Gorillas Win vs. Poachers

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Young gorillas are taking conservation matters into their own hands.

Our human efforts of trying to save African animals from snares, , poisonous bait, habitat destruction… the list is long… most of the time seems like a battle we can not win. But this year was different. This year there was a win for wildlife conservation and it comes from the wildlife itself!

Two young , in a group followed by theDian Fossey Gorilla Fundin Rwanda, have learned to deactivate snares that would otherwise kill them. This news warms my heart.In the past adult gorillas have been observed dismantling snares but now it seems the skills are being learned by the younger generation. The ramifications of this are HUGE. Just think about it.

Snares set by poachers are one of the worst threats to the safety of the mountain gorillas.

A couple of months ago, in the second death this year resulting from a poacher’s snare, a juvenile gorilla died of complications of gangrene from rope cuts, and a dislocated shoulder when she tried to escape the snares hold on her.

TheMountain Gorilla Veterinary Project(MGVP), made every effort to save her, but it was too late.

If the gorillas associate the snares with being dangerous, and they begin to dismantle every snare they come across, it will be one less thing the gorillas and their human helpers have to worry about.

“Our battle to detect and destroy snares from the park is far from over… however…today we can proudly confirm that gorillas are doing their part too!”said Felix Ndagijimana, director of the Karisoke Center.

YEAH, and double YEAH. For more photos visit my blog AfricaInside.org

Lori Robinson

Thirty years of traveling to and living in eleven African countries – from my first trip to Southern Africa on assignment as a fashion model in 1984, to my recent role as Africa Adventures Specialist in East Africa for the Jane Goodall Institute – has nourished my life long passion for the natural world. In 2009 I sold my big house, and most of my stuff so I could live more simply. When I’m not leading safari’s in Africa, I’m based in a small African hut, aka California cottage, in Santa Barbara. I write about animals, nature and Africa. You can find me at AfricaInside.org.

Lori Robinson

Thirty years of traveling to and living in eleven African countries – from my first trip to Southern Africa on assignment as a fashion model in 1984, to my recent role as Africa Adventures Specialist in East Africa for the Jane Goodall Institute – has nourished my life long passion for the natural world. In 2009 I sold my big house, and most of my stuff so I could live more simply. When I’m not leading safari’s in Africa, I’m based in a small African hut, aka California cottage, in Santa Barbara. I write about animals, nature and Africa. You can find me at AfricaInside.org.

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Ken_Billington

Lori , congratulations on your success in our “Most Popular and Widely-Read Articles from 2012”. Looking forward to reading more of your articles during 2013.
https://focusingonwildlife.com/news/most-popular-and-widely-read-wildlife-articles-from-2012/

Jo Dale

Fantastic story and a great pic to go with it. Thanks for sharing!

Eleanor Brown
Eleanor Brown

This news is wonderful. I always thought they were very intelligent. This confirms it. Good luck to them.eleonora. [email protected]

Steve Riley

Is there a way to TEACH the gorillas about the snares?

Coke Smith
Coke Smith

I would like to see them start dismantling the poachers…One limb at a time….

Ken_Billington

Lori, this is excellent news – that the gorillas are acquiring the skills to dismantle snares – and to pass them on to the younger generation. From the conservation point of view, we need more similar success stories – by the way, congratulations on your first post.