The Enchanted Forest/Water Safari’s new ride for 2009, The Curse of the Silverback, definitely puts the word ‘theme’ in Water Theme Park. The "silverback" theme refers to the dominant male gorillas who lead and protect their living groups, named after the mature male's saddle of light grey hair. Gorillas are found in several countries in Africa, including the Democratic Republic of Congo. The park chose the silverback gorilla theme for a number of reasons. They’re a perfect fit for the safari theme--the image of the gorilla’s power adds more thrill to the ride, and they’re very fascinating creatures who are endangered and need to be protected.
“We are in a great position to help and that’s why we have partnered with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International (DFGFI) to raise awareness and funds for the gorillas,” said Katie Noonan, Marketing Director for the park. “In December of 2008 we adopted our own silverback gorilla through the organization and during the summer we’re bringing a DFGFI fundraising initiative to the park called “Coins for Congo™” that will support programs in Africa that improve the survival of these amazing primates who so closely match our own human genetic makeup. We are reaching out and asking people to help,” Noonan adds.
2009 has even been named the Year of the Gorilla by several organizations including UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) that are launching initiatives to protect these primates. By visiting the park this summer, families can enjoy a day full of fun, experience our new water ride and learn more about the gorillas and what can be done to protect them!
In the following pages, you’ll find lots of facts and information provided by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International (DFGFI) about the mountain gorillas, including silverbacks.
Please share the following information with your students to teach them about the mountain gorillas.
We recommend that you check out the following links for more information & activities.
The mountain gorillas studied by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International live in the Virunga Mountains, a chain of volcanoes spread across the borders between Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Uganda (see the red arrow on the map). Some of the volcanoes are active, and some are dormant. Some of them reach as high as about 4,000 meters (more than 13,000 feet).
The forests where the mountain gorillas live are often cloudy, misty and cold. At the bottom of the mountains, the vegetation is very dense, becoming less so as you go higher up. Other animals that live in the forest with the mountain gorillas are duikers (a kind of deer), antelope, tree hyraxes (a small furry animal related to the elephant), golden monkeys, and forest buffalo.
What is mountain gorilla family life like?
Typically, mountain gorillas live in groups that contain one or two adult males (ages 12 years or older, called silverbacks), several younger males (called blackbacks), adult females, juveniles and infants. The dominant silverback gorilla (so named for the gleaming silver saddle of hair on his back) is in charge of the group's daily travels in search of food. He is also the center of attention during rest sessions and mediates conflicts within the group. The silverback gorilla also protects the group from outside dangers, such as intruding silverbacks from other groups, poachers, and other animals.
The dominant silverback forms special bonds with the adult females in the group and fathers most of the offspring. Mountain gorilla females can begin motherhood around age 10, and will carry a single baby for about 8-1/2 months. Mother gorillas share a very close relationship with their infants for about 4 years, after which another sibling may be born. Mother gorillas hold newborns close to their chest at first, but soon the infant learns how to hold on for itself. Then it learns how to ride on the mother's back, until it is old enough to travel on its own.
How big do mountain gorillas get?
Adult male gorillas can reach 400 pounds, and females can reach about 200 pounds. Female gorillas don't have the crest on the top of their heads like the males, and no silver on their backs. When a silverback gorilla is standing upright (say, during a chest beating display), they can be as tall as 5 and a half feet. Normally gorillas walk on all fours, and are only about 3 and a half feet high at the shoulder. A newborn gorilla weighs only about 4-1/2 pounds!
What do mountain gorillas eat?
The mountain gorilla diet is mostly plants like celery, nettles, bamboo and thistles, and they are quite particular about what parts of each plant they like to eat. Sometimes they also find ant nests and eat the ants, along with an occasional worm or grub. There isn't much fruit where mountain gorillas live, but they do love to eat the wild berries that grow in their habitat. The mountain gorillas spend a lot of their time traveling in search of food, as plants and trees change with the seasons. The full-grown mountain gorilla diet can include up to 60 pounds of vegetation a day!
How do mountain gorillas communicate?
