In Rwanda, there is a tribe of gorillas led by three brothers. This phenomenon is very rare since usually only one male gorilla is the chief of a tribe.
Silverback mountain gorillas, named for their many white hairs on their backs, are used to leading groups of female gorillas and their young. If they do not belong to any tribe, male mountain gorillas live alone or in small groups. Generally, a single male gorilla leads a tribe. It is very rare that several males are in the same group.
However, one tribe in Rwanda is an exception, since it is led by three male gorillas , all brothers. These three gorillas alone protect a group of 22 females.
Musilikale is the dominant male who protects the group. He is accompanied by his brothers Incumbi and Turakomeje, who help him watch over the tribe while Musilikale leaves to search for food and nesting places.
The two little brothers have a very close bond since they constantly play together. The dominant male has a protective nature towards the young gorillas, which he lets sleep in his nest if something happens to their mother.
This tribe like no other is overseen by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, an organization that works to conserve mountain gorillas and Grauer’s gorillas, also known as eastern lowland gorillas. The organization protects these species in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, monitoring them every day from a distance.
These gorillas are now used to human presence, which allows researchers to better study their social interactions and better understand their behavior and way of life.
Endangered and endangered gorillas
These two species of gorillas are particularly threatened. Indeed, mountain gorillas are endangered. Today, their population is estimated at 1,000 individuals. This species is threatened by the loss of its habitat, poaching, and is often the victim of traps set for other animals.
Grauer’s gorillas are critically endangered. Their population is so small that it is not known exactly how many eastern lowland gorillas still live in the wild. This species is also a victim of poaching and habitat loss. By following the gorillas, the group of researchers tries to protect them from all these dangers.