What is a Silverback gorilla? Silverback is a name given to a mature male mountain gorilla that develops a grey patch of hair along his back because of age. Most Silverbacks are group dominants, lone gorillas or rivals for the group domination. A Silverback is responsible for all the group day to day activities. They determine where the group travels, forages for food, have their resting point or build nests to sleep at night. They are the most aggressive among all mountain gorillas.
The dominating Silverback mates with all the group females and does not allow any other Silverbacks or Juveniles in the group to do the same. This is why mature non-dominant Silverbacks move away to form their own families or fight the dominating silverback in order to rule. With this, they can also gain mating rights and have kids of their own.
Silverbacks are responsible for the safety of their families. In case of any danger, they fight to protect their families even if it leads to their death. Silverbacks also use sign language to communicate with the entire group in case of danger. Adult males weigh more than female gorillas and are also taller than females. Silverback gorillas consume about 30 kilograms of food each day while the females consume up to 18 kilograms of vegetation.
A Silverback contains a set of 13 ribs, making it 26 ribs in total. A single rib is heavier than for a human being. Some of them are fond of killing young adult males (Juveniles) when they triumph in a fight and take over a family. This is because they want to avoid challenges in the future.
Trekking Silverback Gorillas
To know more about Silverbacks, you can visit Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The cost of gorilla trekking differs across all countries. Sick people and children under the age of 15 years are not be allowed to trek mountain gorillas. Trekking mountain gorillas is not like going on a game drive or carrying out any other ordinary activity. You have to locate these primates by hiking to the mountain slopes. You will also require a couple of gorilla trekking gears like hiking boots, garden gloves, warm clothing’s, raincoats, insect repellents, sunscreens, energy snacks, and drinking water.
Mountain gorilla national parks almost experience the same type of climate. The best time to visit gorillas is in the dry season; Anywhere around June to September and December to February. The wet season might disrupt the gorilla trekking activity as some roads leading to the national parks become impassable. The trekking trails also become muddy, slippery and hard to get through.