There are sadly only about 700 of these majestic and beautiful creatures left as they have been under threat from war, from human encroachment and the bush meat trade. You can visit small family groups in carefully organised trekking trips in both Rwanda and Uganda and the money is a vital source of income to the local community which in turn helps to protect the gorillas. Conservation efforts are proving to be successful but there is still a long battle ahead.
Gorillas are very large and heavy omnivores who can climb trees, but are usually found on the ground. They grow up to 6 feet tall and are immensely powerful. They live in communities of up to 30 individuals at a time and these troops are organized according to fascinating social structures. Troops are led by one dominant, older adult male, often called a silverback because of the swathe of silver hair that adorns his otherwise dark fur. Troops also include several other young males, some females, and their offspring. Watching them up close on a gorilla trek is one of the most incredible experiences to have and it will certainly remind you just how similar to us these wonderful creatures really are.