Rwanda: Mountain Gorilla Gives Birth to Twins

by Feb 7, 2011Great Apes

Musanze — Gorilla trackers from the Volcanoes National Park, yesterday, reported a rare birth of gorilla twins, born to Kabatwa from the Hirwa Group.

According to park officials, the successful birth of twin gorillas becomes the second since 2004 in Susa Group and only the fifth case recorded in more than 40 years of Gorilla monitoring in Rwanda

The first twins in Susa Group, which have grown to the adult age of 6, were named by President Paul Kagame and First lady Jeannette Kagame during the first public and national Gorilla Naming Ceremony-Kwita Izina, held in 2005. The ceremony attracted international conservationists and media groups.

“It’s uncommon among the population of gorillas, and very few cases of twins have been documented in the wild or captivity. The twins in Hirwa Group provide another opportunity for comparative research on this rare case of twining in primates, therefore continuing to get more knowledge and reference for gorilla research, and conservation in general,” said Prosper Uwingeli, the Chief Park Warden.

Veterinary doctors and park rangers who are monitoring them said that the twin baby gorillas were in good health.

Last year’s gorilla census in Virunga chain habitat, showed a 26.2% population increase of the endangered mountain gorillas, increasing from 380 to 480.

The habitat covers three countries; Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Thirteen baby gorillas are expected to be given names in the forth coming Gorilla Naming ceremony scheduled for June this year.