How Many Gorillas Are Left In The World?

How many gorillas are left in the world? Around 316,000 Western and 5,000 Eastern gorillas are estimated to live worldwide. Regarding the IUCN’s classification, both species are Critically Endangered; all subspecies are Critically Endangered, save for the mountain gorilla.

how many gorillas are left in the world

How Many Mountain Gorillas are Left in the World?

Gorilla numbers have been steadily declining since their discovery in 1902 by scientists; only approximately 880 mountain gorillas remain in the world, and they must stay in the wild to live. As a result, the mountain gorillas have been designated as severely endangered, and attempts are being made to save them.

Name Gorilla
Scientific Name Gorilla beringei beringei
Status Endangered
Population More than 1000
Height 4 to 5 ½ feet
Weight 440 lbs
Class Mammalia
Kingdom Animalia

Where are the Mountain Gorillas Found?

A total of four protected sites, the Virunga national park of the Democratic Republic of Congo; Volcanoes National Park of Rwanda; Bwindi National Park and Mgahinga National Park of Uganda, are home to the Mountain Gorillas in their native environment. It is very unusual for a Gorilla to survive in captivity.

Difficulties for the Mountain Gorillas

The mountain gorilla population has dropped significantly since its scientific discovery due to various factors, including habitat loss to people and poaching. However, as protected areas are established, the mountain gorilla population will likely grow.

Population Census of Mountain Gorillas

There are regular censuses of mountain gorillas in protected regions to establish their population size. However, the census is disorganized, with none of the three nations doing it simultaneously. As a result, it is impossible to estimate the mountain gorillas’ current population accurately.

The number of mountain gorillas in Uganda’s Bwindi and Mgahinga national parks is now counted, and the results will be announced shortly.

Where do Gorillas Differ from People?

One of the most striking similarities between Mountain Gorillas and humans is that they share 98% of our genomes and 96% of our DNA. We share more genetic similarities with chimpanzees than any other primate.

Mountain Gorilla Population and Distribution

Both the Virunga range of extinct volcanoes and the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda is home to mountain gorillas, which may be found in these two independent sites. Biologists think the Bwindi gorillas are a distinct species of their own.

Populations of Mountain Gorillas in the Past

As early as the eighteenth century, mountain gorilla populations began to plummet due to various reasons such as habitat destruction, unregulated hunting, war and other civil upheavals, and illicit pet trade; however, mountain gorillas seldom survive in captivity.

The population of Mountain Gorillas as of Today

There has been a modest growth in the mountain gorilla population due to conservation initiatives, with the number of mountain gorillas rising from 620 to roughly 880 individuals in the last few years.

How Can Gorilla Trekking Aid Conservation?

One of the most popular East African tourist attractions, mountain gorilla trekking, has significantly contributed to the mountain gorillas’ survival. Only $600 in Uganda, $1500 in Rwanda and $400 for the Democratic Republic of Congo gorilla trekking permits are available.

When you buy a gorilla trekking permit, a portion of the money you spend goes toward research and conservation efforts; the remainder goes toward building infrastructure and educating the local community surrounding the designated gorilla conservation zones in the first place.

Book a Gorilla trekking excursion with Adventure in the wild safaris to aid the protection of mountain gorilla populations.


Eastern gorillas have two distinct subspecies, the mountain and the lowland. One population resides in the Virunga Massif, which straddles the borders of Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. In contrast, the other population lives in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda and the Sarambwe Nature Reserve in the DRC.

Different Types of Gorillas

Before recent times, the three subspecies of gorillas were thought to constitute one species: the western lower gorilla (western), the eastern lower gorilla (eastern), and the mountain gorilla (western). The existence of two distinct species, each with two subspecies, is now universally acknowledged. A third subspecies of one of the animals has lately been reported to exist.

Unchained Gorillas

Only in Africa can you find unchained gorillas. Gorillas are divided into four subspecies: western lowland, eastern lowland, cross-river, and mountain. All of them are in grave danger. The western lowland gorillas are more vulnerable to people hunting and habitat loss than the Mountain Gorillas (1000+). Only western lowland gorillas are kept in zoos.