Everyone who works with the mountain gorillas agrees that they are generally peaceful and gentle. The gorillas that are observed by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International as well as the groups that are visited by tourists are used to the presence of humans. But this doesn't mean that the gorillas won't sometimes charge, scream or bare their teeth, whether at an outsider or within the group itself. Most of these actions are just meant to serve as warnings, to ward off danger or to prevent a fight.
Mountain gorillas can communicate in a variety of ways, including facial expressions, sounds, postures and gestures. One of the nicest sounds is heard when the group is resting after a period of feeding. This sound is something like a soft purring and is called a "belch vocalization." When the gorillas feel threatened, they can make a variety of loud sounds, like roars or screams. Facial expressions are also used for communication. For example, an open mouth with both upper and lower teeth showing means aggressions. But a closed mouth with clenched teeth may signal anger as well. And, of course, there's the classic chest beating by male gorillas, which is used to show stature, scare off opponents or even to prevent a fight.
How does the Fossey Fund track and protect the mountain gorillas?
The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International employs a staff of gorilla trackers and anti-poaching patrols at the Karisoke Research Center, who regularly go into the forest to locate, observe and protect several groups of mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park. They record the gorillas' location and status, and try to locate and remove snares. Dr. Fossey started this work in the late 1960s and the Fossey Fund has continued it ever since. Snares are set by poachers, who are illegally hunting in the forest. Generally, these snares are set for other animals, not the gorillas, but gorillas can still get caught in them. Snares are circular and range in size from small, about three-inches in diameter for small animals like hyrax, to the large, 18 inch in diameter ones for buffalo. They are made of rope and wire. The wire makes the circle that an animal steps into, and the rope is tied to a bent bamboo pole. When the animal steps in the wire circle of the snare, the trap is sprung, and the bamboo bends back up, making the circle tight around the leg of the animal so it can't get out.
How do gorillas get their names? The Karisoke staff also has the responsibility of giving names to the gorillas, when newborns arrive. Once a year, the Rwandan trackers who work at the research station have a public celebration to decide on good names for the gorilla babies born that year, based on a traditional ceremony for naming their own babies. Some examples are AMAHORO (which means "Peace") and PASIKA (which means "Easter" since she was born near Easter).
How do scientists study the gorillas?
Ever since Dian Fossey started studying the mountain gorillas in the late 1960s, scientists from the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International and from colleges and universities around the world have made the mountain gorilla a focus of their research. They have studied everything from how gorilla groups are formed to how males and females choose mates, to how infants are raised and how the gorillas communicate. In addition to the ongoing research about mountain gorilla life, scientists are now using some of the most up-to-date scientific methods to learn even more. For example, DNA samples taken from the gorillas' droppings are used to learn the exact paternity for each new infant born in a gorilla group. Scientists are also attempting to classify all of the plants in the forests, upon which the gorillas and other species rely for food. Using a new process called hyper spectral remote sensing; they can collect information using aerial photographs, and then compare this information with other data collected on the gorillas and even the poaching activity in the area.
Will the mountain gorilla survive?
The year 2002 marked the 100th year since the mountain gorilla was first scientifically identified as a distinct subspecies of gorilla. When Dian Fossey started observing the mountain gorillas in the late 1960s, she estimated there were about 250 mountain gorillas in the Virungas. But estimates from the early 1960s suggested there had been many more than that. As a result of the tracking and protection programs that Fossey started and have since been continued by DFGFI, and the successful gorilla eco-tourism program begun in the early 1980s, the Virunga gorilla population increased to 324 by 1989, when the last census was conducted. Today it is estimated that there are about 380 mountain gorillas living in the Virungas.
The future of the gorillas is most dependent on the protection and survival of the forests in which they live, since they depend on this land for food, safety and normal activities. But the forests are often in danger from growing human populations, and from civil war in the region. No Mountain Gorilla has ever survived in captivity, therefore it is crucial to protect them in their natural environment. They are critically endangered.
What other kinds of gorillas are there?
Another subspecies, the Grauer’s (eastern lowland) gorilla, lives west of the mountains, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Their population has declined in recent decades so that fewer than 27,000 now survive, although some new groups have been found recently in remote areas. They are also endangered. They live in two national parks and a group of nature reserves established and managed by local communities, with support and technical assistance from the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International. They are similar to mountain gorillas but eat mostly fruit and have shorter hair.
