Rare Cross River gorilla caught on film (VIDEO)

Nine-day-old gorilla lays in the hand of its mother Kijivu at the Prague Zoo on May 3, 2010.
Michal Cizek

Video cameras set up in Cameroon’s Kagwene Gorilla Sanctuary caught a group of rare Cross River gorillas on film.

ABC noted that Cross River gorillas are found mostly on the border between Nigeria and Cameroon. The Cross River gorilla, which is a subspecies of the Western gorilla, is the most endangered of the African apes. There are only an estimated 250 alive today. 

In a statement Steve Sanderson, president of the Wildlife Conservation Society said, “This video gives us all a spectacular view into the hidden world of one of our closest relatives, which is in dire need of our help to survive."

Christopher Jameson, Director of WCS’s Takamanda Mone Landscape Project, added in the statement on the World Conservation Society's site, “The video represents the best images to date of Cross River gorillas, normally shy animals that flee at the slightest hint of human presence. The footage provides us with our first tantalizing glimpses of Cross River gorillas behaving normally in their environment. A person can study these animals for years and never even catch a glimpse of the gorillas, much less see anything like this.” 


The WCS noted several highlights of the video including, at the 1:10 mark a male silverback appears. He surveys the area, then runs past the camera giving the classic chest-beating display. At a more solemn point, the researchers note another gorilla appears to be missing a hand, which in the statement they say is, "a healed injury but a disquieting indicator of the presence of snares within the family group’s range in the past before increased patrolling in the now-protected area."

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