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Mountain gorillas live in families also called social groups. Each social group is different from the other in terms of size, leader and history of formation. Extensive understanding of gorilla social groups, leadership, roles and formation is very crucial in gorilla tourism and conservation. You ought to know how a gorilla family you are trekking came about and how it has thrived all through. Gorilla trekking is a magical experience and the best wildlife encounter ranked number one travel activity in the whole world. Hundreds of travelers who flock into gorilla destinations each day is proof that gorilla tracking is indeed a once in a lifetime experience. Check out detailed facts about gorilla social groups in Uganda, Rwanda the Democratic Republic of Congo with Africa Adventure Safaris
More adult females than Males
In mots gorilla groups, the population of adult female gorillas outweighs the males. It’s common to find one dominant silverback gorilla living with multiple adult females and the young ones.
A mature male gorilla must do any of the three options:
Two adult male gorillas cannot live in one family peacefully. Therefore once a male gorilla matures, he has to fight for dominance over the group. This gorilla has to fight hard to overpower the ruling dominant silverback and send him out of the family to take over. If successful, he will take over the leadership of the family to perform all fatherly roles in a home.
If an adult male gorilla cannot take over the leadership of his maternal family, he must strike out to form his own family. The male gorilla will start by stealing some adult females from his previous group and other gorilla families in the neighborhood. He has to fight with other silverback gorillas so as to win the love of adult females who end up following him. He may start with a few members, roughly 3 and will increase with time as new babies are born.
If an adult male gorilla fails to take over from his dad to make his own family, he will join a bachelor group. In this group, male gorillas train themselves in fighting tactic and skill that can help them become leaders. There will choose a leader of this group who determines the movements and activities of the family.
A gorilla chooses to leave or stay in his/her native family
When they become adults, both male and adult females have a choice to either leave or stay in their native families. The adult male gorilla leaves their native families to make their own families while adult females leave to join other gorilla groups. Therefore, it’s obvious that a female gorilla may join more than one group hence can produce babies of different mothers. However, some gorilla’s especially adult females tend to stay in their original families until death.
Gorillas have a dominance hierarchy
Different gorillas play different roles in their families. The hierarchy among males includes a dominant silverback that is the overseer of the whole group determining where to sleep and eat. The second hierarchy of gorillas protects the family from external attacks while the third hierarchy is in charge of resolving conflicts within a group. Regarding hierarchy among adult females, those who have stayed in a family for long are the bosses. While the new ones feel low. Also, a female gorilla most loved by a silverback is the boss lady of the family, a female who has a new baby is treated with respect by the silverback and also other adult females.
Gorilla families vary in size
Yes, do not be surprised when you see a gorilla family having only 2 members and the other one having over 60 members. The strength of a silverback to conquer and grab members form other gorilla families to determine how big his family will become. Pablo group in Rwanda is widely recognized for having the highest number of gorilla individuals. Great thanks to Gicurasi, the present silverback f Pablo group who has fought to expand the families size.
Generally, mountain gorillas are interesting creatures worth visiting. An hour with a gorilla family rewards you with a lifetime experience. Book a gorilla safari to Uganda, Rwanda and Congo, trek the endangered species and enjoy this memorable experience.