Cross River Gorillas
African Cross River gorillas
Because the gorillas are wary of humans and inhabit rugged territory, scientists have been unable to count many of these gorillas directly. Instead, researchers have used indirect signs, such as nest counts, and estimated range sizes to determine that there are only about 200 to 300 of these gorillas left in the wild. Cross River gorillas are scattered in at least 11 groups across the lowland montane forests and rain forests of Cameroon and Nigeria, an area of 3,000 square miles, or about twice the size of Rhode Island.
Life Style of the Cross River Gorillas
Cross River gorillas live in a region populated by many humans who have encroached upon the gorilla’s territory—clearing forests for timber and to create fields for agriculture and livestock. Poaching occurs in the forests as well, and the loss of even a few of these gorillas has a detrimental effect on such a small population.
Efforts to protect these animals are focused on securing the forests that house them. WWF and partners have worked with the governments of Cameroon and Nigeria to create a protected area for the Cross River gorilla that spans the border of these two countries.