Silver Back Mountain Gorilla Experience

by | Jul 22, 2023 | 0 comments

Silver Back Mountain Gorilla Experience

98%DNA is human, call them the closest kindred of humans, living in the dew and misty tropical forests of East Africa that hold the world’s last remaining mountain gorillas.

The intelligent and strong-chested human-like creature is a majestic animal that visitors wouldn’t miss tracking while on their safari to Uganda.

Silverback gorillas are adult male mountain gorillas identifiable by a swathe of silver hair on their back.

They are the largest primates on earth, growing up to six feet and weighing up to 4000 pounds (195kg).

Silverbacks are known for their display of aggression and dominance including whooping, charging, chest-beating, and tree slapping.

Characteristics of silverback gorillas

Silverback gorillas are some of the most impressive and stunning animals on Earth. They have captivated our attention for centuries with their intelligent, gentle nature and remarkable physical strength.

Despite their intimidating size and powerful presence, they are complex creatures who demonstrate a variety of behaviors in different situations.

They have unique black fur with silver streaks on their back, hence their name “Silverbacks”. This striking feature is due to changes in melanin production when they reach maturity.

The strong silver color provides a stunning contrast against their black face, hands, and feet.

Silverback Gorillas have long arms with powerful hands that can be used to support their weight while walking on all fours or while in a standing position.

Their thick legs help them move quickly when they need to escape danger or chase down prey.

Other features include broad nostrils, small ears, and eyes set deep within the skull.

They also have large canine teeth that protrude from the sides of their mouths and molar teeth for grinding food.

where to eye spot silverback gorillas?

Silverback gorillas are massive mountain gorillas that can be found in four tropical forest national parks in East Africa that is Virunga national park in DRC, Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park and Mgahinga gorilla national park in Uganda.

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When do male gorillas become silverback gorillas?

The thickness of black hair that the males have is greater than any other member of the family.

The infant male gorillas grow into juveniles between the age of 8-12and they are called blackback gorillas.

From the age of 13 and beyond, the males begin to grow short shiny hairs on their backs, a sign of maturity and they begin to mate with some of the adult females in the mountain gorilla family,

At this age, the males’ apocrine glands become more active in the silver backs’ armpits which they use to develop an unfriendly odor that significantly notifies intruders of their presence in the territory.

At this age, they also develop strong canines which aren’t for feeding but are used as lethal weapons during fights with their enemies.

As they grow in age, their maturity comes with responsibility. For example, where there is a single silverback in the family, it performs its duties along with blackbacks as subordinates as they learn their responsibilities in the future.

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How powerful are the Silverback gorillas?

Size and height

The silverback gorilla is the largest primate on Earth.

They are massive animals, with large heads and broad chests. Adult male gorillas weigh between 140-205 kg (310-452 lbs.),

While females usually weigh about half as much. While their height varies depending on where they live, silverbacks typically reach a height of 1.7-1.8 m (5.6-5.9 ft.).

The lifespan

A silverback gorilla is typically around 35-40 years, although they have been known to live for up to 50 years in captivity. In the wild, however, their life expectancy is much lower due to factors such as disease and predation.

How they feed.

Silverback gorillas are mainly herbivores, and their diet consists mainly of fruits, leaves, stems, and bark from trees.

They can also feed on small insects such as ants and grubs.

They also eat bamboo shoots, herbs, nuts, and seeds when available.

How aggressive are Silverbacks?

No, silverback gorillas are not naturally aggressive animals. In the wild, they typically only become aggressive if they feel threatened or are trying to protect their families.

If you’re lucky enough to see a silverback gorilla up close, you’ll likely find them to be gentle giants!

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Roles of Silver Back Gorillas


The Silverback is also responsible for building the nests in which his group will spend the night; they build a new nest each day.


It’s the silverback’s responsibility to search for food and inform its family members. Care: The silverback may now and again help the mothers to carry their young ones.


Similar to a father, a Silverback gorilla must offer protection to each of their family members, and in the event of danger, the Silverback is at all times prepared to attack its enemy.


It’s the responsibility of the Silverback to mate with the females and to produce new off-springs,

They lead other members; intervene in times of conflict within the family, make decisions for the family, and many others.

Silverback Gorilla Habits

Silverback Gorilla Nests

A silverback gorilla nest is an impressive sight to behold. These nests are built from branches and leaves by the male gorillas.

The large structures allow several animals to sleep within them at once, creating a haven from the elements.

It’s believed that this nesting behavior helps form strong social bonds between members of the same troop, creating a sense of security among themselves.

Silverback Gorilla Mating

Silverback gorillas’ mating behavior is one of the most fascinating aspects of the animal.

The primate forms complex social structures that revolve around strong bonds between silverbacks and females, which breeders refer to as “harems.”

During mating. Silverbacks become even more territorial to protect their harem from other males.

Silverbacks typically display their dominance by beating their chests, charging around, and vocalizing loudly to attract available females.

When a silverback gorilla finds an interested female, he will stay close to her until they eventually mate.

However, if multiple males are present in one area at once, they will compete for potential mates through displays of physical aggression or intimidation tactics like head-bobbing or chest beating.

Females typically give birth to one offspring every four or five years after a nine-month gestation period.

The mother will stay with her young until it is weaned at two years of age before searching for another mate.

Silverback Gorilla Social Behavior.

The majestic silverback gorilla is one of the most awesome and inspiring primates in the world.

Renowned for their strength and intelligence, these gentle giants are incredibly social animals that live in family groups known as troops.

A troop consists of a male silverback and several females with their offspring.
Silverback gorilla communicates with each other through various vocalizations, facial expressions, and postures which can be used to express a variety of emotions such as happiness, fear, dominance, or submission.

Silverback gorillas have a strong bond with their troop members and spend much of their time grooming each other and engaging in playful behaviors like chasing or wrestling.

They also use gestures to show respect for dominant members of the group or to establish bonds between individuals.

In addition to being social creatures, silverback gorillas are also solitary animals that take daily walks on their own within their territorial boundaries.

Facts About Silverback Gorillas

It’s important to emphasize that silverback gorillas are not aggressive by nature.

While males can become territorial when threatened, they usually prefer to flee than fight.

An adult male silverback gorilla is typically twice as big as an adult female, weighing up to 400 pounds and standing up to 6 feet tall.

Silverback gorillas live in small family groups consisting of one male leader (the silverback) and several females with their offspring.

The silverback is typically the ‘boss’ of his family group. He leads the group and protects it from predators while defending his territory from other males.

Silverback gorillas are herbivores and eat leaves, fruit, and bark.
Although they are vegetarians, silverbacks can become aggressive when protecting their food sources from other animals.

When males are young, they leave their family group and search for new territories.

Males will often fight with other males to claim territory. When silverbacks are mature; they will often mate with multiple females.

Silverback gorillas are the largest primates in the world. They have a life span of 35-40 years in the wild and 50 years in captivity.

In conclusion,

the silverback gorilla is one of the most fascinating and iconic species in the animal kingdom.

Their complex social structure, impressive physical strength, and deep-rooted family values are just a few of the traits that make them so intriguing that visitors would wish to visit. Regards!


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About the Author

Tony Kizito

Tony is an enthusiastic and self-motivated tour Consultant with over 5 years in delivering professional tailor-made Trips across East Africa. I am keen to offer strong attention to detail, understand the travelers' needs and then craft unforgettable African safari experience.

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