- They are active in the daytime in optimal habitats, but may become nocturnal due to human interference or sub-optimal habitat.
- Need to drink plenty of water and so tend to stay near water sources.
- Juvenile males look like females, which may be to camouflage them and protect them from jealous bulls.
Animals — Mammals — Artiodactyla (Even-toed ungulates) — Bovidae (Cloven hoof ruminants)
Nyala are a type of antelope with spiral horns. They are interesting because of the high levels of sexual dimorphism they show. Males are much larger and darker with large horns, while females are a reddish colour with more distinctive white stripes.
They are social animals, but prefer to group in small numbers of 2-3 males or 3-15 females. There are also mixed gender groups of less than 15. Herds are not stable, and individuals tend to move between different groups. They will breed throughout the year, though there are birth peaks in spring and autumn with most young born in the spring. They are prolific breeders, and are seemingly resistant to inbreeding.
They currently are not endangered, but their threats include hunting, grazing competition from livestock, and habitat loss due to agriculture.
Habitat: Good quality grasslands, dense woodlands and thickets in lowland areas.
–Average weight: 55-125kg (males heavier than females)
–Average height: 90-110cm (males taller than females)
In the wild up to: 16 years
In captivity up to: 19 years
Diet: Eats foliage, fruit, flowers and twigs.
Distribution: Found in south-east Africa, introduced to Botswana and Namibia.