I first discovered the Gorilla Doctors while writing an article about a gorilla naming ceremony in Rwanda. Since then, I’ve been in touch with Molly Feltner, a freelance writer, photographer and communicator for the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project. Molly told me how the project is made up of an international team of vets, known as the Gorilla Doctors and dedicated to saving the lives of critically endangered mountain gorillas. With only 800 mountain gorillas left in the world today, they work tirelessly to protect and preserve gorillas across Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
There are many reasons why these gentle giants of the forest need medical attention. It may be due to an injury at the hands of a poacher’s snare, or a life threatening disease outbreak that requires antibiotics. Sometimes naughty gorillas need to be anesthetised and brought back to their homes. Like in the case of Mukunda – a lone silverback with a habit for travelling far outside the park and causing havoc by raiding crops in the village.
Here is a short video clip – one of the many illustrating the work of the Gorilla Doctors across central Africa.
Gorilla Doctors Jan and Eddy perform an intervention on Noel, a young male gorilla in the Rugendo group of the Virunga National Park, DRC. The gorilla had been sick with respiratory disease for a few days and wasn’t getting better so Dr. Eddy darted him with antibiotics. He made a quick recovery.
Find out more online: http://www.gorilladoctors.org/