Brookfield Zoo Animal Bulletin

Western Lowland Gorilla

The Basics

This mammal belongs to the group of great apes. It weighs anywhere from 220 to 440 pounds and can get up to 5.5 feet tall. Black and grey fur cover most of its body. The western lowland gorilla usually gives birth to just one baby at a time which is called an infant. Gorillas travel and live with about 30 other gorillas. This is known as a troop.

Western lowland gorillas' main predators are humans, who hunt them for meat or clear their habitats for development. Large cats, like leopards, are the only other threat. The western lowland gorilla scares off predators with its large size and loud roar.

Habitat & Diet

This gorilla can be found in different lowland tropical rainforests throughout Africa. More specically, it can be found in Southeastern Nigeria, Cameroon, Gabon, Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Equatorial Guinea.

While in the wild, the gorilla eats leaves, herbs, shrubs, vines and other vegetations and fruits. When at the zoo, the gorilla can be seen eating monkey chow, apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, sweet potatoes, carrots, celery, onions, green beans, spinach, kale, parsley, and escarole or romain lettuce.

Interesting Facts

  • They can live to be almost 50 years old.
  • The western lowland gorillas are critically endangered, having an estimated 95,000 left in the world.
  • They are very intelligent animals and have even learned sign language!

Author: Erica Anklam