Animals of the Vogelstrausskluft: Springbok
Plateau, Old Valley, Canyon Plains
(antidorcas marsupialis)

The Springbok, the heraldic animal of South Africa, is the only gazelle found south of the Zambezi. It lives in the dry plain savannah of the Kalahari up to the barren regions of the Namib. Springboks are about the size of deer - 80 to 85cm shoulder height - and are marked with a distinct face mask and the reddish-brown stripe on the side, which is typical for gazelles. Male as well as female animals have lyra-shaped short horns.

In situations of danger Springboks perform a stiff-legged bound in the air - the so called pronking - unfolding a bush of bright white hair on their back end, to warn the herd. During these bounds the animals can reach heights of up to 3.5m.

During dry season huge herds of Springboks used to migrate southwards over the Orange River. They completely defoliated the land they crossed and simply overran other antelopes that tried to stand up against them. The last migration of this kind was reported in 1896, after which they were hunted intensively. Springboks today live in bigger or smaller herds all over the Kalahari.

Population on Vogelstrausskluft: widespread
Main Habitats: Plateau, Ancient Valley, Canyon Plains

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