The gorillas we see in zoos are western lowland gorillas. They live in other countries in western and central Africa. They are more numerous, numbering an estimated 200,000, but they are also endangered.
Quick Questions and Answers 1. How many gorillas are left in the wild?
About 700 mountain gorillas, fewer than 27,000 Grauer’s (eastern lowland) gorillas, and some 200,000 western lowland gorillas. The gorillas in zoos are western lowland gorillas. 380 mountain gorillas are in the Virunga Mountains, the area protected by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International. The others live in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda. Mountain gorillas generally do not survive in captivity, therefore it is crucial to protect them in their natural environment.
2. How do we identify gorillas in the wild?
Nose prints. Gorillas are identified by their unique "nose prints," which are their nose patterns. Every gorilla has their unique nose print. DFGFI researchers use photographs and illustrations of the gorilla’s nose in order to identify and monitor individual gorillas.
3. What is the biggest threat to gorillas?
Illegal trade in wildlife, snares set for antelope and other wildlife, human encroachment for logging, fuel collection, farming or mining that destroys the forest, civil instability, and diseases that gorillas can catch from humans. Mountain gorillas are a critically endangered species and are constantly threatened. That is why EF/WS donates to support Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International field programs that protect them.
4. How many miles must DFGFI trackers, anti-poaching patrols, and national park guards cover to protect the mountain gorillas in the Virunga mountain range in Rwanda?
48 miles. The patrols search and destroy more than 1,000 snares each year. Illegal wire traps are set in the park by local villagers to catch animals such as antelope. Despite the patrol’s constant vigilance, because of the unpredictable movement of the gorilla groups they are not always able to prevent every gorilla snare encounter.
5. When humans visit the gorillas through tours, what distance must they keep from the gorillas and how long are they allowed to stay?
25 feet away / visit for 1 hour. Gorillas share 98% of our DNA and therefore can catch human diseases. Because they are critically endangered, we must keep a safe distance to protect them.
6. What can you do to help save gorillas?
Donate funds to help save gorillas in the Congo by dropping your coins in the Coins for Congo ™ collection boxes. Adopt a gorilla for yourself or as a gift, or make a contribution to the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund through the website. Tell your friends about the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund's mission and website. Most information can be found on the Fund’s website (gorillafund.org) or call 1-800-851-0203 (Eastern time zone). Thank you for caring about the gorillas!
7. At what age can a female gorilla become a mother?
10 years old. Female gorillas will carry a single baby for about 8-1/2 months. Mothers share a very close bond with their infants for about 4 years, after which another sibling may be born.
8. What is the average weight of a female gorilla?
9. What is the weight of a fully developed adult male gorilla?
400 pounds. Fully developed male gorillas have a crest on top of their head and silver hair on their backs. They are called "silverbacks." When a silverback is standing upright he can reach up to 5-1/2 feet tall. Silverbacks act as the defenders of the gorilla family group and the adolescent male gorillas known as “blackbacks” act as guards.
10. What percentage of the day does a mountain gorilla spend resting?
40%. However resting periods can be prolonged on rare sunny days. Sunny days are infrequent in the rainforests of the Virunga mountain range. The average annual rainfall is 72 inches.
11. Which year did Dian Fossey take her first safari to Africa?
1963. Dian Fossey had a calling to visit Africa because of its wilderness and great diversity of free-living animals. Her dream was realized by The Henry Family of Louisville, Kentucky who loaned Dian Fossey the collateral to make the trip. It was then that she traveled to the Virunga mountain range and met the mountain gorillas for the very first time.
12. Which year did Dr. Louis Leaky, one of the past century's great anthropologist choose Dian Fossey to undertake a long term field study of the mountain gorillas?
1965. Dian Fossey met Dr. Leaky during her first safari to Africa which included Tanzania in 1963. Three years later, Dr. Leaky chose her to lead the field studies. Dr. Leaky was a constant source of encouragement and optimism to Fossey until his death in 1972.
13. How many years did Dian Fossey spend studying mountain gorillas in the Virunga mountains in Rwanda?
20 years. Fossey spent 20 years in the Virunga mountain range until her murder in 1985, which is still unsolved. Dian Fossey is widely regarded as one of the most dedicated preservationists in history.
