Andries
Jun 8, 2017

Springbok

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Edited: Jan 23, 2018

 

Springbok (Antidorcas Marsupialis) Rowland Ward minimum: 14"

Rams may weigh up to 110 lbs. Their striking body colour renders them easily recognizable. Shoulders appear lower than the hindquarters. Cinnamon coloured upper body, white underparts and a broad dark brown stripe on either flank stretching from the front legs to the rear legs. The short white tail is brown tufted. The rump is marked by a triangular-shaped white patch, framed by a dark brown stripe with the apex on the top of the hindquarters. Horns of ewes are more slender and shorter than those of rams.

 

Springbok are selective feeders whose diet comprises the best fodder available at any given time. They browse in the dry season and predominantly graze after the rainy season when grasses spout green. They are fond of flowers such as of Acacia, and drink water readily, but when open water is scarce, water requirements are met by eating moisture-rich tubers and roots.

 

The Springbok live in a harsh and unpredictable environment. Calcareous pans, dry river beds and short grass savannah are preferred. They avoid areas of tall grass. A feature unique to the springbok is pronking, in which the springbok performs multiple leaps into the air, up to 7 ft above the ground, in a stiff-legged posture, with the back bowed and the white flap lifted. This happens mostly in the rutting season but is also an alarm signal. Video

 

 

The Springbok is the most abundant antelope in the central and western parts of South Africa. Some herds are still free roaming within some of its natural range, but most are now confined to farmlands and reserves. They are a common feature in most of South Africa's national, provincial and private reserves.

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