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Bushbuck (female)

Tragelaphus scriptus


This was spotted in the end of the dry season. A lot of the antelopes we saw was very emaciated with visible ribs, and some were very indifferent to us and our car passing. Luckely the rain started a few days after and the life cycle continued as it always hava done for the animals living there.


Dry season. I am not sure of the biome for the exact place of the spotting, most likely tree savanna. Gorongosa region contains enormous biodiversity, representing five of Africa’s nine biomes.


Male bushbucks are bigger than females, with weights ranging from 40 to 80 kg and shoulder heights from 70 to 100 cm. Females weigh about 25 to 60 kg and are 65 to 85 cm tall. Only males have horns, which usually spiral once and are fairly straight, parallel to one another, and up to a half meter long. Females are usually a lighter brown than males. Both sexes have white spots and stripes, the patterns of which vary geographically. The Bushbock in the photo has very few spots and stripes. Young can be born at any time of year, but in arid regions there is a peak in birth rates during the rainy season. Gestation requires only 180 days, allowing a female to produce more than one calf per year. A single calf weighing about 4 kg is born. The calf does not follow its mother out into the open to forage until it is four months old. It remains hidden in the dense underbrush in the mean time, and its mother returns periodically to let it nurse. Sexual maturity is reached at one year, but males' horns do not reach full size until three years of age. Lifespan: 12 years or more Gorongosa national park. A wonderful place where I felt like I was able to take a peak into the "real Africa", how it once was! More about the park: I am going back there in July this year, and I am really looking forward to see the differences.

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Spotted on Oct 13, 2012
Submitted on Jun 13, 2013

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