14. Who starred as Dian Fossey in the movie Gorillas in the Mist?
Sigourney Weaver. She starred as Dian Fossey in Gorillas in the Mist in 1988, three years after Dian Fossey’s murder. She earned an Oscar nomination for Best Actress and has served as DFGFI’s honorary chair since 1998.
16. How much does a newborn gorilla typically weigh at birth?
2 kg. 2 kilograms equals 4.4 pounds. A newborn gorilla is exceptionally small at birth and is wholly dependent on its mother for food, transport, and warmth—just like a human infant.
17. How long is a gorilla considered to be an infant?
Until about 3 years of age. Gorilla infants start life extremely vulnerable and defenseless, but soon begin to explore their surroundings, play with their peers, and eat solid foods. A gorilla is considered to be an infant until it has been weaned, a process that usually takes place when the infant is between 2.5 - 3.5 years old. After the infant is weaned and forages on its own, it is considered to be a juvenile, a period that lasts until roughly 6 years of age.
18. What percentage of infants die during the first three years of life?
25%, an estimate according to recent analyses. Life in the rainforest is very difficult, especially for vulnerable infants, and some will die before they reach 3 years of age. Common causes of death for infants include infanticide, disease and accidents. Infanticide is most often observed when females carrying infants join a new group or when a group is disrupted due to the death of a silverback. In these cases, infants are often killed by the males of the new group so that the female will more quickly breed again (theoretically with the new male leader).
19. How long is the typical life span of a mountain gorilla?
35 years, but this depends somewhat on gender. The average life span of a male is into the early 30s. There have been females in the Karisoke mountain gorilla groups that lived into their 40s.
20. What are some of the mountain gorilla’s favorite foods?
Thistles and nettles. Mountain gorillas are herbivores that eat a wide variety of plants, mostly concentrating on the leaves, shoots and stems of foliage. However, they also eat roots, flowers, fruit and some insects. The mountain gorillas can often be found foraging for their favorite plants, including thistles, nettles, wild celery and bamboo.
21. What community programs does the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International help to support?
Programs for orphans and widows, community health initiatives, clean water projects, and education programs. The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund is involved in a number of community development projects in Rwanda and in the Democratic Republic of Congo, to help communities that live near the mountain gorilla habitat.
22. How often do female gorillas give birth?
Every 4-5 years. The birth of a new infant is a very demanding time period for a female gorilla, since she has the extra burden of carrying and feeding the infant. As a result, females do not become pregnant during the time they are nursing, which usually lasts about 3 years. Once females do become pregnant, their gestation (or time of pregnancy) is 8.5 months.
23. Which group member provides the most care for infant gorillas?
The mother gorilla is the primary caregiver of infants. The mother carries out all duties in the care of infants from birth to weaning with little or no input from the father or other group members. The dominant silverback may initially inspect and later play with the infant when it becomes more active, but is not usually involved in the care of infants. Other group members may also inspect and play with the infant, but rarely actively engage in care giving behaviors. (However, sometimes other individuals will carry older infants when the group is moving.)
24. What are some causes of death in mountain gorillas?
Disease, loss of habitat, old age, infanticide, and poaching. There are many different causes of death in wild populations of mountain gorillas and survival is difficult in such a challenging environment. Loss of habitat due to human encroachment is a major threat to gorillas and all endangered species, but other factors, some natural and some human-caused, are also important.
25. What physiological adaptation have mountain gorillas evolved to help them digest foods?
The plants that grow in these mountains, such as wild celery, bamboo, roots and bark, have a lot of fiber, more so than plants found at lower altitudes. Mountain gorillas have developed extended intestines to help them digest these foods. That’s why they have such big bellies!
26. Why is DFGFI’s Ecosystem Health program so important for both humans and gorillas?
The Ecosystem Health program has been operating in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo since 2001, and is geared toward bringing a healthy environment and healthcare to communities located near the gorillas. This, in turn, helps reduce the threat of disease transmission to the endangered gorillas and other animals within the nearby parks and reserves. There are now numerous other "people programs" underway, including clean water and clinic rebuilding projects, support for local schools and orphanages, and projects that help people start small businesses. As their quality of life improves, people have less need to turn to the forest for resources, and can become leaders in protecting their natural environment.
