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Habitat of Gorillas: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Mary Grace Miller

Mary Grace has taught first grade for 8 years and has a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and is licensed in ESL.

You may have read about gorillas or seen them in a habitat in the zoo, but where do gorillas live in the wild? This lesson will teach you the features of a habitat as well as the different habitats in which different species of gorillas live.

What Is A Habitat?

A habitat is the natural home or environment of any living thing, including plants and animals. This means that a gorilla's habitat is its natural home in nature. An animal needs five things to survive in its habitat: food, water, air, shelter, and a place to raise its babies. Habitats can be lots of different sizes and can even be in water; for example, a shark's habitat is in the sea!

Gorillas can live in forests or mountains.
gorilla

There are four types of gorillas: the cross river gorilla, the eastern lowland gorilla, the western lowland gorilla, and the mountain gorilla. Each type of gorilla has a different habitat.

Where Does The Cross River Gorilla Live?

The Cross River gorilla lives in forests in Africa. They have a problem with their habitat, though- humans have cleared the forests to get timber and to create fields for farming and farm animals. Because of this, their forest habitat is shrinking quickly. Cross gorillas also have a problem with poaching in their forests. Poaching is illegal hunting, so some hunters come into the forests and hunt Cross River gorillas. This is causing their population to decline, so the World Wildlife Federation is working to create a protected area for Cross River Gorillas at the border of the countries of Cameroon and Nigeria.

Where Does The Eastern Lowland Gorilla Live?

Eastern lowland gorillas live in tropical lowland rainforests in the African country called The Democratic Republic of Congo. Lowland rainforests usually have a long dry season and have thorny trees, shrubs, and plants called succulents (like cacti) that can store water in their stems. There have been many years of war and conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo, so the eastern lowland gorillas do not have as much space to live in as they used to have. Just like the Cross River gorilla, eastern lowland gorillas are in danger of poaching from hunters that live nearby. There is a park called Kahuzi-Biega National Park that is designed to protect the eastern lowland gorilla.

This gorilla lives in Kahuzi-Biega National Park.
gorilla

Park staff and other organizations are working hard to make sure this is a safe place for gorillas.

Where Does The Western Lowland Gorilla Live?

The western lowland gorilla lives in several countries in Africa, including Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic, Gabon, and Equatorial Guinea. They live in dense rainforests, or rainforests with trees and plants that are very close together.

The western lowland gorilla lives in dense forests.
gorilla

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