An image of a troop of gorillas.

Hello, and welcome back to the Amahoro Tours blog! Today, we’re back with another blog, and for this blog, we’re bringing back one of our favorite topics — gorillas! Sure, we often talk about the gorilla treks we offer as a part of our eco-tourism experiences in Rwanda, Uganda, and the Congo, but today we’re talking exclusively about our favorite mammals. Keep reading to learn some more fun facts about the fascinating existence of gorillas. 

The Troop (Or Band)’s All Here

You know how groups of animals have specific names — a pod of whales, a murder of crows, a flock of sheep? Well, there is a special name for gorillas too. In fact, they have two names for a group of gorillas, band or troop. 

When it comes to a troop or band of gorillas, there is a consistent structure you’ll find each time. Each troop or band will consist of a dominant male. There will be only one male per troop or band. Then, the rest of the troop will be made up of females and infants. Oh yeah, baby gorillas are called infants, just like human babies! Interesting, right?

Nestled In For The Evening

While baby gorillas are called infants just like human babies, that’s only one of many similarities between us and gorillas. Another interesting fact about gorillas is that they sleep in nests. Okay, we know what you’re probably thinking. Right now, you’re picturing a nest, in a tree, similar to that a bird would use — but bigger. Instead, a gorilla’s nest is similar to a bed! They assemble different types of vegetation on the ground to give themselves a comfy place to sleep.

But they don’t use the same nest every day — they actually build new ones each and every time they are going to bed! Everyone except the infants, at least. Mostly gorillas sleep in the evening, but they have been observed to take a midday nap. And yes, you guessed it — they make new nests for naps too. 

They’re Huge!

Just about everyone understands that gorillas are big, but do you know just how big they actually are? Female gorillas are smaller than the males, however, they average around four-and-a-half feet tall, and usually weigh in around 200 pounds. While this isn’t insanely tall, these proportions make for a strong, impressive creature. 

Male gorillas come in about a foot taller than the females, averaging around five-and-a-half feet tall, and they weigh in at about 400 pounds! That’s very big! 

They’re Innovative Problem Solvers

We find this fact especially interesting, considering the fact that it’s relatively new information in our wealth of information regarding gorillas. In 2014, the discovery was made in the wild that gorillas actually make tools to solve problems they face. 

The example that enabled the discovery can be summarized like this:

A gorilla was attempting to gather ants from an anthill as a meal, however, bites from the ants scared the first gorilla being observed away. Then, another gorilla tried to get some ants for themself, only to experience the same fate. 

However, this gorilla didn’t give up. She proceeded to make a tool out of a twig that she used to extract and then eat the ants. It’s truly amazing! Other gorillas have been seen to use sticks to gauge water depths, and so much more. There are even plenty of instances where gorillas in captivity created tools in their enclosures.

You Can See Them Today!

While it may seem a world away to some, you can actually experience the majesty of the gorilla in the wild. At Amahoro Tours, we conduct gorilla treks that you can join. During these treks you’ll have an unforgettable experience in the national forests of Uganda, the Congo, or Rwanda, during which time you’ll get to see gorillas in the wild.

If you’re interested in this experience, contact us today to schedule your gorilla trek with Amahoro Tours.