Gorilla duo dismantles poachers’ trap

July 20th, 2012 - 5:50 pm ICT by IANS  

National Geographic London, July 20 (IANS) Two young mountain gorillas were spotted dismantling a poacher’s trap that had killed one of their own companions.

Staff at the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund in Rwanda were stunned to spot the plucky young duo, Dukore and Rwema, undoing a snare in their forest home.

“Today, our field staff observed several young gorillas from Kuryama’s group destroying snares!” Veronica Vecellio, gorilla programme coordinator at the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund’s Karisoke Research Centre, which is in the reserve where the event took place, blogged.

“John Ndayambaje, our field data coordinator, reported that he saw one snare very close to the group; since the gorillas were moving in that direction, he decided to deactivate it,” said Vecellio, the Daily Mail reports.

“Silverback Vuba (another gorilla) pig-grunted at him (a vocalization of warning) and at the same time juveniles Dukore and Rwema together with blackback Tetero ran toward the snare and together pulled the branch used to hold the rope,” added Vecellio.

“They saw another snare nearby and as quickly as before, they destroyed the second branch and pulled the rope out of the ground,” said Ndayambaje. The pair were able to rip the snare apart without harming themselves. Vecellio said the behaviour was unheard of.

“This is absolutely the first time that we’ve seen juveniles doing that,” the Daily Mail quoted Vecellio as telling National Geographic.

“I don’t know of any other reports in the world of juveniles destroying snares. We are the largest database and observer of wild gorillas, so I would be very surprised if somebody else has seen that,” said Vecellio.

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