Waterbuck - Kobus ellipsiprymnus

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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 Waterbok Zulu Phiva
Tswana Pitlhwa Shona Dhumukwa
Photo Kobus Hugo
R.W. Min
28" Max 39"
S.C.I Min 70" Max 91" Measurement Method 1

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Hoof drag marks between tracks 

Distribution Dung
1.5 cm
Clusters of 8 cm
Visible Male/Female Differences

Mature bulls have a strong, turpentine/goat-like odour. Females have two pairs of nipples between their hind legs. Only males have horns


Floodplains, woodland and grassland within 2 km of water.


Predominantly a grazer with a preference for long grass. Some browsing is done when grass is low in protein. Also eats marulas (a tangy fruit) and sometimes baboon droppings.


Single young (rarely twins) are born throughout the year after a gestation of 280 days. Young are weaned at 6-9 months. Females first calve at two years. Lifespan 11 years. Readily taken by large carnivores.Cows leave the herd to give birth to calves which lie hidden for 3-4 weeks, but if approached they run rather than freezing.  Females remain in the herd they were born in.

Behavior and Habits

Most active in the cool of the day but also feeds at night. They usually form herds of 6-12 but sometimes up to 30 with herd size larger in summer. Females and young form nursery herds.

Territorial bulls have a very strong body odor. Bulls first hold territories at 5-6 years old and occupation and status are advertised by standing in a proud posture, neck erect and head up, showing the white band on the throat. Fights are fierce and result in death more often than in any other antelope. Some territorial bulls tolerate the presence of a subordinate male. Males without territories form bachelor herds which are forced to stay in poor habitat outside the dominant bulls' territories. Bachelor herds are allowed to move through territories as long as they behave submissively. Young males are expelled from the herd when horns start to grow.


Normally silent, snorts and bleats.

Dung and Field sign

Droppings are rounded clumps of flattened pellets, or separate pellets 2 cm long, tapered at one end and blunt at the other.


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