When do gorillas eat



What do gorillas look like?

Gorillas are the largest and heaviest monkeys in the great ape family. Standing upright, an adult male measures up to two meters and weighs 220 kilograms. Mountain gorilla males can get even heavier. The females are significantly smaller and lighter: they are only about 140 centimeters tall.

Gorillas usually have black fur, long arms, short, strong legs and very large hands and feet. The thick eyebrow ridges are typical of gorillas - that's why they always look a little serious or sad.

Where do gorillas live?

Gorillas only live in the tropical regions of Central Africa.

Gorillas love open rainforests with clearings. They therefore mainly stay on mountain slopes and along rivers.

A densely overgrown soil with lots of plants and bushes is important so that the animals can find enough food.

What kinds of gorillas are there?

Gorillas belong to the great ape family. These are the monkeys that are the most developed.

The great apes are easy to recognize because, unlike all other monkeys, they do not have a tail.

There are three different races of gorillas: The western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) lives on the coast of the Gulf of Guinea and is brown in color.

The eastern lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla graueri) lives on the eastern edge of the Congo Basin and has black fur.

The best known are the mountain gorillas (Gorilla gorilla bereingei). They live in the mountains up to an altitude of 3600 meters. Their fur is black too, but a bit longer.

About 45,000 animals are still alive from the western lowland gorillas, from the eastern only about 4000 and from the mountain gorillas probably only 400 animals.

How old do gorillas get?

Gorillas live to be no more than 50 years old, but often only 30. In the zoo, they can live up to 45 years.


How do gorillas live?

Gorillas are family animals, they live in groups of 5 to 20, sometimes 30 animals.

A group is always led by an old male - the so-called silverback. Since he is older, his fur has turned silver-gray on his back. He protects and defends his family.

The group also includes a couple of adult females and their young.

The daily life of the gorillas is leisurely. Usually they move slowly through the jungle in search of food. You take a lot of breaks and usually only manage one kilometer a day.

When it gets dark in the evening, they just spend the night where they are. To do this, they climb trees and the females and boys weave a comfortable, cozy sleeping nest out of branches and leaves. The males, on the other hand, usually spend the night on the ground.

Gorillas are peaceful animals that only attack when seriously threatened. When in danger, they prefer to evade rather than engage in a fight.

Friends and enemies of gorillas

Gorillas are so big and strong that they have no natural enemies. Your only enemy is man. For a long time gorillas were hunted. People wanted their meat and they sold their skulls as trophies. They were also often killed for allegedly destroying fields.

Today the trade in gorillas is tightly controlled and they are under protection. However, gorillas find a suitable habitat less and less because the rainforests in Central Africa are being destroyed and used for agriculture.

How do gorillas reproduce?

Gorillas do not really grow up until late: a female gorilla does not give birth to her first young after around nine months of gestation when she is ten years old.

Like a human baby, a baby gorilla is completely helpless and completely dependent on its mother for the first few months.

At birth it is still gray-pink and only has dark hair on the back and head. Only after a few days does the skin turn black.

Twins: gorilla babies in a twin pack

A Dutch zoo welcomed gorilla twins in June 2013. Twins are very rare in gorillas.

Baby gorillas cling to their mother's fur, suckle them and carry them everywhere.

After about a week the young can see properly, at around nine weeks the little ones crawl around and at nine months they walk upright.

From the sixth month they mainly eat plants, but never venture far from their mother.

The cubs only become independent at the age of four, when the mother gives birth to the next boy. The young males leave their group when they are adults.

Then they wander around alone for a while until they conquer a female from a strange group and form their own group.

The females also separate from their group when they grow up and join a single male or a neighboring group.

How do gorillas communicate?

Gorillas communicate with each other with more than 15 different sounds. These include howling, roaring, coughing and growling sounds.


What do gorillas eat?

Gorillas are pure herbivores: They eat leaves, stems, roots, bark, tubers and young plant shoots. They usually look for food on the ground.