It is almost impossible to believe that two gorillas that have not seen the humans that helped the gorillas escape captivity in a zoo would remember the humans after 12 years of separation but they do. The video is a great argument for the intelligence of gorillas and the response that animals have to kindness and care from humans. Damian Aspinall works with his own charity and zoos to return gorillas from captivity to a special preserve in their native habitat in Africa. Aspinall has made his life a mission to free some of man’s closest relatives from jail and return them to the wild where they belong. He works with a wild animal park in Britain to become closely acquainted with young gorillas and helps to train the gorillas to cope with their home in the wild.
Aspinall and his daughter Tansy made a journey to the Howletts Wild Animal Park in Britain to the free gorilla preserve in Gabon in Africa. The people are riding in a boat and calling to the gorillas. The gorillas have been trained when they were young to respond to certain calls from humans. It is really unbelievable that the gorillas would remember and respond to calls they have not heard in 12 years but the animals do. The two gorillas come to the bank of the river and wait expectantly but patiently for their human friends.
Aspinall gets out of the boat and cautiously approaches the gorillas. The animals know him immediately. They play with each other like old friends. They hug each other like people hug each other. The animals are so mild mannered and tame around people they know that Aspinall has no problem letting his daughter Tansy play with the gorillas too. As the people leave, the gorillas stand on the bank and look longingly and sadly at their departing friends.
The thing one needs to see in this video is how gentle the gorillas are. The expression on the animal’s faces is one of recognition and what people would call joy at a reunion with old friends. You also get to see a short film clip of Tansy playing with the gorillas when they were young. She was very young at the time as well.
Most people have been raised on movies that depict gorillas as vicious and mean. The reality as demonstrated by this video is the exact opposite. The animals are gentle, playful, and very intelligent. No one knows a lot about gorilla’s capacity for memory. The little video shows that gorillas know people that helped raise the gorillas 12 years after not seeing the people at all. It is hard for people to remember the names of school mates after 12 years.
This little video shows the right thing to do. It took the people a long time to get the gorillas ready to go back to the jungle. You cannot tell who is more delighted by the reunion after 12 years. This is a really touching and amazing video of what the relationship between man and animals could and should be.