Unusual features/differences from similar
Cream-colored on the rump while the rump of the
Bontebok is white. Horns are whitish on the ridges
while horns of the Bontebok
Visible Male/Female Differences
Males larger than females with thicker horns. Females have one pair of nipples between the hind legs.
Habitat and Distribution
Highveld grassland with permanent water as a requirement. Very widely translocated.
A selective grazer, but will browse. Prefers short grass, especially
fresh growth a veld fire. Drinks at least once a day.
Calves weighing 6-7 kg produced after a gestation of 246 days. Calves are weaned at 4 months.
Newborn calves can stand within a few minutes and run with the mother after 20 minutes.
Mothers chase other blesbok away and will only suckle their own calf. Bonds between
mother and calf weaken when the calf is about six months old. Females are sexually mature at 2-3 years.
Lifespan 13 years. Breeding triggered by short day length.
Behavior and Habits
Active in the early morning and late afternoon
and rests in shade during the
heat and thickets at night. Territories are marked with dung middens. The
territorial males lies in a midden to drench himself in the
smell of his area. Both sexes and all ages deposit a secretion from a gland in
front of the eyes on grass
stalks, as well as a secretion from glands between the front hooves. Territory occupation is
advertised by standing sideways on to intruders, stamping the feet and digging up soil
with the horns. Males without territories form bachelor herds. Territories are defended by horn clashing which can escalate to
becoming serious and are sometimes fatal. Territorial
rams herd females by corralling them with head stretched forward and tail curled up.
from their mothers bleat, mothers answer with deep grunts.
Dung and Field sign
Dung middens, horned up soil. Dung pellets are 1,5 cm long with a short point at one
end, and blunt at the other.