Rushegura Gorilla Family
Family size: 19 members including 1 silverback
The Rushegura gorilla family is another incredible family that broke off from Habinyanja Family. By the time of its habituation, it was led by Mwirima silverback around 2002. This group derived its name from a local word “Ebishegura”, unique tree species in Bwindi. Rushegura is the name of a place where the separation of this group from the larger family of Habinyanja took place in February 2002. Previously called “Habinyanya 2 group”, the group quickly received a new name, that derives from “Ebishegura” – a tree specie that was abundant in the home area of the new family. The Rushegura group is a calm family.
The break – away was led by Mwirima, a strong-massive silverback , desirous to form his own family, carrying away with him seven members. Mwirima, a son of Mukurusi, parted ways with his brother ,Rwansigazi who was famous for taking the gorillas on distant ranging expeditions, while Mwirima preferred shorter ranges.
The group was opened for Tourism in 2002 since the individuals had been habituated under the original Habinyanja family .
True to Mwirima’s determination to found a large –stable family,he worked so hard that by April 2010,the individuals had increased to 19 from the original 8.He is on record to have sired a number of off springs so far.
Quick Information about the Rushegura Family
The Rushegura Family consists of 19 individuals with silverback gorilla Kabukojo.
The Rushegura gorilla family was brought together in 2002, after one of the silverbacks from the Habinyanja group decided to break away. They started with 12 individuals including 5 females.
The group which is known to at times cross in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo ,currently boasts of a one Silverback , five Adult females , one Blackback ,and a host of juveniles and infants.
The individuals under Mwirima feel secure given his proven heroics in fighting off rival and wild groups. Mwirima is known to engage in severe fights in protection of his sovereignty and the family, using his sharp canines, slapping and tearing vegetation , chest beating and thumping the ground with palms to display the end of the battle.
Rangers cite a recent example when Rushegura group encountered a wild Makare group against whom Mwirima fought tooth and nail ,triumphed and ensured the group stayed feeding in the battle field for two days to celebrate his rare feat.
Mwirima determines the movements of the group leading to appropriate feeding sites as well as mediating conflicts within the family. With the five adults bonded to Mwirima for most of the time, watch out if Kabukojo the influential – fast maturing Blackback will keep submitting to this dominant Silverback ,choose to lure some females into starting his independent family or even overthrowing Mwirima to take over the mantle of Rushegura group.
Latest Updates from the Rushegura Family
This group was led by Mwirima at the time of splitting from the Habinyanja family in 2002. Unfortunately Mwirima died in 2014 at about 35 years and the silverback leading the group is Kabukojo.
Mwirima (meaning darkness) was given his name because of his dark face. He split from the habituated Habinyanja group with 13 others on February 13, 2002, which marked the beginning of his own family called Rushegura.
The Habinyanja group comprises of 14 individuals. They began with 12 members including five females. In the past, the group has been known to cross the border and venture in the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo but came back in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.
This roams not far from Buhoma village and sometimes even wander through the gardens of the lodges.