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I Dream Africa

I Dream Africa

Black Wildebeest

   

Introduction: Black Wildebeest have a dark brown to black body, an erect mane and a long whitish tail. Both sexes have heavy, forward curving horns. Bulls measure 1.2 metres at the shoulder and weigh 161 Kg. Cows measure 1.16 metres at the shoulder and weigh 130 Kg. The horns of calves are initially straight, and start to grow the characteristic curvature at approximately nine months of age.

Distribution: Black Wildebeest are endemic to South Africa. Historically the Black Wildebeest occupied the central open grassland plains of the country, from the Northern Cape, the Free State, and the southern Highveld regions of the former Transvaal, western Lesotho, western Swaziland and the grassland areas below the Drakensberg in KwaZulu-Natal. Recently introduced to other parts of the country and neighboring countries. With population estimates of about 12 00 it is not regarded as threatened by extinction. In Namibia wildebeest are commonly found in the Etosha National Park and on several privately owned game farms.

Diet: They are primarily a grazer, in order of preference selecting for predominantly grass, and occasionally karroid shrubs and herbs.

Coloring: Black Wildebeest have a dark brown to black body, an erect mane and a long whitish tail

Breeding: The gestation period for a wildebeest is 250 days with 80-90% of the calves being born in a 3 week period when conditions are most favorable. At birth the calves are licked clean by their mothers, can stand within a few minutes and run with her within 5 minutes.

Size: Adult males stand about 150cm at the shoulder and weigh 250kg, the females smaller at 135cm and 180kg. Both sexes have horns.

   
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