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Mountain Gorillas

The largest living primate, gorillas are spread across much of the equatorial African rainforest. Broadly speaking, the species is split into lowland gorillas and mountain gorillas.

The volcanic range which spans Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo is home to the critically-endangered mountain gorilla. Tracking gorillas in Rwanda is safe and accessible.

At the latest count, there are approximately 1,000 mountain gorillas in the wild, with 604 in the Virunga Massif. The population is slowly increasing, thanks to concerted efforts between our governments, communities and NGOs.

There are twelve gorilla families living in the Volcanoes National Park, which are fully habituated, with a few others habituated solely for scientific research. The groups, or troops, consist of at least one silverback along with several females and youngsters.

A gorilla visit can entail anything from a 1 to 4-hour trek through the forest, led by experienced trackers who have spent their entire lives living in or close to the forest. Your trek will be enchanting as you weave through overhanging vines, moss-covered Hagenia trees and giant Lobelias that thrive in the tropical climate. You may spot golden monkeys or see buffalo, bush duiker and a wide variety of bird life.

But the high point, of course, one of the greatest wildlife experiences on earth, will be spending an hour with the gentle giant gorillas as they go about their daily life, feeding, playing, resting, and raising their young. At the end of your visit you will understand what kept conservationist Dian Fossey living in this same forest for 18 years protecting these wonderful animals.

  1. Visit Rwanda - Gorilla Trecking: https://www.visitrwanda.com/interests/gorilla-tracking/ 
  2. Kwita Izina Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/kwitaizina/albums
  3. Documentaries on Mountain Gorillas: https://www.youtube.com/user/kwitizina/videos

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