Mountain gorilla families live in social groups mostly composed of 1 silverback, several females, juveniles and infants dominated by a silverback that takes care of all the group activities, silverbacks are always defensive in protecting their families rather than their province.
For unknown reasons, gorillas are afraid of chameleons and caterpillars, baby gorillas that are found with playing with any crawling thing always freak out and give way to caterpillars and chameleons. Silverback gorillas defend their babies against any attack and females also protect their young from any harm even if this can cost their live.
Gorillas are also intelligent animals, they have been observed using tools for example the use of sticks to fetch termites from holes, measuring the depth of a river with a stick and the use of logs to cross water paths.
Mishaya gorilla family
Mishaya mountain gorilla family can be trekked from the southern sector of Bwindi impenetrable national park at Rushagga. The group is named after Mishaya an ambitious silverback that broke away from Nshongi gorilla family to start up his own group in May 2011.
Mishaya the silverback left his group with 7 members but kept fighting other groups to grab females and the group expanded to 12 members. Mishaya unfortunately died mysteriously in 2014 at the age of 28 years and silverback Mwine took over the group leadership.
It’s suspected that Mishaya must have died due to a lot of injuries he got from several fights with other gorillas because he even had no history of any illness, one time injuries were got from several group members with Mishaya and an infant being severely injured.
To trek Mishaya mountain gorilla family, tourists will have to book permits and accommodation from Rushagga sector of Bwindi impenetrable forest national park. The trek to this family starts early morning after briefing and take from 30 minutes to 7 hours depending on the location of the gorilla family and phase of the trekkers. Only a group of eight healthy people will be allowed to visit the family.
Gorilla habituation can be done in Rushagga sector of Bwindi national park the same sector where you can trek Mishaya gorilla family, gorilla habituation is not crowded like gorilla trekking as only a group of 4 people will join in gorilla habituation. You also get to spend 4 hours with mountain gorillas compared to trekking where you spend only one hour.
Gorilla trekking permits cost $700 per person per trekking while gorilla habituation permits cost $1500 per person per trekking. Tourists should always endeavour to book their permits in advance of 3 months before the actual trekking date due to high demand.
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