RWANDA GORILLA TREKKING FAMILIES
Rwanda has 10 habituated gorilla families reserved for gorilla trekking while two are for research purposes. Rwanda is very popular for gorilla trekking and conservation due to the works of Diana Fossey who spent many years studying the behaviors of Mountain gorillas and how to conserve these endangered grate apes.
Susa Gorilla Family
This gorilla family derives its name or was named after River Susa which runs through the area where Susa gorilla group normally call home. Susa gorilla family is indeed historical and one of the popular groups in as far as conservation studies of mountain gorillas is concerned. It is Susa gorilla family that Diana Fossey studied while she was in Rwanda before her death in 1985.
Susa gorilla family is one of the hardest group to trek in Volcanoes National Park due to the fact that it is normally found in high altitudes. There days when it climbs so high that tourists are not allowed to trek it. Susa gorilla group had the highest number of individuals in Volcanoes National Park numbering up to 42 members but because of gorilla family dynamics, in fights and group separations, Susa now had twenty eight members with three silverbacks, as well as wo twins of Impano and Byishimo. Susa Group is thus for those tourists who are adventurous, like long and hard treks and above all would love to meet the twin gorillas.
Sabyinyo Gorilla Family
Sabyinyo Mountain Gorilla Family derives its name from Mountain Sabyinyo which is shared between Uganda and Rwanda although these gorillas are on the Rwandan side of Sabinyo mountain. This gorilla group has two wonders or advantages. It has the biggest silver back called Guhonda and is normally the easiest to trek among all gorilla families in Volcanoes National Park. These is because it is normally found in the gentle slopes of Sabinyo and Mgahinga making it easy to trek. For all those that are looking for an easier gorilla family to trek should consider Sabinyo gorilla family. This mountain gorilla family has two silver backs with Guhonda being the dominant one while Ryango silver back is the second in command, three adult females, and three juvenile gorillas.
Amahoro Gorilla Family
Amahoro is a Rwandese word meaning peace is one of the gorilla families in Rwanda. Amahoro is thus a peace full family and those that have managed to track this gorilla family will testify that indeed all members are very peace full. This group is led by the dominant silverback called Ubumwe which means togetherness. If one is looking for a gorilla families that is likes peace and togetherness, then it has to be Amahoro mountain gorilla family. More often Amahoro gorilla group has been observed roaming on the slopes of Mountain Visoke and those trekking it should expect a medium to harder but awesome experience.
Amahoro gorilla family currently has seventeen individuals including Ubumwe the dominant silver back, two black backs, five juvenile gorillas, five adult females, and four young gorillas. Mountain gorilla families keep on changing in terms of members so feel free to contact Encounter Africa Safaris for details about gorilla families in Rwanda.
Formely known as the 13 Group, Agashya gorilla family had 13 members living together as a family but due to better conservation methods by the government of Rwanda, the group has expanded to 25 Members. This gorilla family is named after Agashya who is the dorminat silverback and the leader of the group.
Agashya gorilla family has one dominnt silverback, twelve mature females, three juveniles and seven young gorillas thus twenty five individuals in total. Initially, Agashya gorilla group was headed by a silverback known as Nyakairima but after a deadly fight, Agashya overpowered him and took over the leadership. Nyakairima left with no choice had to leave the group. Agashya silverback was very ambitious having expanded the group from 12 members to 25 members. Agashya gorilla group is normally found in the foothills of mountain Mgahinga and Sabinyo and once in a while this group moves uphill. It is believed that Agasha is so protective that when ever he senses danger, he will direct the whole gorilla group to move from downhill to uphill.
Umubano Gorilla Family
» Family size: 7 members including 1 silverback
The Umubano group was formed by members of the Amahoro family after Charles, one of the other males, broke off and is now leader of his own group
Kwitonda Gorilla Family
» Family size: 18 members including 2 silverbacks
The Kwitonda family is named after the dominant silverback of this group and means “humble one”.
Hirwa Gorilla Family
» Family size: 9 members including 1 silverback
Still a new group that emerged recently and is formed from two different families, Group 13 and Sayinyo.