Mountain gorillas are an endangered species of apes that can only be trekked in Virunga national park in Rwanda, Bwindi impenetrable forest national park and mount Mgahinga national park in Uganda and Volcanoes national park in Congo.
This great apes were almost becoming extinct in the 19thcentury but due to the conservation efforts the number of mountain gorillas has dramatically increased from about 300 gorillas left in the world to about 900 gorillas today. Dian Fossey and American primatologist is one of the main reason gorillas increase today, she dedicated her live to the conservation of mountain gorillas and also set up the Karisoke research institute for the studying and conservation of gorillas and her efforts unfortunately led to her death in December 1985.
How big are gorillas
The male mountain gorillas are always bigger than the female mountain gorillas; male mountain gorillas can measure up to six feettall from toes to the head. The silverback mountain gorillas can measure up to 1.52 meters with their hands wide open. Some mountain gorillas can grow to a length of 2.25 meters. The average male of an adult male mountain gorilla can go up to 193 kilograms with even some weighing up to 200 kilograms, the female mountain gorillas can weigh up to 140-160 kilograms, a silverback gorilla can lift up to 815 kilograms.
The tallest gorilla recorded was 1.95 cm tall, arm span of 2.7 meters, chest of 1.98 meters and weighed 219 kilograms this silver was however unfortunately shot near Lake Kivu in 1938. The heaviest gorilla was shot in Cameroon weighing 263 kilograms. It’s said that male gorillas in captivity are capable of weighing up to 310 kilograms or more. Gorillas’ arms are longer than their legs; they can also learn sign language as well as use simple tools.
Gorillas are the largest living primates with a DNA of 98% similar to that of human beings this makes them mans closest relatives. Gorillas’ habitats are tropical forests in the Virunga conservation area in east and central Africa. Gorilla groups are dominated by one Silverback gorilla who will determine the movements and everything concerning the family including fighting for the family even if the fight can cost a life of a Silverback.
While going for gorilla trekking tourists must obtain gorilla permits in order to access the mountain gorillas in their natural habitats, permits cost USD 600 in Uganda, USD 1500 in Rwanda and USD 450 on Congo. The country’s where gorillas can be trekked experience the same type of climate throughout the year, the best time for trekking mountain gorillas is in the dry season when gorilla trekking trails are easily accessible and accessible.
Tourists trekking in the rain season mist carry garden gloves, rain jackets, hiking boots, warm clothing’s and so much more sometimes the weather is unpredictable it can rain even during rain season but the sky often clears after the rain.