The diverse world of nonhuman primates The Gorilla Primates are defined as mammals that belong to ancestors who resided in forests over 65 million years ago. A wide variety of animal species falls into this category, but the one chosen for the purpose of this paper is the Gorilla and their genus as well as species name is also the Gorilla. The genus however is divided into two species which are further subdivided into 5 subspecies. They are very similar to humans in terms of DNA content. The closest looking species of gorillas are humans as well as chimpanzees that have emerged from a common ancestor approximately seven million years ago.Physically, gorillas are strong mammals weighing between 70 and 200 kilograms depending on their size, gender, eating habits and environment. They are huge and broad and amongst them, mountain gorillas generally do not climb trees whereas in contrast, the lowland gorillas are arboreal ( Murray, 2002). Male gorillas possess a greater brain capacity and the teeth structure of gorillas is similar to humans. Their reproductive cycle is one month long and only extracted by behavioral changes instead of physical ones and the inter birth interval of gorillas is around 4 years. Once babies are born, they are dependent on female gorillas, their mothers that is till the time they reach maturity which means around seven to fifteen years, depending on the gender. Males require more time than females (Welvaert, 2005). When young, gorillas are taught things like protecting themselves, finding out food for them, adapting to live in the habitat and other necessary things to become independent. Male gorillas play a very small role in upbringing of their offspring except that they protect them from external threats. Gorillas are basically herbivores and are dependent upon vegetation in their surroundings. The greater chunk of their diet is attributed to fruits while the remaining to stems, grass and seeds. They occasionally eat small bugs and termites also but that is a very negligible portion of their diet.(Welvaert, 2005)The social organization of gorillas is very interesting. A band of gorillas can involve few individuals which could m up to 30 or more in number. The most dominant adult is responsible for the group and takes care of the females and the young with some help from the younger males. The groups usually follow a polygamous mating system. They have the freedom to choose their partners and form groups with either other males, females that belong to their own bands or stay with their initial groups(Welvaert, 2005). They live in a collective environment within their groups and protect each other within the group and save their group members from other external threats.Gorillas have their own way and language of communicating with each other. They can even be trained to understand the sign language. Hooting represents a signal of potential threat to the band of gorillas, sharp grunts show anger and are usually used to discipline the young gorillas.( Murray, 2002) ·· Works CitedMurray, J. (2002). Gorillas. United States of America: ABDO.Welvaert, S. R. (2005). Gorillas. Minnesota: Capstone.
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