Intimidating gorilla

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It could be debated which one would be more intimidating – the gorilla right in front of you or guard armed with a rifle next to you.

You need not to fear though as the only way to get up close to the rare silverback gorilla in ‘The Pearl of Africa’ is with the accompaniment of a guard as a safety measure.

Gorillas often quote movement that could be considered human, ape, or a mixture of the two.

Their interaction with bystanders often includes gentler direct contact followed by erratic gymnastic movements, climbing, “chipping”, and any form of bacchanal with their gorilla ensemble.

Other times, it involves tests of strength or threat display that make animals look large and more physically fit, a display that may allow it to gain the resource before an actual battle takes place.

Although agonistic behaviour varies among species, agonistic interaction consists of three kinds of behaviours: threat, aggression, and submission.

Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is home to the largest mountain gorilla population in the world.

Some forms of agonistic behaviour are between contestants who are competing for access to the same resources, such as food or mates.

Depending on the availability and importance of a resource, behaviours can range from a fight to the death or a much safer ritualistic behaviour, though ritualistic or display behaviours are the most common form of agonistic behaviours.

With his massive size, the ABQ Bio Park Zoo’s resident silverback gorilla Marcus can be quite intimidating, but there is a lot more to gorillas than brute strength.

“It can take them a while to get worked up and once they are, they walk around stiff, acting grumpy or banging the mesh just to let us know—in case we missed it—that they are upset.” It’s difficult not to notice the gorilla’s physical and intellectual similarities to humans, but the Bio Park’s gorillas live in a world that’s all their own.

Zookeepers do a visual check each morning, train with the gorillas, and prepare their medicine, food supplements and enrichment, but after that it’s gorilla time.

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