New Gorilla Additions in Bwindi
New gorilla additions in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park of Uganda happened on 1st May 2020 to Nshongi gorilla family that got one new born infant, and on 25th April 2020 for Muyambi gorilla family. These new gorilla additions in Bwindi were welcomed with great enthusiasm by the respective families, the Uganda Wildlife Authority as well as the conservation agencies and various tourism stakeholders. Whereas the parents of Muyambi gorilla family baby gorilla are yet to be established, the new born gorilla to Nshongi gorilla family was born to Kabagyenyi and the silverback Bweza. At the moment, the genders of these new born gorillas are not yet known. This is so because it is very hard to get close in order to examine the babies for they are jealously guarded by their respective families especially the mothers.
Muyambi gorilla family is one of the newest gorilla families in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park availed for gorilla trekking by the many travellers after gorilla trekking in Bwindi. Muyambi, the dominant silverback of this gorilla family, was formerly a member of the Mubare gorilla family that was the very first gorilla family to be availed for gorilla trekking in Bwindi. Muyambi however split from Mubare gorilla family to form his own and was availed for gorilla trekking in 2019. Welcoming a new born baby gorilla therefore to this newly established gorilla family is very encouraging.
Nshongi gorilla family on the other hand is an old gorilla family that was the very first to be habituated and availed for gorilla trekking in Rushaga gorilla region of Bwindi. Availed for gorilla trekking in 2009 after being habituated since 2007, this gorilla family has the same dominant silverback-Nshongi. Nshongi gorilla family named because of its dominant silver and also because it was discovered near the Nshongi River where it still dwells to date.
Before, the family had about 35 gorilla individuals but due to splits by silverbacks to make their own families, there are only well over 25 gorillas still left making it the largest gorilla family in Rushaga gorilla region. Kabagyenyi, the mother of the newly born gorilla is only 10 years old and this is her very first baby. This new born will be named with time. Nshongi gorilla family has two silverbacks named Kakono and Nshongi with Nshongi as the dominant, 6 adult females say Munini, Shida, Bukojo, Nyampundu, Bwiruka and Kabagyenyi, 7 blackbacks namely Bweza the father of the new born, Matama, Busasa, Bwire, Munnywa, Kutu and Tinfayo, 5 juveniles say Tindatine, Mureba, Rurehuka, Mucunguzi and Mahoro, and 6 infants say Kazani, Katoono, Mukiza, Ninsiima, Bwiruka and Rotary as well as the new born.
The new gorilla additions in Bwindi has the population of gorillas growing. This is all attributed to the great conservation efforts of the Uganda Wildlife Authority and partners who are dedicated to the protection and conservation of mountain gorillas. A recently concluded gorilla census showed that the population of Bwindi was well over 459 individuals, making it to have the highest gorilla population with the rest being shared by the three gorilla destinations that make part of the Virunga Conservation Area say Virunga National Park of the Congo, Volcanoes National Park of Rwanda and Uganda’s Mgahinga Gorilla National Park. The recent study also had the total gorilla population in the world being at 1063 individuals only. New gorilla additions in Bwindi and other gorilla destinations with time will see the population of gorillas growing that they would cease to be feared of extinction.
Travellers who would like to see these new born gorillas would have to book a gorilla safari to Bwindi and be allocated the particular gorilla family. For one to be allowed to take part in gorilla trekking, a gorilla trekking permit is required. A gorilla trekking permit can be purchased from the Uganda Wildlife Authority offices or through a trusted tour operator. Given that the demand for gorilla trekking is very high, gorilla permits tend to sell out very fast. Booking in advance to secure one’s spot is therefore advised.
Given the current covid-19 pandemic that is sweeping through the world, primate safaris that involve gorilla trekking, chimpanzee tracking and golden monkey tracking have been put on hold in not only Uganda but also Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo so as to protect the primates who are very susceptible to human illnesses. Primate safaris will resume when the Covid-19 pandemic recedes.
Book a gorilla safari tour or talk to a reputable tour operator like Achieve Global Safaris for more information on how you may get to take part in gorilla trekking after Covid-19 and be able to see these new gorilla additions in Bwindi.