Our distant evolutionary cousin, the mountain gorilla, is an endangered species. And, unfortunately, poaching and illegal hunting by humans is the primary reason for the decline. In fact, there are only about 680 of these beautiful, powerful creatures left in the wild.
However, one of the organizations seeking to protect the species (and even increase its population) is Virunga National Park, the oldest national park on the continent of Africa. This wonderful photo — which went viral on the Park’s Instagram account — features two female gorillas standing proudly with two rangers, Patrick and Mathieu.
The Park’s social media account states that “Those gorilla gals are always acting cheeky so this was the perfect shot of their true personalities. Also, it’s no surprise to see these girls on their two feet either — most primates are comfortable walking upright (bipedalism) for short bursts of time.”
They go on to note that these two primates were orphans and have been raised with the enclosed sanctuary since infancy. They are comfortable with humans; in particular, the park rangers who care for them. Obviously, one should never approach a gorilla or another wild animal under any circumstances.
You can help Virunga National Park to protect these incredible gorillas and other endangered species by donating online today.