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The Greater Kudu. Few antelope have such a bearing of greatness as a kudu. The females, with their oversized ears, white tail exposed, as they bound off into the brush after being disturbed. The regal look of a kudu bull as it disappears into the brush, corkscrew horns laid back against it flanks.
The bi-nominal name for these beautiful antelope is Tragelaphus strepsiceros; the name being derived from the Greek, tragos, meaning 'male goat' and elaphos, meaning 'deer'. The specific name, strepsiceros is also Greek, sterphis meaning 'twist' and keros, 'horn'. In short, the kudu is described as a male goat looking deer, with twisty horns.
Here in the Waterberg, and on Kaingo Private Game Reserve, we are blessed with a good and stable population of kudu. Larger kudu bulls prefer the safety of the mountain slopes, whilst the females may be found just about everywhere on the reserve. They are shy by nature, and to get a good photograph of a sizable kudu bull, a rarity. The big old bulls will very seldom give you more than 5 seconds for a photograph before melting back into the bush. Females and young calves are a lot more trusting, sometimes posing for a photograph. They tend to be mixed feeders, feeding on grass and leaves in alternate seasons. Because of their tendency to roam, no fence can keep in a determined kudu, the populations outside our reserve and indeed over the whole Waterberg are increasing. They are a great threat to motorists traveling on our tar roads at night when they may jump into the lights of oncoming traffic.
The greater kudu is an enigmatic part of the Waterberg landscape. Come and join us to look for a good facial portrait, if of course, the kudu lets you…
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