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Photo by @joelsartore | This western lowland gorilla named Gladys at the @cincinnatizoo was just six-months-old when she boarded the Photo Ark. When she arrived at the Zoo, her surrogate mother, Mlinzi, cared for Gladys and taught her all things gorilla. Now this sweet girl is five-years-old and fully integrated into her troop!
Gorillas are one of our closest relatives, sharing 98.3% of their genetic code with humans. They display many human-like behaviors like using tools, communicating through facial expressions and vocalizations, and even producing laughter when amused or tickled. While western lowland gorillas like this one are the most numerous of all gorilla species, they are still listed as Critically Endangered by IUCN. The spread of Ebola as well as poaching for bushmeat and capture for the pet trade have all contributed to the decline of this incredible species. The good news is that you can help save gorillas by contributing to organizations that protect them and their land! Ecotourism not only protects the species that live in the area, but also supports the local economy and provides jobs for the people who live there. And of course, continuing the fight to protect the last of these natural habitats is always essential to maintain any species under threat.
Head to @natgeo on Twitter right now to ask Joel a question as a part of #NatGeoFest
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🎥 @filipe_deandrade | I’ve always wanted to dive with mako sharks. They are beautiful, fast and powerful. To be exact, the fastest sharks in our oceans. Pure biological wonders that are responsible for keeping the oceans clean and balances. Beyond just diving with them, I also wanted to learn more about them. So I hit up my friends at @pelagicsafari and @nakaweproject to spend a week around short fin mako sharks in Baja, Mexico. It changed my life. My fascination turned into an appreciation and now I’m motivated to help prevent sharks from going extinct. I hope you enjoy the shark content but are also inspired to jump in the water. Trust me, its the most fun I’ve ever had as a naturalist.