Examination of the Genetic Diversity of the Mountain Gorilla

1074 Words Feb 4th, 2018 4 Pages
They are found in two isolated population, firstly in the Virunga Volcanoes region which covers Uganda’s Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park and Democratic Republic of Congo’s Virunga National Park , and secondly in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in south-western Uganda (Robbins & Williamson , 2008)
Research by Kalpers et al. in 2003 and Gray et al in 2006 have place the population in Virunga at 380 with approximately 300 in Bwindi (McNeilage et al. 2006). The population is believed to be undergoing a significant reduction (Robbins and Robbins, 2004) and has been listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species since 2000. All the threats to these two populations are from humans - disturbance, disease transmission, habitat destruction for firewood and farmland, cattle grazing, illegal timber extraction, incursions by militia, illegal hunting, snares set for other mammals, poaching for the illegal pet trade and bushmeat etc. (Robbins & Williamson, 2008).

There is a broad assumption that genetic diversity in wild populations is directly related to population size and consequently species that show recent decline have reduced variation (Vigilant & Bradley, 2004) with such a small, stressed and declining population genetic diversity within this subspecies becomes more important. There are two genetic…
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