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Southern Lechwe

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Southern Lechwe

DISTRIBUTION AND HABITAT

South Africa. Plain grasslands, wet meadows, floodplains bordering marshes.

BEHAVIOUR

Active most often in the early morning hours and after dusk. The size and structure of the herd depends on the abundance of food and the mating season. Females with young prefer wetter areas, males prefer drier areas. He is phlegmatic by nature. Narrow, long, light, flared to the sides of the hooves
make it easier to move around the marshy and difficult terrain.

DIET

The food consists of grasses (Echinochloa, Panicum, Brachiaria, Paspalum, Acroceras, Oryza) and young shoots of reeds.

REPRODUCTION

Sexual maturity is reached at the age of 1.5 – 2 years. Gestation: around 8 months. The female gives birth to 1 young which she feeds with milk until 5-6 months. Lifespan: up to 15 years in kind.

GOOD TO KNOW

Reasons for the threat to the species: poaching, commercial hunting, drought, construction of dams for hydropower plants that drastically change the environment.

  • Latin name: Kobus leche
  • IUCN –Red List – NT – near threatened
  • CITES – Appendix II
  • ESB –  European Studbook

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