Many people all over the world wonder what do Mountain Gorillas Eat? We bring you a complete guide of what do Gorillas eat and their Feeding Habits for both Low Land & Mountain Gorillas

More than 85% of both Mountain and Lowland Gorillas diety is a mainly vegetarian. Gorillas majorly feed on stems, buds of bamboo shoots and fruits. In searching for what does mountain gorillas eat, many people ask do gorilla eat meat?. Mountain gorillas are herbivores, which enables them to achieve their impressive stature on a mostly vegetarian diet. They have massive jaw muscles which help them chew tough vegetation. However the Western lowland gorillas, do enjoy eating termites and ants, they often break open termite nests to feed on the termite larvae

What  Species of Plants do Gorillas Eat / What Plants Do Mountain Gorillas Feed On?

What Do Gorillas Eat ? What Do Mountain Gorillas Eat? Diet And Feeding Habits of Gorillas

                                                A Mountain Gorillas Eating Vegetation in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda

What gorillas do eat is dependent on the nature of their habitat and the season of the year. Primarily, Mountain Gorillas feed on parts of green plants unlike their counterparts the  Western Lowland Gorillas which prefer a lot of fruit.

The Mountain Gorillas that inhabit the Virunga National Park, Volcanoes National Park and Bwindi Impenetrable National Park shared by Rwanda, Uganda and Congo draw their food from about 38 varying species of plants.

Mountain Gorillas, as well as their counterparts the Western Low Land Gorilla families, feed on a variety of plant matter over 200 different plants that make up the bulk of what Mountain Gorilla feed or diet on including:-

  • Bamboo Shoot

  • Gallium Vines

  • Wild Celery

  • Gorillas eat roots

  • Tree bark

  • Pulp

  • Fruits

  • Leaves

  • Thistles

  • Nettles

  • Seeds

  • Stems

  • Shoots

  • Ants

  • Insects e.g Termites

  • Termites mounts soil

 Western Low Land gorillas draw their food from majorly from arrowroot and ginger families.

What  Species of Plants do Gorillas Eat During Dry Season? / What Plants Do Mountain Gorillas Feed On During Hot Seasons?

  • It should be noted that during the dry season, there are few juicy fruits in presence which prompt the gorillas to consume a lot of seeds and tree barks – something always seen while on gorilla safaris in Uganda or in Rwanda.
  • Besides plant species, Gorillas feed on or eat quantities of soil though irregularly which is considered to be neutralizing the poisonous substances contained in their food and that the soil contains some minerals that are missing in their plant foods.

Additionally, Gorillas consume small animals mostly insects though it forms like 0.1% of their food intake.

What do Infant Gorillas Eat / What Do Young Mountain Gorillas Feed on?

  • Infant gorillas rely on their mothers’ milk for sustenance. Young Mountain and Western Low Gorillas occasionally feed on ants and other insects but in small quantity since they are full of proteins. Young/Infant Gorillas are only fully weaned at about 3 and a half years old when they can begin eating the adult diet.

What Are The Feeding Habits of Mountain & Low Land Gorillas?

  1. Considering the fact that fruits grow on trees, gorillas of all age ranges tend to climb up the trees in quest of these fruits. It should further be noted that although western gorillas prefer fruits to leaves pith, stems and shoots, they cannot surpass the percentage of fruit consumption exhibited among their colleagues – the Chimpanzees and Orangutans. The Chimpanzees and the Mountain gorillas can be seen on your gorilla trekking safari in Uganda and Rwanda.
  2. While feeding, Mountain Gorillas do not complete the whole vegetation in an area but they feed selectively, for example, they can consume stems from one plant, move to the next and preserve the remains for another feeding time.

How Much Do Gorillas Eat Per Day?

  1. Adult male Gorillas(Silver back Gorillas) eats about  30kg of plants daily while a mature female adult Gorilla can consume/east about 18kg. Given that Gorillas are mainly herbivores, Gorillas are mainly herbivores, eat leaves, stems, fruits, mostly consists of bamboo shoots, fruit, leafy plants barks,buds, some times small invertebrates such as termites, ants, worms, and larvae.
  2. To supplement their diet some times western lowland gorillas eat small insects to make the volume of their daily consumption ranging between 27-30kg for the Adult male and 16-18kg for the adult female.

