Mountain vs Lowland Gorilla (Mountain Gorilla Facts)

mountain gorilla vs western gorilla

Mountain and lowland gorillas are the two sub-species that are often misunderstood as one. However, these two species differ from each other in many criteria such as their size, habitat, and behavior. Here in this article we will compare the differences between both the mammals and compare them in a fight.

What Does a Mountain Gorilla Look Like?

The mountain gorilla is a large, muscular primate with long arms, flat nose, elongated and cone-shaped head, and a big swollen belly. They possess complete black or brownish hair, but older males may also have silver or white streak that runs along their necks. These mammals have long hair and short arms with a massive physique as compared to their close relatives, the lowland gorillas. 

Where Does the Mountain Gorilla Live?

The mountain gorilla lives in a narrow range within central Africa. Their major population can be found in the national parks of Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

These species prefer to live in the forested regions, including rainforest, bamboo forest, grasslands, and mixed forests. 

The mammals choose the forested regions of mountain habitats between 8,000 and 13,000 feet above.

What is The Size of a Mountain Gorilla?

The primates can stand around 4 to 6 feet tall, while standing and can weigh up to 300 to 500 pounds. Males are generally larger than females can even weigh twice as much. However, the mountain gorilla is the second-largest primates in the world after the eastern lowland gorilla. 

What Does Mountain Gorilla Eat?

Mountain gorillas are herbivorous and feed on a variety of vegetation that includes roots, fruits, flowers, leaves, and tree bark. Although herbivorous, they have also known to eat insects if no other food source is left. The primary diet composition depends on a variety of local plants and trees. These mammals spend around a quarter of their day eating on up to 75 pounds of food. 

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How Fast Can a Mountain Gorilla Run?

The top speed of mountain gorillas is 25 miles per hour.

Mountain Gorilla Reproduction:

The reproduction of gorillas is similar to that of humans; the females have a gestation period of nine months. They yield a single offspring, and they can mate all the year without any specific season. However, unlike humans, these primates can only give birth once every several years due to the infant’s longer development times. The newborn is tiny and weighs only about four pounds. From the moment of the birth of the infant, it is almost inseparable from its mother. The mother will cling the infant for the first two or three years of its life. A gorilla will begin to learn vital communication and social skills through playtime, such as chasing and wrestling. Along with the mother, the members of the troop also care and nurse the baby gorilla. 

Mountain Gorilla Facts:

  • Gorillas share 98.4 percent of the same DNA with humans. 
  • Mountain gorillas can be recognized by their nose’s shape and pattern just as their fingerprints can identify humans. No two gorillas will have the exact design.
  • As the adult mountain gorillas have a silver streak of hair along their backs, they are also known as Silverbacks.
  • The critical signal of gorilla communication is its scent. Smells can be a warning of nearby threats from predators. 
  • They have 16 different types of calls. Which also includes short barks for alarming and male gorillas roar and beat their chest to show rivalry. 
  • The main predators of mountain gorillas include leopard and crocodiles. 

Mountain Gorilla Behavior:

Mountain gorillas have a unique way of locomotion, known as knuckle-walking. They walk around on all four limbs with its finger curled up on the ground. Although they can walk on two legs for a limited time. Like other apes, gorillas are highly intelligent mammals. They can use tools, display, and learn the signs. They are also very social animals that can laugh, feel distressed, and develop an attachment. Grooming is an essential part of their social bonding, which keeps the primates free from dirt and parasites. These mammals live in a small group that can consist of 20 individuals. The group is composed of a single dominant male with several females and their offspring. 

How Long Does Mountain Gorilla Live?

In the wild, mountain gorillas can survive for 35 years, but the lifespan up to 50 years have been recorded. 

Are Mountain Gorilla Endangered?

Under the IUCN red list, the species are considered as endangered. The greatest threat to these mammals are humans, their activity such as illegal hunting and habitat destruction from mining, agriculture, and industrialization have become threatening to these mammals. 

What Does a Western Lowland Gorilla Look Like?

The western lowland gorilla is the smallest among the gorillas. The Western lowland gorilla may have brownish coloration. A little white cluster of hair on their rump distinguishes the infants up to four years. The white patch helps the mother keep track of the infant and support other group members to identify the infant. The female’s species have gray coloration below the ears and on the neck and the top of their heads. Compared to the mountain gorillas, the western lowland gorillas have a broad skull and longer arms than their legs. 

Where Does the Western Lowland Gorilla Live?

The western lowland gorilla population is widely distributed across the Congo basin and is spreading across the countries of Gabon, Central Africa Republic, Angola, Equatorial Guinea, and the Congo. 

What is The Size of Western Lowland Gorilla?

An adult male can stand up to 6 feet tall and weigh between 300 to 500 pounds. While the female’s measures 4.5 feet tall and weigh from 150 to 200 pounds. However, the arm span of a male measures feet, whereas for females, it ranges to 6.5 feet. 

What Does Western Lowland Gorilla Eat?

These mammals are primarily herbivorous and eat the leaves and stems of herbs, shrubs, and vines. They also consume the fleshy fruits of around a hundred seasonal fruiting tree species. On the other hand, some of the subspecies feed less on vegetation. They get their protein from invertebrate found on leaves and fruits. The adult males eat about 45 pounds of food per day while the females eat about two-thirds of that amount.

Western Lowland Reproduction: 

The duration and frequency of breeding are quite low in western lowland gorillas as compared to other apes. The gestation in females lasts for four and a half months, delivering a single infant. For the first few months, the mother supports the infant by holding on her chest all day. They continue to ride on their mothers back till they are 3.5 to 4 years old. The baby gorillas grow twice the rate of the human baby for the first couple of years. 

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Western Lowland Gorilla Fun Facts:

  • Gorillas are affected by the Ebola virus, with two significant outbreaks being reported in 2003 and 2004.
  • Western lowland gorillas are brilliant creatures. They make various tools that they use for the foraging process. 
  • One of the known gorilla named Koko managed to learn 1,000 signs.
  • Western lowland gorillas are the most common species found in zoos. 
  • The male western lowland gorillas are regularly prone to cardio Myotherapy.
  • From the ages of 3 and 6, western lowland gorillas are referred to as human-like.

Western Lowland Gorilla Behavior:

Gorillas are social animals, live in groups, troops that can consist of more than 30 members. The group is typically composed of a Silverback male, one or more black male, many adult females, and their infants. A female may change family groups several times throughout her life. While the mature males leave their group to find a new mate. The western lowland gorilla is quite a non-aggressive mammal. It will never attack unless provoked. These mammals are more active during the morning, and late afternoon, the adults take a nap in a day nest while the young spend their time in wrestling and playing games. 

How Long Does Western Lowland Gorilla Live?

In the wild, these primates can live for 30 to 40 years while in captivity they can survive for 50 years.

Are Western Lowland Gorillas Endangered?

According to the IUCN, the western lowland gorillas are classified as endangered species. These mammals are subjected to hunting and commercial trade, and their population is gradually decreasing. 

Mountain vs Lowland Gorilla: Fight Comparison 

Although there is no possibility that mountain and lowland gorilla will compete against each other. But if this happened so, mountain gorilla can win as it is the second-largest primate in the world, and western lowland gorilla is the smallest subspecies. Also, western lowland gorilla is not aggressive and does not fight until provoked. If we consider size to be a critical factor in comparing their fight, mountain gorillas are the clear winners. 

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