Rise of the apes: How gorillas are outsmarting poachers

According to field staff from the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, several young gorillas have been spotted destroying snares that are set to maim and kill wild apes. “Today, two juveniles and one blackback worked together to deactivate two snares and how they did it demonstrated an impressive cognitive skill,” a staff person from the Karisoke Research Center told the Huffington Post. Just two days before, one such snare had severely injured a young ape named Ngwino, who dislocated her shoulder in a desperate attempt to escape. What’s worse, she contracted gangrene from cuts to her leg.

John Ndayambaje, the Fossey Fund field data coordinator, said he saw a group of gorillas nearing a snare, when a silverback called Vuba made a sound of warning. Two juveniles and a blackback responded by running toward the snare and destroying it with their bare hand. They did the same to another snare nearby.