If we were able to immortalize Harambe, maybe we can do it again by helping these cute gorillas keep their homes alive.
This selfie from the Virunga National Park has made rounds on the internet with over 23,000 shares and 30,000 reactions on Facebook as of writing. In the photo, two female gorillas are standing with little smiles on their faces behind a park ranger. One of them even looks like she’s smiling over her shoulder. We stan primates who can serve looks.
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You might have recently seen caretakers Mathieu and Patrick’s amazing selfie with female orphaned gorillas Ndakazi and Ndeze inside the Senkwekwe center at Virunga National Park. We’ve received dozens of messages about the photo. YES, it’s real! Those gorilla gals are always acting cheeky so this was the perfect shot of their true personalities! Also, it’s no surprise to see these girls on their two feet either—most primates are comfortable walking upright (bipedalism) for short bursts of time. Guys, if you shared our gorilla selfie post, please share our Earth Day posts as well! Conserving Virunga’s amazing wildlife is a constant challenge for the Park and our work wouldn’t be possible without your support. Matching funds have been pledged on every donation to the Park today, up to a total of $25,000—giving us the opportunity to raise $50,000 for Virunga! Visit virunga.org/donate or click the link in our bio to get involved and keep sharing our posts! Thank you! *We want to emphasize that these gorillas are in an enclosed sanctuary for orphans to which they have lived since infancy. The caretakers at Senkwekwe take great care to not put the health of the gorillas in danger. These are exceptional circumstances in which the photo was taken. It is never permitted to approach a gorilla in the wild. #gorillaselfie #gorilla #mountaingorilla #mountaingorillaselfie #selfie #earthday #earthday2019 #virunga #virunganationalpark #congo #drcongo #rdc #drc #protecttheplanet #happyearthday #wildlife #wildlifeconservation #conservation #natureconservation
The two were rescued by rangers from the conservation and grew up imitating their caretakers’ behavior, including standing. “It’s very curious to see how a gorilla can imitate a human and stand up,” deputy director Innocent Mburanumwe tells BBC.
In response to the viral post, Virunga urges people to help out in keeping Ndakazi and Ndeze, the two gorillas, safe. Poaching is a huge problem in the Congos. Ndakazi and Ndeze’s kind are always in danger of being harmed, and the rangers who are tasked to protect them are getting killed in the process. Since 1996, over 130 rangers have been killed on the job.
Because of the viral photo, $50,000 has been raised for the conservation. If you want to pitch in, you can donate through their website. Let’s protect everybody in that photo at all costs.