Gorillas live freely in Bwindi forest national park and Mgahinga National park in south western part of Uganda. Virunga National Park is also a habitat for the mountain gorillas that live in D.R. Congo. Volcanoes National Park or Pac National des Volcans is the mountain gorilla home in Rwanda. In the entire world, Mountain gorillas or the eastern gorillas only live in those 4 National parks and about 880 of them are still surviving in this area.
Although they live freely in the forest, human activities have kept on encroaching on there habitat. This is a serious threat to mountain gorillas placing them in the position of one of the most endangered primates in the world by IUCN red list. Because of the rich volcanic soil of this area agricultural activities have to compete with the existence of the mountain gorillas. In Rwanda, Uganda and Congo, a regional conservation program stressing the relevancy of maintaining the virgin forest watershed and the desire to habituate some gorilla families for tourism purposes so that the community accrues the benefits of reserving these apes easing the work of community awareness.
Mountain gorillas live in the volcanic montane area surrounded by forested environment. They survive at an altitude of 2200 to about 4300m. They live in a feeding habitat for about a year but this depends on the availability of food stuffs. In the Virunga area, Mountain Gorillas live at the slopes of Mountain Misoke, Visoke, Muhavura and Karisimbi. The surrounding environment is cold and moist almost through out the year. Some of the Parks where they live include:
Bwindi forest National Park is the largest habitat for the mountain gorillas with only about 10 gorilla families open for tourism purposes. The park occupies 331 sq km and lies at the base of the great Rift Valley 10 gorilla trekking families are freely open for tourism in the northern and southern sector of Bwindi impenetrable National park.
Mgahinga National Park is the second gorilla trekking pack in Uganda very close to the boarder of Uganda and Rwanda. Mountain Gorillas in this park at times cross boarders to Rwanda therefore gorilla trekking permit cards can only be booked on the day of tracking. The park occupies only 33.7 sq km which is the smallest park in Uganda.
Volcanoes National Park is the only park in Rwanda where mountain gorillas live. It lies at an area of about 125 sq km of mountain forest. Mountain gorillas in this park live at the slopes of Mt Karisimbi, Mt Bisoke and Mt, Mikeno.
Virunga National Park shares a border with volcanoes National Park in Rwanda but it is situated in D.R.Congo. This park is part of the Virunga forested ranges where mountain gorillas call home on a about 7800 sq km. Virunga National park is still not a safe park for gorilla trekking because of the insecurity that is common in this area.
These are common in central Africa but smaller in size than the eastern gorillas. They are divided into two groups that is to say the western low land gorillas and the cross river western gorillas. They feed on a variety of fruits than there counter parts the mountain gorillas. This is the commonest specie of gorillas area are residents of Cameroon, Central African Republic, D R. Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. They differ in size from other gorillas because they are smaller in size, have brown-grey coats and auburn chests, wider skulls with more pronounced brow ridges and smaller ears.
These are at times called Gorilla gorilla diehilie. They are common to human encroached areas in Cameroon and Nigeria. There head structure and fore head is smaller than that of western low and gorillas. In height, they are shorter than the rest of the gorilla types. They occupy altitudes between 100m and 2037m above sea level.