27. Do gorillas have a birthing season?
No, gorillas give birth year round. Gorillas do not have a fixed birthing season. Mating occurs throughout the year and new infants are born all year round. While climate and the availability of food resources do affect some primate species’ birthing seasons, gorillas are not as dependent on seasonal food resources.
28. What are some of the typical behaviors of an infant gorilla?
It isn’t until infants reach age 2 or 3 that they are away from the mother a lot and interacting with other group members. While gorillas do spend a lot of time with their mothers when they are newborns, as they get older they become much more active with other group members and enjoy playing, wrestling and socializing.
7. Group of mammals that includes gorillas, monkeys and people
8. While playing, juvenile gorillas may do this
10. Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund field station
11. Name of the gorilla that was adopted by EF/WS
Down 1. The mountains where Dian Fossey first studied gorillas
2. Gorillas build these at night to sleep in
3. The color of a mature adult male gorilla's back
6. To show aggression, gorillas may beat on this body part
9. A country that mountain gorillas live in
KIDS SAVING GORILLAS: YOUNG GENERATION HELPS THE FOSSEY FUND The Fossey Fund often hears from young children and high school students who want to help save gorillas. Kids love animals, and they often identify with vulnerable creatures. Some of our youngest supporters make an extra effort to help out in creative ways, educating others and raising money in their communities. Since we last wrote about children’s contributions in the Fall 2006 Gorilla Journal we have received more news from young supporters. Here are a few outstanding stories:
Starting out young
Nick Carswell of Pacific Grove, California raised $135 for the cause last year, when he was only 8 years old. He sold lemonade outside his local post office on “National Make a Difference Day,” helped by a friend and his big brother Wesley, who wore a gorilla costume. They skated and danced to help draw attention to the gorillas, according to their mother, Martha Carswell.
“Nick takes this cause very seriously and will probably sell lemonade again next year,” says Mrs. Carswell. Nick calls himself “Your friend in the gorilla business.”
Another project started when five 10-year-olds in a fourth grade language arts class at Greenfield Hebrew Academy in Atlanta were assigned to read on the Web about endangered animals and write an essay about what they would do for the animals if they had $100.
With help from teacher Marci Kaplan, student Brinkley Berch and her classmates created a PowerPoint presentation for a school assembly, put up signs around the school, and made announcements encouraging other students to contribute a dollar or more in return for the privilege of wearing jeans to school one Friday instead of following the usual dress code. Joanne Truffelman, vice chair of the Fossey Fund’s board of trustees, spoke to the fourth-grade students about Dian Fossey’s life and the plight of the gorillas. The class used the $320 they raised to adopt the Fund’s anti-poaching patrol and an infant gorilla.
Going all out!
Some children have harnessed the Internet and reached beyond their communities to spread the word. Last year, at age 11, Haley Stern of Burlington, Vermont, started her own organization called Kids Save Apes.
“In 2007, I went to the Bronx Zoo, and was blown away by the gorillas,” she says. “My parents got me the movie ‘Gorillas in the Mist,’ and during the poaching scenes in the end I was so terrified, I adopted a gorilla from the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund right after. But I wanted to do more to help. I gathered my friends to form 'Kids Save Ape.’ I made a website and email address, and spread news on the plight of the apes. I notified teachers, parents, kids, senators, representatives, the president! Before I knew it, I had raised $500 (not including what other members had raised as well) and was telling everyone about the cause.”
Kids Save Apes includes chimpanzees, gorillas, and other apes in its mission.
The web site: www.kisdssavesapes.webs.com provides a basic description of each species and links to other organizations, especially those oriented towards young people.
“We learn more about apes and we petition to stop poaching and raise money to adopt apes from organizations such as the Fossey Fund and other groups,” says Haley. She has succeeded in recruiting more than 40 members from all over the world, including the United Kingdom, Canada, and Tanzania.