Gorillas process these quantities of food with the help of their chewing muscles that are quite strong and their teeth that are much like human teeth except the long pointed canines that are only possessed by mature male gorillas which are not used for feeding but rather for fighting other competing gorillas.

GORILLA FACTS FAQs

    More about Gorillas Facts

    The gorilla facts give a summarized insight into the gorilla lifestyle and allow you to know about them like never before.

    What illnesses do gorillas suffer from?

    It has been noted that gorillas can acquire many human diseases and it is upon this background that those on gorilla trekking safaris in Uganda and Rwanda have to keep a minimum distance to reduce on this risk.

    Mountain gorillas tend to inhabit the areas with a wet and cold climate which in turn tend to cause respiratory tract diseases especially Pneumonia thus claiming some of the Mountain gorilla lives. READ MORE

    Where do gorillas live?

    Gorillas like most of their primate colleagues, sleep in nests which they patch in the trees or on the ground in consideration of various variables like vegetation and the security conditions. It should be noted that every evening, gorillas construct new nests – something that is evidenced on your gorilla trekking safari in Uganda and this cannot be avoided even if it is very close to the nest that slept in the previous night. Another thing to note is that, Infants or call them baby gorillas are the only ones exonerated from the task of making nests as they spend overnights with their mothers. READ MORE

    How much space does a gorilla group need?

    Gorilla groups do not necessarily require distinct territories and neither do they defend such areas against conspecifics. Gorillas roam in what is called the home ranges whose size is dependent on food availability.
    The home ranges are always larger where the food sources are widely dispersed. In case of abundance of nutritious and high-quality food plants, the distance in between the feeding sites reduces. However, the more members the gorilla family possesses, the further will it roam and the extension is the home range which at times causes variation in gorilla trekking times among different gorilla groups. READ MORE

    How do gorillas sleep?

    Gorillas like most of their primate colleagues, sleep in nests which they patch in the trees or on the ground in consideration of various variables like vegetation and the security conditions. It should be noted that every evening, gorillas construct new nests – something that is evidenced on your gorilla trekking safari in Uganda and this cannot be avoided even if it is very close to the nest that slept in the previous night. Another thing to note is that, Infants or call them baby gorillas are the only ones exonerated from the task of making nests as they spend overnights with their mothers. READ MORE

    Do gorillas have enemies?

    This is a question to contemplate deeply about especially when it relates to the critically endangered mountain gorillas which are mostly sought of on Uganda gorilla safaris. It should be noted that apart from humans, the gorillas do not certainly have enemies.
    Among the animals that have been registered to have an influence on life, gorillas are Leopards. This predator has been recorded in Virunga Volcanoes to have an effect on the lives of gorillas. For example, Walter Baumgärtel came across the remains of a range of gorillas that had lost their dear lives at the hands of dangerous leopards in the area. A similar case was recorded in Gabon where a leopard killed a sick young gorilla. READ MORE

    Are gorillas afraid of water?

    Gorillas like other apes including humans find it hard to swim naturally which prompts them to desist from expanse water masses like Lakes and Rivers. It has been recorded however that both adult and young gorillas like to play around with water. While in quest of their food, gorillas tend to walk through swamps on their two legs keeping water levels up to their waists. READ MORE

    Do gorillas often climb trees?

    Primarily, gorillas dwell on ground and can only spend 5 – 20% of their daytime in trees in contrast to their primate counterparts – Chimpanzees which spend 47 – 67% of their time in trees and Orangutans spending close to 100%. READ MORE

    What do gorillas do all the day?

    Gorillas are always active from 6am to 6pm. Gorillas tend to have daily routine and events seem to follow each other chronologically. Even on your gorilla safari in Uganda and Rwanda, you have a chance be part of this routine. Gorillas move out of their nests early in the morning to commence their foraging consuming as much vegetation as they can before resting in the late morning and midday. Gorillas forage again in the afternoon until they rest at night. Unless it is cold and overcast which prompts gorillas to stay longer in their nests, they tend to depart their nests at dawn 6 am. READ MORE

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