Kudu Facts

Kudu Facts
Kudu is a type of an antelope. There are two species of kudu: Lesser Kudu and Greater Kudu. Both of them live in areas characterized by dense bushes or in the forests. Kudu can be found in eastern and southern parts of the Africa. Although local people hunt them for their meat and horns (which are used as music instruments, containers for honey or as a symbol of the male potency), they are not listed as endangered species.
Interesting Kudu Facts:
Kudus usually reach 4 to 5 feet in height. Males are larger than females: they have 495 to 787 pounds, while females have 396 to 517 pounds.
Kudu is easily recognized by its long, spiral horns. They can reach 72 inches in length, making 2 ½ twists.
Both species of the kudu have white lateral stripes and spots on their body. They can be bluish gray, grayish brown or colored like rust. Also, both species have mane on a dorsal (back) side of the body, which follows the line of the spine.
Characteristic coloration of their body provides protection against the predators. When kudu sense a danger, it becomes motionless. Its body color blends with the environment and predators cannot recognize it easily.
Kudus are hunted by lions, leopards and wild dogs. Cheetah, pythons, eagles and smaller wild cats often prey on young kudus.
Besides predators and humans, kudus are susceptible to the rinderpest virus, which eliminated large number of kudus during several epidemics in the past.
Kudu is herbivorous animal (eats only plants) which consumes mainly grass, roots, leaves, fruits and tubers.
Kudu can survive long period without water. Part of the moisture can be compensated by the food rich in water, such as wild melon.
Kudu is one of the loudest antelopes. It produces gruff like barking sound which is used for communication.
1Male kudus usually live solitary life or rarely form bachelor groups that travel together. Dominance in the group is established via fight. It may end up fatally for both participants if their horns lock together, preventing kudus to separate from each other. Dominance can be displayed by positioning the body sideways (body looks bigger) in front of the other males.
Females live in the small groups composed of adult females and their offspring. Groups usually have between six and ten members.
Mating season starts at the end of the rainy season. Pregnancy lasts eight months and ends with a single baby. Female leaves the group and isolate herself and the baby for the next couple of months.
First four or five weeks of the life, young kudu spends lying in the grass. After that, calf starts to follow its mother during short period of time each day. At the age of three to four months, young kudu follows its mother all the time. When calf becomes able to follow its mother constantly, they will return back to the herd.
Young kudus grow rapidly and they are able to take care of themselves as soon as they turn six months.
Kudu lives 7 to 8 years in the wild and up to 23 years in the captivity.

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