About Gorillas in Uganda

SOCIAL ORGANIZATION AND BEHAVIOR

Current knowledge on the social organization and behavior of gorillas is dominated by results from research on mountain gorillas though there are some data for eastern and western lowland gorillas. The minimum group size for all subspecies is two individuals (usually a silverback and a female), except for males ranging alone, while maximum group size varies slightly for each subspecies (Yamagiwa et al. 2003). The maximum group size for mountain gorillas can exceed 20 individuals, while eastern and western lowland gorillas generally are not found in groups larger than 17 to 20 individuals and western lowland gorilla groups are always observed in groups smaller than 20 individuals (Yamagiwa et al. 2003).

Gorilla
Gorilla gorilla gorilla
Mountain gorillas live in age-graded groups of, on average, 9.2 individuals, with one adult male (though there may be more than one), multiple adult females, and their offspring (Watts 1996; Doran & McNeilage 1997; Robbins 2001). Natal dispersal is much more common for females than for males in mountain gorillas (Watts 1996). In general, females emigrate from their natal groups to avoid inbreeding. They do not always stay in their new groups throughout their lives and secondary transfer is common (Watts 1996; Robbins 2001). Males either remain in their natal groups or disperse. If young males remain in their natal groups, they will be subordinates to the silverback, but may have the opportunity to mate with new females or become dominant if the silverback dies. The other strategy for mountain gorilla males is to leave their natal groups and become solitary, attracting emigrating females and starting new social groups. In groups containing only one silverback male, females disperse and find new social groups upon the death of the silverback (Yamagiwa & Kahekwa 2001). This may be related to high rates of infanticide documented among mountain gorillas at Karisoke. Infants deprived of protection by an adult male are almost certain to be killed and as a tactic to protect against this, females join new groups in the absence of a silverback (Watts 1989). Until recently, infanticide had only been recorded among mountain gorillas; direct evidence now exists for eastern lowland gorillas and indirect evidence has been recorded among western lowland gorillas (Stokes et al. 2003; Stoinski pers. comm.). Finally, males can live in all-male groups, although this seems to be a strategy generally employed by young males when their group disintegrates before they reach adulthood (Stoinski pers. comm.).

Gorilla
Gorilla beringei beringei
Eastern lowland gorillas generally live in groups of one male, multiple females, and their offspring, though these can shift to multi-male groups for brief periods (Yamagiwa et al. 2003). The average group size is 9.8 individuals (Yamagiwa & Kahekwa 2001). Males spend a few months to a few years alone after emigrating from their natal groups at or before the age of 15, eventually attracting dispersing females and creating a new social group (Yamagiwa et al. 2003). Average age of transfer for female eastern lowland gorillas is nine (Yamagiwa & Kahekwa 2001; Yamagiwa et al. 2003). Female gorillas do not always emigrate independently; sometimes they transfer with another female to join a solitary male. Group succession, as seen in male mountain gorillas that remain in their natal groups, has not been observed in eastern lowland gorillas. If the silverback dies, the multi-female group and their offspring may continue to associate, rather than disperse, until a maturing silverback transfers into the group (Yamagiwa & Kahekwa 2001). One possible explanation for this behavior is protection against predators. Rather than roaming with just their offspring, females remain in groups of unrelated individuals to decrease chance of being attacked by leopards (Yamagiwa & Kahekwa 2001).

Difficulties with habituation and ecological constraints on observation have limited the research on social behavior of western lowland gorillas (Magliocca et al. 1999; Parnell 2002; Stokes et al. 2003). Group composition in western lowland gorillas is generally one silverback, multiple females, and their offspring with groups averaging 8.4 individuals (Parnell 2002). Groups with two silverbacks have been observed at several sites (Stoinski pers. comm.). Males generally emigrate from their natal groups and are solitary, as is seen in eastern lowland gorillas. Western lowland gorillas were not thought to live in bachelor groups btu there is now evidence from several sites that males will coexist without breeding females; group composition generally consists of a single adult male plus several younger males and nonreproductive females (Stoinski pers. comm.). Both natal and secondary transfers are observed in female western lowland gorillas and, as is seen in mountain gorillas, when the silverback dies, groups disband and females immigrate into new groups (Stokes et al. 2003). Though it has never been directly observed among western lowland gorillas, infanticide is the probable cause of this behavior. Females protect against infanticide when their resident silverbacks die by seeking the protection of other adult males in new groups (Stokes et al. 2003).

