By Jamie Link

Infant Bwindi Silverback Gorilla

Equipment Info
Canon Canon EOS-1D Mark IV
State/Province/Region
OT
Country
UG
Nearest Area
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park
Town
Bwindi, Uganda
Description

Gorilla tracking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda, Africa is definitely an amazing experience to say the least. This little guy was soo friendly and curious about us, we actually had to move back away from him. He is about 12 months old in this photo and was very clumsy. It was downright comical to watch him maneuver around, often falling head over heals or stumbling while trying to climb small stumps. Gorilla infants are vulnerable and utterly dependent on their mothers for survival. Male gorillas are not active in caring for the young. However they do play a role in socializing them to other youngsters. The silverback has a largely supportive relationship with the infants in his troop and shields them from aggression. Infants remain in contact with their mothers for the first five months and mothers stay near the silverback for protection. Infants will suckle at least once per hour and will sleep with their mothers in the same nest. Infants begin to break contact with their mothers after five months but only for brief period each time. By 12 months, infants will start to venture up to 20ft away from their mothers. At around 18–21 months, the distance between mother and offspring increases and they regularly spend time away from each other. In addition, nursing decreases to once every two hours. Infants spend only half of their time with their mothers by 30 months. After that, they enter their juvenile period from their third year until their sixth year. At this time, gorillas are weaned and they sleep in a separate nest from their mothers. After their offspring are weaned, females begin to ovulate and soon become pregnant again and the cycle repeats.

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Date Added
July 13, 2012
Date Taken
July 13, 2012

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