KIRUNGI – BLACKBACK
Meaning of name: This Rukiga word describes something good or pleasant.
Age: About 12 years
Who’s yo daddy? Safari
Who’s yo mama? Mother unknown
The goodness and pleasantness alluded to gorilla Kirungi is in reference to his looks. Take it on the UWA trackers authority he is ‘black and beautiful.’ In addition, he is also gargantuan in stature. This one physical trait makes one pretty sure he’s Safari’s son. In fact he looks like he might outstrip papa Safari in size and then the hens may just come home to roost with son giving father a taste of his own medicine.*
For the moment, father and son enjoy a special relationship. It’s clear that he is favoured over the other blackbacks and more so over poor Bahati. Kirungi is Safari’s right hand man.
Typical of a blackback, Kirungi is playful and obliges the infants and juvenile when they come to him to play. With them he has the patience of Job, but to his credit, he displays this patient persona to one and all, man and beast alike.
He’s even known to have a soft spot for his fellow blackback, the much maligned Bahati.
Indeed he’s not a bad gorilla to have as a friend.
*If you can, see Bahati profile.