The gorillas’ natural habitats cover tropical or subtropical forests in Eastern, Central and West Africa. Although their range covers a small percentage of Africa, the gorillas cover a wide range of elevations.

The mountain gorillas inhabits the Albertine Rift Montane that include the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, the cloud forests of Mgahinga National Park in Uganda, the Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and the Virunga Volcanoes. The forests range in altitude from 2,200–4,300 metres (7,200–14,100 ft).

Lowland gorillas live in the dense forests, lowland swamps and marshes within different areas in Africa while the western lowland gorillas live in the Central West African countries. The  eastern lowland gorillas live in the Democratic Republic of the Congo near its border with Rwanda.

Mountain Gorillas

They live in the afro montane forests in northwest Rwanda, southwest Uganda and eastern DRC. The mountain gorillas live in the impenetrable parts of the tropical forests in East Africa. The entire world’s population is spread out over only two different places: one part inhabits the slopes of the Virunga Volcanoes, stretching out from the border area in Congo to Rwanda. The other part, which comprises a population of about 340 mountain gorillas, are found in Bwindi National Park Uganda that covers an area of about 330 sq km. Above all, Bwindi is the only forest in Africa that has chimpanzees and mountain gorillas living next to each other.

Range and habitat

Gorillas have a patchy distribution within the wild. The range of the two gorilla species is separated by the Congo River and its tributaries. The western gorilla lives in west central Africa, while the eastern gorilla lives in east central Africa. Between the species and even within the species, gorillas live in a variety of habitats and elevations. Gorilla habitat ranges from montane forests to swamps. Eastern gorillas inhabit montane and sub-montane forests between 650 and 4000 m (2132-13,123 ft) above sea level. Mountain gorillas live in the montane forests at the higher ends of the elevation range, while eastern lowland gorillas live in sub-montane forests at the lower ends of the elevation range. In addition, eastern lowland gorillas live in montane bamboo forests, as well as lowland forests ranging from 600–3308 m (1969-10,853 ft) in elevation. Western gorillas live in both lowland swamp forests and montane forests, and elevations ranging from sea level to 1600 m (5249 ft). Western lowland gorillas live in swamp and lowland forests ranging up to 1600 m (5249 ft), and Cross River gorillas live in low-lying and sub-montane forests ranging from 150–1600 m (492–5249 ft).