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W. L. SCLATER, M.A., F.Z.S. 

Director of the South African Museum, Cape Town 




W. L. SCLATER, M.A., F.Z.S. 

Director of the South African Museum, Cape Town 

VOL. I. 




















It seems a very remarkable fact, in these days of books 
and book-making, that except for one very creditable essay 
published in 1832, by Mr. J. F. Smuts, no one has hitherto 
attempted to give a complete account of the Mammals of 
South Africa ; and although large numbers of naturalists and 
sportsmen have visited the country, for the purpose of shooting 
and collecting, nearly all their energies have been devoted to 
obtaining so-called " trophies " of the larger animals; while 
the smaller sorts, among which are many most interesting 
creatures, have been hitherto almost entirely neglected. 

The result of this is that our knowledge of the larger 
animals such as the antelopes and the carnivores, is fairly 
complete, while among the rats, bats, and shrews, much still 
remains to be done. 

In the present volumes I have endeavoured to collect 
together all the information at present available on the subject 
of South African Mammals. I fear there are a good many 
omissions and that much revision will be necessary, but my 
hope is, that the publication of this book may stimulate the 
energy of many interested in Natural History to collect further 
material and to record more facts about the life-history of 
South African animals, for it is the want of specimens, and of 
information regarding them, that has so much hampered me 
in my present efforts. 

The limits of South Africa, which I have chosen some- 
what arbitrarily are the Cunene and Zambesi Eivers on the 
West and East coasts respectively ; on the whole this is a 
more convenient line than the Tropic of Capricorn, which has 


sometimes been adopted, or than any fancied line of faunal 

The Synonymy has been reduced, as far as possible : only 
references to authors dealing with South Africa have been 
considered, and a large number of references to the narratives 
of the older Cape Travellers and to sporting works have been 
placed under separate headings entitled "Literature.-' 

For the vernacular names in Kaffir or Amaxosa, I am 
indebted to Mr. W. E. M. Stanford, C.M.G., the Superin- 
tendent of native affairs at Cape Town, who is an excellent 
Kaffir linguist. The descriptions and measurements (which 
are all in inches), have, unless otherwise stated, all been taken 
from specimens preserved in the South African Museum, 
and I have endeavoured to so draw up the former that, 
with the help of the numerous keys, the ordinary educated 
individual without special scientific training may be able to 
understand them, though perhaps this will not always be 
quite feasible. 

In preparing the accounts of the habits of the animals 
I have necessarily relied on the observations of others. I have 
endeavoured to compile from what has been already published, 
and from observations communicated to me by letter and 
otherwise, a short summary of what is known of the life- 
history of every animal. In the case of many of the smaller 
forms there is nothing whatever known, and it is here that 
there is an unbounded field for Nature-lovers throughout 
South Africa. 

Of the illustrations a considerable number have been most 
kindly lent to me by the Committee of Publications of the 
Zoological Society of London, to whom I have to return 
my most sincere thanks. The Publishers of Flower and 
Lydekker's Mammals have also allowed me the privilege of 
purchasing a number of cliches of blocks used in that work. 
The other illustrations have been prepared, under my superin- 
tendence, chiefly here in Cape Town, by Miss Ethel Edwards, 
Mr. Claude Fuller and Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Thompson, to all 
of whom I am much indebted for their patience and attention 
to my wants, and although in some cases they have not 
turned out quite so successfully as I could have wished, yet 


they are careful representations of the animals, and the 
shortcomings of some of them from an artistic point of view 
are due chiefly to the inexperience of the artists in making 
drawings for reproduction in the form of process blocks. 

Finally, I must ask my numerous correspondents, both in 
South Africa and elsewhere, to accept my heartiest acknow- 
ledgment for their help, and for the information and the 
specimens often obtained by them at great inconvenience to 
themselves, and without which my work would have been still 
more imperfect ; chief among these are Mr. G. A. K. Marshall, 
of Salisbury, Messrs. H. F. and W. Francis, the late Mr. 
W. Cloete, of Waterfall, in the Albany Division, Mr. Claude 
Southey, Dr. C. L. Lindley and Miss Lilian Orpen. To Mr. 
Oldfield Thomas and to Mr. W. E. de Winton, of the Natural 
History Museum in London, and especially to my father, Mr. 
P. L. Sclater, Secretary of the Zoological Society, I am indebted 
for constant aid and advice. Mr. Sclater has, furthermore, 
most kindly undertaken the labour of reading through my 
proofs for the press. 


South African Museum, Cape Toion, 
Fehruarij 13, 1900. 


The following is a list of the more important separate works 
dealing with South African Mammals referred to in the text, 
arranged according to the date of publication. 

1686. Tachard, Pere G. Voyage de Siam des Peres Jesuites, &c. 2 vols. 
Paris. 4to. 
The second chapter contains an account of the Cape, with allusions to the 
fauna, illustrated with plates of the Zebra, on p. 90, and of the Vache Marine 
(Hippopotamus), the Rhinoceros and the Gerf du Cap (Hartebeest), on p. 104. 

1731. Kolben, P. The Present State of the Cape of Good Hope done into 
English, by Mr. Medley. 2 vols. London. 8vo. 
Translation from the German original, published at Nuremberg, in folio in 1719. 
The second volume contains the earliest list of South African animals. 

1763. Caille, Abbe N. L. de la. Journal Historique du Voyage fait au Cap de 
Bonne Esperance. Paris. 12mo. 
The Abb4 visited the Cape in 1750 to make certain astronomical observations ; 
his journal contains descriptions of one or two animals met with during his 

1766-68. Linnaeus, C. von. Systema Naturae. 3 vols in 4. Ed. duodecima. 
Stockholm. 8vo. 
From the 12th edition of Linnaeus' " System of Nature," binomial nomen- 
clature makes its start. 

1766-87. Vosmaer, A. [Collection of descriptions, in Dutch, of various animals, 

each with a separate title-page and illustrated with a coloured plate] . 

Amsterdam. 4to. 

The following Cape animals are described chiefly from examples living in the 

menagerie of the Prince of Orange, viz., Wart Hog {Phacochoerus aetliioincus) , 

Dassie (Procavia capensis), Genet [Qenetta tigrina). Kudu {Strepsiceros capensis), 

Eland {Taurotragus oryx), Gnu {Connochaetes gnu), Giraffe (Oiraffa capensis), 

and Golden Mole [Chrysochloris cmrea). 


1774-89. Buffon, Comte de. Histoire Naturelle. Supplement, vols 1-7. 
Paris, 4to. 
A number of South African animals are here mentioned for the first time ; 
most of the descriptions are based on information sent by Colonel Gordon to 
Professor AUamand, at Leyden, and reprinted from AUamand's Dutch edition of 
Buffon's great work. 

1775-1810. Schreber. Die Saugethiere. 5 vols. Erlangen, dto. 

A descriptive work on mammals, not completed by the author but con- 
tinued after his death by Goldfuss and Wagner. 

1776. Masson, F. An Account of Three Journeys from Cape Town into the 

Southern parts of Africa ; undertaken for the Discovery of New Plants 

towards the Improvement of the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew. 

Phil. Trans., 1776, part 1, p. 268. 

Mr. Masson was a gardener from Kew who travelled extensively in South 

Africa between the years 1772 and 1776. The account of his travels contains a 

good many references to the larger Cape animals, though none are described at 

very great length. 

1778. Hop, H. Nouvelle description du Cap de Bonne Esperance avec un 
journal historique d'un voyage de terre fait par ordre du Governeur 
Feu Mgr. Ryk Tulbagh. Amsterdam. 8vo. 
Journal of a journey undertaken in 1761-62 to Little and Great Namaqualand, 

during which the Giraffe was first met with in South Africa ; descriptions of 

this and other animals from the pens of Professor Allamand and Dr. Klockner 

of Leyden. 

1785. Sparrman, A. A Voyage to the Cape of Good Hope, &c., from the year 
1772 to 1776. 2 vols. Dublin. 8vo. 
Translation from the original published at Stockholm (8vo, 1783). Sparrman 
was the earliest trained naturalist who visited South Africa, he travelled along 
the South Coast as far as the Fish River ; his observations are very trustworthy 
and he added much to our knowledge ; a number of Cape animals were described 
by him for the first time in the Transactions of the Swedish Academy for the 
years 1778-82. 

1789. Paterson, W. A Narrative of Four Journeys into the Country of the 

Hottentots and Caffraria in the Years 1777, 1778, 1779. London. 


Notes on journeys made through the eastern and northern parts of the 

Colony, including the first discovery of the mouth of the Orange River, with 

Colonel Gordon, and containing references to many animals including the 

Giraffe, a specimen of which was obtained just to the north of the Orange River. 

1790. Vaillant, F. le. Travels from the Cape of Good Hope into the Interior 

Parts of Africa. Translated by Mrs. Helme. 2 vols. London. 8vo. 

1796. Vaillant, P. le. New Travels in the Interior Parts of Africa in the 
Years 1783, 1784, 1785. 3 vols. London. 8vo. 
The first translated from the 1st edition, published in 4to, at Paris in 1789, 
the second from the Paris edition, in 8vo, dated I'an 3 (1794-95) ; accounts of the 
habits of a good many animals are referred to in these perhaps not wholly 
trustworthy works. 


1795. Thunberg, C. P. Travels in Europe, Africa and Asia, made between the 
Years 1770 and 1779. 4 vols. 2nd ed. London. 8vo. 
Translation of the original Swedish edition. Vols. 1 and 2 contain the 
African travels through the Colony to Algoa Bay in the East, and to Calvinia in 
the North ; many incidental accounts of the larger animals are given, after- 
wards separately published in the "Memoirs of the St. Petersburg Academy," 
vol. 3 for 1811. 

1801-04. Barrow, J. An Account of Travels into the Interior of Southern 
Africa in the Years 1797, 1798. 2 vols. London. 4to. 
A second edition, also in 2 vols., published in 1806. Barrow came out on the 
staff of Lord Macartney, the first English Governor, and travelled all over the 
Colony ; he makes many references to the animals met with and their habits. 

1804-05. Daniell, S. African Scenery, being Illustrations of the Animals, &c. 
Plates 1-30. London, oblong folio. 
Sketches of the artist who accompanied Messrs. Truter and Somerville on 
their journey to the north of the Orange River in 1801 (see below, Barrow). 

1806. Barrow, J. A Voyage to Cochin China, &c., to which is annexed an 

Account of a Journey made in the Years 1801, 1802, to the Residence 

of the Chief of the Booshuana Natives. London. 4to. 

The appendix is a narrative by IMessrs. P. J. Truter and William Somerville, 

of one of the earliest journeys north of the Orange River as far as Latakoo, near 

Kuruman in Bechuanaland. The Pallah {Ae]pyceros melampus), the Kokoon or 

Blue Wildebeest (Connocliaetes taurinus), the " new quagga " {E^uus hurchelli), 

and the Takheitse or Roan (Hippotragtis eguinus) are all met with and described, 

though their introduction to scientific nomenclature did not take place till later. 

The animals were mostly figured by Daniell. 

1812-15. Lichtenstein, H. Travels in Southern Africa in the Years 1803, 1804, 
1805 and 1806. Translated from the original German, by Anne 
Plumptre. 2 vols. London. 4to. 
Translation from the German edition published in 8vo at Berlin in 1811. 

Narrative of travels through the Colony and also to Bechuanaland. Notes on 

several animals are given and also a scientific description and name for the 

Pallah (Aepyceros melampus). 

1817. Burchell, W. A List of Quadrupeds brought by Mr. Burchell from 
South Africa and Presented by him to the British Museum on the 
30th of September, 1817. Pamphlet. London. 8vo. 

1820. Daniell, W. Sketches Representing the Native Tribes, Animals and 
Scenery of Southern Africa. 48 pis. London. Long 8vo. 
A further series of uncoloured engravings by Samuel Daniell (cf. 1804). 

1820-22. Desmarest, A. G. Mammalogie ou Description des especes des 
Mammiferes. 2 vols. Paris. 4to. 
A complete descriptive catalogue of the Mammals then known ; many of the 
South African animals collected by Delalande are here described for the first 


1822. Burchell, W. J. Travels iu the Interior of Southern Africa. 2 vols. 
London. 4to. 
Burchell (born 1781, died 1863), arrived at the Cape in 1810 and travelled 
north as far as Litakun (near Kuruman) ; he was a most skilful and well- 
trained zoologist and botanist, and his observations are all accurate and methodi- 
cal ; he discovered and named the Sassaby {Damaliscus lunatus) and a small 
Wild Cat {Felis nigripes) ; he also gave a name to the blue Wildebeest {Conno- 
chaetes taurinus) and the Blesbok {Damaliscus albifrons), and discriminated the 
Zebra, to which later Gray gave his name (Equus hiirchelli). 

1826. Smith, A. A Descriptive Catalogue of the South African Museum. 

Part 1. Mammalia. Cape Town. 8vo. 
A descriptive list of the Mammals contained in the collections brought 
together by Dr., aftervs^ards Sir Andrew Smith, to form the first South African 
Museum, instituted in June, 1825, by the order of His Excellency Lord Charles 
Henry Somerset, the then Governor ; the collections were for many years in the 
care of the South African Institution, and subsequently handed over to form the 
nucleus of the South African Museum, as refounded in 1857. 

1827-34. Lichtenstein, H. Darstellung neuer oder wenig bekannter Saugethiere. 
Berlin. Polio. 
This work contains descriptions of eighteen South African animals several 
of which are described as new species though now relegated to synonomy. 

1827. Brants, A. Het Geslacht der Muizen door Linnaeus op-gesteldt met eene 

plat. Berlin. 8vo. 
A monograph on the Muridae containing the earliest descriptions of the 
following Cape animals: — Georychus caecutiens, Otomys irroratiis, Dendromys 
mesomelas and Mus colonus. 

1832. Smuts, J. Dissertatio Zoologica, enumerationem Mammalium Capensium 
continens. Tribus tabulis adjunctis. Leyden. 4to. 
This is the first and in fact the only work dealing with the Mammals of the 
Cape. Very careful descriptions are given of all the animals, 108 in number. 
Vespertilio tricolor, Sorex (now JJyosorex) varius, Mus dolichurus and 31anis 
temmincki, are described for the first time, others, also described as new, have 
since been shown to be synonymous with previously described species. 

1835. Steedman, A. Wanderings and Adventures in the Interior of Southern 
Africa. 2 vols. London. Svo. 
Account of travels, chiefly in the Eastern Provinces, and as far as Griquatown 
in Griqualand West, whither he accompanied Sir A. Smith ; chapter v. of the 
second volume is devoted to Natural History, and an account of the Waterbuck 
{Cobus ellipsiprymnus) first obtained by the author is there given, 

1835. Moodie, J. W. D. Ten Years in South Africa. 2 vols. London. 8vo. 
Incidental notes on the habits and distribution of many animals in Swellen- 

dam and Albany between the years 1830-35 are here given. 

