Gorilla Vocalizations- Mountain gorillas share 98% DNA to human being and they are the second primates related to humans after chimpanzees. Mountain gorillas express their needs, wants, feelings, and emotions just like Humans! They have ability to communicate both verbally and non-verbally.
Though mountain gorillas can speak, they can express their emotions very distinctively through vocalizations like hoots, grants, laughing, sticking their tongues out, chucklers, cries and vibrations. They express their emotions are annoyance, laughter, bluster, joy, anger, run sideways, fear, jump up and down, impatience and pleasure.
There are sixteen types of mountain gorilla vocalizations and some of these can be grouped to give twelve basic categories, mountain gorillas often mix sounds and actions which makes it easy to know what they mean. An example of vocalizations can be seen when silverbacks are angry, they will make very loud hoots, beating their chests, throwing vegetation, and mountain gorillas do this send a warning to their enemies and if the enemy doesn’t back up it will lead to a serious battle because they feel threatened. When they are playing gorillas also laugh like humans and they produce chuckles during sessions of play.
The infant mountain gorillas also have communications which they use for communicating with each other, their mother always understands what the off springs mean and respond to them. The infant gorillas communicate by whining and sharp noises.
Gorillas also use their vocalizations for offering support and displacement, communication to find food, mating, grooming, developing social relationships within the troops, and expressing social distress. Mothers also take responsibility for teaching their babies communication.
There are numerous occasions where mountain gorillas have been taught by humans to communicate using sign language an example was Koko that researchers taught to use sign language.
The baby mountain gorillas learn to recognize their mother’s voices at a very young age, they often alert themselves in very low voices can’t be heard by human beings in case of danger. Mountain gorillas also have a strong sense of smell to quickly notice any unusual and potentially difficult or dangerous circumstances such as any predators in the area.