Western Lowland Gorilla
Gorilla gorilla gorilla
Gorilla beringei beringei
Cross River Gorilla
Gorilla gorilla diehli
Eastern Lowland Gorilla
Gorilla beringei graueri
Gorilla beringei ?
*Note: The reason why there’s a question mark after the nomenclature (name) of the Bwindi Gorilla is because until recently it was considered to be part of the sub-species Mountain Gorilla. But now it’s not considered not to be and until further notice its classification is unresolved.
* The numbers in parentheses are approximately how many of a given gorilla sub-species remain. The reason why these figures are estimates is because of the difficulty in tracking the gorillas for a census count as a result of regional conflicts from a few years back.
Basic concept on how species are named.
A species’ name is binomial (two words in the name). The first word is the generic name and always starts with a Capital letter. The second word is the specific name and always begins with a small letter. If there’s a third word in the name this refers to the sub-species of that particular species. So for example Gorilla beringei graueri , Gorilla refers to the genus, beringei refers to the species and graueri refers to the sub-species.
But I always thought that gorillas are a single species?
If this thought has crossed your mind you’re not alone. If you’d like more information on this issue please CLICK HERE.