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12 thousand gorillas were exterminated in the Congo in 10 years

A long war, excessive hunting, mining and the spread of humans into the habitats of the gorillas, caused a decrease of more than 70% in their number. At the current rate it won't be long before they are completely extinct

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gorilla. Long-term conservation action is required

The population of gorillas in the Congo has decreased in the last decade by more than 70%, and the number of monkeys remaining in the country is currently less than 5,000. According to the International Organization for Conservation of Nature, these data mean that since 1994, 12 thousand gorillas of the "Eastern Lowland" species, which can only be found in the Democratic Republic of the Eastern Congo, have become extinct.

The researchers estimate that the wars in the region, excessive hunting, mining and the spread of humans into the natural habitats threaten the continued existence of the gorilla species. "The decrease in the number of monkeys is massive, but the extraordinary conditions must be taken into account - the entire region was literally destroyed due to the war," said Juan Carlos Bunia, head of the Central Africa region of the International Organization for Conservation of Nature, to the BBC website. Boniye added that "there is room for concern - but also for cautious optimism." There is an extraordinary response in the area to help us preserve the animals."

However, the organization's activists agree that if the death of the gorillas continues at the current rate, it won't be long before they become completely extinct. "Gorillas breed at an extremely slow rate, so the conservation action should be long-term," explained Dr. Patrick Malham, director of the African program at the Foundation for the well-known gorilla researcher, Diane Posey.

The civil war in the Congo and the mineral mines established in the area (used for the cell phone and laptop industry), resulted in the movement of many residents to the gorillas' living areas. Various armed groups operate there, a reality that makes it difficult for environmental organizations to act for legislation that would limit the thriving trade in gorilla meat.

For information on eurekalert

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