Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda

By Squack Evans

This was a short safari in June, but we had an amazing experience: three days in Rwanda, trekking the Mountain Gorillas, a total of two treks, one with the Agashya group and the other with the Kwitonda group. There are very few Mountain Gorillas left in the world, experts tell us somewhere just over 800, so this is a very special safari.

Our first day out we bumped into a herd of buffalo on the way. This happens from time to time but you very rarely get a chance to actually see them. The normal state of affairs is the thundering of hooves, usually in the opposite direction. This time we had a good look at them; probably about 15 animals in total. Do these qualify as true Forest Buffalo, Syncerus caffer nanus?? Would love to hear the comments of an expert!

Both gorilla groups we visited have large numbers of individuals and both also have good number of babies which provides interesting interactions and play all the time. This youngster decided it was time to take a siesta on the Silverback, Agashya, he was very tolerant all told!

The Kwitonda group also has some very interesting dynamics with 3 silverbacks at the moment, which provides for some exciting viewing.

We managed on both days to get very close to the gorillas, on one occasion we were boxed in to the thick vegetation with a youngster sitting very close by watching with interest, and sometimes amusement, our attempts to maintain the required 7 metre distance. What a great trip, something every Africa-phile should do at least once!

No comments:

Post a Comment