“moo-YEE-sah”; 6-year-old female
Muyisa was rescued in 2011 on the border of Rwanda and DRC. She was taken into Rwanda then due to insecurity could not return to her home in DRC for 3 years. During this time she lived alone with only a human caregiver and she unfortunately suffered from stress and pulled out much of the hair on her head as a result. When she finally returned to DRC in 2014 it was a cause for celebration and her Rwandan name of Ihirwe (meaning “luck”) was changed to the Congolese name of Muyisa (also “luck”) to signify her return to her Congo home.
It was unclear how Muyisa would react to seeing gorillas again but as soon as she met the group at GRACE, they physically embraced her and she integrated seamlessly into the group. A remarkable story for a gorilla that lived for 3 years by herself! Despite being 4 years old when she arrived at GRACE she still wanted to be carried by older females, likely because she had missed this physical contact during a critical period of her life.
Today she is a confident young female who loves playing with gorillas her age. Whenever the adult females allow her to get close to infant Lulingu, Muyisa practices carrying Lulingu on her back.
Best friends: Kalonge, Isangi, Shamavu, Amani
Identifying characteristics: Dark face with many wrinkles