For Tarzan's adoptive tribe in the books, see Apes.Gorillas are ground-dwelling, predominantly herbivorous apes that inhabit the forests of central Africa. The eponymous genus Gorilla is divided into two species: the eastern gorillas and the western gorillas (both critically endangered), and either four or five subspecies. They are the largest living primates. The DNA of gorillas is highly similar to that of humans, from 95–99% depending on what is counted, and they are the next closest living relatives to humans after the chimpanzees and bonobos.
Gorillas' natural habitats cover tropical or subtropical forests in Africa. Although their range covers a small percentage of Africa, gorillas cover a wide range of elevations. The mountain gorilla inhabits the Albertine Rift montane cloud forests of the Virunga Volcanoes, ranging in altitude from 2,200–4,300 metres (7,200–14,100 ft). Lowland gorillas live in dense forests and lowland swamps and marshes as low as sea level, with western lowland gorillas living in Central West African countries and eastern lowland gorillas living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo near its border with Rwanda.
In the literatureEdit
In the books, the apes of Tarzan's adoptive tribe are absolutely not gorillas. Burroughs seemed to consider their species as more human, a kind of "missing link" between animals and humans. They walk upright, and although they have actions and habits typical of primates, their society and spoken language distinguishes them.
In the books, gorillas are a separate, less intelligent species. A gorilla only comes into the story as a lone and violent individual, rather than part of a family grouping or an intelligent tribe such as Tarzan's.
Disney animated filmsEdit
In the animated movies, Tarzan is similarly adopted by intelligent primates with a spoken language, but they are referred to as gorillas, and physically resemble the well-known Silverback species.
Some of the names from the book were used.