Eastern Lowland Gorilla, Species of Gorillas & Gorilla Trekking.
The eastern lowland gorilla or Grauer’s gorilla is a subspecies of eastern gorilla endemic to the mountainous forests of eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo and Important populations of this gorilla live in the Kahuzi-Biega and Maiko National Parks and their adjacent forests, the Tayna Gorilla Reserve, the Usala forest and on the Itombwe Massif.
Eastern lowland gorillas are the largest of the four gorilla species and largest living primates and males have an average weight of 210 kilograms where as females weigh 100 kilograms with height for males 1.85 meters and 1.6 meters
Eastern Lowland Gorilla Diet
Eastern lowland gorillas are herbivores in nature and spend much of the day feeding on plants diet including fruits, leaves, stems and bark as well as small insects such as ants and termites and adults can consume up to 18 kilograms of food per day. Eastern Lowland Gorillas normally feed during the morning and afternoon and rest around midday
Eastern Lowland Gorilla Behavior
Eastern lowland gorillas are highly sociable and very peaceful, living in groups of two to over 30. A group usually consists of one silver back, several females and their offspring. Silver backs are strong and each group has one dominant leader. These males protect their group from danger and young silver back males will slowly begin to leave their natal group when they reach maturity, and will then attempt to attract females to form their own group. Female Eastern Lowland Gorillas leave their birth groups to join other groups or single male gorillas when they reach sexual maturity at around 7 or 8 years of age
Eastern Lowland Gorilla Vocalization and Intelligence
Eastern Lowland Gorillas can make up to 25 vocalizations such as grunts, laughs, hoots, barks and screams, each with its own specific meaning and are the smartest of the primates which have been seen using sticks to measure water depth and bamboo sticks as ladders to climb trees
Eastern Lowland Gorilla Reproduction
Male Eastern Lowland Gorillas mature later than female Eastern Lowland Gorillas and do not breed until 15 to 20 years of age. A female will give birth to a single infant after a gestation period of about 8½ months and breastfeed for about three years. The baby can crawl at around nine weeks old and can walk at about 35 weeks old. Infant gorillas normally stay with their mother for three to four years and mature at around 8 years old for females and 12 years old for males.
Eastern Lowland Gorilla Life Cycle
The frequency and duration of sexual activity in gorillas are low in comparison to other great apes. Only the silver back, or dominant male gorilla, is allowed to mate with the adult female gorillas in his group. The reproductive success of males depends upon the maintenance of exclusive rights to adult females, which is ensured by males forming a permanent bond with each female gorilla in a social group. The formation of these bonds keeps adult female gorillas from leaving the group or mating with other male gorillas. Normally quiet animals, gorillas are unusually loud during copulation (mating). Gorillas live 30 – 40 years in the wild; 40 – 60 years in captivity.
Eastern Lowland Gorilla Conservation Status
The population of Eastern Lowland Gorillas was estimated to number 3,000 – 5,000 individuals in 1980. Since that time civil war in the region has caused increased poaching and pressure on the gorillas and their habitats.