Did you know? Legend has it that the kudu is God’s favorite antelope! After creating the very first kudu, God held its face in His hands, looked into its eyes and exclaimed, “You are SO beautiful!” and kissed the kudu smack on the nose! And that’s why the kudu bears the fingerprints of God. You can see them on the sides of every kudu’s face.
At nearly five feet tall and 565 pounds, this magnificent creature is one of South Africa’s largest antelopes. The greater kudu male is easily recognized by its majestic spiraled horns, which can grow as long as 72 inches, making two and a half graceful twists. Despite the enormity of its horns, the kudu can move easily through wooded habitats and dense bush by titling its chin up so the horns lay across its back. These beautifully shaped horns have long been prized in Africa for use as musical instruments, honey containers and symbolic ritual objects.
The kudu’s fur ranges from a brown-blue grey to reddish brown, with wonderfully exotic markings, spots and stripes. It has a lovely chevron of white fur on its forehead, a crest of long hair on its spine and fringe under its chin. Its mysterious coloring and coat patterns serve as protective camouflage in tall grass and bushes. When alarmed, these gentle animal prefer flight to fight. They will run away, lifting their tails over their rumps and fanning out the white undersurface as a warning signal to others. Their call is the loudest of any antelope, a penetrating, gruff bark.
While prey to hyenas, lions, cheetahs, leopards and wild dogs, kudus are vegetarians and nibble on leaves from the trees and bushes as well as other varieties of plant life such as herbs, flowers, berries and fallen fruits.
Kudus favor both the savannah and bushveld, and sightings are quite common on safari. Are you ready to meet God’s favorite antelope? Click here for a Safari Adventure itinerary.