Knowledge about social relationships is most extensive for mountain gorillas. The core of social groups is the male-female bond, which is reinforced by grooming and close proximity (Watts 2003). It is important for female mountain gorillas to develop strong relationships with males because males offer such services as protection against predators, protection against infanticide by other males, and mating opportunities (Watts 2001). It is common to see aggressive behavior between males and females, though rarely is it intense or does it lead to serious injury (Watts 1996). Female-female relationships vary, but generally differentiate along lines of relatedness; maternal relatives associate closely and often affably interact. Generally, though, female gorillas have limited friendly relationships and multiple aggressive encounters (Watts 1996). These aggressive encounters often revolve around social access to males, and males intervene in contests between females (Watts 2003). Relationships between male gorillas are generally weak, especially in heterosexual groups where the dominance hierarchy is quite apparent and there is strong competition for mates. Relationships between members of all-male groups, in those subspecies where they occur, are slightly more affiliative, and they socialize through play, grooming, and close proximity (Robbins 2001).

REPRODUCTION

Gorilla
Gorilla gorilla gorilla
Data from wild mountain gorillas and captive western lowland gorillas provide the majority of information about reproductive parameters of gorillas and the differences between the subspecies are few. Menarche occurs in female gorillas around age six and is followed by a period of adolescent infertility that usually lasts two years (Czekala & Robbins 2001). The estrus cycle lasts between 30 and 33 days and there are very subtle outward signs of ovulation, unlike the very obvious sexual swellings seen in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (P. paniscus). Gestation lasts 8.5 months. For wild mountain gorillas, the average age at first parturition is 10 years and the interbirth interval is four years (Czekala & Robbins 2001). It is more difficult to assess male reproductive maturity because they can be fertile before exhibiting secondary sexual characteristics (the silver saddle that characterizes adult males). Males between eight and 12 years are called blackbacks (Robbins 2001). In captivity, though, males can sire offspring by the age of six (Stoinski pers. comm.). Usually by age 12 or 13, males can be considered silverbacks, but most will not reach their full adult size until the age of 15 (Czekala & Robbins 2001).

There is no evidence of birth seasonality and mating occurs year-round (Watts 1991; 1998). A female will initiate copulation by pursing their lips and slowly approaching a male, establishing prolonged eye contact. If he does not respond she may reach towards him, touch him, or slap the ground in front of her to attract his attention (Sicotte 2001). In groups with multiple males, solicitation is taken as indication of female preference, though females may be coerced to mate with multiple males during the estrus period (Sicotte 2001). A male initiates copulations by approaching the female and displaying at her or touching her and giving a "train grunt" vocalization (Watts 1991).

PARENTAL CARE

Since mortality is as high as 38% in mountain gorillas during the infancy period (from birth to three years), caregivers, primarily females, are acutely important in the survival of their infants (Watts 1989). Because of their long period of development and dependence, gorilla mothers can expect to invest years caring for their vulnerable offspring. Although male gorillas do not take an active role in caring for infants, they play an important role in their socialization, often associating with older infants and juveniles (Stewart 2001). The relationship that develops between the silverback and infants in his group is usually supportive; he serves as an attachment figure during the difficult time of weaning and he shields young gorillas from intragroup aggression by intervening in disputes involving older, more dominant individuals (Stewart 2001).

Gorilla
Gorilla gorilla gorilla
For the first five months of life, infant mountain gorillas remain in constant contact with their mothers and females seek close proximity to their resident silverback for protection (Stewart 2001). During this period, infants are dependent on their mothers for food, suckling at least once per hour, and sleep at night in their mothers' nests (Stewart 1988). After five months, mother-infant pairs break body contact, but only for a few seconds and by 12 months, infants venture up to, but never more than, five meters (16.4 ft) away from their mothers. By 18 to 21 months, this distance between the pair is regular and increases (Fletcher 2001). Concurrent with this decrease in proximity is a decrease in nursing frequency, with infants only nursing once every two hours (Stewart 1988). By the age of 30 months, infants spend only half of their time with their mothers.

The juvenile period is from three to six years and is characterized by a decrease in maternal grooming, no longer sharing a sleeping nest with the mother, and weaning (Stewart 2001). Because of the enormity of the task of rearing infants and the stress of lactation on the mother's body, female gorillas experience lactational amenorrhea until the infant is weaned at three or four years. After the infant is weaned, the mother begins to ovulate and shortly thereafter becomes pregnant (Stewart 1988; 2001). Weaning conflict is minimized in gorillas, compared to other great apes, because of the cohesive nature of gorilla groups. The constant availability of play partners (including the silverback) may contribute to less intense conflict between mother and infant during this period (Fletcher 2001).

