1. Gorillas are the largest primates on earth and are closely related to humans, with DNA that is 98% similar to ours.
  2. There are two species of gorillas: the eastern gorilla (Gorilla beringei) and the western gorilla (Gorilla gorilla).
  3. Eastern gorillas are further divided into two subspecies: the mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei) and the eastern lowland gorilla (Gorilla beringei graueri).
  4. Western gorillas are also divided into two subspecies: the western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) and the Cross River gorilla (Gorilla gorilla diehli).
  5. Gorillas are primarily herbivorous, with a diet that includes leaves, stems, fruit, and flowers.
  6. Male gorillas are much larger than females, with adult males weighing up to 400 pounds and standing up to six feet tall.
  7. Gorillas are social animals and live in groups called troops, which typically consist of one dominant male (the silverback) and several females and their offspring.
  8. Silverbacks are responsible for protecting the group and leading them to new feeding areas.
  9. Gorillas communicate using a variety of vocalizations, facial expressions, and body postures.
  10. Gorillas are primarily found in the forests of central and eastern Africa, with the majority living in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda.
  11. Gorillas are listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), with habitat loss, poaching, and disease being the main threats to their survival.
  12. The mountain gorilla is the most endangered of the gorilla subspecies, with only around 1,000 individuals remaining in the wild.
  13. Gorillas have been observed using tools in the wild, such as using sticks to gauge the depth of water or as a weapon.
  14. Gorillas have unique nose prints, just like humans have unique fingerprints, which can be used to identify individuals.
  15. Gorillas have been known to display emotions such as grief and joy, and have even been observed mourning the death of a fellow gorilla.
  16. Gorillas have a lifespan of up to 40-50 years in the wild.
  17. Gorillas can contract human diseases such as Ebola and COVID-19, which can have devastating effects on their populations.
  18. Gorillas are sometimes poached for their meat and body parts, which are used in traditional medicine.
  19. Conservation efforts, such as ecotourism and habitat protection, have helped to increase gorilla populations in some areas.
  20. Gorillas play an important role in their ecosystems by dispersing seeds and helping to maintain forest biodiversity.

As mentioned earlier, there are two species of gorillas, which are further divided into subspecies based on their geographic location and physical characteristics:

  1. Eastern gorilla (Gorilla beringei) a. Mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei) - found in the Virunga Mountains on the borders of Rwanda, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. They have longer hair than other subspecies to help them survive in colder temperatures. b. Eastern lowland gorilla (Gorilla beringei graueri) - found in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo. They have a larger head and shorter hair than mountain gorillas.
  2. Western gorilla (Gorilla gorilla) a. Western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) - found in central and western Africa, primarily in Cameroon, Congo, and Gabon. They have a reddish-brown coat and a more rounded skull than other subspecies. b. Cross River gorilla (Gorilla gorilla diehli) - found in the rainforests of Cameroon and Nigeria. They have a thinner, more angular skull than other western gorillas.

All subspecies of gorillas are considered endangered due to habitat loss, poaching, and disease. Conservation efforts, such as habitat protection and ecotourism, are crucial in their survival.