In the world of wildlife photography, getting the perfect photo requires a lot of effort and sacrifice. Sometimes you have to spend hours waiting for animals to appear or killing time until the weather improves. For one photographer, her patience was rewarded with her once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see up close a silverback gorilla thumping her chest in Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park, a moment that was both exciting and nerve-wracking. was. Luckily, the interaction was captured in a video shared on Instagram by photographer Richard de Gouveia. “When we arrived, the clouds were dark and the vegetation was thick. "While the gorillas were feeding and the storm was approaching, the trackers were trying to find an advantageous spot for us," he recalled. “The rain that started as a drizzle turned into a downpour, and the gorillas found shelter, and so did we.”
In the video, a silverback gorilla appears in the foreground, giving the camera its profile. Meanwhile, a photographer watches him from the background, camera in hand. The gorilla suddenly lunged towards where the cameraman was sitting and punched him in the chest. “While we were watching another gorilla, a silverback marched behind us and mastered the moment perfectly, putting on a show that our calm and collected guests will not soon forget,” says de Gouveia, who also serves as the leader's host. "She then went outside to make sure we were keeping a safe distance from the gorillas."
Ms. de Gouveia added further details about the expedition and how she plans to care for the photographers and animals. "In theory, we try to keep enough distance, but in practice that doesn't always work." "It helps keep it that way," he added. “Also, her time with her family is limited to one hour, as her chances of sharing her illness with them increase exponentially.”
Although this encounter ended peacefully, it's a reminder of the great lengths nature photographers go to to bring us closer to animals we might otherwise never get to know. Their work, like that of other researchers in the sciences, should not be taken for granted.