Name: Blue Wildebeest
Scientific Name: Connochaetes Taurinus
Blue wildebeest are large African bovids with robust muzzles and cow-like horns. The horns are long without ridges and the males’ horns are thicker with the appearance of a boss. Wildebeests have short hair covering their bodies, and their color ranges from slate gray to dark brown, with males darker than females. There are black vertical stripes of longer hair on their backs. Wildebeests also have black faces, manes, and tails. The different subspecies of wildebeest vary in color. Connochaetes t. johnstoni is the largest subspecies and the western white-bearded wildebeest (C.t. mearnsi) is the smallest. Connochaetes t. mearnsi is the darkest group of wildbeest and C.t. albojubatus is the palest. Connochaetes t. taurinus individuals are slate gray in color, the origin of the common name “blue” wildebeest.
Wildebeests thrive in areas that are neither too wet nor too dry. They can be found in places that vary from overgrazed areas with dense bush to open woodland floodplains. Wildebeests prefer the bushlands and grasslands of the southern savanna. Large herds numbering into the thousands may be observed on the Tanzania Serengeti equatorial plain, and in Zambia in Liuwa Plain National Park, in their annual migration. Smaller herds of about thirty are found in northern Botswana, Zimbabwe and the South African locations of Waterberg, Kruger National Park and Mala Mala. Some herds can be found almost to the southern tip of South Africa.
The range of the wildebeest includes the plains and acacia savannas of eastern Africa. This range extends from the equator to the tip of South Africa.
It grows to 1.4 meters shoulder height.
Attains a body mass of 300+ kilograms.
Life span in excess of twenty years.