• Question: are mounting gorilas dangerous if they are how dangerous are they?

    Asked by jack to Shane, Angela on 14 Nov 2013.
    • Photo: Shane Mc Guinness

      Shane Mc Guinness answered on 14 Nov 2013:

      Great question Jack.
      I think we talked about this in the chat room yesterday. It’s a common mistake to think that gorillas are very dangerous. In fact only a few people that we know of have ever been killed by gorillas. MANY more people are injured or killed by hippos in Africa than anything else. They’re grumpy buggers!
      Though gorillas are really big and strong, they usually just display a lot and pretend to charge at you. They make lots of noise and break tree branches to show how strong they are. Sometimes they get into fights with other gorillas and injure each other but it is almost never fatal. And attacking human!? We are way too clever to annoy them; we know what would happen if we did so humans rarely get injured by gorillas. If they wanted they could pull your arm out of your socket and throw you over the next hill, but we never really do enough to cause that!

    • Photo: Angela Stevenson

      Angela Stevenson answered on 14 Nov 2013:

      Hi Jack, mountain gorillas are large, physically imposing creatures, which gives them that mean scary look about them. But in reality they are also gentle, affectionate, and intelligent animals. They are peaceful vegetarians who are devoted to their family groups and spend a lot of their time interacting playfully with their young. I would never want to cross a gorilla nursing it’s young, they love their family so much that they would fiercely protect them when in danger. They only behave aggressively toward humans if they believe they are being threatened. Great question!