Kudu Voodoo

Greater Kudu bull

Greater Kudu bull

The elegant Greater Kudu, seen here, lives in Africa.  We watched this mighty bull confidently stride in front of our safari vehicle at the end of the day in Zambia.  In a protected park, with only gawking appreciative humans, he literally walked off into the sunset.  We sat there in our vehicle until it got so dark we could no longer see him.

 

Tragelaphus strepsiceros is one of the largest antelope, males usually weighing in the range of 500 pounds.  They eat grasses, roots, and fruits; and tend to hide in brush to avoid their predators, mostly lions and hyenas.  Therefore, they are not easy to spot.

 

Their twisting horns are spectacularly beautiful, but the down side of that is, of course, poaching.  Loss of habitat and deforestation are also problems for the kudu.  They are sparsely populated in most areas, but not yet an endangered species.

 

Due to the waning light we had that evening, the photographers in our safari group had to regretfully stop photographing at a certain lightless point.  After that, we all sat still and quiet, revering this magical creature until he was gone.

 

Photo credit:  Athena Alexander

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17 thoughts on “Kudu Voodoo

  1. Beautiful! And the information you share is just the right amount.
    Do you know the purpose for having the horns twisted?

    • Horns are used for sparring (and locking) in male territorial disputes, but I do not know the evolutionary reason for twisted ones. Thanks for your comments, Nan.

  2. What a magical moment when everyone had to stop thinking about photography, and just had to sit together to appreciate the experience. What gifts mother nature has to offer when we still ourselves enough to accept them.

  3. Most interesting species,dear Jet ! You were so very lucky to see it from close up ! Your description is very vivid and by looking at the beautiful image,I feel I have seen it in real !
    Its name : Tragelaphus strepsiceros,is of Greek origin and is so faithfully describes the characteristics of the species :
    ( tragelaphus is a compound word from [trage = bull + elaphus= deer ) as for strepsiceros,it is also a compound word from [ strepsi = twisted and ceros = horns ] . It’s amszing ! Isn’t it ? !!!
    Love to you Jet, Doda 🙂

    • Doda, how wonderful of you to provide the etymology! Thank you so much. Yes, it is amazing, and makes perfect sense when you break it down. So glad you liked the post too. 🙂

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