1836. Smith, A. Eeport of the Expedition for Exploring Central Africa from 

the Cape of Good Hope. Cape Town. Svo. 
In an appendix are described the new species of mammals and birds met 
with during the expedition, of which the route extended through Basutoland and 


Bechuanaland, as far as Moselekatse's capital, in what is now the Western 
Transvaal. The following are the species described for the first time : — Galago 
vioholi, Macroscelides intiifi and M. hrachyrhynchus, Mtis marikquensis, Mus 
coucha, Mus lehocJila, Gerbillus paeba, Gerbillus brantsi and Fimisciurus cipapi. 

1838. Harris, W. C. Narrative of an Expedition into Southern Africa during 
the Years 1836 and 1837. 1st edition. Bombay. 8vo. 
Second edition published in London, 1889 ; account of a shooting expedition 
undertaken by the author to the country of Moselekatze, the Matabele Chief, in 
what is now the Rustenburg District of the Transvaal ; accounts of many larger 
animals are given and also of the discovery of the Sable Antelope (Hippo- 
tragus niger). 

1840. Harris, W. C. Portraits of the Game and Wild Animals of Southern 
Africa. 30 plates. London. Folio. 
Illustrations of nearly all the larger animals of South Africa drawn from 
the author's sketches, and accompanied by rather grandiloquent and flowery 

[1847]. Delegorgue, A. Voyage dans I'Afrique Australe. 2 vols. Paris. 8vo. 
Account of shooting expeditions in Natal and Zululand, and of a journey to 
the Magaliesberg, now in the Rustenburg district of the Transvaal, from 1838 to 
1842, with many observations and reflections on Natural History. 

1848. Methuen, H. H. Life in the Wilderness, or Wanderings in South Africa. 

2nd ed. London. 8vo. 
First edition published in 1846. Account of a journey as far as the junction 
of the Limpopo and Marico rivers, now in the north-western part of the 
Transvaal, with observations on the larger animals and woodcuts of their heads, 

1849. Smith, Sir A. Illustrations of the Zoology of South Africa. Vol. 1, 

Mammalia. 53 plates. London. 4to. 
Descriptions, with coloured plates, of various South African animals chiefly 
collected by the author during his journey into the interior (cf. 1836). Many 
new species are described, and the work constitutes by far the most valuable 
contribution up to that time, to our knowledge of South African Zoology. 

1849. Angas, C. F, The Kaffirs, illustrated in a series of drawings, &c. 

London. Folio. 
Plate 29 illustrates a new Antelope, the Inyala (Tragelaphus angasi), dis- 
covered and described by the author from the neighbourhood of St. Lucia Bay 
in Zululand. 

1850. Gray, J. E. Gleanings from the Menagerie and Aviary at Knowsley 

Hall. Hoofed Quadrupeds. (Printed for Private Distribution). 

Knowsley. Folio. 
A series of plates, coloured and uncoloured, from drawings by Mr. Water- 
house Hawkins, of animals living in the Menagerie of the Thirteenth Earl of 
Derby, accompanied by descriptive letterpress by Dr. Gray ; many South 
African species are delineated. 


1852. Peters, W. C. H. Naturwissenschaftliche Reise nach Mossambique in 
den Jahren 1842 bis 1848 ausgefuhrt, Zoologie I. Saugethiere. Fifty- 
four plates. Berlin. Folio. 
A classic work on the Fauna of the Lower Zambesi Valley ; many of the 
new species herein described have subsequently been found further south, well 
within our limits, such are Versperugo nanus, Chrysochloris obtusirostris, 
Funisciurus palliatus, Gerbillus leucogaster, Saccostomus campestris, Golunda 
fallax, Hystrix africae-australis, Bubalis lichtensteini. 

1855. Gumming, R. G, Five Years of a Hunter's Life in the Far Interior of 

South Africa. 2 vols. New ed. London. Small 8vo. 
First edition published in 1850. Description of hunting trips extending as 
far northwards as the junction of the Shashi and the Limpopo in 1843-49, with 
accounts of the habits and distribution of most of the larger game ; a very 
large number of Lions and Elephants were shot and a new variety of the 
Bushbuck was found on the Limpopo and named " Antilopus " roualeyni. 

1856. Andersson, C. J. Lake Ngami. London. 8vo. 

Account of the author's travels in Damara, Ovampo, and Ngami-land, with 
notices of the habits of the larger animals met with. 

1857. Livingstone, D. Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa, 

&c. London. Svo. 
A history of Dr. Livingstone's earlier journeys from 1842, when Lake 
Ngami was discovered ; various Natural History notes are interspersed ; 
the Lechwe (Cobus lecliee), the Puku (Cobiis varcloni), the Sitatunga or Nakong 
[TragelapluLS selousi) and Livingstone's Eland (Taurotragus livingstonii) were all 
met with for the first time. 

1862. Layard, E. L. Catalogue of the Specimens in the Collection of the 

South African Museum. Part 1, Mammalia. Cape Town. Small Svo. 
Two-hundred and twenty-three species, both South African and exotic, are 
enumerated ; many of the specimens are still retained, but a good many have 
been replaced by better preserved examples. 

1863. Baldwin, W. C. African Hunting from Natal to the Zambesi from 

1852-60. London. Svo. 
Account of hunting excursions in Zululand and through the Transvaal to 
Lake Ngami and the Zambesi, with notices of many of the larger animals. 

1863. Grout, L. Zululand, or Life among the Zulu Kaffirs. London. Svo. 

A chapter is devoted to the animals of Natal and Zululand and the Zulu 
names are given. 

1864. Baines, T. Explorations in South- West Africa. London. Svo. 
Account of a journey from Walfisch Bay in Damaraland, via Lake Ngami, 

to the Victoria Falls, with notes and other particulars of the larger animals 
met with. 

1868. Chapman, J. Travels in the Interior of South Africa. 2 vols. London. 
Account of Wanderings between Natal, Lake Ngami, the Victoria Falls and 
Walfisch Bay during the years 1849-61 ; contains notes on the habits and 
distribution of some of the larger animals. 


1873. Andersson, C. J. The Lion and the Elephant. London. 8vo. 

The habits and hunting of the two animals as observed in South Africa by 
the author. 

1875. Drummond, The Hon. W. H. The Large Game and Natural History of 
South and South-East Africa. Edinburgh. 8vo. 
The author's experiences were chiefly in Natal and Zululand, and a good 
many of the animals found there are here commented on. 

1878. Dobson, G. E. Catalogue of the Chiroptera in the Collection of the 
British Museum. London. 8vo. 
This work contains full descriptions of all the Bats of the world, and our 
knowledge of South African species is mostly founded on the information 
therein contained. 

1878-83. Elliot, D. G. A Monograph of the Felidae, or Family of the Cats, 
London. Folio. 
A complete monograph illustrated with fine coloured plates. 

1881. Holub, E. Seven Years in South Africa (1872-79). Translated by Ellen 
E. Frewer. 2 vols. London. 8vo. 
Translation of the German edition published at Vienna in 1880 ; contains 
notes on various animals met with during his journeys extending as far as the 
Victoria Falls and Sesheke on the Zambesi. 

1882-90. Dobson, G. E. A Monograph of the- Insectivora, Systematic and 
Anatomical. Parts 1-3, fasc. 1. London. 4to. 
An unfinished work containing a monograph of the Golden Moles, a family 
of considerable importance in South Africa. 

1886. Farini, G. A. Through the Kalahari Desert. London. Svo. 
An appendix contains a list of Kalahari Mammals. 

1888-93. Theal, G, McC, History of South Africa. 5 vols. London. Svo. 

Many scattered references to the South African Fauna are to be found in 
these pages. 

1889. Bryden, H. A. Kloof and Karoo. London. Svo. 

Contains special chapters on some of the Game animals, such as the Klip- 
springer, Vaal Rhebok, Zebra, together with a valuable account of the past 
distribution of the larger animals of the Colony. 

1889. True, P. W. Contributions to the Natural History of the Cetaceans, 

A Review of the Family Delphinidae. Bulletin of the United States 
National Museum, No. 36. Washington. Svo. 
A complete account of the members of the Dolphin family. 

1890. Mivart, St. G. Monograph of the Canidae. London. 4to. 

A monograph illustrated with plates of all the South African species of Dogs, 
Foxes and Jackals. 

1890. Reuvens, C. L. Die Myoxidae oder Schlaefer. Leyden, 4to. 

A monograph of the Dormice, with the description of a new species from 



1890. Selous, P. C. A Hunter's Wanderings in Africa. 2nd edition. London. 
First edition published in 1881. The greater part of the book is devoted to 
hunting reminiscences in Mashonaland and north of the Zambesi, with many 
incidental references to the habits of the animals met with ; two valuable 
chapters on the Antelopes and Rhinoceros are reprinted from the Zoological 
Society's " Proceedings." The whole is illustrated with figures of the heads 
of the numerous South African Antelopes. 

1890. Martin, Annie. Home Life on an Ostrich Farm, London. 8vo. 

Contains notes on the habits of many of the animals and birds met with on 
Karoo, during a residence for some time in the eastern part of the Colony. 

1892, Nicolls, J, A., and Eglington, E, The Sportsman in South Africa. 
London. 8vo. 
An account of the game animals and birds of South Africa, with descriptions, 
native names, habits and distribution, derived partly from personal observation 
and partly from compilation. The heads of all the Antelopes are figured in a 
series of twelve plates. 

1892. Moseley, H. N. Notes by a Naturalist on the Challenger. 2nd edition. 
London, 8vo, 
First edition published in 1879 ; chapter vi. contains an account of residence 
at, and observation on the Fauna of, the Cape Peninsula, during the stay of the 
Challenger in Simon's Bay. 

1892. Distant, W. L, A Naturalist in the Transvaal. London, 8vo. 
Contains scattered notes on some of the Mammals, and (on p. 159) a list 

of those observed near Pretoria. 

1893. Selous, F. C, Travel and Adventure in South-east Africa. London. 8vo, 
Further hunting reminiscences with scattered notes on the habits of the 

larger animals. 

1893. Bryden, H. A. Gun and Camera in Southern Africa, London, 8vo, 

Account of a residence in British Bechuanaland, and of a trip to the Botletli 
River ; an excellent account of Giraffe shooting is given ; one chapter deals 
with the distribution of the larger game animals of Bechuanaland and the 

1893. Lydekker, R. Horns and Hoofs, or Chapters on Hoofed Animals. 

London. 8vo, 
Short descriptions and notes on the various members of the families Bovidae, 
Cervidae, Stcidae and Bhinocerotidae, illustrated with many figures in the text. 

1894. Oswell, W. C, Jackson, F. J., Selous, F. C, and others. Big Game 

Shooting, The Badminton Library. 2 vols. London. 8vo. 
Accounts of several of the large South African game animals, with reminis- 
cences by Mr. Oswell, Livingstone's companion in his early journeys. 


1894-1900. Sclater, P. L., and Thomas, 0. The Book of Antelopes. 4 vols. 
London, 4to. 
This work contains full descriptions and synonomy of all the known species 
of Antelopes, together with accounts of their habits and distribution. Almost 
every species is illustrated by a coloured plate, besides numerous woodcuts of 
heads and hoxns. 

1895. Millais, J. G. A Breath from the Veldt. London. Polio. 

Contains accounts of the Game animals met with and shot on a hunting 
excursion from Capetown through the Transvaal bushveld to south-east 
Mashonaland ; the special value of the book consists in the drawings and sketches 
which were nearly all done from the live or only just killed animals, and not 
from stuffed specimens, as is so frequently the case ; the animals most fully 
dealt with are the Springbok, Kudu, Sable, and Wildebeest, both Black and 

1895. Matschie, P. Die Saugethiere Deutsch-Ost-Afrikas. Berlin. 8vo. 

An account of the Mammals of German East Africa, with many illustrations 
and much incidental information about South African species. 

1896. Kirby, P. V. In Haunts of Wild Game. Edinburgh. 8vo. 

An account of hunting the large Game animals found in the bushveld 
of the Eastern Transvaal and adjoining Portuguese territory ; an appendix 
gives a useful list of the animals met with, together with their vernacular names, 
distribution and habits. 

1897. Bryden, H. A. Nature and Sport in South Africa. London. 8vo. 
Chapters are devoted to many of the larger and more interesting South 

African animals, their history, habits and distribution. 

1898. Gibbons, A. St. H. Exploration and Hunting in Central Africa. 

London. 8vo. 
In an appendix on p. 394, is a list of the Game animals of Barotseland with 
notes on their habits and distribution. 

1898-99. Oatalogus Mammalium tarn viventium quam fossilium. 2 vols. New 
edition. Berlin. 8vo. 
A most useful catalogue with the synonomy and distribution of all the species 
of Mammals hitherto described. 

1899. Bryden, H. A. (edited by). Great and Small Game of Africa. London. 

This work contains descriptions and illustrations of all the larger African 
animals, the South African portion contains contributions by Kirby, Selous, 
Bryden, Rendall and Neumann. 

1899, Kirby, P. V. Sport in East Central Africa. London. 8vo. 

A zoological appendix, contains some notes on Mammals met with, especially 
in the Portuguese districts lying between the Zambesi and Beira. 


The following are the abbreviations used for the more important journals 
quoted in the synonymy : — 

Ann. kk. Hofmus. 
Ann. Mag. N. H. , , . 
Ann. Mus, .,,.,,,,, 
Ann. S. A. Mus. . 
Ann. Sci. Nat. . . , 
Archiv. f. Naturg. 
Bericht Akad., Berlin.. 

Bull. Soc. Philom. . . . 
Charlesw. Mag. N. H. . 
Jom. Sci. Lisb 

K.Vetensk. Akad. Handl 

Le Natur 

Mag. nat. Fr. Berl. 

M. B. Akad. Berlin. 

Mem. Mus. Hist. Nat. 

Annalen des k. k. naturhistorischen Hofmuseums. 14 

vols. 1886-99. Vienna. 8vo. 
Annals and Magazine of Natural History. 124 vols. 

1838-99. London. 8vo. 
Annales du Museum d'Historie Natur«lle. 20 vols. 

1802-13. Paris. 4to. 
Annals of the South African Museum. 1 vol. 1898-99. 

Cape Town. 8vo. 
Annales des Sciences Naturelles, Zoologie et Palaeonto- 

logie. 162 vols. 1824-99. Paris. 8vo. 
Archiv f iir Naturgeschichte, 65 vols. 1835-99. Berlin. 

Bericht iiber die zur Bekanntmachung geeigneten 

Verhandlungen der koniglich-preussischen Akademie 

der Wissenschaften zu Berlin. 20 vols. 1836-55. 

Berlin. 8vo. 
Bulletin de la Soci^t^ Philomatique de Paris. 49 vols. 

