Gorilla Groups

grp_1Amahoro: The Amahoro group was opened for tourism in 2000.  It is the latest group to join the group for tourism in 2000. Amahoro meaning peace, this name was chosen as a symbol of peace also due to the personality. This silverback is more relaxed and approachable. The Amahoro Group has more than 19 members, including several young gorillas.





group_sabyinyoSabyinyo: This group was formed after the death of the leading silverback of the group thirteen in 1992. At first, the group was known as Amavubi meaning wasps due to the hard time during the period of habituation. It was only composed of three silverbacks: Guhonda, Ryango and Ruhennyi. After the death of the leading silverback of the group thirteen, some of them took the females from group thirteen: Ijisho, Gukunda, Kampanga and later on, Safari, other females from group eleven. Thus, a new group was formed with four females and two silverbacks. The name of the group was then changed to Sabyinyo, Sabyinyo being the mountain where the group was first localized.

As the group composition keeps on changing depending on the rate of birth, death, emigration and migration, new members can be found in the group as well as others left the group. This group has a particularity of its kindness and the hugest silverback in the world. This silverback likes to beat his chest showing that he is powerful.

N.B Mountain gorillas leave their groups for two reasons: to avoid inbreeding and to make their own groups.

group_13dGroup Agashya: Contrary to the popular beliefs, group Agashya has more than Twenty individuals. This group came to be thirteen to the order in which it has been localized. At that time groups could be named according to the order in which contacted. Method initiated by Dian Fossey. This group has never had more than one silverback in its history and that is why after the death  of  the leading silverback Murith in 1992 it led to the  loss of all adult females to other silverback forming Sabyinyo group and leaving Group thirteen with only three young males that could not lead the group.

However, these young males: Munani, Nyakarima and Kwirinda stayed together until the older one named Munani turned to silverback but then Nyakarima left the group and Kwirinda died of injuries due to interaction with another group. Munani, being a silverback who wanted to form his group at any cost, had an interaction with group Sabyinyo and obtained Safari one female  which was also a member of group eleven before being Sabyinyo member. He also obtained two other females Gukunda and Cyuzuzo. In 2002 the silverback died of a natural death leaving seven members with a blackback which together with the oldest female (Safari) led the group for five months until when a new silverback came to take over the group.

The new Silverback which is named Agashya came with three members with him increasing the group size. However, the blackback he met in the group refused to submit to the new silverback and left the group to a solitary life. After Agashya gained power he has increased the group for more than 21 individuals in only three years with nine adult females. The name Agashya meaning something special is related to ability to lead such a big group of more than 21 gorillas.


group_umubanoUmubano: This was part of Amahoro group, but later split into two groups creating Umubano. In normal conditions in a group of more than one silverback, when the leader  dies  the group is taken by then next to him. This was not the case with Charles the leader of Umubano. After the death of the leading silverback. Charles refused to submit to the next silverback, instead left the group with two females to form his group.

Ambitious and being a young silverback he has been successful in maintaining his group and gaining more females in a short time. In this group, the silverback is the happiest and the strongest of them all.



group_susaSusa: This is the second largest group of mountain gorillas. It has about 38 individuals with four silverbacks. It was originally studied by Dian Fossey and lives on the slopes of mountain Karisimbi.The most particularity of this group is having rare twin gorilla born twice in the same group.The last event was on 19.05.2004 when a 12 years old female Nyabitondore gave birth to twins (male and female). She has been successful in raising these twins. These might be the first ever twins to survive in the history of Mountain gorillas.

Hirwa: This is a new group formed by one silverback. All its members came from other formed and habituated groups. It is until now composed of more than Fifteen individuals. Its particular character is that it is more peaceful.


group_kwitondaKwitonda: This group is from Democratic Republic of Congo. It arrived in 2005 with more than sixteen members all habituated and it was frequently visited by different tourists. The group is comprised of one silverback and two black backs, females and young ones.

The leading silverback is very shy.


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