Animals

By Mikey Jones 


There’s nothing better than a little monkeying around to cheer you up – as this gorilla’s keeper discovered.

Sitting on a stump, caretaker Matthieu appears to be sadly hanging his head until his gorilla Matabishi slides up beside him.

The female gorilla then sits with him and starts to hug him in an attempt to get his spirits up.

It worked, and the carer was soon up on his feet at the at Senkwekwe Mountain Gorilla Orphanage in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a large Central African country.

The touching scene was captured by South African wildlife photographer Nelis Wolmarans from Cape Town.

The 42-year-old said: “The majority of my adult life has revolved around Africa’s wildlife.

PIC BY Nelis Wolmarans / CATERS NEWS 

“I have a passion for the bush and all creatures within, which guided me to work in hugely diverse areas of the wildlife industry.

PIC BY Nelis Wolmarans / CATERS NEWS 

“The four mountain gorillas who are cared for at the centre have constant human company and develop very strong bonds with their carers.

“The deep emotional bond is heartwarming to see and the gorillas both draw comfort from and give comfort to their caretakers.

PIC BY Nelis Wolmarans / CATERS NEWS 

“They are always within touching distance.

“Matthieu is Matabishi’s human companion, and she sees him as a parental figure and a best friend.

PIC BY Nelis Wolmarans / CATERS NEWS 

“It’s very clear that they adore each other and the level of trust between the two is exceptional.

PIC BY Nelis Wolmarans / CATERS NEWS

“You can see they are a constant source of comfort to each other, and there to support each other with friendship and unconditional love when they need it.

“I love capturing touching moments such as these.”