1791-99. Paris. 8vo. 
Magazine of Natural History; new series by Edward 

Charlesworth. 4 vols. 1837-40. London. 8vo. 
Jornal de Sciencias mathematicas, physicas et naturaes 

publicado sob os auspicios da Academia real das 

Sciencias de Lisboa. 30 vols. 1868-99. Lisbon. 8vo. 
.Kongliga Svenska Vetenskaps Akademiens Handlingar. 

138 vols. 1739-91. Stockholm. 8vo and 4to. 
Le Naturaliste. 21 vols. 1879-86. Paris. 4to. 
Magazin der Gesellschaft naturforschender Freunde zu 

Berlin (c. /. S. B. nat. Fr. Berl.). 8 vols. 1807-18. 

Berlin. 4to. 
Monatsberichte der koniglich-preussischen Akademie 

der Wissenschaften zu Berlin. 26 vols. 1856-81. 

Berlin (c. /. Bericht Akad. Berlin). 
M^moires du Museum d'Histoire Naturelle. 20 vols. 

1815-32. Paris. 4to. 


N. Arch. Mus. Nouvelles Archives du Museum d'Histoire Naturelle, 

35 vols. 1865-99. Paris. 4to. 
N. Act. Ups Nova Acta Regiae Societatis Scientiarium Upsalensis. 

14 vols. 1733-50. Upsala. 4to. 
Notes Leyd. Mus Notes from the Royal Zoological Museum of the Nether- 
lands at Leyden. 21 vols. 1879-99. Leyden. 8vo. 

Nov. Zool Novitates Zoologicae. 6 vols. 1894-99. Tring. 8vo. 

Ofvers. K. Vet. Akad. Ofversigt af K, Vetenskaps-Akademiens Forhandlingar. 

Forh 56 vols. 1845-99. Stockholm. 8vo. 

Proc. Zool. Soc Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London. 67 

vols. 1832-99. London. 8vo. 
Rev. Mag. Zool Revue et Magasin de Zoologie. 30 vols. 1849-79- 

Paris. 8vo, 
S, Afr. Quart. Journ. . . South African Quarterly Journal. 2 vols. 1829-35. 

Cape Town. 8vo. 
S. B. nat. Fr. Berlin . . Sitzungsberichte der Gesellschaf t naturforschender 

Freunde zu Berlin. 30 vols. 1860-99. Berlin. 4to. 

and 8vo. 
Trans. Zool. Soc Transactions of the Zoological Society of London. 15 

vols. 1885-99. London. 4to. 

Zool, Gart Der Zoologische Garten, 30 vols. 1860-99, Frankf urt- 

a-M. 8vo. 

Zool. Jahrb Zoologische Jahrbacher. 36 vols. 1886-99. Jena. 8vo. 

Zool. Journ Zoological Journal. 5 vols. 1824-35. London. 8vo. 

Zoologist The Zoologist. 57 vols. 1843-99. London. 8vo. 



Fig. 1 Cercopithecus lalandii, mother and young 8 

,, 2 Cercopithecus samango 10 

, , 3 Side view of the skull of Papio porcarius 13 

,, 4 Papio cynocephalus 17 

,, 5 Skull of Galago garnetti 20 

,, 6 Skull of Galago moholi 21 

,, 7 Galago moholi 22 

,, 8 The right half of the hinder part of the base of the 

cranium of the Wolf ( Ganis lupus) 25 

,, 9 Left half of the palate and the lower jaw of Fells 

caffra 28 

,, 10 Felts pardtis, the black YSiYietj 36 

,, 11 Felis nigripes 41 

,, 12 Genetta tigrina, leit ha\i oi ^sAsbte 53 

,, 13 Sole of the hind foot of Genetta tigrina 54 

,, 14 The small spotted Genet, Genetta felina 56 

,, 15 Left half of palate and lower jaw of Herpestes galera 59 

,, 16 The Small Grey Mungoose {Herpestes pulverulentus) 65 

,, 17 ^kull oi Bhynchog ale inelleri 70 

,, 18 Left half of palate and lower jaw of Suricata 

tetradoAityla 76 

,, 19 Suricata tetradactyla 78 

,, 20 Palate and lower jaw of Proteles cristatus showing 

the rudimentary molars 79 

,, 21 Proteles cristatus 81 

,, 22 Skull and left half of palate of I?2/<*ewa crocw^a 84 

„ 23 Hyaena hrunnea 86 

,, 24 Skull of Vulpes chama 97 

,, 25 ^kull oi Otocyon megalotis 99 

,, 26 Otocyon megalotis 100 

,, 27 '^kuW oi Lycaon pictus 102 

,, 28 Lycaon pictus 103 



Fig. 29 Left half of palate and lower jaw of ilfeZZii;ora7-ateL.. 109 

30 Mellivora ratel Ill 

31 Palatal view of skull and lower jaw of Zorilla striata 113 

32 Skull oi Poecilogale albinucha 115 

33 Poccilogale albinucha 116 

34 Skull of Arctocephalus imsillus 119 

35 Arctocephahcs picsillus 121 

36 Skeleton of the right fore feet of the pig and the 
buffalo {Bos caffer), to show the modification of 
the Artiodactyle limb 125 

37 Stomach of a ruminant opened to show its internal 
structure 126 

38 Skull and horns of Buhalis lichtensteini $ 130 

39 The Ked Hartebeest (SztSa^is caa77ia) 132 

40 Lichtenstein's Hartebeesfc {Bubalis lichtensteini) 135 

41 The Bontebok {Damaliscus pygargus) 139 

42 The Blesbok [Damaliscus alhifrons) 142 

43 Skull and horns of the supposed hybrid between the 
Red Hartebeest and the Sassaby 145 

44 Young Black Wildebeest, eight months old 149 

45 Horns of Black Wildebeest, eleven weeks old and 
nineteen months old 152 

46 TLeo^di oiiliQ'DmkQX {Cephalophus grimvii) 159 

47 The Klipspringer {Oreotragus saltator) 167 

48 Fore leg of the Oribi {Ourehia scoparia) to show the 
knee tufts 171 

49 Skull of Nesotragus living stonianus ^ 179 

50 Head of the Damaraland Dik-dik [Madoqua 
damarensis) 182 

51 Head of the Water-buck {Cobus ellipsiprymnus) 186 

52 Horns of the Puku (Co&MS t^arcZo^if) 192 

53 Head of the Eooi Ehebok (Gervicapra fulvorufula) ^ 198 

54 Hind feet of Aepyceros melampus to show the 
glandular tufts on the cannon bones 203 

55 Head of the male Pallah {Aepyceros melampus) 205 

56 Side view of skull and horns of Antidorcas euchore 208 

57 Head of the Eoan Antelope {Hippotragus equinus) ... 218 

58 Head of the Sable Antelope [Hippotragus niger) 222 

59 TlhQ Gem^hdk [Oryx gazella) 226 

60 Skull and horns of the Inyala [Tragelaphus angasi)... 236 

61 Skull and horns of the Sitatunga [Tragelaphus selousi) 238 

62 Skull and borns of the Kudu (<Sirej:)SJceros ca/jeusis)... 243 

63 Head of a male Eland [Taurotragus oryx) 249 







! > 




























Skull and horns of a male Buffalo {Bos caffer) 255 

Skull of the Southern Giraffe {Giraffa capensis) 259 

Head of the Southern Giraffe {Giraffa capensis) 262 

Skull of Hippopotamus amphihius 266 

The Hippopotamus {Hippopotamus amphihius) 269 

The Bosch-vark (Potowoc/ioenis c/ioerqpotomMs) 275 

Skull of Phacochoerus aethiopicus 277 

Blight UT^^er m.o\a,v oi Phacochoerus aethiopicus 277 

Eight fore-feet of Bhinoceros simus and Equus burchelli 
to show the modifications of the Perissodactyle 

limb 281 

Skull of Equus hurchelli 283 

HhQ QviQ.gga, {Equus quag g a) 295 

Skull of Bhinoceros simus 297 

Upper molar of Bhinoceros simus 298 

Skull, side view, and left half of palate of Procavia 

capensis 309 

The Uassie {Procavia capensis) 312 

Eight fore - foot of an African Elephant {Elephas 
africanus), to show the modification of the 

Proboscidian limb 317 

80 Grinding surface of a partially worn right upper 
molar of the African Elephant {Elephas africa- 
nus), to show lozenge-shaped species between 

the successive enamel plates 318 


Order Primates 


Family Cercopithecidae 

1. Cercopithecus lalandii. The 

Vervet . . . . . . 6 

2. Cercopithecus pygerythrus. 

The Mozambique Monkey . . 9 

3. Cercopithecus samango. The 

Samango Monkey . . . . 9 

4. Cercopithecus albigularis, 

Sykes' Monkey . . . . 11 

5. Papio porcarius. The Chacma 

or Baboon . . . . . . 13 

6. Papio cynocephalus. The 

Yellow Baboon . . . . 16 

Family Lbmubidae 

7. Galago garnetti. Garnett's 

Lemur . . . . . . 19 

8. Galago moholi. The Moholi 

Lemur . . . . . . 20 

Order Garnivora 

Family Felidae 

9. Felis leo. The Lion . . 29 

10. Felis pardus. The Leopard 34 

11. Felis serval. The Serval 
Cat 38 

12. Felis nigripes. The Black- 
footed Wild Cat .. ..40 


13. Felis cafEra. The Caffer Cat 42 

14. Felis caracal. The Caracal 44 

15. Cynaelurus jubatus. The 
Hunting Leopard . . . . 46 

Family Viveeridae 

16. Viverra civetta. The Civet 
Cat 51 

17. Genetta tigrina. The Large- 

Spotted Genet . . . . 53 

18. Genetta felina. The Small- 
Spotted Genet . . . . 55 

19. Genetta senegalensis. The 
Senegal Genet . . . . 57 

20. Genetta rubiginosa. The 
Rusty- spotted Genet . . 58 

21. Herpestes caffer. The Large 
Grey Mungoose . . . . 60 

22. Herpestes gracilis . . . . 61 

a, subsp. typicus. The Slen- 
der Mungoose . . . . 62 

b, subsp. badius. The Ruddy 
Mungoose . . . . . . 62 

23. Herpestes galera. The Water 
Mungoose . . . . . . 63 

24. Herpestes pulverulentus. 
The Small Grey Mungoose . . 65 

25. Herpestes punctatissimus. 
The Pale Mungoose . . . . 66 

26. Herpestes albicauda. The 
White-tailed Mungoose . . 66 

27. Herpestes grandis. The 
Giant Mungoose . . . . 67 

28. Helogale parvula. Wahl- 

berg's Mungoose . . . . 68 

29. Rhynchogale melleri. ]\Iel- 
ler's Mungoose . . . . 71 




30. Crossarchus fasciatus. The 
Banded Mungoose . . . . 72 

31. Cynictis penicillata. The 
Bushy-tailed Meerkat . . 74 

32. Cynictis selousi. Selous' 
Meerkat 75 

33. Suricata tetradactyla. The 
Slender-tailed Meerkat . . 76 

Family Peotelidae 

34. Proteles cristatus. The Aard 

Wolf 80 

Family Hyaenidae 

35. Hyaena brunnea. The 
Brown Hyaena or Strand 
Wolf 85 

36. Hyaena crocuta. The 

Spotted Hyaena or Tiger 
Wolf 87 

Division CYNOIDEA 

Family Canidae 

37. Canismesomelas. The Black- 
backed Jackal . . . . 92 

38. Canis adustus. The Side- 
striped Jackal . . . . 95 

39. Vulpes chama. The Silver 

Fox 98 

40. Otocyon megalotis. Dela- 
lande's Fox 99 

41. Lycaon pictus. The Cape 
Hunting Dog or Wilde 
Honde 102 

Family Mustelidae 

42. Lutra capensis. The Cape 
Otter 107 

43. Lutra maculicoUis. The 
Spotted-necked Otter . . 108 

44. Mellivora rate!. The Ratel 110 

45. Zorilla striata. The Striped 
Muishond 113 

46. Poecilogale albinucha. The 
Snake Muishond . . . . 115 

Family Otaeiidae 

47. Arctocephalus pusillus. The 
Cape Sea-Lion . . . . 120 

Order Ungulata 


Division PECORA 

Family Bovidae 

Subfamily Bubalinae 

48. Bubalis caama. The Red 

Hartebeest . . . . . . 181 

49. Bubalis lichtensteini. Lich- 
tenstein's Hartebeest . . 134 

50. Damaliscus pygargus. The 
Bontebok 137 

51. Damaliscus albifrons. The 
Blesbok 141 

52. Damaliscus lunatus. The 

Sassaby . . . . . . 144 

53. Connochaetea gnu. The 
Black Wildebeest or White- 
tailed Gnu 148 

54. Connochaetes taurinus. The 
Blue Wildebeest or Brindled 
Gnu 152 

Subfamily Cephalophinae 

55. Cephalophus grimmi. The 

Duiker 157 

56. Cephalophus natalensis. The 
Red Duiker 161 

57. Cephalophus monticola. 
The Blue Duiker . . . . 163 

Subfamily Neotraginae 

58. Oreotragus saltator. The 
Klipspringer . . • . . . . 166 

59. Ourebia scoparia. The 
Oribi 170 

60. Raphicerus campestris. The 
Steenbok 173 

61. Raphicerus melanotis. The 
Grysbok 176 




62. Nesotragus livingstonianus. 

Livingstone's Antelope . . 179 

63. Madoqua damarensis. The 
Damaraland Dik-dik . . 182 

Subfamily Cervicaprinae 

64. Cobus ellipsiprymnus. The 
Waterbuck 185 

65. Cobus leche. TheLechwe.. 189 

66. Cobus vardoni. ThePuku.. 191 

67. Cervicapra arundinum. The 
Keed-Buck 194 

68. Cervicapra fulvorufula. The 
EooiEhebok .. ..197 

69. Pelea capreolus. The Vaal 
Ehebok 200 

Subfamily Antilopinae 

70. Aepyceros melampus. The 
Pallah 203 

71. Aepyceros petersi. The An- 
golan Pallah 207 

72. Antidorcas euchore. The 

Springbuck 209 

Subfamily Hippotraginae 

73. Hippotragus leucophaeus. 

The Blaauwbok . . . . 215 

74. Hippotragus equinus. The 
Roan Antelope . . . . 217 

75. Hippotragus niger. The 
Sable Antelope . . , . 221 

76. Oryx gazella. The Gems- 
bok 225 

Subfamily Tragelaphinae 

77. Tragelaphus scriptus . . 280 

a, subsp. sylvaticus. The 
Colony Bush Buck . . . . 230 

b, subsp. roualeyni. Gor- 
don Cumming's Bush-Buck 231 

c, subsp. typicus. The Har- 
nessed Antelope . . . . 231 

78. Tragelaphus angasi. The 
Inyala 234 

79. Tragelaphus selousi. The 

Sitatunga 237 


80. Strepsiceros capensis. The 
Kudu 241 

81. Taurotragus oryx . . . . 246 

a, subsp. typicus. The 
Eland 246 

b, subsp. livingstouii. Liv- 
ingstone's Eland . . . - 247 

Subfamily Bovinae 

82. Bos caffer. The Cape Buf- 
falo 254 

Family Gieaffidab 

83. Giraffa capensis. The 
Southern Giraffe . - . . 260 

Division SUINA 

Family Hippopotamidae 

84. Hippopotamus amphibius. 
The Hippopotamus . . . . 267 

Family Suidae 

85. Potamochoerus choeropota- 

mus. The Bush Pig . . 274 

86. Phacochoerus aethiopicus. 
The Wart-hog .. ..278 

Family Equidab 

87. Equus zebra. The Moun- 
tain Zebra . . . . . . 284 

88. Equus burchelli .. ..287 

a, subsp. typicus. Bur- 
chell's Zebra 288 

b, subsp. antiquorum. The 
Damaraland Zebra . . . . 289 

c, subsp. transvaalensis. 
The Transvaal Zebra . . 290 

d, subsp. wahlbergi. Wahl- 
berg's Zebra . . . . . . 290 

e, subsp. chapmanni. Chap- 
man's Zebra . . . . . . 291 

f, subsp. selousi. Selous' 
Zebra 291 

g, subsp. crawshayi, Craw- 
shay's Zebra . . .. .. 292 

89. Equus quagga. The Quagga 294 



Family Rhinocerotidae 

90. Rhinoceros simus. The 

Square-lipped Rhinoceros . . 299 

91. Rhinoceros bicornis. The 
Common Rhinoceros . . 303 


Family Procaviidae 

92. Procavia capensis. The 
Dassie 310 


93. Procavia arborea. The Tree 
Dassie . . . . . . 314 

94. Procavia brucii. Bruce's 
Dassie . . . . . . . . 815 

Family Elephantidae 

95. Elephas africanus. The 
African Elephant . . . . 319 


The second and concluding volume of this work, which will 
contain a complete index, is now in the press and will shortly 
be issued. The second volume of the companion work on the 
Birds has been delayed owing to the tragic death of the author. 
Dr. Stark, at Ladysmith, on the 18th of November last year. 
The manuscript, however, has been recovered and is being 
prepared for the press by the Editor of the series, Mr. W. L. 