COMMUNICATION

Vocal communication among gorillas is important in within-group interactions as well as extra-group interactions. Within-group calls, include "copulatory grunts" and "whimpers" during copulation, "whines" and "whimpers" by infants, "play chuckles" during play, "intense" and "mild cough grunts" during mild threat displays, and "close" calls that include both "syllabled" and "non-syllabled" calls such as "train-grunts" and "dog whines" (Fossey 1972; Harcourt et al. 1993). "Close" calls are commonly given within the group in situations of either potential separation or potential conflict. Extra-group calls serve to alert group members of potential predation and include "barks" or are given as long-distance threat displays upon detection of another group and include the "hoot series," which may be accompanied by chest beating (Fossey 1972; Harcourt et al. 1993). Most calling occurs within-groups during feeding times, though gorillas also call during rest periods as well (Harcourt et al. 1993).

Total Eclipse in Murchsion Falls National Park 03rd.November.2013

As seen from the Earth, a solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth, and the Moon fully or partially blocks the Sun. A total solar eclipse—when the moon passes in front of the sun and blocks it completely—is an amazing sight. To see a total solar eclipse, you have to be in just the right spot on the earth. When you look up in the sky at the sun and the moon, you notice a strange coincidence—both look the same size in the sky. Both the sun and the moon look about one-half degree in diameter. And in Uganda, It is expected in Nebbi and Pakawach District and other towns are Arua,Soroti and Gulu and this means a tourist in Uganda can view total Eclipse from Murchison Falls National Park on 3rd November 2013, the solar eclipse will pass over the equatorial Gabon in West Africa, Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia.

For a tourist in Murchison Falls, this will give you an opportunity to go for a game drive and a boat cruise along the Nile Delta. The predators to see include Lions, leopard, hyenas and side-striped jackals among others as they come out of their hide-outs during the morning game drive and while on the Boat cruise on River Nile to the bottom of the falls tourists will enjoy remarkable sightings of the hippos, crocodiles and over 20 bird species such as the goliath herons, Egyptian geese, kingfishers, Hornbills, and African fish eagle among others.

However amidst all that scenery, on 3rd November 2013 at around 2Pm. The tourists for the historical and magical most beautiful and colorful intimate layers of the sun and scenic views along the axis of the moon must observe t he most important rule of thumb: Never look directly at the sun. While there are several options -- from specialty eclipse glasses to homemade devices capable of limiting the field of view -- eclipse viewers should make sure that they are taking the proper steps to prevent possible eye damage.

Murchison Falls National Park is a national park in Uganda that lies in north western Uganda, spreading inland from the shore of Lake Albert around the Victoria Nile and for any tourists in search for total Eclipse you can book a Ugandan Safari to Murchison Falls.

About Uganda

Uganda is regularly called 'The pearl of Africa' in light of its magnificence, freshness and vibrant spirit. Uganda is an enchanting nation, just as of late uncovered as an extraordinary safari experience

Uganda has it all!  It offers the best of everything from East and West Africa. A special blending of the substantial creatures like Elephants, Lions, Buffaloes, Leopards, Giraffes, Zebras, Hyenas, Warthogs, Hippos and Crocodiles from the savannas and the woodland creatures like Chimpanzees, Gorillas, Black and White Colobus Monkeys, Red-tailed Monkeys, Patas Monkeys, Blue Monkeys, Forest Elephants, Forest Buffaloes and Giant Forest Hogs.

Generally sightseers land at Entebbe's cutting edge and productive universal runway, with its stunning area on the shores of Lake Victoria. Only 40 kilometers away, sprawled over seven rises, there is the capital Kampala. A present day and clamoring cosmopolitan city, which reflects the progressing monetary development and political steadiness that has portrayed Uganda throughout the previous 20 years.

There is more to Uganda than untamed life: The compelling Nile, with its astounding Murchison Falls, the setting for a portion of the planet's best white-water rafting. There are the snow-topped piles of the Rwenzori, and the Virunga Volcanoes and Mount Elgon, both with a considerable measure of trekking chances through a lovely landscape. Uganda has a couple of excellent huge lakes like Lake Victoria and Lake Bunyonyi. Furthermore separated from that, Uganda has the notoriety as 'Africa's Friendliest Country', with the custom of cordiality and a strikingly low level of wrongdoing and irritate coordinated at vacationers. The official dialect of Uganda is English and the coin is Ugandan Shilling (Ush). The area is 236.580 sq. kilometers, with a populace of 24,5 million.

