscular arms, thick chests, large nostrils and black-brownish hair and their hair covers the whole body except the face, hands, feet and chest mostly the old silverbacks.
Furthermore, gorillas walk with all four legs most of the time and can stand when feeding on tree bark or displaying dominance. The adult male gorillas are called silverbacks because of the gray hair on their back. Silverbacks are larger than the females and can weigh between 135 to 220 kilometers in the wild. Those in captivity may grow fatter and heavier because of less space in which to roam around. And because of their weight, adult gorillas avoid climbing trees and the young gorilla are the one that climb and sleep on short tree branches most of the time.
Gorillas live in groups led by dominant silverback. A gorilla family is made up of 10 to 30 individuals who can live up to 35 years in the wild and those in captivity can live up to 45 years. The gorilla family group includes younger males, females, juveniles and their babies. The stability of a gorilla group depends whole on the bond between the females and the dominant silverback.
Mating in gorillas is often initiated by the females as soon as she is fertile. The young females always leave the family after becoming sexually maturity to join lone males or other groups. This movement is to avoid inbreeding and competition for the attentions of the dominant silverback. The mature male may stay with his group of birth though in most cases are driven away by the dominant silverback to start a life alone. The silverbacks can attempt to snatch females from stable groups and if a male succeed in staying with his family group, he will lay low and mate with some of the females, Types of gorillas
There are two types of gorillas that is Eastern gorillas and the western gorillas. The Eastern gorillas has two subspecies of Mountain gorillas and the Eastern lowland gorillas which are generally referred to as the Grauer’s gorilla, the Eastern gorillas are the largest primates and are found in Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. The Western gorillas are divided into the cross
River Gorilla and the Western lowland gorillas. In general, the western lowland gorilla lives in the lowland forests of central and west African countries like Angola, Gabon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of the Congo and Gabon. These species are the smallest species though most plentiful of all the four gorilla subspecies. They live in some of the largest and densest forests of Africa, estimating over 350,000 remain in the wild. These species are also more commonly seen in zoos and stand out from the two substances of eastern gorillas because of their greyish-reddish fur. However, they have been the most numerous of all the types of gorilla sub species which decreased by 60% in the last 25 years. Due to the threaten of human’s encroachment, poaching and Ebola virus.
Cross River Gorillas ‘’ G gorilla diebli’’
The Cross River gorillas are also another type of gorilla species which was classified as a distinct subspecies in 2000 and listed as endangered primates by the IUCN in their 2006 list. These species can be found in the countries of Cameroon and Nigeria as well as to the northern-western side of Africa. They can weigh about 440 pounds and can stand up to 5 feet long. Though their number is decreasing dues to threatening them thus leading to less than 350 remain species in the wild. The cross River Gorillas are vulnerable to extinction matter being, they occupy a small piece of land and come into more contact with humans. The greatest threat which has led to their number decrease is loss of genetic diversity, habitat loss and poaching as well as logging. But the government of Cameroon, Nigeria and International wildlife conservation Agencies came out to solve these issue through ensuring protection in order not get wiped out.
Gorilla trekking experience is not possible with Cross River Gorillas and cannot be seen in zoos.
Eastern lowland – Grauer’s gorillas
The Eastern lowland gorillas are found in the eastern side of the Democratic Republic of Congo in national parks like Kahuzi Biega National Park, Odzala Kakoua National Park, Maiko National park and certain areas around the Itombwe Massif. These subspecies of gorillas are the largest of all the gorillas, which are characterized of stocky body, larger hands and a short muzzle among others, Types of gorillas
Facts, mountain gorillas’ species have black coats with shorter hair on the head and body.
They are also known as the third most critically endangered species of the three gorilla subspecies. Though to certain extent their number is reducing due to threats like poaching and habitat loss. However in the world there total population is over 7,500 individuals remaining and most seen in the country of Democratic Republic of Congo.
Mountain Gorillas ‘’ G. berengei berengei’’
Mountain gorillas are one of the two sub species of the Eastern Lowland gorillas found in three countries in the entire world, in Virunga Mountain ranges of Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. In Congo can be trekked in Virunga National park, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and Uganda is blessed with two Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. Though mountain gorillas are not such heavy as the Eastern lowland gorilla which live in forests at higher elevations ‘’8,000 to 12,000 feet and no mountain slopes.
Fact about mountain gorillas, they can standout because of their thick and long hair-fur. They have thick coat that protects them from the cold temperature along mountain slopes.
More so, mountain gorillas are the second most endangered of the four gorilla’s subspecies. In the wild around 1065 individuals are remaining. Though they are being threatened by habitat loss as a result of continues human encroachments of the forests and mountain slopes and to some do migrate higher to the cold mountain slopes which threaten their health.