Mammals may be defined as vertebrated or back-boned animals in 
which the blood is constantly preserved at a fixed temperature, as 
a rule somewhat higher than that of the surrounding air. Their 
young are nourished with milk provided by the mother from the 
mammary glands, which are situated somewhere on the lower 
side of the body ; and the skull is provided with two condyles 
or swellings posteriorly, for the attachment of the back-bone. 
In addition to these characteristics they are (almost invariably) 
provided with a covering of hair; they have, as a rule, four 
limbs furnished with flat nails, claws or hoofs ; their teeth, when 
present, are usually separable into three categories {i.e., incisors, 
canines and molars) in which case they are described as Heterodont ; 
though in some cases, as in the porpoises, where all the teeth are 
constructed on one pattern, they are termed Homodont. Further- 
more the teeth of the adult animal are usually preceded by another 
set, the milk-teeth ; finally, the cavity containing the heart and 
lungs is completely separated from that containing the viscera by 
a transverse partition known as the diaphragm or midriff. 

Mammals are divisible into three sub-classes of which, however, 
only the first is represented in the South African Fauna. These 
are : — 

1. The Eutheria, containing by far the greater number of 
Mammals ; in these the young are nourished before birth by means 
of a placenta ; they are found all over the world. 

2. The Metatheria, containing the Marsitpialia, the young of 
which are born in a very rudimentary condition in consequence of 



the absence of a placenta, an organ by which the young are nourished 
while still unborn. These animals are confined to the Australian 
Eegion and to the New World. 

3. The Prototheria, containing only the egg-laying Echidna 
and Ornithorhynchus , confined to the Australian Eegion. 

Out of the nine orders into which the Eutheria are usually 
divided one only (the Sirenia) is not represented in South Africa. 
In the following key of the other eight, the characters used are by 
no means the most fundamental, but such as will enable a student 
to recognise most easily the proper position of any animal in the 
series : — 

A. All four limbs well developed. 

a. Fore-limbs not modified for flight. 

a}. Incisor teeth always present in one 
jaw at least. 
a^. Hallux or pollex, or both, opposable 

to the other digits PBIMATES. 

Vol. I., p. 4. 

b^. Hallux and pollex not opposable. 
a^. Toes usually provided with claws 
sometimes with flat nails, 
a*. Incisors neither chisel-shaped 
nor prismatic, or if so more 
than two in number above and 
a\ Upper lip usually projecting 
beyond the lower ; middle 
pair of incisors larger than 

the others INSEGTIVOBA. 

Vol. II. 

6\ Upper lip not projecting ; 
middle incisors not larger 

than the others CABNIVOBA. 

Vol. I., p. 24. 

&\ Incisors chisel - shaped, in the 
upper jaw usually, and in the 
lower jaw invariably two in 

number only BODENTIA. 

Vol. II. 


c*. Incisors prismatic and sharp- 
pointed, two in the upper jaw 

and four in the lower Hyracoidea. 

Vol. I., p. 310. 

¥. Feet provided with hoofs or hoof- 
shaped nails or not terminating 

in distinct toes UNGULATA. 

(except Hyracoidea). Vol. I., p. 123. 

a^. No incisors in either upper or lower 


Vol. II. 

b. Fore limbs modified for flight ; fingers 
elongated to support a membranous 


Vol. II. 

B. No posterior limbs ; structure modified for 

aquatic life CETACEA. 

Vol. II. 


This order comprises Man, the Monkeys and the Lemurs. 
Although the group is a tolerably homogeneous one, the disparity 
in organisation of man and the highest anthropoid apes on the one 
hand and the lemurs on the other hand, make a definition of the 
order rather difficult ; the following characters, however, are 
common to the group. 

Dentition heterodont, i.e., consisting of incisors, molars and 
canines, and diphyodont, i.e., with both a milk and a permanent 
succeeding set ; orbit surrounded by a bony ring more or less 
developed ; clavicles present, radius and ulna distinct ; limbs 
almost always with five fingers and toes terminating usually in flat 
nails or rarely in claws ; hallux or pollex, or both opposable. 

The animals contained in this order are nearly all arboreal ; they 
are distributed all over the world, except in the northern parts of 
the Old and New "World, and in the Australian Eegion. 

The lemurs form a very distinct sub-order distinguished by their 
low organisation and generalised features, and, indeed, by many 
zoologists are considered to represent a separate order ; they are 
specially characteristic of Madagascar, but have outlying forms in 
the Ethiopian and Oriental Eegions. 

Key of the South Afiican Genera. 

A. Inner pair of upper incisors in contact with one 

another ; orbit completely shut off from the 
temporal fossa by a vertical bony plate ; 
second digit of hind foot with a flat nail 
(Anthropoidea) . 

a. Muzzle short ; tail longer than the body ; 

ischial callosities small Cei-cojnthecus, p. 5. 

b. Muzzle elongate and dog-like ; tail shorter than 

the body ; ischial callosities large Pajno, p. 12. 

B. Inner upper incisors separated in the inedian 

line ; orbit not shut off from the temporal fossa 
by a plate of bone ; second digit of the hind foot 
with a claw (Lemuroidea) Galago, p, 18. 



This suborder comprises Man and all the monkeys, and is 
divisible into five families, namely, Hominidae (Man), Simiidae (Man- 
like Apes), Cercopithecidae (other Old World Monkeys), Gebidae (New 
World Monkeys), and Hapalidae (Marmosets) ; of these only the 
second family, to which all South African monkeys are referable, 
here concerns us. 

The characteristic features of the suborder are briefly as 
follows : — Skull with orbit completely shut off from the temporal 
fossa by avertical plate of bone, and the lachrymal foramen situated 
within the limits of the orbit ; pollex occasionally rudimentary or 
absent, second digit always well developed, and the pes almost 
always provided with a flattened nail ; cerebral hemispheres much 
developed, convoluted and covering completely, or almost com- 
pletely, the cerebellum ; median incisors always in contact in the 
middle line. 


The chief distinguishing features of this family are as follows : — 
A narrow internasal septum ; tail not prehensile ; ischial callosities 
present ; cheek-pouches generally present ; pollex, if present, 
opposable ; hind limbs never greatly exceeding the fore-limbs in 
length ; crowns of the molars elongate, their tubercles forming 
imperfect transverse ridges. 

The members of this family are confined to the Old World, and 
in addition to the two described below, comprise the genera The- 
ropithecus (the Gelada of Abyssinia), and Cercocebus (the Mangabeys, 
or white-eyed monkeys), which have no representatives within our 


Cercopithecus, Erxlehen, Syst. Begn. Anim. p. 22 (1777)... C. mona. 

Muzzle rather short ; head round ; body slender with narrow 
loins ; limbs long ; tail long ; anal callosities present but smaller 
than in the baboons and macaques ; fingers and toes united by a 
web at the base ; thumb present but short. 


Skull depressed, superciliary ridges not prominent ; third lower 
molar with no talon, so with four cusps not five. 

Dentition. — i. f , c. ^, pm. f , m. f , = 32. 

About 45 species of this genus have been described, of these 
31 are recognised in the last general revision of the genus (P. L. 
Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc, 1893, p. 243), while an additional 15 
are noted down as not having been seen by the author. This genus 
is entirely confined to the Ethiopian region, ranging from Gambia 
and Abyssinia in the north to Cape Colony in the south; the 
different species being usually confined to small restricted areas. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Outside of fore and hind limbs the same colour 

as the body ; a white frontal band separating 
the face and forehead ; a patch of rufous hairs 
at the base of the tail round the cahosities. 

a. General colour above grizzled yellowish- 

grey and black C. lalandii, -p. 6. 

b. General colour above grizzled greenish and 

black C. jjygerythrus, p. 9. 

B. Outside of fore and hind limbs black or ashy 

black, darker than the body ; no white 

frontal band. 

a. No red at the base of the tail; back ashy C. samango, p. 9. 

h. A rufous red patch at the base of the tail ; 

back golden yellow C. alhigularis, p. 11. 

1. Cercopithecus lalandii. The Vervet. 

Simia sabaea, a/pud Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 301 (1811) 

[nee Linn.] . 
Cercopithecus faunus, A. Smith, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 4 (1826) 

[nee Linn^ . 
Cercopithecus pygerythrus, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Caj). p. 1 (1832); 

Grill, E. Vetens. AJcad. Handl. ii, 2, p. 12 (1858) ; Layard, Cat. 

Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 14 (1861) ; Forbes, Handb. Primates, ii, 

p. 60 (1894) \nec Ctiv.] . 
Cercocebus pygerythrus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 22 (183 
Cercopithecus lalandii, Is. Geoffroy, Diet. Univ. d'Hist. Nat. iii, p. 305 

(1843) ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 248 ; id. ibid. 1893, 

p. G15 [fig.]. 


LiTEEATURE. — Kirby (1896) p. 556, native names and habits in the 
Eastern Transvaal. 

Vernacular Names. — Aap, Aapje or Blaanw-aap of the Dutch ; Inkau 
of Amaxosa (Stanford), and Zulus (Kirby); Ingobiyana of Swazis, and 
Inkalatshana of Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour above, grizzled yellowish-grey and 
black, each hair being annulated with sub-equal bands of these 
two colours ; outsides of the limbs and greater part of the tail like 
the back, the latter a little darker ; narrow band across the fore- 
head, cheeks, chin, under-parts, and insides of fore and hind limbs 
white tinged with yellow ; hands and feet black ; skin of face black, 
with a few black hairs separating it from the surrounding white ; 
hairs round the base of the tail and anus brick red ; skin callosities 
yellowish, skin of scrotum green. Skull with a long and narrow 
palate as compared with C. samango. 

Dimensions. — Head and body 26 ; tail without hairs 25 ; hind 
foot 4-75 ; from ear to nose-tip 3-75 ; skull, extreme length, 4-0, 
from condyle to premaxillae 2-75 ; breadth 2-50 ; upper cheek teeth 

Distribution. — The vervet is an arboreal monkey, and is there- 
fore found only in the more wooded districts of the Colony, such as 
those on the southern coast and along the river beds. It is reported 
to occur in the Swellendam division, and thence along the southern 
and eastern Coasts as far as Zululand. It is also found in the 
thick bush along the Orange and Vaal Elvers in Prieska and 
Griqualand West, and perhaps extends as far north as the Trans- 
vaal ; but regarding this, reliable data are not at present forth- 
coming. The South African Museum possesses specimens from 
Knysna, Pondoland and the Vaal Eiver Valley in Griqualand West. 

Habits. — Although the vervet is a very common animal in 
captivity, little seems recorded about its habits in the wild state ; 
for most of the information given below I am indebted to the 
late Mr. W. Cloete, of Waterfall, near Bowden, in the Albany 
division of the Colony. 

Mr. Cloete states that these animals are nearly always found in 
the strips of jungle fringiag the banks of rivers, and never very 
far from water, to which they readily take, swimming with great 
ease and agility. 

They associate together in troops composed of individuals of 
all ages and sexes, varying in number from small family parties to 
several dozens, the females carrying the very young ones. The 




adult males in the prime of life are frequently found solitary, 
whereas in the troops those males which have their teeth much 
worn down are more numerous than those whose teeth are at their 
best. This seems to show that the solitary individuals are those 
which have been unable to enter into the troops owing to the 
superior strength of the older males. 

Fig. 1. — Cercopithecus lalancUi, motlier and young (Proc. Zool. Soc). 

The chief articles of food of this monkey are the gum and seeds 
of the mimosa ; the fruit, and in seasons of scarcity, the pulp of 
the leaves of the prickly pear (Ojnmtia), all other fruits and 
vegetables, especially those of gardens, and also insects and spiders. 

In captivity this animal is stated by Mr. Cloete to be more 
treacherous than the baboon and not so sociable and tame. It is 
generally to be seen in the Zoological Society's Gardens, where in 
1893 a female gave birth to a young one. A curious fact observed 
in this connection was that the young monkey, which, however, 


only lived about two months, was in the habit of sucking both its 
mother's teats at once, as is shown in the sketch (fig. 1). The period 
of gestation does not appear to have been recorded, but that of an 
allied form the malbrouck (C cynosurus) is stated by Babu E. B. 
Sanyal of the Calcutta Zoological Gardens, to be seven months. 

2. Cercopithecus pygerythrus. The Mozambique Monkey. 

Simla pygerythra, F. Cuvier, Hist. Nat. Mamon., livr. xxiv (1821). 
Cercopithecus pygerythrus, Desviarest, Manivi. Suppl. p. 534 (1822) ; 

Peters, Reise Mozamb. Sailgeth. p. 4 (1852) ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. 

Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 249 ; id. List Vert. Zool. Gardens, 9th ecL, 

p. 11 (1896) [Beira district] . 

