At one isolated village the natives, who were unarmed, reported that they not unfrequently saw and heard the gorillas, which broke down the stalks of the plantains in the rear of the habitations to tear out and eat the tender heart.
According to native report, the gorillas sleep on these beds, which are of sufficient thickness to raise them a foot or two above the ground, in a sitting posture, with the head inclined forwards on the breast.
I.) states that gorillas only leave the depths of the forest to enter the outlying clearings in the neighbourhood of human settlements when they are attracted by some special fruit or succulent plant; the favourite being the fruit of the "mejom," a tall cane-like plant (perhaps a kind of Amomum) which grows abundantly on deserted clearings.
In the first case Mr Bates states that the tracks and beds indicated the presence of three or four gorillas, some of which were small.
Asia, the orangs of Borneo and Sumatra, the gorillas of W.
Each of these apes resembles man most in some one physical characteristic: the gibbons in the formation of the teeth, the orangs in the brain-structure, the gorillas in size, and the chimpanzees in the sigmoid flexure of the spine.
Even when asleep and snoring, gorillas are difficult to approach, since they awake at the slightest rustle, and an attempt to surround the one heard making his bed by the woman resulted in failure.
Most gorillas killed by natives are believed by Mr Bates to have been encountered suddenly in the daytime on the ground or in low trees in the outlying clearings.
Mr Bates, like Mr Wiriwood Reade, refused to credit du Chaillu's account of his having killed gorillas, and stated that the only instance he knew of one of these animals being slain by a European was an old male (now in Mr Walter Rothschild's museum at Tring) shot by the German trader Paschen in the Yaunde district, of which an illustrated account was published in 1901.
It was long supposed that the apes encountered on an island off the west coast of Africa by Hanno, the Carthaginian, were gorillas, but in the XII.
Male gorillas largely exceed the females in size, and attain a height of from 51 ft.
Fully adult gorillas have never been seen alive in captivity - and perhaps never will be, as the creature is ferocious and morose to a degree.