Cross River Gorilla of Nigeria-Gorilla Tours
The Cross River gorilla is a subspecies of the western gorilla and is restricted to the forested hills and mountains of the Cameroon-Nigeria border region at the headwaters of the Cross River and is separated by about 300 km from the nearest population of western lowland gorillas, and by around 250 km from the gorilla population in the Ebo Forest of Cameroon. Though the chances of viewing these mountain gorillas are so low and their total population consists of over 200 individuals and these are spread over an area of over 12,000km and these include; Afi mountain, the Okwangwo division and Mbe Mountain of the cross river National park.
For this reason, the scientists are so vigilant about habituating them. Visiting their habitat will help to conserve it as well as the two remaining primate sanctuaries and the restoration projects, Estimates from 2014 suggest that fewer than 250 mature Cross River gorillas remain, making them the world’s rarest great ape. Groups of these gorillas concentrate their activities in 11 localities across a 12,000 km2 range, though recent field surveys confirmed the presence of gorillas outside of their known localities suggesting a wider distribution within this range.
This distribution is supported by genetic research, which has found evidence that many Cross River gorilla localities continue to maintain contact through the occasional dispersal of individuals. cross river gorillas have nesting behaviors that depend on things such as habitat, climate, food source availability and risk of attack and from April until November they are likely to build their nests with in the tree, and from November they build on the ground.
Interesting facts about Cross River Gorillas
Cross River Gorillas are found in 2 countries in Africa that is Cameroon and Nigeria and are among the rarest and very few gorillas that are left in the world thus we point out some of the facts about Cross River Gorillas that every traveler out to know as listed below.
Rarest of All Apes
The Cross River Gorilla, with fewer than 300 individuals estimated to exist in the wild, and very few gorillas that are left in the world , is the most endangered of the gorilla subspecies, and is listed by the IUCN as Critically Endangered.
Cross River Gorilla Diet
Cross River Gorillas eat more Liana and tree bark throughout the year, and less fruit during periods of scarcity, than Western Lowland Gorillas. In Afi, gorillas traveled longer distances when consuming large amounts of fruit, while at Kagwene, the gorillas traveled shorter distances when fruit was abundant.
Habitat of Cross River Gorillas
Western Lowland Gorillas inhabit the vast western equatorial African forest, which is separated from the Cross River region by the grasslands and fragmented forest of the Cameroon highlands, and the dense human population of the lowlands in western Cameroon, as well as the Sanaga River.
Cross River Gorilla live in groups
Cross River Gorillas usually live in groups of four to seven individuals, although larger groups do exist. The Afi study group usually consists of 18 gorillas, which roam in about 30km2, a larger range than is usual for Western Lowland Gorillas. This group formed foraging subgroups for one or more days, particularly when feeding on widely dispersed fruits and herbs, and reformed as a super-group during rest periods
Physical Characteristics of Cross River Gorillas
Cross River Gorillas have shorter hands and feet than other gorillas. The single male skeleton had a thumb at the short end of the range for western gorillas, and a large possibility index indicating a short thumb relative to the index finger. The female skeleton was bigger than is usual for female Western Lowland Gorillas