Description. — This monkey, which apparently takes the place 
of Cercopithecus lalandii in Bast Africa, seems only to diiler from 
it in its much more greenish coloration, the annulations being 
alternately of black and green instead of black and grey ; the fur is 
also said to be longer and softer in this species than in G. lalandii. 

Had it not been for the fact that M. Milne Edwards of the 
Museum of Natural History in Paris, has examined the types of 
both Cuvier [G. pygerythrus), and of Geoffroy {C. lalandii), and has 
most kindly communicated the results of his examination to me to 
the effect that the two species are quite distinct, I should have 
been inclined to have identified them with one another. 

Distribution. — An example of this monkey from Beira was 
presented to the Zoological Society of London by Mr. H. P. Hast^ 
in 1894, this is the only record of its occurrence within our limits ; 
it appears to be found northwards along the East coast as far as 
Mombasa, and inland as far as Kilima-njaro, and has been recorded 
by Peters from Sena and Tette on the Zambesi. 

A flat skin from the neighbourhood of Salisbury recently pre- 
sented to the South African Museum by Mr. Marshall, seems refer- 
able to this species, so that this form probably replaces C. lalandii 
in Ehodesia. 

3. Cercopithecus samango. The Samango Monkey. 

Cercopithecus samango, Sundevall, Ofvers. K. Vet. AMd. Forli. 
StocJcholm, i, p. 160 (1845) ; Peters, Beise Mozatnbiqtie Sailgeth. 
p. 4 (1852) [Inhambane]; id. Proc. Zool. Soc. 1865, p. 400 [An- 
gola] ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 251. 
Vernacular Name. — Insimango of Amaxosa (Stanford). 

Description. — Above dark, grizzled, each hair ringed black and 
yellow, the black rings being the longest ; darkest on the head and 




gradually lightening towards the tail. Below chin, throat, belly, 
lower side of proximal part of tail and inside of hind legs dirty 
white ; fore limbs and hands black, outside of hind limbs greyish 
black, feet black, no rufous patch at the sides of the anus, tail 
gradually darkening, the distal two thirds being quite black. Skin 
of face, inside of ears, of feet, anal callosities and nails black. 

Fig. 2. — Cercojnthecus samango. 

Dimensions.— Of a mounted specimen ; head and body, 27*0 ; 
tail without hair 31-0 ; length of hind foot 5-0; from ear to nose-tip 
4-0 ; skull extreme length 4-30 ; condyle to premaxillae 3-30 ; breadth 
2-90 ; cheek teeth 1-0. 

Distribution. — This monkey is found in the eastern parts of the 
Colony such as the Kicg Williamstowu district, whence it ranges 


on up the East Coast through Natal (where it is rare) and Zulu- 
land to Inhambane ; it is further stated by Dr. Peters to reappear 
in Angola. 

The South African Museum possesses examples obtained in the 
neighbourhood of Port St. John, in Pondoland ; and there are 
several from the Pirie bush in the King Williamstown Museum. 

Habits. — Very little is recorded about this monkey ; Mr. Sidney 
Turner, of Port St. Johns, informs me that it is found only in the 
thickest forest, usually in dark damp places and gorges into which 
the sun seldom or only for a short time penetrates, and that it never 
associates with the vervet. 

The skins were highly prized and much sought after by the 
Zulus, as they formed part of the distinguishing dress of one of the 
regiments of that nation before their military power was broken. 

4. Cercopithecus albigularis. Sykes' Monkey. 

Semnopithecus albigularis, Syhes, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1831, p. 106. 
Cercopithecus albigularis, Sykes, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1832, p. 18 ; P. L. 

Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 251 ; Forbes, Handb, Primates, ii, 

p. 67 (1894). 
Cercopithecus erythrarchus, Peters, Beise Moisambique Saiigeth. p. 1, 

pi. i. (1852). 

Description. — Fur long, thick and abundant, general colour 
dark olive on the head and shoulders, darkest on the head ; no 
frontal band of white ; cheeks paler than the head ; from the 
middle of the back to the root of the tail a very rich golden yellow, 
the hair annulated with that colour and black ; chin and upper chest 
white, sides and belly grey-grizzled not white ; a pure rufous patch 
below the tail on either side of the anus ; fore limbs coal black, 
hind limbs ashy black being quite black at the toes ; tail with basal 
three inches golden like the back, then darker, the last three 
quarters being coal black. 

Dimensions. — From a flat skin ; head and body 25 ; tail 24 ; 
of the type 23 and 26 respectively. 

Distribution. — This species was originally described by Colonel 
Sykes from a living specimen of which the exact habitat was 
unknown ; it has since been recorded from various parts of East 
Africa from Kilima-njaro to Mozambique and Nyasaland. A flat 


skin from which the description was drawn up, and which is 
doubtless referable to this species, was obtained near Umtali in 
Mashonaland and presented to the South African Museum by Mrs. 
Morrison. This is the only record of its occurrence in South Africa. 

The following species of the genus though not yet ascertained to 
inhabit South Africa will probably be eventually found within our 

Cercoisitliecus stairsi, P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 580, 
pi. si ; 1893, pp. 252 and 612. 

This species can be at once distinguished by the bright red 
patches in front of the ears. The original specimen was obtained 
alive in the Zambesi delta and presented to the Zoological Society 
of London by Dr. J. A. Moloney. Since then two other live 
examples from Mozambique and British East Africa have been 
acquired by the same Society. 

Genus PAPIO. 

Papio, Erxlehen, Syst. Beg. Anim. p. 15, (1777) P. sphinx. 

Cynocephalus, Lacepede, Mem. cle VInst. iii, p. 490 (1801). P. maimon. 

Muzzle much elongated and swollen by the enlargement of the 
maxillae, with nostrils at the tip ; ischial callosities large ; tail 
short ; the fore and hind limbs are of approximately equal length 
and are much more adapted for terrestrial quadrupedal progression 
than those of the other monkeys. Skull (fig. 3) with the facial 
portion much elongated and a conspicuous ridge along the maxillae 
on either side, so that the upper surface of the face between the 
orbits and the nasal opening is flattened. 

Dentition. — i. |, c. i, pm. f , m. | = 32. Teeth large and strong, 
the canines much elongated and very sharp. 

About twelve recent species of this genus have been described, 
all of them confined to the Ethiopian region. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Hair of back brown, obscurely ringed ; skin 

of face ashy black P. i^orcarius, p. 13. 

B. Hair of back ringed yellow and black ; skin 

of face flesb-coloured P. cynocejihalus, -p. 16. 




5. Papio porcarius. The Chacma or Baboon. 

Simla ipOYGaria, Boddaert, Natiirf. xxi, p. 17, pi. i. (1787) ; Grill, K. 

Vetens. ATcad. Handl. ii, 2, p. 12 (1858). 
Simla sphinx, Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. Hi, p. 301 (1811). 
Paplo porcarius, Geoffroy, Ann. MiLseum, xix, p. 202 (1812) ; Smuts, 

Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 2 (1832) ; Forbes, Handb. of Primates, i, p. 

263 (1894). 
Cynocephalus urslnus, A. Smith, Descrip. Cat. S. Afr. Miis. p. 1 (1826). 
Cynocephalus porcarius, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. 11, p. 25 

(1834) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mas. p. 15 (1861) ; Distant, 

Zoologist (4) 1, p. 29 ; Schonland, ibid. p. 155 (1897) [habits] . 

Fig. 3. — Side view of the skull of Papio porcarius. 

LiTERATUEE. — Tacliard (1685), p. 90, note of occurrence on Table 
Mountain ; Kolben (1731), 11, p. 120, description and quaint accomit of 
habits ; Sparrman (1785), 11, p. 243, account of meeting with on the Fish 
River; Hall (1859), p. 377, and (1860) p. 112, notes on habits; Holub 
(1882), p. 245, accomit of habits and shooting; Martin (1890), p. 238, note 
on habits ; Moseley (1892), p. 123, observations near Simonstown ; Klrby 
(1896), p. 567, native names and habits m the Eastern Transvaal ; Klrby 
(1899), p. 319, occurrence in the Beira District. 

Vernacular Names. — Bavian of the Dutch Colonists ; T'chatikamma of 
the Hottentots, whence is derived the name Chacma often used in Europe ; 


Infene of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Imfena of Swazis and Zulus ; Tshweni of 
Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour dark brown with a tinge of yellow 
which is more conspicuous on the forehead ; the hairs dark brown 
at the base and tip with, in most cases, a subterminal band of 
yellow ; hair on the nape of the neck and the hinder part of the 
cheeks elongated forming a slight covering to the ears ; the lower 
part of the arms and legs darker than the rest of the body, almost 
black, hair on the upper parts of the hands and feet quite black; 
naked skin of the face and chin brownish black, the upper eyelids 
being flesh-coloured ; ears nearly naked ; nails black ; the 
callosities dark sienna red in the old males ; tail about half the 
length of the head and body, carried with the proximal third 
directed somewhat upwards, and the distal two-thirds downwards. 

Skull of the old male with very heavy prominent ridges on the 
frontals above the eyes and also running along the maxillary bones 
from the orbits to the nasal openings. 

Upper canines very strongly developed measuring in the case of 
one old male in the Museum 1-75 in. in the socket, and with a 
very sharp edge posteriorly. 

Female similar, but with less developed mane and muzzle ; 
callosities flesh-coloured. 

Dimensions. — From an old mounted male ; head and body 3 ft. 
4 ; tail without hair 18 ; with 20 ; length of hind foot 8'0 ; from 
ear opening to nose-tip 8"5 ; skull, extreme length 8*5 ; length from 
premaxillae to condyle 6-0 ; breadth 4-35 ; upper cheek teeth 2-12. 

Distribution. — The baboon or bavian is found all over South 
Africa, and is abundant in almost all the divisions of Cape Colony, 
Natal, and the Transvaal. It appears to extend up into Ehodesia, 
as it is recorded by Kirby from the country between Beira and 
the Zambesi, but does not seem to cross that river ; baboons are 
still plentiful in the southern part of the Cape Peninsula and are 
sometimes seen on Table Mountain itself. There are in the South 
African Museum skins and skulls from the Stellenbosch, Tulbagh, 
Worcester, Beaufort West and Albany divisions of the Colony. 

History. — The baboon has long been known in South Africa, 
and is frequently mentioned in van Eiebeck's diary ; all the early 
travellers, Tachard, Kolben, Sparrman, and le Vaillant, give a more 
or less fall account of its occurrence and habits. Among more 
modern authors little has been written on the subject and in the 


following account I have chiefly rehed on some notes sent to me by 
Mr. W. Cloete, of Waterfall, near Grahamstown. 

Habits. — The chacma is an inhabitant of the steep and rocky 
krantzes which abound in all parts of Africa, and although most 
frequently found in treeless country, is a very good tree climber 
when opportunity offers ; in some parts of its range where 
krantzes are few it even sleeps in tall trees. They associate 
in troops of varying numbers up to about one hundred individuals ; 
when moving from place to place the old males are usually seen 
on the outskirts and always form a rear guard ; also when resting 
a sentinel or two is always placed on the top of a rock, in order 
to warn the troop of approaching danger. 

They rest at night in crevices of the krantzes, coming out during 
the day only. They are frequently captured by surrounding their 
lairs before daylight, when all are asleep. The chief enemy of the 
baboon apart from man is the leopard, which, however, seems to 
confine his attention to females and young ones, as an adult old 
male would probably be a good match even for a leopard. 

The pace of baboons is not very rapid ; on level ground they 
can easily be overhauled by ordinary dogs, but in rough country 
and on hill sides they can hold their own with great ease. They 
move with the first part of the tail somewhat up-curved, and the 
last two-thirds hanging straight down. 

The cry of this animal is a deep hoarse bark, and is compared 
by Professor Moseley, who observed their habits in the neighbour- 
hood of Simons Town, to a German " hoch " much prolonged. 

The baboon may almost be described as omnivorous ; the fruit 
and leaves of the prickly pear, the more thorny ones being pre- 
ferred, wild fruits, berries, and bulbs, and the white sweetish pith 
at the lower ends of the aloes form the greater part of its diet. 
Insects, scorpions, centipedes and even lizards are eagerly sought 
after by turning over loose stones, and Mr. Distant relates how 
when first searching for insects in the Transvaal he was intensely 
surprised to find stones turned over before his arrival, as if some 
other " geodephagous coleopterist had anticipated him ; " this he 
afterwards found was due to the insect-searching attributes of the 

Mr. Cloete informs me that wild honey is also a favourite article 
of diet ; he has himself observed a male chacma robbing a bee's 
nest in a hole in the ground ; the method pursued by the animal 
was to rush at the nest, seize a comb, and after dropping it a 


few times and rolling it about to get the bees off, to carry it away 
a short distance so as to be able to devour it out of the way of the 
infuriated bees. 

The baboons cause great annoyance to the farmers ; they 
frequently devastate orchards and fruit gardens, they suck and 
devour ostrich eggs, and of late years they have taken to killing 
and disembowelling lambs and kids for the sake of the curdled milk 
in their stomachs. 

The chacma is frequently seen in captivity, and examples of it 
are nearly always to be found in the Zoological Gardens in London. 
When young it is a delightful pet, full of intelligence and affection, 
especially towards its master, though sometimes averse to strangers ; 
with increasing age, however, it becomes morose and dangerous. 
Baboons are frequently hunted by farmers with dogs and guns, the 
most ordinary procedure being to surround the " kopje " where 
they are known to be sleeping before daylight ; they defend them- 
selves from the attacks of dogs with considerable vigour, often inflict- 
ing very severe wounds with their long eye teeth, which sometimes 
in the case of old males reach a length of two inches. 

6. Papio cynocephalus. The Yellow Baboon. 

Papio cynocephalus, Geoffroy, Ann. Mus. xix, p. 102 (1812) ; LorenU, 

Ann. Tih. Hofmus. ix, notiz. p. 67 (1894). 
Cynocephalus babouin, Desmarest, Mamm. p. 68 (1820) ; Peters, Beise 

Mozambique Sailgeth. p. 4 (1852) ; P. L. Sclater, List Vert. Zool. 

Gardens, 9th ed., p. 33 (1896) [Mashonaland] . 
Papio babuin, Forbes, HandbooJc of Primates i, p. 265 (1894). 

Literature. — Kirby (1899), p. 320, occurrence north of Beira. 

Description. — General colour of fur brownish yellow ; ears 
naked, flesh-coloured like the face ; upper side of body uniform 
brownish yellow, the hairs with broader yellow and narrower black 
rings, sides darker, below lighter than the back ; hands and feet 
black ; whisker tufts pale saffron yellow. (Forbes). 

Dimensions. — Smaller than the chacma ; Kirby gives the total 
length of a male 3ft. 4 ; of a female 3ft. 1. 

Distribution. — The yellow baboon is found throughout the 
greater part of Africa, extending from Abyssinia and Nubia in the 
north, to the Coanza Eiver in Angola in the west and the Zambesi 
Eiver in the south. 




