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Gabon Wildlife

Celebrated as ‘Africa’s Last Living Eden’, Gabon offers an unrivalled wealth of some of Africa’s most spectacular biodiversity and supports an exceptional abundance of undiscovered wildlife experiences.

Unapologetically wild and enchanting, you can find forest elephants, forest buffalos, chimpanzees, gorillas, and hope to see breaching humpback whale at the same spot. Loango National Park is famous for its beachcomber forest elephants and surfing hippos that roam its wild coastline, the national park is also brimming mangrove forests, mirrored waterways, speckled tidal lagoons and a vast track of savannah. Here large herds of forest elephant, forest buffalo, monkeys, chimpanzee, red river hogs, hippo, sitatunga, duiker, crocodile and over 420 bird species cover the landscape.


Gorilla trekking is popular at Loango with one main habituated group of western lowland gorillas for guests to spend time with in one of the world’s most intact primate habitats.


Gabon is also home to a number of chimpanzees, which can be found in the forests of the national parks. The Mikongo Conservation Center in Lopé National Park is a great place to learn about and see chimpanzees in their natural habitat. Chimpanzees are great apes that are found in several African countries, including Gabon. Gabon is home to a number of different subspecies of chimpanzees, including the central chimpanzee and the Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzee. Chimpanzees are highly intelligent and social animals, with a complex social hierarchy and communication system. They are known to use tools in the wild, such as sticks to fish for termites or rocks to crack open nuts. They are omnivorous and feed on a variety of foods, including fruits, leaves, insects, and small animals.

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Mandrills (Mandrillus sphinx) are Old World monkeys that are found in the rainforests of central and West Africa, including Gabon. Gabon is home to one of the largest populations of mandrills in the world, with an estimated 15,000 individuals living in the country's rainforests. Mandrills are easily recognized by their striking coloration, which includes blue and red markings on their faces and brightly colored rumps. They are the largest species of monkey in the world, with males weighing up to 120 pounds. Mandrills are primarily arboreal and spend much of their time in trees, although they will also come down to the ground to forage for food. They are omnivorous and feed on a variety of fruits, seeds, insects, and small animals.


Gabon is home to a population of forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis), which are a subspecies of African elephants adapted to living in dense rainforest habitats. The forest elephants in Gabon are an important part of the country's biodiversity, and play a key role in maintaining the health and diversity of forest ecosystems. Forest elephants are smaller than their savanna elephant counterparts, with rounder ears and straighter tusks. They are highly social and form tight-knit family groups led by a matriarchal elder female. They communicate through a variety of vocalizations, and use low-frequency rumbling sounds that can travel long distances through the forest.

Forest Buffalo

The forest buffalo, also known as the dwarf buffalo or the Gabonese forest buffalo, is a subspecies of the African buffalo that is found in the rainforests of central and West Africa, including Gabon. In Gabon, forest buffalo populations are found in a number of protected areas, including Loango National Park, Moukalaba-Doudou National Park, and Ivindo National Park. These buffalo are adapted to living in dense forests, where they feed on a variety of plant material, including leaves, bark, and fruits. The forest buffalo is smaller in size compared to the savanna buffalo, and has a reddish-brown coat with a shaggy appearance. They have shorter and curved horns compared to their savanna counterparts. They are social animals and can form herds of up to 40 individuals, which are typically led by a dominant male. The forest buffalo is an important species in the ecosystems of Gabon's rainforests, playing a role in seed dispersal and maintaining vegetation.