Facts about mountain gorillas in Bwindi
Facts about mountain gorillas in Bwindi: Mountain gorillas are endangered species of primates on the IUCN Red List of threatened animals. There are few mountain gorillas left in the world and these do live in Bwindi impenetrable forest national park as well as the Virunga conversation area that comprises Mgahinga national park, Virunga national park, and volcanoes national park.
Bwindi impenetrable forest national park is found in Uganda and it’s situated in the southwestern part of the country. The national park covers a total area of 331 sq. km full of thick tropical forest and harbors over 700 endangered species of primates. The national park is famous for harboring the highest number of theses great Apes among all gorilla parks.
There are over 19 mountain gorilla families fully habituated for gorilla trekking and there are 2 mountain gorilla families semi-habituated for gorilla habituation. Bwindi has been divided into 4 sectors where these mountain gorillas do live and these are Nkuringo and Rushaga in the south, Ruhija in the east, and Buhoma in the north.
Facts about Bwindi mountain gorillas
Bwindi mountain gorillas share about 98% DNA with human beings
Mountain gorillas are said to be closest relatives to human beings and they got all the senses of human beings just that they can’t talk. Mountain gorillas can easily understand everything a person tells them and some even understand sign language
About 700 mountain gorillas in Bwindi
With the increase in births, over 700 mountain gorillas are now living in the thick tropical forest of Bwindi. Bwindi is said to be home to the highest population of mountain gorillas left in the whole world. They do live in Buhoma region, Nkuringo region, Rushaga region and Ruhija region.
They live in thick vegetation cover
Mountain gorillas of Bwindi live in the thick tropical forest at high altitudes where they find comfortable homes and enough food.
Bwindi gorillas eat the whole day
The other Facts about mountain gorillas in Bwindi of is these species spend most of their time eating and their diet comprises stems, bamboo, shoots, and fruits. On some rare occasions, mountain gorillas in Bwindi eat larvae, ants, snails, and sometimes rotting wood.
Bwindi mountain gorillas are the biggest living primates
Mountain gorillas happen to be the biggest species of primates with a silverback weighing up to 180kgs and a female mountain gorilla weighing up to 90kg.
Mountain gorillas in Bwindi can live up to 40 years
The lifespan of these endangered species of primates in the jungles of Bwindi is about 35 years however there are some that can live up to 40 years.
Mountain gorillas sleep at night
Just like human beings, mountain gorillas of Bwindi sleep at night. They do make nests during the day and they sleep in these nests at night as a group. The mothers sleep with their babies until when they learn to make their own nests.
Mountain gorillas in Bwindi live in groups
Mountain gorillas live in groups of 5-25 members on Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. These mountain gorilla families are headed by silverback whose role is to protect and care about all members of the group.
Female mountain gorillas reach the breeding stage at the age of 10 years
Female mountain gorillas in Bwindi become sexually mature at the age of 10 years and this is after they have seen their period. Female mountain gorillas give birth to only one infant and they give birth every after 4 years. The gestation period of a female mountain gorilla is 8.5 months.
Mountain gorillas are endangered
Mountain gorillas are said to be endangered species of primates but their population in Bwindi is increasing. Mountain gorillas are the most threatened species of primates but it’s important to know that the Uganda wildlife authority is trying so hard to make sure that the mountain gorilla population increases. The national park was gazzeted in 1992 and from then the population has been increasing day by day.
For travelers that would love to know more about these creatures in Bwindi at Africa Adventure Vacations, we do help them organize a safari in the park. The first thing you need to encounter these apes is the gorilla permit. There is a gorilla permit that enables travelers to encounter these apes for 1 hour and there is a gorilla habituation permit that enables travelers to encounter gorillas for 4 hours.
Gorilla trekking and habituation permits are sold by Uganda Wildlife Authority at a fee. Travelers that want gorilla trekking permits can get them at $700 for foreign non-residents, $600 for foreign residents, and UGX250,000 east African citizens. Travelers can get gorilla habituation permits at $1500 foreign non-residents, $1000 foreign residents, and UGX750,000 citizens of East Africa. Apart from gorilla permits, travelers need to look at transport to the park and accommodation.
For accommodation, all gorilla trekking regions in Bwindi have enough accommodation facilities where travelers can stay based on their budget. These accommodation facilities range from budget to mid-range to luxury options and a traveler will choose where to stay based on the money they have.
Accommodation facilities in Bwindi include Buhoma Lodge, Four Gorillas Lodge, Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge, Engagi Lodge, Chameleon Hill Lodge, Gorilla Heights Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Camp, Bwindi Jungle Lodge, Gorilla Valley Lodge, Rushaga Gorilla Haven Lodge, Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge, Sanctuary Gorilla Forest Camp, Bwindi Forest Lodge, Bakiga Lodge, Mahogany Springs Lodge, Silverback Lodge, Haven Lodge, Lake Mulehe Gorilla Lodge, Ruhija Gorilla Safari Lodge, Agandi Lodge, and Gift of Nature Lodge.
Travelers that want to encounter gorillas and observe more of these facts mentioned above should be part of the gorilla trekking and habituation activities in the park. Gorilla trekking and habituation experience enable travelers to be around these mountain gorillas and watch them do daily activities, learn about their habits, and take photos.
On the day of gorilla trekking, trekkers must gather at the sector offices where park wardens teach them about the rules and regulations of gorilla trekking or habituation. 8 trekkers are accompanied by ranger guides to search for a fully habituated gorilla family and 4 trekkers are accompanied by armed ranger guides, conservationists, and researchers to search for a semi-habituated gorilla family.
The search for gorillas takes you through different trekking trails for 2-7 hours of meeting different park animals, birds, and vegetation. The moment the mountain gorilla family is spotted, trekkers are given 1 hour to be around these apes, watch them do daily activities, take photos and learn about their habits. When a semi-habituated mountain gorilla family is located, trekkers are given 4 hours to be around these apes and be part of the activities that make mountain gorillas get used to human presence around them.