Concept

Greater kudu

Summary
The greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) is a large woodland antelope, found throughout eastern and southern Africa. Despite occupying such widespread territory, they are sparsely populated in most areas due to declining habitat, deforestation, and poaching. The greater kudu is one of two species commonly known as kudu, the other being the lesser kudu, T. imberbis. Kudu (kuːduː ), or koodoo, is the Khoikhoi name for this antelope. Trag- (Greek) denotes a goat and elaphos (Greek) a deer. Strepho (Greek) means "twist", and strepsis is "twisting". Keras (Greek) refers to the horn of the animal. Greater kudus have a narrow body with long legs, and their coats can range from brown/bluish grey to reddish brown. They possess between 4 and 12 vertical white stripes along their torso. The head tends to be darker in colour than the rest of the body, and exhibits a small white chevron which runs between the eyes. Greater kudu bulls tend to be much larger than the cows, and vocalize much more, utilizing low grunts, clucks, humming, and gasping. The bulls also have beards running along their throats, and large horns with two and a half twists, which, were they to be straightened, would reach an average length of , with the record being . They diverge slightly as they slant back from the head. The horns do not begin to grow until the bull is between the ages of 6–12 months. The horns form the first spiral rotation at around 2 years of age, and not reaching the full two and a half rotations until they are 6 years old; occasionally they may even have 3 full turns. This is one of the largest species of antelope. Bulls weigh , with a maximum of , and stand up to tall at the shoulder. The ears of the greater kudu are large and round. Cows weigh and stand as little as tall at the shoulder; they are hornless, without a beard or nose markings. The head-and-body length is , to which the tail may add a further . File:Greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) calf male.jpg|Male calf[[Tswalu Kalahari Reserve]], [[South Africa]] File:Greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros strepsiceros) juvenile male.
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