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Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund staff to visit Oklahoma City Zoo

The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund CEO and its research director will lead a discussion of mountain gorillas in Rwanda on Tuesday at the Oklahoma City Zoo's Rosser Center auditorium.
BY MATT PATTERSON mpatterson@opubco.com Published: October 20, 2012
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“To get up to the gorillas, it can be a five-hour trek up the mountain,” he said. “They collect data for an hour and then they have to head back down the mountain. It can be a 12-hour day, but there is an incredible pride that they have in these gorillas.”

One of the most impressive things Scott saw was the work between Fossey Fund researchers and people in the area where the gorillas are most heavily concentrated. Scott said one of the challenges facing both sides is gorilla-human contact. Some gorillas are beginning to venture into more lowland areas to sample the crops of farmers.

But the Fossey Fund also places great emphasis on working with people, building several public facilities including a medical clinic and school.

“That's the great thing about the Fossey Fund,” he said. “They not only take care of the gorillas, they take care of the people in the area. That's something we've learned in our conservation efforts. It starts with the people.”