In May 2008 Haley and her 11-year-old co-president, James Brooks of Ontario, travelled to Boston to meet Jane Goodall and speak about their work with Goodall’s youth organization, Roots and Shoots. James also started an organization, called “1000 Classrooms,” an affiliate of Kids Save Apes, which educates children in western countries about the risks faced by people and wildlife in the Democratic Republic of Congo. His group raises funds for a poultry co-operative that supports the widows and children of park rangers who were killed while protecting gorillas. See www.1000classrooms.org.
Haley is looking for more children aged 7-14 to join Kids Save Apes. She invites schools, classes, scout troops and individual students to become involved by holding a fundraiser, learning about apes through research and field trips to zoos, and writing for the website.
Haley sets ambitious goals for her organization. “One thing we hope to do is touch a poacher’s life, so he’ll put down his knife – even just one poacher. Our main goal is to save the apes from extinction, maybe even from being endangered. . . I believe that all of us hard-working animal organizations will really make a difference in the world!” Haley says.
Recycling to help gorillas
Another kid who saves apes is Mariah Nablo. Two years ago, Mariah saw a TV documentary about Dian Fossey’s work and another film that showed how illegal mining of coltan, a strategic mineral used in cell phones, destroys gorillas and their habitats in the Congo. She decided to start “Mariah Saves Gorillas” to spread the word and take action after she noticed a cell phone collection box at the Buffalo Zoo Her group collects discarded cell phones and sends them to an organization called Eco-Cell for recycling, which reduces the demand for new phones. Eco-Cell resells the used phones and also sees that phones that can’t be reused are disposed of properly so that the hazardous substances they contain won’t go in a landfill. Funds from sales of the used phones go to the Fossey Fund, zoos and other conservation organizations. (See Gorilla Journal, Winter 2009 for more information or visit www.eco-cell.com.)
Mariah’s campaign started with an Earth Day visit to her father’s workplace, where she collected 150 phones, and now operates through phone donation boxes at schools and businesses in her home town of Williamsville, New York and other nearby Buffalo suburbs. Like Haley, she has a website: www.mariahsavesgorillas.com. Her goal is to collect 1,000 phones, and last time we checked the website she was well on her way. She also reports on proposed legislation that would ban United States companies from using Congo coltan in any electronics.
Recently Mariah told a reporter at the Amherst Bee that she would like to work with animals when she gets older, like Dian Fossey. Meanwhile, her slogan is “Save the gorillas one cell phone at a time!” She is now in third grade and has been collecting cell phones for two years.
The gorilla gang
This year a new group of young gorilla conservationists, who call themselves “the Save the Gorillas Gang,” has launched an ambitious program at Maple Tree Montessori Academy in Brighton, Michigan. When the upper elementary school class (ages 9-12) decided that they wanted to do something to protect animals for their environmental service project for the new Nature Education Program, teacher Julia Liljegren told them about the mountain gorillas. The kids grew more excited the more they learned, according to Liljegren (known now as their “silverback”). They created a colorful t-shirt design and are planning a fundraising walk, including a can and bottle refund drive, to benefit the Fossey Fund in April. They have already raised nearly $1,000. They also planned an Earth Day presentation on gorillas. Finally, they plan to write letters to their representative in Congress and conduct a petition drive urging gorilla protection, and then invite the representative to the school to receive the letters during a media event.
The T-shirt slogan: “It’s their planet too: Save the Mountain Gorillas” expresses a compassion for all living things that is echoed in the comments several members of the “gang” at Maple Tree contributed for this article: “Not many people know they are endangered so they don’t care, but they should, because mountain gorillas deserve to live just like we do,” says Jazmine Mellem, age 10. “Even if someone or something is different. . . we all live on this earth and we all deserve to be treated fairly,” according to Brooklyn Rue, age 9. “This is their planet too, and we have no right to hurt it,” says Vivian Pearsall, age 10. For more information about this project, see www.mapletreemontessori.com.
-- Barbara Joye, Gorilla Journal (Spring 2009)
1) Haley Stern (right) and James Brooks lead "Kids Save Apes."
2) Kids at a Montessori school in Michigan created this T-shirt design and slogan. (c) Maple Tree Montessori Academy -- Save the Gorillas Ganag -- Mountain Gorilla Project
3) Mariah Nablo started "Mariah Saves Gorillas" and collects old cell phones for recycling, donating the funds