Skip to Main Content
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance logo
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance Library logo

Western Lowland Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) Fact Sheet: Physical Characteristics

Physical Characteristics

Weight 136-181 kg (300-400 lb) 72-98 kg (159-216 lb)
Height 1400-1750 mm (4.6-5.74 ft) 1400-1750 mm (4.6-5.74 ft)

General Appearance


  • Gray-brown/black. Top of head is reddish-brown. Skin is black
  • Mature male has "silver" back from shoulders to rump
  • Eastern gorillas are somewhat larger than western gorillas - longer faces and
    broader chests. Blacker hair

Sexual Dimorphism

  • Adult male is almost twice the size of the female

Other Characteristics

  • Gorillas are the largest primate

Western Lowland Gorilla

gorilla  and baby

Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. All rights reserved.

Page Citations

Caldecott & Ferriss, (2005)
Nowak, (1999)
Perroux, et al., (2009)

SDZWA Library Links