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Rushegura Gorilla Family Members Named

Rushegura Gorilla Family Members Named


What a great innovation!

Uganda Wildlife Authority staff in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda’s most popular national park, have been able to give names to all eleven gorillas in the Rushegura group.

Thumbs up our Bwindi staff!! This is no mean achievement. The process involves closely observing the gorillas for endless hours. No easy task given that gorillas live in the dark jungle, and following them requires lots of patience and determination.

The Rushegura group has one silverback who is the Head of the group, five females, two juveniles and three infants.

Below are the names of the gorillas and their meaning in table form:

Silverback Mwirima Means darkness among the Bakiga in South Western Uganda. The gorilla’s hair is extremely dark!
Adult Female Kyirinvi Refers to a person with grey hair. Kyirinvi has lots of silvery hair under her right ear.
Adult Female Buzinza Refers to a person with a cut on their ear. Buzinza’s right ear is split into two lobs.
Adult Female Nyamunwa This word is used in reference to anything near the mouth. Nyamunwa has a huge scar around her mouth.
Adult Female Kibande Refers to a big and flat head. Kibande has a big and flat head.
Adult Female Karungyi Refers to beautiful and nice things. Karugnyi has a perfect body with no dents or scars, hence the name.
Juvenile Karembezi Refers to a person who nurses and cares for children, a favorite pastime for this gorilla. Karembezi is always carrying infant gorillas on its back.
Juvenile Kabukojo Among the Bakiga, Enkojo is a scar from a wound. Kabukojo has several scars on her nose.
Infant Ruterana “Kuterana” is to beat among the Bakiga. Ruterana screams unnecessarily and causes fights among fellow gorillas
Infant Nyampazi Refers to red ants. When Nyampazi was first sighted, the group was feeding on ants
Infant Kafuruka “Okufuruka” is to migrate. Kafuruka was born when the family was mobile, and had nearly traversed the whole park!

Next time you track the Rushegura group, we hope you will be able to guess the names of the gorillas just by looking at them!

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