Gorillas are the largest of the great apes, genetically very closely related to humans. Apes differ from monkeys in being larger and most of the body covered by hair, longer arms than legs with a wider chest, having bigger brains and no tails. The gorillas of Bwindi and Mgahinga are mountain gorillas the rarest of all the three subspecies of gorillas.
Gestation period of a female is 8.5months; females mature at 10-12years, 000male’s 11-13years and a life span of 30-50years.
Gorillas are shy, social peaceful vegetarians that have great senses of hearing, taste, smell and touch. They are herbivores mostly eating plant materials; use both their hands and feet to grasp things. Like humans they have a single stomach and rather long intestine. They eat different types of leaves in the forests like tubers, flowers, fruit, roots.stems, barks of certain trees, tender plant shoots, and seeds and sometimes on rare occasions supplement with some insects, snails, soil and even dead infants. They enjoy favorites like bamboo shoots, crunchy wild celery which contain a lot of water, gaint thistles, and vines, from the foliage they eat are able to get moisture.
Bwindi forest gorillas have more plant species than the virungas.
Gorilla’s daily habits include feeding time, moving and foraging and the rest of the day remains for resting. They rise up in the morning for feeding and normally the silverback determines, makes decisions leading to the feeding sites.
During the afternoon the group typically moves again before finding a place to spend the night.
Every evening gorillas build nests for a night except for the infants so as to have a comfortable sleep. Their groups move on average less than one kilometer per day and rarely more than two. Longer movements typically follow an aggressive interaction or other events that have stressed the group. They communicate amongst each other by use of complicated gestures and sounds like roars, chuckles,hooting,throwing objects,slapping,growls,sideways running and lip-tucking, chest beating and sharp grunting.