Anti-poaching rangers’ extraordinary selfies with two gorillas that look almost human in Congo national park quickly go viral.
Gorillas’ selfie with rangers goes viral
A photo posted by a Congolese anti-poaching ranger showing he and a colleague with two posing gorillas in the Virunga National Park, has gone viral online. What’s special about this photo is that the gorillas in the background are not just in the frame, but seem to be actually posing for the camera. However, there is a sweet but sad little story behind the picture.
Virunga National Park is home to around a third of the world’s population of wild mountain gorillas
The world population of mountain gorillas is currently estimated to be around 1000 individuals.
In Virunga’s southern sector there are currently eight gorilla families and four solitary males which are habituated, meaning they are accustomed to the presence of humans.
The habituation process is done by researchers and Rangers who visit the gorillas on a daily basis for between two and three years until the gorillas are familiarised with humans.
Today, Virunga National Park is home to around a third of the world’s population of wild mountain gorillas, as well as four orphaned gorillas who reside in the Senkwekwe Center, the only facility in the world that cares for mountain gorillas in captivity.
Located at park headquarters in Rumanbago, the Center’s inhabitants were each victims of poachers or animal traffickers as infants.
Abandoned by or taken from their families, the orphans are cared for by the Center’s dedicated staff. The staff’s extraordinary work would not be possible without the help of individuals and organisations from around the world who have stepped up to support conservation efforts in Virunga.
Learn more about the Senkewekwe Center orphans and how you can support their care, or find out about the Fallen Rangers Fund, to care for the widows and children of Rangers killed in the line of duty.
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