Common Duiker - Sylvicapra grimmia

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Damara Dik-dik - Madoqua kirkii | Oribi - Ourebia ourebi | Suni - Neotragus moschatus | Grysbok - Raphicerus melanotis | Sharpe's Grysbok - Raphicerus sharpii | Klipspringer - Oreotragus oreotragus | Blue Duiker - Philancomba monticola | Red Duiker - Cepholophus natalensis | Common Duiker - Sylvicapra grimmia | Steenbok - Raphicerus campestris | Bushbuck - Trogelophus scriptus | Blesbok - Damaliscus dorcas phillipsi | Bontebok- Domaliscus dorcas dorcas | Reedbuck - Redunca arundinum | Mountain Reedbuck - Redunca fulvorufula | Grey Rheebuck- Pelea capreolus | Springbuck - Antidorcas marsupialis | Impala - Aepyceros melampus melampus | Blue Wildebeest - Connochaetes taurinus | Black Wildebeest - Connochaetes gnu | Tsessebe - Domaliscus lunatus | Gemsbuck - Oryx gazella | Red Hartebeest - Alcelaphus buselaphus | Lichtenstein's Hartebeest - Sigmoceros lichtensteinii | Sable- Hippotragus niger | Roan - Hippotragus equinus | Puku - Kobus vardonii | Waterbuck - Kobus ellipsiprymnus | Red Lechwe - Kobus leche | Nyala - Tragelaphus angasii | Sitatunga - Tragelaphus spekei | Kudu - Tragelaphus strepsiceros | Eland - Taurotragus oryx | Buffalo - Syncerus caffer


Afrikaans Duiker
Tswana Phuti Zulu Mpunzi
Shangaan Mhuti Shona Mhembwe Venda  Nfsa
R.W. Min 4" Max 7"
S.C.I Min 11" Max 17" Measurement Method 1

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1 cm
Short point at one end, blunt or slightly hollow at the other
Sometimes in middens

Visible Male/Female Differences

Both males and females may have horns. The females are larger and have two pairs of nipples between their hind legs. 

Habitat and Distribution

Scrub, bush and woodland. Grassland with bush or dense grass. Penetrates desert along river runs. Independent of water when green green food is available.


A browser, eating a wide range of trees and bushes. Also eats fruit, pods and seeds, roots, caterpillars, bark, flowers, mushrooms and even nestling birds. In arid areas wild melons are eaten for their water content.


Single lambs weighing 1.7kg  are born at any time of year after a gestation of 5 months. Lambs can run within a day but remain hidden in heavy cover and the mother returns to suckle. Full grown at 7 months; females first mate as early as 8-9 months, and give birth at 1 year. Lifespan 8-11 years. 

Behavior and Habits

Active at dawn or late afternoon. Seen as solitary, or a female with a lamb. Rarely in male-female pairs.  Scent-marks are produced by the preorbital glands and glands between the front hooves. When threatened lies still or freezes, dashing away at the last moment if approached closely. Runs with a distinctive diving, zigzag motion from which comes the name duiker, which is Afrikaans for diver. The horns and sharp back hooves are used as defensive weapons and can cause severe wounds.


The alarm call is a nasal snort; if caught bleats pitifully, a sound that attracts other duikers and predators.

Dung and Field sign

Droppings are 1 cm long, 1 cm across, with a short point at one end, blunt or slightly hollow at the other, sometimes in middens.


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