Eastern Lowland Gorillas

Eastern lowland gorillas may be found in Uganda, Rwanda, and the (DRC).

Mountain gorillas and Grauer’s (or Eastern lowland) gorillas are two distinct subspecies. According to the World Wildlife Fund, there are roughly 700 Mountain gorillas and a few thousand Eastern lowland gorillas, down from about 17,000 in the 1990s.

Western Lowlands Gorillas

It is believed that western lowland gorillas may be found in the following countries: Cameroon, Gabon; Congo; CAR; Angola; and Nigeria. These gorillas are divided into the Western lowland and the Cross-River varieties.

Currently, there are just a few hundred cross river gorillas living worldwide and approx. 100,000 western lowland gorillas; however, the latter number has declined by around 60 percent in the last 25 years owing to habitat destruction, poaching and illness, as said WWF.

Cross-River Gorillas

On the Cameroon–Nigeria border, you’ll find cross-river gorillas. Between 200 and 300 people now call this place home. As a result, they are highly threatened subspecies in terms of sustainability.

Mountain Gorillas

The Virunga Mountains in Uganda and Rwanda are home to the endangered mountain gorilla. The Dian Fossey gorilla fund manages and monitors them regularly. There are presently approximately 1000 of them, up from a population of 700 only a decade ago.

Captive Gorillas

Captive gorillas in the Europe and United States, or Africa’s gorilla sanctuaries, are the most common. There are currently no gorilla sanctuaries outside of Africa.

They’re all Western lowland gorillas, who are the only gorillas kept at zoological institutions. As with Ndume and Koko, two former residents of the Gorilla Foundation’s facility in Northern California.

The Gorilla Foundation may purchase or lease 71 acres of tropical land in Maui until 2058. Koko and Ndume gorillas were supposed to be housed here, but that idea was cancelled.

It’s been a year since the death of Koko and the relocation of Ndume to the Cincinnati Zoo, but those gorillas who can’t or won’t adapt to their new environments in zoos still need somewhere to go. To honor Koko’s memory, we’re exploring options for establishing the KokoMaui Sanctuary.


Primate gorillas may reach heights of up to 1.25 meters, weights of up to 270 kilograms, and arm spans of up to 2.6 meters, depending on species and sex, making them giant living primates. The leader of the group is known as a “silverback.” Darker fur and other physical features set the Eastern Gorilla apart from the Western Gorilla. The average lifespan of a gorilla in the wild is 35–40 years. Fatou, the world’s oldest gorilla, is still ageing at 65 years old.

Top Ten Facts about Gorillas

Find out some interesting facts about mountain gorillas, their challenges, and the things you can do to assist them.

  • Eastern and western gorillas are the only two types found around the globe. A subspecies of the eastern gorilla, the mountain gorilla, is located in the mountains.

  • Currently, the number of mountain gorillas in the wild is believed to be 1,063 based on recent census findings (which come out every 5-10 years).

  • One group of mountain gorillas lives in the Virunga Volcanoes (a region spanning three national parks in Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)). Another in Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, which connects to the DRC’s Sarambwe Nature Reserve, are the only two mountain gorilla populations in east-central Africa.

  • Mountain and bamboo forests at higher elevations, bordered by farmland and human towns, are their natural habitats.

  • Since gorillas are so closely related to humans in terms of genetics, even a common cold might have severe consequences ut65tjfor them since they lack the required immunity to human ailments.

  • A typical silverback gorilla may stand 170cm (5’5" tall) on all fours and weigh up to 180kg (nearly 30 stone). Female mountain gorillas, on the other hand, may reach a height of 150cm (4’9") and a weight of 90kg.

  • The majority of mountain gorillas’ daily diet consists of vegetation. Eighty-five per cent of the gorillas’ diet consists of leaves, although they may also consume small animals such as snails or ants.

