As has been the tradition, Baby gorilla naming ceremony kwitaizina is back this year, were we will again witness 19 baby gorillas being named amidst celebration. Most baby gorillas that are due for naming where born in 2015, and are about to walk away with names come this September. A baby gorilla naming ceremony dates back to centuries if Rwanda’s traditions and cultural practices where names were given to new born babies after birth. This is no different to baby gorillas in Volcanoes National park Rwanda where thousands of people including high profile figures will flock to the foothills of the virunga volcanoes at the park headquarters to be a part of this conservation event known in the local language as Kwitaizina.
The baby gorilla naming ceremony is part of the Government’s initiative through the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) together with other conservation partners and local communities to protect the Mountain Gorillas and their natural habitat. This event was started in 2005 and has since been celebrated annually, the event creates awareness of the conversation of these great yet endangered species – the mountain gorillas. In the last years baby naming ceremony – Kwitaizina, we saw baby gorillas swing around with new names, these included; Umugwaneza, Gasizi Ikirezi Twongere Ububasha.
Baby gorilla naming takes place in Volcanoes National Park. Volcanoes national park rests in the North west of Rwanda and is part of the larger Virunga region that hosts the rare endangered mountain gorillas that live on the slopes of the Gahinga, Karasimbi, Sibyinyo and muhabura volcanoes. It’s in this very park that the famous conservationist Diana Fossey spent most of her life working tirelessly to ensure the conservation of the mountain gorillas.
Baby gorilla naming ceremony – Kwita Izina is attended by many both the international, regional and the locals who come to join the celebration of the new born baby gorillas. In this year’s ceremony, a tourism and conservation exhibition which was concluded today was organized by RDB, and many including Uganda participated. The exhibition was intended to increase networking, partnerships between the different tourism operators, hotel owners, and conservationists, and also showcasing different products, and other regional tourism destinations.
Uganda, Rwanda & DR Congo share the only world’s population of mountain gorillas currently counting at about 800 individuals, Uganda though having the half of the world’s population of about 400 individuals living in the neighborhood of Mt Mgahinga National Park and Bwindi Impenetrable national Park which the most famous place for gorilla tracking in Uganda. Gorilla tracking either in Rwanda or Uganda is pretty much the same, as both countries or parks share the same ecosystem as they are both in the virunga region, in both countries trekkers make their way through the thick misty forest and hike the volcanoes to meet the rare and great mountain gorillas. Tracking either Uganda gorilla or Rwanda gorillas is breathtaking and an activity likened to no other, in both countries you get a chance to spend an hour with the gorillas, observe as they eat, behave, just like humans.