An example rom Mashonaland has recently reached the Zoolo- 
gical Gardens in London, so that it must be included in the South 
African Fauna as defined in this work. 

Habits. — In this respect the yellow baboon seems to resemble 
the chacma. Sir Harry Johnston in his British Central Africa, 
p. 287, says of it that it is very common everywhere in Nyasaland, 
and very bold and cunning. It is constantly robbing the natives' 

Fig. 4. — The Yellow Baboon {Papio cynocephahos). 
(Flower and Lydekker). 

plantations, and the women profess to go in terror of the large 
males, as they say that the latter will attempt to outrage them if 
they see no man accompanying the party ; this is also related of 
the chacma of South Africa. When the baboons descend to raid 
plantations, one or more of their number invariably stand sentry 
to warn the rest of the troop of approaching danger. 


This suborder contains the animals known generally as lemurs, 
all of which are small or of moderate size and arboreal, and 
generally nocturnal in their habits. 

The chief anatomical characters separating them from the true 


monkeys are as follows : — Skull with the orhit freely coramunicating 
with the temporal fossa below the post-orbital bar, and with the 
lachrymal foramen opening outside the orbit ; pollex and hallux 
well developed, the second or index digit of the manus sometimes 
rudimentary, that of the pes always with a claw ; cerebral hemi- 
spheres not completely overlapping the cerebellum ; median incisors 
usually separated by a gap in the middle line. 

The head quarters of the lemurs are undoubtedly in the large 
island of Madagascar to which by far the greater proportion of the 
species is restricted. They extend, however, in smaller numbers 
across Africa as far as Senegambia and through Southern Asia into 
the Philippines. 

Only one of the three families here concerns us, as the other 
two, the Chiromyidae, containing only the aye-aye, and the 
Tarsiidae, containing the tarsier, are confined to Madagascar and 
the Malayan regions respectively. 


The characters of the family may be considered with those of 
the only genus represented in South Africa. Some six additional 
genera are confined to Madagascar, two to Africa proper and two 
to the Oriental region. 

Genus GALAGO. 

Galago, Geoffroy, Mag. Encycl. Ann. ii, i, p. 49 

(1796) G. senegalensis. 

Otolicnus, Illiger, Prodr. Mamm. p. 74 (1811) G. senegalensis. 

Otogale, J.E. Gray,Proc. Zool. Soc. 1863, p. 139. ..G. garnetti. 

Ears large, round and membranous, naked, capable of being 
folded at the will of the animal ; eyes large and approximated ; 
fingers and toes long and slender ; tail thick and bushy. 

The skull (fig. 5) is high and broad with a rounded brain case and 
short facial region ; the angle of the lower jaw is produced backwards. 

Dentition. — i. f, c. i, pm. f, m. f = 36. The last upper 
premolar has two large external cusps, and nearly equals the first 


molar in size, the upper incisors are small and separated in the 
middle line, the lower incisors and canines are all parallel and 
procumbent, the anterior premolar appearing at first sight to be 
the canine. 

This genus, which consists of about twelve species, is confined 
to the tropical and sub-tropical portions of Africa. 

In addition to the two species mentioned below, a third, Galago 
crassicaudatus, of larger size and darker rufous colour than 
G. garnetti, has been stated to occur in Natal, though I have been 
unable to find on what authority ; as, however, it is undoubtedly- 
found just north of the Zambesi it may, eventually, have to be 
included in our fauna. Galago monteiri of Angola also occurs 
just beyond our frontier. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Larger ; tail of equal bushiness throughout ; snout 

produced G. garjietti, p. 19. 

B. Smaller ; tail more bushy towards the tip ; snout 

very short G. moholi, p. 20. 

7. Galago garnetti. Gaenett's Lemur. 

Otolicnus garnettii, Ogilbtj, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1838, p. 6. 

Otogale garnetti, ./. E. Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1863, p. 140, [fig. skull] . 

Galago garnettii, Mivart, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 646; P. L. Sclater, 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 711, pi. xl ; id. ibid. 1872, p. 689 ; Forbes, 
Handb. Primates i, p. 40 (1894) ; Pousargues, N. Arch. Mus. (3) 
vi, p. 138 (1894). 

Description. — General colour yellowish grey, the hair soft and 
thick and the bases slaty, while a number of longer hairs with 
black shining tips are scattered all over the body especially on the 
back ; hairs on the muzzle shorter ; a faintly marked white stripe 
from between the eyes to the nose ; chin and lower sides yellowish 
white ; ears nearly naked and black ; limbs of the same colour as the 
back ; hands and feet darker, nearly black ; tail long and bushy of 
same colour as the back but the bases of hairs not slaty, fingers and 
toes all provided with a flat nail, except the second of the hind limb 
which has a claw. 




Skull with the facial portion considerably elongated so that the 
nasals are as long as the diameter of the bony orbits. 

Dimensions. — From a skin ; head and body 14 ; tail with 
terminal hairs 11 ; hind foot 3-5 ; from ear opening to nose tip 2-20 ; 
ear about 1-80 ; skull length 2-30, breadth 1-45, cheek teeth 0-70. 

Distribution. — Garnett's lemur is found in Natal and Zululand ; 
and should it on further investigation be found to be identical with 
G. agisymhanus, as has been suggested by some authors, its range 
will be extended northwards as far as British East Africa. 

The South African Museum possesses a specimen from Natal. 

Fig. 5. — Skull of Galago garnetti {Proc. Zool. Soc). 

Habits. — Very little seems to be known about this lemur 
although it was described so long ago as 1837 by Mr. Ogilby. In 
captivity it is stated to exhibit no fear of cats and dogs and to be 
very sprightly and tricky ; it kills all it can pounce upon and over- 
power ; on the ground it jumps upright like a kangaroo on its hind 
limbs without using its forefeet, covering several feet at a spring. 
It is nocturnal in its habits and feeds on fruits and perhaps insects. 

8. Galago moholi. The Moholi Lemur. 

Galago moholi, A. Smith, App. Report Exped. Explor. South Africa, 

p. 42 (1836) ; id. Illusir. Zool. S. Afr. Mavim. pi. viii (1839) ; 

Layard, Cat. Mamni. S. Afr. Mus. p. 17 (1861) ; Gray, Proc. Zool. 

Soc. 1863 p. 146 [fig. skull] ; Distant, Zoologist (4) i, p. 83 (1897). 
Otolicnus senegalensis, apiod Peters, Beise Mozamb. Sailgeth. p. 11, 

pi. iv, figs. 10, 11 [skull] (1852). 


Galago senegalensis, Forbes, Handh. Primates i. p. 41 (1894) ; 
Pousargues, N. Arch. Mus. (3) vi, p. 144 (1894) [in partj . 
Literature. — Chapman (1868), p. 13, note on habits; Kirby (1896) 
p. 556, native naines and habits in Eastern Transvaal. 

Vernacular Names. — Nacht aapje of the Dutch, Night-ape or Bush 
baby of the Enghsh Colonists ; Ngwanangwaila of the Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour greyish brown, the basal part of 
the fur dark slaty and the tips yellowish grey, the fur being very 
fine and soft ; the face somewhat paler than the back with a distinct 
white stripe along the nose separating two black rings round the 
eyes ; the chin and throat are white, the rest of the underparts 
washed with yellow in the male, paler in the female ; outside of 
the limbs of the same colour as the back, hair on feet pale ; tail 
long covered with long sparse brown hairs, of the same colour 
throughout, getting more bushy towards the tip. 

Fig. 6.— Skull of Galago moholi {Proc. Zool. Soc). 

Head rounded, snout short and pointed, ears pale, naked inside, 
covered with a few fine yellow hairs outside ; eyes deep topaz 
yellow ; fingers and toes with flat nails except the second toe which 
has an upstanding thin claw. 

Skull with smooth and rounded brain case, large orbits com- 
pletely encircled, but not entirely closed in by bone, and with a short 
slender facial portion, the length of the nasal bones being about half 
the diameter of the orbit. 

The upper incisors are very small, close to the canines, and 
separated by a gap in the middle line ; the canines short, about twice 
the length of the following tooth; the anterior and median premolars 
are like the canines but with traces of the anterior and posterior 
cusp ; the posterior premolar is like the succeeding molars with 
four chief cusps connected by an oblique ridge from the anterior 
inner to the posterior outer cusp. In the lower jaw the four incisors 




Fig. 7, -The Moholi Lemur (Galago vioholi.) 


are long and procumbent, the succeeding canines resemble the 
incisors but are slightly stouter ; the anterior and median premolars 
are procumbent and tusk-like, exceeding the canine in every way, 
the posterior premolar resembles the molars. 

Distribution. — The moholi lemur was met with by Sir A. 
Smith, who was its first discoverer, on the Limpopo Eiver in about 
25° S. Lat., i.e., in the Eustenburg district of the Transvaal; from 
here it extends all over the wooded districts of the Transvaal and 
Ehodesia to Nyasaland, where it has been recorded by Thomas. 
It also occurs in Mozambique and Angola but does not appear to 
reach the Colony or Natal. 

The South African Museum possesses specimens from the 
Transvaal and from the neighbourhood of Lake Ngami. 

This little lemur is closely allied to the West African form with 
which it has frequently been confounded, but an examination of the 
types of the two species (G. senegalensis in Paris and G. moholi in 
London) shows that they are really distinct. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 7 ; 
tail with hair 8 ; hind foot 2'5 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 
1"4 ; skull extreme length 1"5 ; zygomatic breadth 1-0; upper 
cheek teeth 0-4. 

Habits.- — The moholi lemur is a purely arboreal animal, and is 
therefore only found in wooded districts ; it is also nocturnal 
spending the day in a nest or lying on the branch of a tree. It is 
found singly or in pairs, and is exceedingly active, springing great 
distances from branch to branch ; in captivity too the facility with 
which it bounds or almost flies across the room has frequently been 
remarked. Its food consists of pulpy fruits and insects. 

The female is said to bear two young ones at a birth though a 
pair kept in captivity by Mr. Distant only produced one. 

Sir A. Smith remarks that in their manners these lemurs 
manifest considerable resemblance to monkeys, particularly in 
their propensity to the practice of ridiculous grimaces and gesti- 


This order contains a large assemblage of highly organised and 
powerful animals chiefly iiesh-eating in diet, such as the cats, dogs, 
weasels and seals. They are distinguished by possessing five or 
sometimes four toes usually armed with claws, by the pollex and 
hallux not being opposable and by their teeth, of which there are 
two sets, each divided into incisors, canines, and molars, all of 
which are rooted. 

Other characters are ; incisors small and pointed, usually three 
in number on either side, of which the median pair are the smallest, 
canines strong, conical and well developed, molars usually com- 
pressed, sharp edged and adapted for cutting ; condyle of the lower 
jaw on a level with the molars and working in a transverse semi- 
circular groove, the glenoid cavity, restricting all lateral motion ; 
clavicles rudimentary or absent, radius and ulna distinct, no 
centrale ; cerebral hemispheres always convoluted to a certain 
extent ; stomach simple ; caecum small or absent ; uterus bicornuate, 
placenta discoidal and generally zonary; mammae abdominal and 
of varying number. 

The order is divided into two suborders (by some zoologists 
considered as separate orders) for the terrestrial and marine forms 
respectively, and comprises altogether eleven families, represen- 
tatives of seven of which are found in South Africa, while the 
other four, namely the bears (Ursidae), racoons (Procyonidae), 
walruses {Trichechidae) and true seals (Phocidae) are entirely absent. 

The following synopsis gives the characters by which the South 
African suborders and families can be separated. These charac- 
ters unfortunately are not always very obvious, and the skull 
(fig. 8) must be referred to for further explanation. Keys to the 
genera where necessary will be found under the families. 



Fig. 8. — The right half of the hinder part of the base of the cranium of the 
wolf [Canis lupus) to show : — c, condyloid foramen ; I, foramen lacerum pos- 
terius ; car, carotid canal ; e, eustachian canal ; o, foramen ovale ; a, the pos- 
terior, and a', the anterior opening of the alisphenoid canal; P, the paroccipital 
process ; m, the mastoid process ; a m, the external auditory meatus ; g, the 
glenoid foramen below which is the glenoid cavity for the condyle of the mandible 
(after Flower). 

A. Limbs adapted for terrestrial life, not forming 
flippers (Suborder Fissipedia). 
a. Auditory bulla inflated and divided into two 
chambers by a transverse partition. 
a}. Head short, digitigrade, toes 5-4 with sharp, 

curved and generally retractile claws Felidae, p. 27. 

6^. Head elongate, toes generally 5-5, claws 

variable Viverridae, p. 49. 

c"-. Head elongate, toes 5-4, claws blunt, molars 

almost rudimentary Protelidae, p. 79. 


b. Auditory bulla inflated but not divided. 

a^. Condyloid and glenoid foramina concealed or 

wanting, toes 4-4 Hyaenidae,-p.82. 

¥. Condyloid and glenoid foramina present, toes 

generally 5-4 Canidae, p. 91. 

c. Auditory bulla not inflated or divided, toes 5-5 ... Mustelidae, p. 106. 
B. Limbs adapted for aquatic life forming flippers and 

enclosed in a common integument (Suborder Pin- 

nipedia) Otariidae, p. 118. 


In this suborder are included all the Carnivora the limbs of 
which are generally adapted to progression on land, although some 
members of the suborder, such as the otter, may be partially aquatic 
in their habits. 

The toes are always provided with claws, which are strong and 
generally sharp and curved, and neither the first digit of the fore 
limb nor the first or fifth of the hind limb ever surpass the others 
in length ; with rare exceptions there are three pairs of incisors 
above and below ; the molars are never uniform, but there is 
always a pair of so-called carnassial teeth, the upper one of which 
is the last premolar and the lower one the anterior molar, these 
form a pair of blades acting on one another like a pair of scissors. 

The classification of the Fissipedia presents a good many diffi- 
culties. Mr. Turner and Professor Flower divide the suborder into 
three sections named Mluroidea, Cynoidea, and Arctoidea, from the 
Greek words for cat, dog and bear, each of which forms a type 
of the respective divisions. 

The characters by which these sections are separated are chiefly 
certain modifications of the bulla or bony chamber of the ear and 
of the alisphenoid canal, a passage below a little bridge of bone 
through which the external carotid artery passes at the base of 
the skull. (See fig. 8, p. 25.) 

Division ^LUROIDEA. 

Auditory bulla dilated, rounded, smooth, thinwalled and (ex- 
cept in the Hyaenas) divided into two chambers ; auditory meatus 
short ; paroccipital process applied to and spread over the bulla : 


mastoid process not much developed ; carotid canal small and in- 
conspicuous ; condyloid and glenoid foramina concealed or wanting ; 
caecum small. 

Eepresentatives of all the four families which belong to this 
division are found in South Africa. 

Family FELIDAE. 

The characters of the genus Felis given below adequately 
diagnose the family, except for the fact that the toes are not always 
completely retractile and that the inner tubercle of the upper 
carnassial does not always bear a cusp. 