Uganda is a tropical nation and much of it falsehoods on the African level between 900-1,500 meters above ocean level. This gives Uganda a delightful tropical atmosphere, with temperatures averaging between 21 and 27 degrees Celsius throughout the day and between 12 and 18 degrees Celsius during the evening. The most smoking months are from December to February, with 27 to 29 degrees Celsius. The blustery seasons are from April to May and October to November.

Uganda is decently watered and fruitful, very nearly 25% of the nation is secured with water. Lake Victoria is imparted by Uganda to Kenya and Tanzania. Lake Albert, Lake Edward and Lake George lie on the fringe with Congo (DRC). At Jinja, Owen Falls is viewed as the wellspring of the Nile.

Uganda is a social blend, with 30 and above diverse dialects fitting in with five notable phonetic assemblies. The nation's generally antiquated occupants, kept to the rocky southwest, are the Batwa and Bambuti Pygmies. They deserted a rich legacy of rock depictions, for example those at the Nyero Rock Shelter close Kumi. The social center of present day Uganda are the Bantu-talking kingdoms of Buganda, Bunyoro, Ankole and Toro. As per oral custom, these hundreds of years old kingdoms are branches of the mediaeval kingdoms of Batembuzi and Bacwezi. Three previous rulers of Buganda are covered in a great conventional thatched building at the Kasubi Tombs in Kampala. Different societies in Uganda are: Karimojong, Maasai, Bak.

List of Uganda Safari Packages

2 Days Jinja City tour
This 2 days  Jinja tour  takes you to  Jinja town and the source of River Nile. From Kampala, Jinja is an hours drive to the East. This safari will begin with a visit to the human-born Sezibwa Falls then proceed to the Mabira Forest, a well developed ecotourism site. 

Read More about the Jinja City tour

 3 Days Murchison falls safari
Murchison Falls National Park, named after the the magnificent Murchison falls, where River Nile the world’s longest river burst out ferociously through a narrow gap in the rift valley escarpment to fall into a frothing pool 43 metres below.
Read More : Murchison falls safari - 3days

 

3 Days Sipi Falls Safari
Sipi Falls is a series of three waterfalls in Eastern Uganda in the district of Kapchorwa, northeast of Sironko and Mbale. The waterfalls lie on the edge of Mount Elgon National Park. The waterfalls lie on the edge of Mount Elgon National Park near the Kenyan border.

Read More : Sipi falls safari - 3days

 

3 Days Gorilla trekking in Uganda
Bwindi National Park at the edge of Western Rift Valley situated in South Western Uganda is an impenetrable forest where Mountain gorillas in Uganda are tracked.  Bwindi Forest Park is home to over half of the world’s remaining Mountain Gorillas.

Read More : Gorilla trekking Uganda- 3days

 

3 Days Kibale Chimpanzee safari
A 3 day Uganda safari that will take you to Kibale Forest National Park includes Chimpanzee trekking , bird watching, nature walks through Kibale Forest and Bigodi Swamp area, cultural tour, crater walk visit especially at the “Top of the World. Kibale National Park is a lush tropical rainforest with fascinating diversity of animals, It is a home to the largest number of the endangered chimpanzees in Uganda, as well as the threatened red colobus monkey and the rare L’Hoest’s monkey.

Read More : Kibale chimpanzees- 3days

4 Days Queen Elizabeth Safari and Lake Mburo

A 4 days safari in Uganda's premier National park Queen Elizabeth National park , including an adventure in Lake Mburo National park.

Read More:QENP and Lake Mburo

4 Days Queen Elizabeth and Bwindi gorilla tracking

This is a 4 day Uganda safari that combines Gorilla tracking in Bwindi National Park, wildlife and bird watching safari in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Read More:QENP and Bwindi gorilla tracking

What We Do?

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Subcategories

Places to visit in Tanzania

1

Ruaha National Park

2

Selous Game Reserve

3

Pemba Island

4

Tarangire National Park

5

Mountain Kilimanjaro

Places to Visit in Uganda

1

Bwindi Impenetrable Park

2

Queen Elizabeth National Park

3

Murchison Falls National Park

4

Lake Mburo National Park

5

Kidepo Valley National Park

Places to Visit in Kenya

1

Masai mara,

2

Amboseli

3

Lake Nakuru

4

Lake Naivasha

5

Tsavo East Tsavo

Places to Visit in Rwanda

1

Nyungwe-Canopy Walk

2

Akagera National Park

3

Lake Kivu

4

Volcanoes National Park

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