• The most recent census of mountain gorillas in Uganda's Bwindi Impenetrable National Park--one of only two places in the world where the rare gorillas exist--has found that the population has increased by 6 percent since the last census in 2002, according to the Uganda Wildlife Authority, the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Max Planck Institute of Anthropology and other groups that participated in the effort. (eurekalert.org)
  • Poaching also carries dangers for humans as it is thought that Ebola may be spread through the butchering and handling of gorilla and other primate meat. (worldwildlife.org)
  • These opportunities for gorilla viewing are so rare, in part, because it takes three or more years of careful and patient gorilla tracking and following to habituate the animals to the presence of humans. (worldwildlife.org)
  • Bwindi is also home to a thriving gorilla ecotourism program, which generates much needed foreign revenue for Uganda annually by bringing paying travelers into the company of mountain gorillas. (eurekalert.org)
  • In spite of incursions by farmers and rebels into the parks, and a few recent poaching events, Virungas' mountain gorillas are persisting as well, thanks to sustained conservation efforts by the guards and staff members within that landscape. (eurekalert.org)
  • The current total of mountain gorillas at both locations brings the worldwide tally to approximately 720 individual animals. (eurekalert.org)
  • Mountain gorillas weigh from 200 to 400 pounds. (slideserve.com)
  • This is great news for all of the organizations that have worked to protect Bwindi and its gorilla population," said Wildlife Conservation Society researcher Dr. Alastair McNeilage, who is also the director of the Institute of Tropical Forest Conservation in Bwindi. (eurekalert.org)
  • According to the census, which also successfully used for the first time genetic samples from fecal specimens, Bwindi's gorilla population now numbers 340 individual gorillas, up from 320 in 2002, and 300 in 1997. (eurekalert.org)
  • The census was conducted between April and June 2006 to determine the size and makeup of the Bwindi population, in addition to their distribution and to gauge human impacts on the gorillas. (eurekalert.org)
  • The follow and habituation of gorillas in Dzanga-Sangha would never have been possible without the extensive knowledge of the BaAka trackers, which are the real backbone of our program," says Chloe Cippoletta, who led the Dzanga-Sangha habituation field staff for years. (worldwildlife.org)
  • WWF has long worked with local BaAka trackers as part of the habituation program, capitalizing on their knowledge of their forest homeland and their ability to locate the gorillas even when traces of the animals are elusive. (worldwildlife.org)
  • In addition to census methodologies such as counting trails and nests (gorillas construct a nest each night), researchers used genetic analyses as well, specifically because many of the groups were clustered in the same area of the park, which presented survey teams with the risk of double-counting the same individuals or groups. (eurekalert.org)
  • Other findings are that gorillas are not using the eastern side of the park, a possible result of human disturbances there. (eurekalert.org)
  • Particularly encouraging, however, is that one group of gorillas are starting to use the northern sector of the park for the first time in living memory. (eurekalert.org)
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