The only two genera may be distinguished as follows : — 

A. Claws completely retractile, upper carnassial with 

a strong inner cusp and root Felis, p, 27. 

B. Claws not completely retractile, upper carnassial 

with an inner root but no cusp Cynaelurus, p. 46. 

Genus FELIS. 

Felis, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat., 12th ed. i, p. 60 (1766) F. leo. 

This genus contains the true cats, the most highly organised of 
all the animals composing the order Carnivora. 

The cats are digitigrade {i.e., walk on the tips of the toes), and 
the fore limbs are provided with five, the hind limbs with four 
toes. The claws borne by these toes are large, strongly curved, 
compressed, very sharp, and completely retractile, that is to say, 
the last phalangeal bone which bears the claw, can be folded back 
into a special sheath provided for its reception on the outer side in 
the fore foot, on the upper side in the hind foot, of the middle 
phalangeal bone. 

The skull is short and rounded, and the auditory bullae are 
large, smooth, and inflated. 

The dentition is as follows : — i. |, c. i, pm. ^-^, m. i = 28 
or 30 ; the most remarkable tooth is the last premolar of the upper 
jaw, which with the solitary molar of the lower jaw form a pair 




of sharp cutting blades acting like scissors and termed the car- 
nassials, this feature attains its most complete development in this 
genus. It is further to be noted that the upper carnassial bears 
on its inner side a tubercle with a cusp ; the solitary upper true 
molar is small and placed somewhat transversely to the other 
teeth ; the canines are very large and strong, the incisors small. 

This genus is distributed all over the world except Madagascar 
and the Australian region, and contains about forty-one species, of 
which there are six found in South Africa as described below. 

Fig. 9. — Left half of the palate and the lower jaw of Felis caffra (| nat. size). 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Ears rounded without a pencil of long hairs ; 3 
upper premolars. 
a. Of large size ; head and body about 65^ ft. m 
length ; of uniform colouration with a mane 

well developed in male J^. Zeo, p. 29. 

h. Of intermediate size ; head and body about 

4J ft. ; body covered with rosette like spots ... F. pardus, p. 34. 
c. Smaller ; head and body less than 3^ ft. 

a}. Eufous, with solid black spots ; head and 

body about 3 ft. 3 in F. serval,^. BQ. 


&'. Pale, with solid black spots ; head and body 

about 20 in F. nigripes, p. 40. 

c^ Grey, without spots ; limbs with bands or 

traces of bands F. caffra, p. 42. 

B. Ears pointed and provided with long pencil of 
hairs ; as a rule two upper premolars only ; body 
unspotted, rufous F. caracal, p. 44. 

9. Felis leo. The Lion. 

Felis leo, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th eel. i, p. 60 (1766) ; Thunherg, Mem. 
Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 303 (1811) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Caj). p. 25 
(1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 120 (1834) ; Elliot, 
Monogr. Felidae, pi. i, (1883) ; LijdeJcker, Handb. Carnivora i, p. 27, 
pis. i-ii, (1895). 

Leo barbarus, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mits. p. 36 (1861). 

Literature. — Tachard (1685), p. 90, note on occurrence near Cape 
Town ; Kolben (1731), ii, p. 94, found close to Cape Town in 1707 ; 
Sparrman (1785) ii, p. 48, observations on habits; Pater son (1790), p. 12, 
occurrence in Caledon and Oudtshoorn in 1777-8 ; Thunberg (1795) ii, p. 69, 
on habits and occurrence on the Ohphants River in ClanwUliam in 1775 ; 
le VaUlant (1796), i, p. 229, also met with on the Oliphants Elver; Barrow 
(1801), pp. 72, 346, met with lions in Uitenhage and Namaqualand; Bur- 
chell (1822), i, p. 287, ii, p. 81, Uons on the northern karoo in Carnarvon and 
Hanover ; Steedman (1835), i, pp. 120, 209, and ii, pp. 14-15, occurrence in 
various parts of the Colony in 1830-31, with note on habitfe; Harris (1838), 
pp. 85, 163, 371, met with lions in Bechiianaland and in the Western 
Transvaal, and gives a description ; Harris (1840), figured pi. xxix ; 
Delagorgue (1847), ii, p. 153, habits in Natal ; Methuen (1848), pp. 80-2, 
habits and occurrence in Griqualand West ; Cummmg (1855), i, pp. 176, 193, 
a good account of habits and hunting; Livingstone (1857), pp. 11, 138, 
adventures with lions and account of habits; Hall (1857), p. 4, distribution 
in South Africa at that date ; Grout (1862), p. 289, still existing in Natal ; 
Andersson (1873), pp. 1-238, adventures with lions ; Drummond (1875), pp. 
222-286, lion-hunting in Zululand; Bisset, Sport and War (1875), account 
of lion shooting in the Colony in 1839, and m Natal in 1865 ; Selous (1881), 
pp. 25, 257, habits and hunting of lions ; Holub (1882), ii, p. 100, observa- 
tions on the habits ; Theal (1888), i, p. 254, ii, p. 7, lion incidents near Cape 
Town at the end of the 17th century ; Bryden (1889), p. 290, extinction in 
the Colony ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 80, habits, distribution, and 
description; Bryden (1893), p. 496, past and present distribution; Selous 
(1893), pp. 147, 165, 444, 467, various notes and measurements ; Selous and 
Jackson (1894), chap, xii, and xvii, on lion hunting; Millais (1895), pp. 
80, 185, habits, occurrence and sketches in the eastern Transvaal ; Kirby 


(1896), pp. 390, 551 on hunting, native names, habits and dimensions in the 
Eastern Transvaal; Kirby (1899), p. 321, distribution in the Beira-Zambesi 
country ; Kirby (1899a), p. 545, habits and shooting in South Africa. 

Vernacular Names. — Leeuw of the Dutch colonists ; Ingonyama of 
Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Ingonyama, Imbubesi or Imbubi of Swazis and Zulus 
(Kirby) ; Tau of Bechuanas and Basutos (Bryden and Kirby). 

Description. — Male : General colour tawny yellow, the hair 
being very short, yellowish and here and there dark tipped ; no 
spots or stripes ; below a little lighter coloured ; a mane of long 
hairs of the same colour extends above from a point on the head 
between the ears to the middle of the shoulder and round the neck 
to just between the front legs ; pupil round ; ears with a black 
patch at the base outside, tips and insides tawny yellow ; a yellow 
tuft of long hairs more or less developed, at the elbow-joint of the 
fore limbs ; tail long and tapering with a horny tip covered with a 
thick tuft of black hairs ; naked skin of the toes black. 

The female differs in the complete absence of the mane, and 
the young animals of both sexes show very distinct signs of darker 
spots, especially about the limbs. 

The skull of the lion is large and massive, with broad zygomatic 
arches, and well-marked sagittal and occipital crests for the attach- 
ment of the powerful jaw muscles ; it can be distinguished from 
that of the tiger, with which alone it could be confased by the fact 
that the posterior processes of the nasal bones do not, or only just 
extend as far back as the frontal processes of the maxillae, and that 
the distance between the anterior parietal suture and the post- 
orbital process is comparatively short, so that the lion's skull may 
be described as short-waisted as compared with the long-waisted 
skull of the tiger. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted example from Mashonaland in the 
South African Museum ; head and body 6 ft. 6 ; tail 2 f fc. 6 ; hind 
foot from heel about 1 ft. 4 ; head from ear- opening to tip of nose 
12 in. ; height at shoulder 3 ft. 3. 

Selous gives 10 ft. 3, 10 ft. 6, 10 ft. 9, 10 ft. 10, and 11 ft. 1, 
as the dimensions of pegged out skins, and the weight of a male 
not full grown 385 lbs., quite full grown as 408 lbs. 

Kirby gives 10 ft. 7 [7 ft. 2 + 2 ft. 11] as the length of the 
largest lion shot by him measured in the flesh along the curves of 
the body, the skin of the same individual, measured when pegged 
out 11 ft. 4, and the skull 16 in. in length ; a lioness measured in 
the same way 9 ft. 2. 



Measurements of a skull in the South African Museum are : 
total length 13 ; from incisors to the foramen magnum 11 ; breadth 
across the zygomata 8 ; upper cheek teeth 5. 

Distribution. — The lion was formerly found throughout the 
whole of Africa, from Algeria to Cape Colony, though now exter- 
minated in the more thickly settled districts ; in Asia it ranges 
through Mesopotamia and Southern Persia into North West India, 
where, however, it is now very rare and likely soon to become 
extinct. Within historic times it was found in Asia Minor and 
South - eastern Europe, and the presence of bones and teeth in 
caverns and superficial deposits prove that it was formerly abundant 
throughout Western Europe as far as the British Isles. 

In South Africa the lion is now extinct south of the Orange 
Eiver, but it is still to be found in German South-west Africa, in 
the Kalahari, in the eastern part of the Transvaal, and throughout 
Ehodesia, Zululand and Portuguese territory. A lion was killed at 
Springs near Johannesburg in 1897, and another was reported from 
near Heidelburg, south of Johannesburg, in the Cape Times news- 
paper of Feb. 8, 1898 ; a third was said in the issue of the same 
paper for July, 20, 1897, to have been killed close to Bulawayo. 

With regard to past times — Kolben (1731), states that lions were 
not uncommon near Cape Town as late as 1707, Sparrman (1785), 
Paterson (1790), Thunberg (1795), and Barrow (1801), all met with 
these animals as soon as they got away from the immediate neigh- 
bourhood of Cape Town especially on the karoo and in Uitenhage. 
The last record I have met with of the occurrence of a lion south 
of the Orange Eiver is of one killed with assegais near Commetjes 
Post on the eastern frontier in 1812, as noted by Hall. General 
Bisset shot a lion in Natal in 1865, which is probably the last record 
for that Colony. The South African Museum possesses a mounted 
pair killed by Mr. Selous in Mashonaland and Manicaland in 1888 
and 1892, and a skin recently obtained from Lake Ngami. 

Varieties. — Most hunters assert that there are more than one 
kind of lion, some distinguishing two, some three, some more 
species ; the distinctions on which these are based are slight 
variations in colour and especially variation in the development 
and colour of the mane ; the Boers distinguish two maned varieties, 
the " Zwart-voorlijf " and the " Geel-voorlijf " i.e., the black and 
yellow maned; Selous (1881), has, I think, clearly shown that these 
varieties are individual and not in any sense geographical, and that 
black-maned and yellow-maned and even maneless lions may be 
born among the same litter. 


Habits. — The lion has been known so long, and so much has 
been written on it that it is difficult to sift out a short account 
from such abundant material. The following is based chiefly on 
the works of Gordon-Gumming and Selous, both of whom appear to 
have observed this animal closely in its native haunts. 

The lion inhabits sandy plains and rough rocky places covered 
with brush or thorny thickets ; it is frequently seen in dry, or nearly 
dry river beds, on either side of which are beds of reeds and bushes, 
in which it can conceal itself. Lions are sociable animals and are 
often seen in small troops of from about six to a dozen individuals 
consisting of perhaps two adult males, three or four adult females, 
the remainder of cubs of varying ages. 

Although this species has a round pupil it is a distinctly nocturnal 
animal, being seldom seen during the day, when it usually rests 
concealed. Kirby says that in cloudy weather, in unfrequented 
districts it is sometimes seen in the day ; and Selous mentions, as 
a very unusual sight, the fact of his seeing, during broad daylight, 
one hunting a kudu. 

The roar has often been described, and while to some people it 
appears most majestic, resembling distant thunder, to others, as 
for instance, to Dr. Livingstone, it resembled the bray of an ass 
and was indistinguishable from the voice of the ostrich. Gordon- 
Gumming describes it as consisting of "at times a low deep 
moaning repeated five or six times, ending in fairly audible sighs, 
and at other times of loud deep-toned solemn roars repeated in 
quick succession, each increasing in loudness to the third or fourth, 
when it dies away in live or six low muffled sounds, very much 
resembling distant thunder." 

Its pace is a slow, loose-jointed walk, the head being held 
quite low, not raised up as generally represented in pictures. 
When excited and charging it progresses by a series of bounds or 
springs, and its pace is as great as that of a horse ; this, however, 
only lasts a short time as, if not successful at first, it very soon 
tires of the pursuit. 

It is generally supposed that the lion does not climb trees, but 
that this is not always so has been shown by Mr. Kirby, who gives 
an instance of a lioness doing so. 

Its food consists of the larger herbivorous animals, and as these 
are killed off, it retreats into less settled and hunted districts. 
The buffalo is perhaps the most frequent victim, but all the 
antelopes, from the eland to the pallah, zebras and even giraffes, are 


easily overcome ; the only animals that apparently escape its depre- 
dations are the rhinoceros, hippopotamus and elephant. The cattle, 
and especially the donkeys, of the hunter and trader are frequently 
carried off at night, as is related in nearly all books of South 
African travel. For all this the lion by no means disdains meat 
which has been shot by sportsmen, even when it has become some- 
what putrid. 

They sometimes become regular man-eaters, though this is not 
nearly so common an occurrence as in the case of tigers in India. 
This is probably owing to the fact that the natives of Africa are 
braver and better armed than the natives of India, and soon club 
together to hunt out and destroy any lion manifesting these pro- 
clivities. In such cases as I have seen described the animal was 
always a very old one, and the teeth so much worn down as to be 
nearly useless for catching wild animals. 

Cannibalism occurs occasionally : Andersson witnessed the con- 
test of a lion and lioness over the carcase of an antelope, resulting 
in the death of the latter and in the devouring of her by her mate. 

The lion usually commences its meal by tearing open the belly 
of its victim and removing the entrails ; these, all observers are 
agreed, it buries near the kill, whether it eventually eats them or 
whether it buries them merely to conceal their odour, which might 
attract other animals to the kill, seems uncertain. They drink, as 
a rule, once a day, in the evening, between sunset and 10 p.m. ; 
also sometimes in the morning after eating all night ; they lap 
loudly like a cat. 

The lion is monogamous ; the period of gestation, as observed in 
the DubHn Zoological Gardens,* is about one hundred and eight 
days ; in South Africa two to four cubs are born, usually three, 
during the warmer season between November and March ; the eyes 
are said by most authors to be open at birth. The mother exhibits 
great devotion towards her young and is always more dangerous to 
meddle with at that time. 

Accounts of the character of the lion differ very considerably ; 
by the older authors it was regarded as the noblest of animals, 
while Livingstone and many others have stigmatised it as a 
skulking coward. The truth, no doubt, lies between the two ex- 
treme views ; it is doubtless cowardly and lazy unless roused, only 
a very few instances being known of its attacking human beings 

* V. Ball, Trans. Koy. Irish Acad., xxviii, p. 723. 



unprovoked and there is no doubt that it will shun a conflict with 
man when possible. 

