This year, on Saturday, June 16, nineteen young mountain gorillas born in Volcanoes National Park over the last year will be given names during the Kwita Izina ceremony in Rwanda.
These young gorillas will be visited by tourists, monitored by trackers, and given veterinary care if needed throughout their lives. That’s a big commitment and one that no one takes lightly. These infants are, in fact, one of approximately 780 mountain gorillas left in the world, a species that is critically endangered.
It is again time to check on a young gorilla, given the name of SACOLA by Patrick Bergin of the African Wildlife Foundation, a coalition member of IGCP. SACOLA was named after the acronym for the Sabyinyo Community Livelihoods Association, a community association that was developed to use the revenue from a luxury lodge, Sabyinyo Silverback Lodge, for community conservation and development projects. Every citizen over the age of 18 in Nyange and Kinigi Sectors are members of SACOLA, which is over 50,000 people.
Information from Emmanuel is that a four year old mountain gorilla-SACOLA has had a great year with no major health issues, and this year, unlike last year, did not get caught in any snares. The news on SACOLA is that she has a younger sibling that will be named this year. SACOLA’s sibling is thought to be a female and is now just a year old, having been born on June 5, 2011.
SACOLA’s younger sibling, a female born on June 5, 2011, will be named at the 8th Annual Kwita Izina gorilla naming ceremony held on Saturday, June 16, 2012.
The Gorilla Doctors noted that an additional female, possibly from an un habituated group had joined the Sabyinyo family.
SACOLA the association has been doing great things as well. The SACOLA dancers now offer visitors a lively start to their trekking day by dancing each morning at park headquarters. And recently, one hundred cows were distributed to the most vulnerable of the community.