Destination

Wildebeest

Hello Africa, here is one of the most successful herbivores, also known as gnus, wildebeests are members of the antelope family.

Quick facts about wildebeest-gnus

Wildebeests are known to be great migrators and always gather in large herds while preparing for long journeys. Females often give birth during the rainy season with a gestation period of 8-8.5 months and the most witnessed one is the Ndutu conservation area that gathers thousands of these animals in the months of late January to march when they are so active in production. This is a place where all photographers wish to be, it collects all kinds of cats like leopards, lions, cheetahs, hyenas, and many others.

These awkward-looking creatures have a heavily built front end, a large box-like with curving horns, and slender hindquarters with spindly legs. They have an attractive gray coat and black mane as well as a white or black beard and luxuriant tail.

Wildebeests are social animals and always mixing up with zebras, topis, kobs, and many others, these are known to be so fast able to drift at 64km/hr, they are good at dodging predators however they are always among the targeted dish for these no mercy animals.

By the age of 4-5, single herd males become quite territorial and leave the herd to form their own, Females establish tiny, overlapping herds, and as groups approach, cows shift to a different herd. These stay with calves till the next baby is born.

When bulls meet at the edge of their territory, they frequently challenge each other by bucking, snorting, scratching the ground, fighting, and growling in low tones. They crouch with their foreheads on the ground, prepare to battle, and step forward to hit each other, banging their heads and horns but rarely injuring each other. There is a suggestion that these duels enhance hormone levels in bulls because bachelor groups are more laid back.

Their habitat is threatened by agricultural activity and fragmentation, and even though a considerable number of wildebeests have died during the Great Migration, the International Union for Conservation of Nature does not rank wildebeests as endangered.

Where to see wildebeests

Kenya and Tanzania are well known because of their wonder migration; however, they are also most spread in the south of Africa.

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