  • Groups of mountain gorillas sleep together in tree or ground nests made from vegetation. Sharing their mother’s nests with their babies will keep them warm and secure.

  • Dogs will make brief barks even when they are somewhat worried or intrigued.

  • Male gorillas employ strutting, beating of the chest, and vocalizations like roars and hoots to frighten competitors.

  • Most mountain gorilla families have a dominant male and numerous females, with roughly ten members. In this group, newborns are cared for by both men and women who hold, carry, and play with them.

  • Around 60% of men and 70% of females will eventually leave their natal group and join another. As a result, inbreeding will be prevented.

  • Gorillas are classified as either baby till the age of three and a half or adults beyond the age of eight.

  • Males in the age range of 8 to 12 are referred to as ‘blackbacks’. Silverbacks are born with a silver part of hair on their backs and hips at 12.

  • Deterioration of their environment is the primary danger to mountain gorillas. Increased agricultural use and competition for scarce natural resources contribute to the region’s deforestation as the region’s population expands. Mountain gorillas are placed in danger by humans entering their habitats to gather water and firewood, putting them at risk of disease and human interaction. The great apes may potentially be injured by people laying snares for bushmeat.

  • Gorillas aren’t confined to their natural habitats. A dispute with farmers might occur if they walk into farms to consume crops such as maize and bananas.

  • Mountain gorillas’ health and behaviour may be adversely affected by poorly-managed gorilla tourism.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some FAQs related to gorillas:

1. In the year 2020, how many gorillas will be left?

There were 604 gorillas in the Greater Virunga Transboundary Collaboration (GVTC) surveys, up from only 480 in 2010, after a rigorous review of all the data. It was previously predicted that mountain gorillas would become extinct by 2000. But as of Today, there are more than 1,000 in the wild.

2. How many gorillas will be left on the planet by 2022?

The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is home to around a third of the remaining mountain gorillas.

3. In the year 2021, how many gorillas will still be alive?

Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) researchers revealed their findings on Grauer’s gorilla population in May 2021. This is more than triple the previous estimate of just 3,800 people, which was made in 2016.

4. Will there be no more gorillas left?

According to a recent United Nations research, gorillas may soon be extinct in large swaths of central Africa. Ebola and other infectious illnesses are also on the list of dangers that might threaten the survival of the world’s apes.

5. Are gorillas gone in 2021?

Due to deforestation and climate change, an estimated one million species are in danger of extinction. Gorilla populations require a long time to expand since they are long-lived animals brewing slowly. Some locations, however, are seeing an increase in the number of gorillas.

6. What is the PP size of a gorilla?

Your pinkie is around the size of gorilla crap. Therefore you’re right: gorillas don’t have much to complain about.

7. How many gorillas do you think are murdered every year?

Apes in Crisis: More than 2,000 Great Apes are Poached or Stolen Every Year from the Wild. UNEP’s Great Apes Survival Partnership says that around 3,000 chimpanzees, gorillas, bonobos, orangutans are unlawfully murdered or kidnapped yearly (GASP).

8. Do gorillas have the ability to be friendly?

The fact that gorillas share 98 per cent of their DNA with humans only demonstrates that they are more like us as kind, calm, and friendly animals. Gorillas are sociable creatures and only turn hostile against people when they perceive a danger to their social group.

9. Do gorillas defend people from harm?

Palaeontologist Julia Gallucci said maternal behaviour toward a person would not surprise her. A youngster in peril may expect the same kind of response from a gorilla as it would from a person.

10. Is it possible for gorillas to live in North America?

Because of their robust immune systems, mountain gorillas in North America are perfectly safe to handle for both local and non-native illnesses and viruses.


Scientific controversy has raged over the possibility that mountain gorillas, a subspecies of the eastern gorilla, may represent two distinct species. Most dwell in the Virunga Mountains, a grouping of extinct volcanoes located in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda. Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda has the rest. It was long believed that mountain gorillas would be extinct by the end of the twentieth century due to their terrible risks since their discovery in 1902: conflict, hunting, habitat degradation, and sickness.

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