Scientists have been unable to thoroughly study the distribution and abundance of the Cross River gorilla until the last decade or so. Because the gorillas are wary of humans and inhabit rugged territory, scientists have been unable to count many of these gorillas directly. Instead, researchers have used indirect signs, such as nest counts, and estimated range sizes to determine that there are only about 200 to 300 of these gorillas left in the wild. Cross River gorillas are scattered in at least 11 groups across the lowland montane forests and rain forests of Cameroon and Nigeria, an area of 3,000 square miles, or about twice the size of Rhode Island.
The hunting and killing of gorillas is illegal in Cameroon and Nigeria, but enforcement of wildlife laws is often lax. Following conservation efforts, hunting has declined to a low level, but any amount of gorilla killing will have a significantly impact an already small population.
If we don’t get serious about saving these spectacular species, it’s quite likely that many won’t be around in the years to come. - Tom Dillon (WWF Senior VP)
References: (Information & Pictures)
Cross River Gorilla. (n.d.). Retrieved June 19, 2020, from https://www.worldwildlife.org/species/cross-river-gorilla