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Is ecotourism the best hope for Rwanda’s mountain gorillas?

Gorrillas in our Midst (2007): Spend a small fortune to buy a permit and you’ll get to watch endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitat

For similar stories, see:
Ape Smuggling (2007):
Shopping for Rhinos (1996):
Where Have All The Elephants Gone? (2013):
Saving the Kiwis (2003):

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Eco-tourism is helping to ensure the survival of the world’s last wild mountain gorillas. Tourists pay up to $650 a day for the privilege of watching these animals in their natural habitat.#

Leonidas Zimarinda has watched over Rwanda’s gorillas for almost 30 years. “I track them until I find them and then keep an eye on them”. Protecting these endangered animals has become high priority since the government realised just how lucrative eco-tourism could be. “The worth of gorilla permits is probably $33 million a year”, states Rosette Rugamba from Rwanda’s tourist authority. In recent years, sales of permits have doubled. But not everyone with money is welcome. As gorillas share 98% of our DNA, they are vulnerable to our diseases. Anyone with a cold is turned away.

SBS Australia– Ref. 3438

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