Massive Gorilla Population Found

Posted on August 6, 2008  Comments (4)

photo of western lowland gorillas

New Census Shows Massive Gorilla Population in Northern Republic of Congo

The new census tallied more than 125,000 western gorillas in two adjacent areas in the northern part of the country, covering an area of 18,000 square miles (47,000 square kilometers). Previous estimates from the 1980s placed the entire population of western lowland gorillas, which occur in seven Central African nations, at fewer than 100,000. Since then, however, scientists had believed that this number had dwindled by at least half, due to hunting and disease.

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) says a combination of factors account for such high numbers of gorillas, including successful long-term management of the Republic of Congo’s protected areas; remoteness and inaccessibility of some of the key locations where the gorillas were found; and a habitat where there is plenty to eat, particularly in some of the swamp forests and the “Marantaceae” forests, which are rich in herbs.

WCS has worked with the Government of Republic of Congo in the northern area of the country for nearly 20 years, helping to establish the Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park and manage the Lac Télé Community Reserve, while working with logging companies outside of protected areas to reduce illegal hunting.

“These figures show that northern Republic of Congo contains the mother lode of gorillas,” said Dr. Steven E, Sanderson, President and CEO of the Wildlife Conservation Society. “It also shows that conservation in the Republic of Congo is working. This discovery should be a rallying cry for the world that we can protect other vulnerable and endangered species, whether they be gorillas in Africa, tigers in India, or lemurs in Madagascar.”

Great news. Related: Gorilla “Paradise” Found; May Double World NumbersOrangutan Attempts to Hunt Fish with SpearBig Big Lions

4 Responses to “Massive Gorilla Population Found”

  1. Curious Cat Science Blog » 1,000 Species Discovered in Greater Mekong in Last Decade
    December 22nd, 2008 @ 8:31 am

    The findings, highlighted in this report, include 519 plants, 279 fish, 88 frogs, 88 spiders, 46 lizards, 22 snakes, 15 mammals, 4 birds, 4 turtles, 2 salamanders and a toad…

  2. Anonymous
    August 11th, 2010 @ 3:36 pm

    As soon as the poachers are aware of them, I am sure that their number is rapidly reduced. I hope they will not repeat the mistakes of the past, that they will protect the gorillas and to prevent their disappearance.

  3. Grauer’s Gorilla (Eastern Lowlands Gorilla) » Curious Cat Science Blog
    November 18th, 2011 @ 4:34 am

    Sadly the eastern lowland gorilla wild population is estimated to have fallen below 8,000 due to warfare (intruding on their territory), agriculture, mining, logging and hunting gorilla’s for meat…

  4. Nice Interaction with a Group of Wild Mountain Gorillas Strolling Through Camp » Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog
    December 22nd, 2011 @ 2:23 am

    An amazing encounter with a troop of wild mountain gorillas near Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda that wandered into a camp and groomed a tourist.

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