Led by silverback Munyinya, Hirwa gorilla family is found in Volcanoes national park in northwestern, close to the border with Uganda and D.R. Congo within the famous Virunga region.
The group is made of up to 16 individuals and is one of the most interesting groups to trek in this national park. It is located in the midst of Gahinga and Sabyinyo mountains sharing borders with two iconic national parks – Mgahinga gorilla national park in Uganda and Virunga national park in D.R. Congo.
Formation of Hirwa group came as a result of silverback Munyinya in 2002 leaving the original Susa group following consistent disagreements and disappeared for over 4 years up to 17th June 2006 when he appeared with some other individuals, mostly female gorillas.
The group was opened officially for tourism in the same year 2006 and named Hirwa. Hirwa is a local Kinyarwanda word meaning “the lucky one”, referring to the instant reappearing of Silverback Munyinya who had disappeared for 4 years and rapid increase in the number of family members within a very short time.
Upon Munyinya’s return, he started increasing the population of group members through raiding neighboring families like Sabyinyo, Kwitonda and Agashya to grab more individuals. Such strength has earned Hirwa a lot of respect from these nearby groups. More fortune befell Hirwa when a set of twins were born to mother Kabatwa (Isango Gato and Isango Gakuru), and currently the family is made up of 16 members including two Silverbacks, two sub-adult males, four adult females, four juveniles and four infants.
Hirwa gorilla group is one among the most trekked and liked groups by tourists in Volcanoes national park, be rest assured that when you take part to trek this family you will enjoy a gorilla safari in Rwanda maximally. The family inhabits the slopes of Mount Sabyinyo, an extinct volcano which is the second highest among the three Virunga volcanoes that lie along the Uganda-Rwanda border.
The Hirwa gorilla family is as close and you can be lucky to find them in just one hour of trekking. There is nothing fascinating like spending a splendid hour with the world’s most sought after primates in their natural habitat.