South Africa: Greater kudu South Africa: Greater kudu - ImagesGram

South Africa: Greater kudu


The greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) is a species of woodland antelope in the genus Tragelaphus found throughout eastern and southern Africa. Despite occupying widespread territory, they are sparsely populated in most areas due to declining habitat, deforestation and poaching. The greater kudu is one of two species commonly known as kudu, the other being the lesser kudu, T. imberbis. Greater kudus have a narrow body with long legs, and their coats can range from brown or bluish grey to reddish brown. They possess between four and twelve vertical white stripes along their torso. The head tends to be darker in colour than the rest of the body, and exhibits a small white chevron running between the eyes. The helical horns of adult males grow as the animal ages, reaching ​2 1⁄2 rotations at about 6 years old.

This picture shows a greater kudu bull photographed near Groot Okevi in Etosha National Park, Namibia. Bulls weigh 190–270 kg (420–600 lb), up to a maximum of 315 kg (690 lb), and stand up to 160 cm (63 in) tall at the shoulder.

Physical characteristics

Greater kudus have a narrow body with long legs, and their coats can range from brown/bluish grey to reddish brown. They possess between 4 and 12 vertical white stripes along their torso. The head tends to be darker in colour than the rest of the body, and exhibits a small white chevron which runs between the eyes.

Greater kudu bulls tend to be much larger than the cows, and vocalize much more, utilizing low grunts, clucks, humming, and gasping.[citation needed] The bulls also have beards running along their throats, and large horns with two and a half twists, which, were they to be straightened, would reach an average length of 120 cm (47 in), with the record being 187.64 cm (73.87 in).[citation needed] They diverge slightly as they slant back from the head. The horns do not begin to grow until the bull is between the ages of 6–12 months. The horns form the first spiral rotation at around 2 years of age, and not reaching the full two and a half rotations until they are 6 years old; occasionally they may even have 3 full turns.
This is one of the largest species of antelope. Bulls weigh 190–270 kg (420–600 lb), with a maximum of 315 kg (694 lb), and stand up to 160 cm (63 in) tall at the shoulder. The ears of the greater kudu are large and round. Cows weigh 120–210 kg (260–460 lb) and stand as little as 100 cm (39 in) tall at the shoulder; they are hornless, without a beard or nose markings. The head-and-body length is 185–245 cm (6.07–8.04 ft), to which the tail may add a further 30–55 cm (12–22 in).