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Waterbuck - did you know

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Waterbuck - did you know


Kobus ellipsiprymnus



  • easily recognisable by the broad white ring around the rump.
  • only male has horns.
  • are grazers but will browse occasionally on shrubs and trees and will also eat fruit.
  • prefer grassland habitant that is close to water.


  • Gregarious, occuring in herds.  Cows, calves and young bachelors congregate in herds. The composition of these herds can change daily. Nursery herds may move through territories of several bulls.  Breeding males establish territories  in areas where there is a rich food supply. Younger bulls form bachelor herds.
  • females will leave the herd to give birth, after 3 or 4 weeks in hiding the calf begins to follow the mother and will join the herd. Calves are weaned at 6-8 months.


  • Waterbuck are strong swimmers and when in serious danger they will take refuge in deep water.
  • their greasy coats emit a musky smell, the odour of dominant bulls is so strong that it can be detected at a distance by human nose. It is believed that the unpleasant odor of older waterbucks will make predators decide to choose other prey.


  • Shoulder height : 120-136 cm




Wild Ways – Peter Apps 

Beat about the Bush – Trevor Carnaby

Safari Companion - Richard D. Estes

Behaviour guide to African mammals - Richard D. Estes

Kingdon Field Guide to African mammals - Jonathan Kingdon





Did you know...