5 Interesting Facts About Western Lowland Gorillas

Western Lowland Gorilla

Photographer Will Burrard-Lucas took this photo of a magnificent western lowland gorilla silverback in the Republic of Congo

I have always really liked western lowland gorillas, so I was very excited when one of my friends from school asked me to write about them.

Here are five interesting facts about them:

  1. The dominant males are known as silverbacks due to the distinctive silver hair that grows on their neck, back and thighs.  I love big muscly silverbacks, which can grow to up to 6 feet tall and weigh 140 kg.
  2. Silverbacks beat their chest to scare away other gorillas.  The sound it makes can be heard a couple of kilometres away through the forest.
  3. They are slightly smaller than the eastern gorillas, enabling them to climb trees to eat fruit.
  4. They live in troops of 5-20 animals and sleep on beds made of grass and leaves.
  5. Western lowland gorillas are the most common gorilla in the world, but even so, they are considered to be critically endangered due to hunting, the ebola virus and loss of habitat.  I would love to see one in the wild one day and it would be very sad if they became extinct.

I hope that you found these facts interesting and learned something new.

Are there any other interesting facts that you would like to share about western lowland gorillas?

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