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Amazing gorillas in volcanoes park in Rwanda

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Rwanda remains one of the fewest countries in the world with mountain gorillas in the volcanoes. After instability in the country and taking poaching measures, gorillas’ number in Rwanda are growing daily and now it’s home to numerous gorilla families.

Tourism of Rwanda has been risen by presence of Gorillas in the volcanoes, this is the uniqueness to the country. 

Sudanese journalist and writer Yousra Elbagir has experienced the journey to volcanoes and visited the gorillas.

She said that once they drove up to the Rwandan highlands to see mountain gorillas in the wild, the iconic movie scenes started to come to her mind.

 

The most experienced guide at the park, Patience DUSABIMANA was there to share the experience with Elbagir, he has been working in the park for 24 years, his entire adult life.

“It’s like taking you home to visit my family, my own family, my children,” Dusabimana said.

“I know them, they know me, we are attached,” he added.

The visit started and Dusabimana, Elbagir and two other rangers trekked across farmland through a rain cloud and up the side of a dormant volcano. Dusabimana was using his tricks to track the gorilla family.

They were going to meet the gorilla family Dusabimana helped habituate (process of making gorillas used to human) in 2002. The gorilla family is called “Amahoro”, meaning “Peace”.

Dusabimana said that it takes a long time -between two and three years for the gorillas to accept humans.

“We did the habituation of this group (Amahoro) after genocide against Tutsi in 1994 and war. We had a dream of having peace.” He added.

The visit continued and Dusabimana taught the tourists the sounds to look out for: a two-tone groan which indicates happiness and a coughing sound which means that they need to back up.

Another distinction is the famous gorilla chest beat. When a silverback beats his chest it is aggressive, but when a child or female beats their chest, it is a sign of glee.

To avoid any infectious illness which can be easily passed between human and gorillas as they match 98% genetically, tourists are handed black face masks.

Mountain gorillas eat around 10-15% of their body weight in vegetation over 12 hours each day. As the mealtime ends, the females of the family gather around.

“True to their name, they are blissfully peacefully, but their proximity to the best and worst of humankind means that peace has been precious.” Elbagir concluded.

From 2005, Rwanda has begun the official ceremony named “Kwita Izina” where mountain gorillas are named in order to give them a value they undoubtedly deserve.

The last recorded poaching incident in Rwanda was in 2002 and the 2018 census found their population had grown to 1,063.

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