The Eastern Lowland Gorilla is located in the tropical rainforest in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They are also known as the Grauer Gorilla, named after Austrian scientist Rudolf Grauer who discovered the species in the early twentieth century. The Eastern Lowland Gorilla is the largest of the four gorilla subspecies, weighing on average 440 pounds, though the giant males can weigh up to 600 pounds. They are listed as a critically endangered species owing to poaching and civil unrest in the area.
The Eastern Lowland Gorilla stands anywhere from 4 – 5 ½ feet tall. They look similar to a mountain gorilla with their jet black coats however the Eastern Lowland Gorilla has shorter fur and longer limbs. Also similarly to the mountain gorilla, male Eastern Lowland Gorillas have a silver stretch of hair down their backs. Gorillas with this appearance are known as “silverbacks”. The Eastern Lowland Gorillas’ diet consists of fruits, leaves, stems and tree bark.
The Eastern Lowland Gorilla survives in family packs of up to 30 members. The pack is led by a dominant male gorilla. The dominant male gorilla is the only gorilla permitted to mate with the female gorillas in the pack. Female Eastern Lowland Gorillas have a gestation period of around 8 ½ months. Infants usually sleep in the same nest as their mothers until they reach the age of 3. In the wild, the Eastern Lowland Gorilla can live anywhere from 35 – 50 years of age.
There are many ways you can help ensure the survival of the Eastern Lowland Gorilla. You can spread awareness by sharing this article, you can donate to one of the many conservation organizations or you can symbolically adopt a gorilla. There are also reputable companies that will allow you to book tours to see the gorillas up close, in their natural habitat. The proceeds go towards gorilla conservation efforts. No conservation effort is too small. We all have the ability to make a difference in the lives of primates.