Most stories on endangered animals end on a sad note - however here is one that is really exciting and uplifting. Last Tuesday, the U.S. based Wildlife Conservation Society announced that they had found over 125,000 rare endangered gorillas in the swamps of Congo, Africa.
The last gorilla census done in the 1980's, estimated that there were only about a 100,000 of these magnificent animals left in wild. Conservationists believe that the number is a lot lower today, since many of the gorillas have died either at the hands of hunters or from diseases. That is why this new discovery is so exciting - It instantly triples the population of gorillas in the wild.
The gorillas were discovered in a huge swamp area in the remote region of Le Tac Community Reserve, situated in the Northern Republic of Congo. Researchers, tipped by hunters who frequent the area, walked three days through muddy terrain before they found the gorillas.
While they saw some gorillas, the 125,000 estimate is based on the number of gorilla nests found in the region. Apparently, every gorilla makes a nest to sleep in at night.
Scientists are really pleased with this discovery, because the Western Lowland sub-species of gorilla that these belong to, have been dying in large numbers due to hunting, deforestation and an incurable disease called Ebola.
The big challenge now is to figure out how to work with the governments of this region as well as seek out donors to try preserve the area where the gorillas are living. We wish them all the luck and hope that we are able to find even more endangered animals in other remote areas of the world.
Resources: CNN.com. Telegraph.co.uk