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A baby mountain gorilla was born in Virunga National Park (PNVi) in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. Such a birth is always an event in this threatened natural and tourist gem, taken over by armed groups.
The mountain gorilla community is growing. Virunga National Park (PNVi), in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, told AFP on Friday the birth of a baby mountain gorilla (gorilla beringei beringei) in this endangered natural and tourist gem, haunt armed groups.
The birth of a “new baby” male occurred on the morning of August 22 within the Baraka family, Olivier Mukisya of the PNVi communication service told AFP.
The discovery was made by a team of eco-guards during a visit to the Baraka family that day as part of the regular monitoring of gorilla families in the Kibumba area, in the Nyiragongo territory, in North Kivu, he explained.
First birth of the year
Without giving details on the female who gave birth, PNVi indicates however that the Baraka family is currently “made up of about 18 individuals”.
“The Baraka family registers its first birth of the year and the latter brings the number of births to 13 since January 2021” within the different families, said Mr. Mukisya.
Located on the border with Rwanda and Uganda, the Virunga park covers 7,800 km2 in the province of North Kivu, of which Goma is the capital.
Rangers vs rebels
The oldest nature reserve in Africa inaugurated in 1925, the Virunga park is a sanctuary for the very rare mountain gorillas, also present in Rwanda and neighboring Uganda.
The population of mountain gorillas is estimated at 1,063 in this region (Rwanda, Uganda and DRC), according to a census carried out from 2016 to 2018 while in the PNVi, this population is estimated at 350 individuals, according to the latest estimates from 2021. .
This mountain gorilla sanctuary has also become a haunt for local and foreign armed groups that have roamed eastern DRC for nearly twenty-five years. Eco-guards regularly clash there with rebels and militias.