Home to 350 individuals, the Bwindi National Park is home to almost half the world’s population of endangered mountain gorillas. While filming the gorillas at a private safari camp in the national park, this man was accepted into a troop, sitting with the group for several minutes being groomed.
For the last two decades, adventurous wildlife enthusiasts have been climbing the forested mountains in Uganda to spend time with these beautiful animals. To protect the gorillas, the park enforces strict rules including permits which are limited each day. It’s not possible to do the trek yourself. Visitors must be accompanied by a local ranger whose job is to track down different wild troops.
Over time, the mountain gorillas have become habituated to humans and no longer see us as a threat. Without this habituation, the gorillas would either flee or possibly attack. This vital tourism brings in much needed jobs and helps protect the gorillas from poaching.
During the trek there is no guarantee of sightings, however the excellent rangers usually find the troops. Once found visitors have just one hour and must sit 7 metres away. However, on rare occasions the curious gorillas occasionally reach out to humans.
In the video, the troop come to sit around the man. While the silverback sits calmly a metre or so behind, the female and young begin grooming him. A rare close encounter with these magnificent creatures.
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