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5TF: World Gorilla Day 2019


What is World Gorilla Day?

World Gorilla Day is the day we celebrate one of our closest relatives, the gorilla! We celebrate it annually on September 24th, the same day that Dian Fossey established Karisoke Research Center in 1967.  

World Gorilla Day is a day to take action in the conservation efforts to protect gorillas in the wild. Due to intensive protection, mountain gorillas have improved from critically endangered to endangered. All other subspecies of gorillas are still critically endangered and facing serious declines.


How can you join in the celebration of world gorilla day?

A great way to get involved is to contact your local zoo. See if they are participating in World Gorilla Day or have any themed activities planned.

Here is a link to our World Gorilla Day page on the Fossey Fund website. Here we list multiple organizations that are supporting and participating in World Gorilla Day!


Activities you can do for World Gorilla Day

Want to participate in World Gorilla Day from home? Try a fun and educational World Gorilla Day activity to engage the classroom or kids! One activity is ‘Groom like a Gorilla’! Gorilla moms spend time grooming their infants as a form of bonding, and also to improve health. To groom like a gorilla, all you need is a gorilla stuffed animal and some small clips. Attach the clips to the hair of the gorilla and let someone else “groom” the gorilla to get them off!

‘Forage like a Gorilla’ is another fun game! Gorillas spend a large portion of their day foraging for food. To forage like a gorilla, get a large basket and hide a few colored balls or blocks. These block represent gorilla food. Hide them in lots of material such as hay, shredded paper, or leaves! Then, have someone go through the material to find all of the hidden ‘food’ items!

Check out the “Learning & Fun” page on our website for other activities such as a gorilla personality test, coloring pages, and more!


Recycling your old cellphone and other electronics is one simple contribution you can make to help the wild gorilla population.

Recycling your old cellphone and other electronics is one simple contribution you can make to help the wild gorilla population

Coltan, a type of mineral used in electronics like cellphones and laptops, is found in and mined out of wild gorilla habitats. The process of mining coltan involves not only destruction of gorilla habitats to unearth the minerals, but the presence of numerous people in the forests to operate the mining sites.  To feed these people, wildlife is hunted from the surrounding forests. This can include gorillas, chimpanzees, elephants, and many other species.

Due to this, we ask you to simply recycle your old electronics instead of throwing them away. When we recycle electronics, we can reuse the coltan. Reusing the coltan ultimately decreases the need for mining in gorilla habitats! You can even join the 2020 global mobile phone recycling challenge, “Gorillas on the Line…Answer the Call.”!


Another thing you can do is spread the word about World Gorilla Day!

One of the best ways to do this is to educate your friends, family, and coworkers about gorilla conservation. You can do this by talking to them, sharing our posts on social media or even by directly support us by buying one of the new Fossey Fund shirts!