Learn all about how gorillas are born, what do gorillas eat, the way in which their young are cared for, as is their courtship and mating and much more that you do not want to miss.
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Breeding and reproduction of gorillas
There are quite curious facts about these animals, they are one of the most studied by man, multiple theories are based on them, including the origin of man and his gradual evolution.
One of the most interesting data is about their sexual age, since those that are in captivity seem to reach their sexual maturity before those that are in the wild.
In the case of the latter, the females will be ready to mate once they turn ten years old, while in the case of the males this event occurs three years later, when they turn thirteen.
In addition to this, unlike other animals, gorillas do not have a season in which to mate, but this can happen at any time of the year.
The males live with their mother for at least eleven years, once they reach this age they venture, going to other herds where they are single, after five years they look for their partner, while in the case of the females they leave the herd in the who were born when they turned ten, then they will go looking for a place to stay.
reproductive habits of gorillas
To know these data, many experts have sacrificed much of their lives to research, discovering many of the habits of these animals.
These reproduce in a very similar way to other hominids, data taken from captive gorillas, such as the so-called Gorilla beringei beringei or the Gorilla gorilla.
In each delivery only one calf is born, it is very unlikely that there will be twins.
Another element to highlight in this regard is that there is a period between one heat and another that lasts from twenty-eight to thirty-three days.
An interesting fact is that they are not able to conceive another calf until at least two years have passed.
There are some females that reach sexual maturity before they are 10 years old, some at seven or eight years old, even the main ovulatory cycle can occur when they are six years old, even so their reproduction always occurs at ten years old.
Once the first mentioned ovulatory cycle occurs, they cannot bring offspring into the world until two years after this event.
courtship and mating
The male has the ability to know the exact moment in which the female is in heat, which can occur at any time of the year, the heat lasts from one to two days each month of the year.
The females make some movement with their body in the form of seduction to the male, they slowly approach looking into the eyes, pursing their lips and thus await the male's response.
If the male does not show a response, she continues to approach until she even touches him, if she still does not get his attention, she hits the ground so that he pays her attention.
In the event that it is the male who seeks mating, he seeks to attract the female by approaching her, touching her and emitting sounds.
There are groups of gorillas, in which there are more males than females, and in the vast majority of cases they are forced to mate with several of them, however it is the “silverback” leader who has the right to do so.
In ancient times there was a belief that humans were the only species capable of mating in front of each other, later with the pertinent observations and investigations it was known that gorillas also possessed this ability.
The gestation period of gorillas in general and the Mountain gorilla is at least eight and a half months, in gorillas the birth occurs mostly at night, during any time of the year, and they can last from two to four years to be in the gestation period again.
This situation makes it difficult for gorilla populations to be recovered, since their reproductive rate is very low, but this is not the only problem. In addition, 38% of the offspring die in their first three years of life, a stage in which who are lactating.
The males of the herd have little to do with the upbringing of the little gorillas, those that are born with a weight equal to or less than two kilos are cared for by their mother, who carries them on her back or in her belly, until three or six months, at which time they begin to walk.