IUCN threat status:

Least Concern (LC)

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Greater kudus are sociable animals with groups of up to 25 females and their offspring of both sexes mingling and separating frequently (2). The larger males roam more widely and form loose bachelor groups, generally only joining female herds during the mating season, which extends through April and May in South Africa (3). During this time the necks of the mature males swell to display their bulging muscles and aggression between males is common. When rival males meet, one stands with his mane erect in a posture that best exaggerates his size, while the other circles around. These displays can sometimes develop into fights with one male locking his strong, spiral horns around the body of his opponent. Occasionally, the horns of the two males may become intertwined, and unable to free themselves from this position, both competitors may die (3). Greater kudu are always alert to predators (5), such as lions and spotted hyenas (3), and will flee rapidly from any potential danger. Despite their bulky size, greater kudus are remarkably agile and are surprisingly adept at jumping, easily capable of clearing a two-metre fence (5). Calves are born in January and February after a nine month gestation, and for the first three to four weeks of life they lie hidden in vegetation, the mother visiting to nurse them (3) (4). Female calves remain with their mother's herd, whereas males disperse after two years of age (3). Greater kudus feed on a variety of foliage, herbs, vines, fruits, flowers and grass, the composition of their diet depending on the season (2). Their long legs and necks enable them to reach food at great heights, exceeded only by the giraffe (2).


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Source: ARKive

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