Thursday, February 2, 2012

Endangered animals – Cross River gorilla

Cross River gorilla can be found only on the border between Nigeria and Cameroon, in mountainous forests, and is one of one of the world's 25 most endangered primates according to the IUCN Primate Specialist Group, and the most endangered of all African great ape species.

There are only 250-300 Cross River gorillas still left in the wild. The main reasons behind their sharp decline in the last few decades have been habitat loss and intense hunting for bushmeat as they have the misfortune to live in a region with high human population density and heavy natural resource exploitation.

Conservation work to protect these gorillas is yet to achieve significant success even despite major effort from Cameroon government that has even created the Takamanda National Park on the border with Nigeria, as an attempt to protect these gorillas.

The good news recently came from the Wildlife Conservation Society. According to their latest satellite study Cross River gorillas have more suitable habitats to roam around than previously thought. The area now known to be occupied by gorillas is more than 50 percent larger than had previously been thought and with the proper steps could lead to recovery of gorilla population.

WCS conservationist Andrew Dunn said: "The good news for Cross River gorillas is that they still have plenty of habitats in which to expand, provided that steps are taken to minimize threats to the population."

Hopefully, this and similar researches will lead to more effective conservation of these majestic animals and ensure there is a future for this gorilla species.

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