The staff of Uganda Wildlife Authority- Bwindi Impenetrable National Park have risen to yet another ecstatic moment of a new baby gorilla with Mucunguzi family coming through on 4th Sept 2020 from Adult Female Ndinkahe. On the other hand, Rushegura gorilla family brought forth a baby from Adult Female Ruterana increasing the family membership to 18 gorillas and two for the group same year!
This takes the tally of new births in Bwindi forest to 5 in just six weeks and fourteen in the year! The new Rushegura baby marks Ruterana’s third offspring in the family. Ruterana particularly has not had a smooth tide with keeping her offsprings alive. When she was 12 years, her first offspring born September, 13, 2012 sadly succumbed to Pneumonia while only fortnight old. The other birth in the family came from Kibande on August 27, 2020. Kibande’s new baby marks her fifth surviving offspring in group. She is also the most senior lady and kingmaker of the family.
Not long ago in April 2020, Rushaga sector registered birth of two babies in Muyambi and Nshongi gorilla groups. According to the Chief Warden BMCA Guma Nelson, the new babies then were thought to have been born on April 25 and May 1, 2020, respectively. Mother Kabagyenyi and Silverback Bweza of Nshongi were observed by the monitoring team of rangers tightly guarding the baby gorilla while in Muyambi group, silverback Muyambi was often seen on patrol to decisively protect the family’s new entrant. Adult Female Kabagyenyi joined Nshongi family from a wild group when she was a sub-adult. Muyambi group on the other hand is the newest group that opened to tourism in 2019. It has six family members. The unnamed mother joined the group from the wild.
Other gorilla families with babies this year include Katwe group which had a baby on 16th Jan for Ntabwoba Adult Female, Nkuringo family welcomed a birth 22nd May, Busigye family had a baby on 28th July with unnamed Adult Female, Mukiza family group 17th February from Adult Female Bwebisha, while Oruzoogo family was 25th July by mother Katoto and Kahungye 20th Jan with yet to be named Adult Female.
The Executive Director UWA Sam Mwandha Observed that “the birth of new mountain gorillas is testimony to Uganda’s successful conservation efforts. With enhanced integrity of protected areas, there has been a general increase in wildlife populations in Uganda,” he said.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature classifies the mountain gorilla as an endangered species. Uganda wildlife Authority continues to be committed to conservation and protection of gorillas to ensure that the population increases despite the Covid19 interruptions.