This animal is not tenacious of life, and is easily killed as com- 
pared with the larger antelopes ; hunting it with dogs and horses is 
comparatively safe ; even on foot it is not reckoned by sportsmen very 
dangerous ; the great risk is in the following up of wounded animals 
into the bush, and it is in doing this that so many fatal accidents 
have occurred. Notwithstanding what has been said the lion 
is considered by Selous to be the most dangerous of all South 
African animals. 

According to Selous the flesh is very palatable, resembling veal. 

10. Felis pardus. The Leopard. 

Felis pardus, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed., i, p. 61 (1766) ; Thun- 

herg, Mem. Acad. Peters, iii, p. 303 (1811) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. 

S. Afr. Mus. p. 38 (1861) ; Gunther, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 312 

[pale var.] ; Trinien, ibid. 1883, p. 535 [small black-spotted var.] ; 

Elliot, Monogr. Felidae, pis. vi, vii (1883) ; Gunther, Proc. Zool. 

Soc. 1885, p. 243 pi. xvi [small black-spotted var.] ; id. ibid. 1886, 

203 [complete melanistic var.] ; Lydehher, Handb. Carnivora, 

i, p. 71. pi. v (1895). 
Felis leopardus, Schreber, Saiigeth. iii, p. 387, pi. ci (1778) ; Smuts, 

Emim. Mamm. Cap. p. 27 (1832) ; A. Smith, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. 

Mus. p. 7 (1826) ; id. S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 121 (1834) ; Layard, 

Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 38 (1861). 

Literature. — Kolben (1731), ii, p. 97, described as being found near 
Cape Town in 1705; Burchell (1822), i, p. 16, note of occurrence near 
Cape Town in 1810 ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxviii, fig. 1 ; Drummond 
(1875), p. 288, habits in Zululand ; Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 84, 
description, distribution and liabits; Bryden (1893), p. 498, distribution in 
Bechuanaland ; Kirby (1896), pp. 178, 239, 551, account of hunting, varia- 
tion, native names and habits in Eastern Transvaal ; Kirby (1899), p. 321 
distribution in the Beira-Zambesi country; Kirby (1899a), p. 568, general 
account of habits and himting. 

Vernacular Names. — Tijger or Vlackte tijger of Dutch Colonists ; 
Ingwe of Swazi, Zulu, and Amaxosa; Inkwi of Basuto (Kirby). 

Description. — Ground colour yellow of varying intensity, paling 
below to pure white, covered all over with black spots of unequal 
size, but not usually exceeding one inch in diameter ; the fur is 
very close, short and thick in South African skins ; on the back 
and sides of the body, the spots consist of three to five clumps of 


black, forming an incomplete ring with a yellow centre usually darker 
than the ground colour ; on the head and limbs the spots become 
smaller, and gradually lose their light centres ; ears rounded, black 
at the base and extreme tip, subterminally tawny ; tail of varying 
length, not so long as the body, tawny above, white below, spotted 
with large irregular black patches, which become larger towards 
the tip where they form two or three incomplete irregular rings ; 
tail not tufted or pointed. Cubs with rather longer hair and less 
bright coloration, the spots being more indistinct. 

The skull of the leopard, besides being very much smaller than 
that of the lion, is more arched from behind forwards, so that, as 
a rule, when the lower jaw is attached and the skull placed on 
a flat surface, the hinder part touches that surface. 

Dimensions. — Leopards vary considerably in size ; the following 
measurements are taken from a large mounted specimen in the 
South African Museum, shot many years ago at Camps Bay, close 
to Cape Town. Head and body, 5 ft.; tail, 2 ft. 10; hind foot, 
8-5 in. ; from ear opening to tip of nose 7"5 in. 

Kirby (1896) gives the dimensions of the two varieties, which 
he distinguishes, as follows : — Hill variety : head and body, 3 ft. 
7 ; tail, 2 ft. 10. Plains or low country variety : head and body, 
4 ft. 4 ; tail, 2 ft. 6. 

Dimensions of a skull in the South i^frican Museum. Total 
length 8-25, width across the zygomatic arches 5*0, length of upper 
cheek teeth 3-10. Mr. Kirby gives the weight of an adult as from 
180 to 190 lbs. 

Distribution. — The leopard is the most widely spread of all the 
cat family; it is found over the whole extent of Africa, and also 
throughout the greater part of Asia, being absent from Siberia and 
the high plateau of Thibet alone ; formerly it ranged over Western 
Europe, as is shown by the fossil remains in the bone caverns of 
Great Britain, Spain, France and Germany. 

In South Africa the leopard, or tiger, as it is invariably called 
by all the Colonists, is found almost everywhere, where suitable 
situations exist. A specimen already mentioned above was killed 
not many years ago within two miles of Cape Town, at Camps 
Bay, and the South African Museum has recently acquired a young 
individual from Jonker's Hoek in the Stellenbosch division, not 
thirty miles from Cape Town, presented by Mr. F. G. Water- 
meyer ; elsewhere it is found throughout the country up to the 


Varieties. — The leopard is an animal which varies a good deal 
both in size and in the colour and distribution of its markings, so 
that it has always been a doubtful question as to the number and 
validity of the species. Both in Africa and India sportsmen have 
been in the habit of distinguishing a smaller "hill" and a larger 
"plains " variety, the distinctions between which have been clearly 
pointed out by Kirby. The smaller has a rich buff ground colour 
and long thick fur, and the rosettes of the back run together some- 
what so as to form several continuous stripes from the nape of the 
neck to the middle of the back. The animal measures on an 
average 6 ft. 5, of which the tail forms 2 ft. 10. The larger low 
country variety has very short far, with a pale fawn ground, and 
no sign of the black stripes along the back ; it is a lankier, longer 
animal than the other, and measures about 6 ft. 10, of which 
the tail forms about 2 ft. 6. 

Fig. 10. — The Leopard (Felis pardus), frora a photograph of the mounted 
specimen of the black variety in the South African IMuseum. 

Mr. Kirby, however, further states that these two described 
varieties are merely the extremes, and that intermediate forms are 
common, even commoner than the extremes, and that in no way 
can the two be considered as different species or even geographical 

More distinct variations of the leopard sometimes occur. Dr. 
Gunther has described a very pale sandy variety from Matabeleland ; 
but perhaps the most remarkable form is one noticed by Gunther 


and Trimen, of which three or four specimens have been obtained, 
all from the neighbourhood of Grahamstown, and of which an 
example has recently reached the South African Museum. 

This peculiar form shows no trace of the rosettes, but is covered, 
especially on the head and along the back, with a large number of 
small round black spots, which in one case were so numerous as 
to be fused together, so that the whole of the back and sides of 
the animal was quite black, while below and on the lower part of 
the legs the spots remain separate. In fact, this variety must be 
accounted as much a black " leopard " as any of those not in- 
frequently found in Southern Asia. The difference, however, 
between the two varieties is an essential one, as in the Asiatic 
black leopard the melanism is caused by the darkening of the 
tawny ground colour, and the rosettes can be seen, somewhat like 
spots on watered silk in certain lights ; whereas in the African 
variety the melanism seems to be caused by the great increase of 
the spots, which finally fuse to form a uniform black livery. 

Dr. Blanford, in his account of the Indian Mammals, asserts that 
African leopard skins can be always distinguished from those of 
Asia by their smaller and more solid spots. If this is the case, 
it may perhaps be necessary to distinguish the African form as a 
geographical sub-species, which should be called Felis pardus 
nimr of Hemprich and Ehrenberg. 

Habits. — The leopard is usually found in rocky situations, 
sometimes in dense scrub near krantzes or precipices, sometimes 
on rocky hills, where there is hardly any vegetation at all, in 
which case it makes its home in caves. It usually goes singly or 
in pairs, though sometimes small troops of four or six are seen 
together, probably consisting of one family ; it is thoroughly noc- 
turnal, much more so than the lion. All observers agree in saying 
that it is a far more silent animal than the lion or even the tiger, 
its voice when heard being something between a hoarse grunt and 
a cough ; it further differs from the lion in the great facility with 
which it is able to climb even high trees, and when attacked it 
frequently seeks refuge there. When pressed the leopard takes to 
the water and can swim well. 

The food of the leopard consists of any animals it can over- 
power ; in the Colony, baboons and dassies {Procavia); in the 
Eastern Transvaal, according to Kirby, cane-rats [Thryonomys) ; 
duikers {Cephalophios) ; bush-pigs {Potomochoerus) and bushbucks 
{Tragelaphus) among wild animals ; kids, lambs, sheep and calves 


among domestic animals. In India it seems to have a particular 
predilection for dogs of all kinds, but I have not observed this 
noticed among writers on African sport. 

The leopard is always credited with the love of killing for 
killing's sake ; it seems likely, however, that when a number of 
victims have been slain, the destroyer would return and devour the 
whole of them if allowed to do so, more especially as it appears, 
notwithstanding what Drummond says to the contrary, to be very 
fond of carrion, even when putrid. 

This animal has a favourite custom of placing its prey up in a 
tree-fork until rotten, and the late Mr. Cloete of Bowden, has 
written to me that he has found the rotten remains of an almost 
devoured bushbuck 12 or 14 ft. above the ground in a euphorbia 

I have never come across any account of a true man-eating 
leopard in Africa, such as undoubtedly exists in India, though many 
fatal accidents have occurred through these animals. 

The usual number of cubs at birth appears to be three, though 
from four to six have occasionally been observed ; in the Eastern 
Transvaal they are born usually between October and December. 

In disposition the leopard is extremely active, wary, and blood- 
thirsty. It is so cunning that instances frequently occur of one 
approaching quite close to a camp, without disturbing the occupant, 
who only discovers the nature of the intruder by the spoor marks 
next day. When brought to bay or wounded it will charge with 
the greatest pluck, and show, for its size, as much courage as a lion. 

11. Felis serval. The Serval Cat. 

Felis serval, Erxleben, Syst. Begn. Anini. p. 523 (1777) ; Smuts, Enum. 
Mamm. Cajo. p. 28 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 122 
(1834) ; Laijard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 39 (1861) ; Elliot, 
Monogr. Feliclae, pi. xxvi (1883) ; LydeMer, Handb. Carnivora, i, 
p. 135, pi. xiv (1895). 

Felis capensis, Gmelin, Linn. Syst. Nat. i, p. 81 (1788) ; Thunherg, 
Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 304 (1811) ; A. Smith, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. 
Mus. p. 9 (1826). 

LiTEEATURE. — Kolbeii (1731), ii, p. 127, notice of a wild cat, obviously the 
Serval ; Sparrman (1785), ii, p. 268, short notice of the Serval ; Grout 
(1863), p. 291, described as inhlozi; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 87. 


description and distribution; Kirby (1896), p. 552, account of in Eastern 
Transvaal; Bryden (1899a), p. 581, general account. 

Vernacular Names. — Tijger-boscli-kat or Tijger-kat of Dutch ; Indhlozi of 
Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Indhloti of Swazis and Zulus (Kirby) ; Tlodi of 
Basutos (liirby) ; Tali of Bechuanas (Bryden). 

Description. — General colour fulvous, getting a little lighter 
posteriorly and on the flanks ; below, chin, belly and inside of 
legs, white or nearly so ; fur thick and somewhat woolly, much 
more so than in the leopard ; body covered with black spots, 
which on the nape and upper part of the shoulder coalesce to form 
six more or less well-defined black lines ; head rounded, with a few 
very small black spots on the cheeks and forehead, but no defined 
markings ; ears long and somewhat pointed, more so than in the 
leopard, black behind with a subterminal fulvous spot ; legs long, 
spotted like the back and with a very characteristic black hori- 
zontal band inside about the region of the elbow and knee joints ; 
tail very short, less than half the length of the head and body, the 
spots at the base large and gradually forming indistinct rings 
towards the tip. 

The skull seems small for the size of the animal ; it differs from 
that of the leopard in having that portion of the skull which forms 
the orbital region very much narrower than the portion behind the 
post-orbital bony processes, whereas in the leopard these two 
portions of the skull are of approximately equal breadth ; except in 
size and that the nasals are somewhat longer and more truncate, I 
can detect no distinction of importance from the skull of F. caffra. 

Dimensions. — Measurements of a mounted- specimen in the 
South African Museum ; head and body 3 ft. 1-5, tail 12, hind 
foot 7"5 ; head from ear opening to tip of snout 5-5. 

Kirby gives the total length of a specimen as 3 ft. 8, and the 
height at the shoulder 1 ft. 8. 

A skull in the South African Museum measures, total length 
4-35 ; greatest width 2-90, upper cheek teeth 1-75. 

Variations. — Like the leopard, this animal varies somewhat in 
the intensity of its coloration. Kirby records a very dark coloured 
individual almost a melanism, from the Eastern Transvaal ; while 
Mr. H. C. V. Hunter shot near Mt. Kilima-njaro in East Africa, a 
completely black variety in which, like the Asiatic black leopard, 
the spots could be seen shining through in certain lights. 

Distribution. — The serval seems to be found throughout Africa 


from Algeria to the Cape, but does not extend its range like the 
two previous species, to the neighbouring continent of Asia. It 
occurs everywhere in South Africa, though nowhere does it seem to 
be common ; it is said to be found in Namaqualand and in the 
Transkei, in German South - west Africa, the Transvaal and 
Ehodesia. The South African Museum possesses an example 
obtained near Somerset West, not far from Cape Town, pre- 
sented by Sir James Sivewright in 1898, and also a skin recently 
obtained at Potchefstroom, in the Transvaal, where it is not 

Habits. — This wild cat perhaps partly due to its retiring habits, 
partly to its scarcity, has been but rarely noticed by African 
observers ; it appears to frequent long grass, reeds and bushes, 
especially in the neighbourhood of small streams and rivers. When 
disturbed by dogs it usually takes to a tree, where it remains at 
bay ; its food consists of small mammals, such as hares and cane- 
rats (Thryonomys), also of birds, and it further is said not to disdain 
birds' eggs ; it is strictly nocturnal in its habits and a great poultry 

Sir Harry Johnston relates that the kittens are easily reared and 
stand confinement well, and that they become tame only to a 
certain extent, never so much so as those of the leopard. 

12. Felis nigripes. The Black -footed Wild Cat. 

Felis nigripes, Burchell, Travels ii, p. 592 (1824); A. Smith, 8. Afr. 

Quart. Journ. ii, p. 123 (1834); Layarcl, Cat. Maiyim. 8. Afr. Mus. 

p. 39 (1861) ; Matschie, 8. B. Nat. Fr. Berlin, p. 258 (1894) ; Brydcn, 

Great and 8mall Game, p. 582 (1899). 

Vernacular Names. — Kakikaan of Bechuanas (Burcliell) ; Tsipa in the 

Kalahari Desert (Livingstone). 

Description. — Slightly smaller than the domestic cat ; general 
colour pale tawny, or sandy, becoming almost white on the chin 
and belly and inside the legs ; body covered with small rounded 
very dark brown or black spots, which on the nape and shoulder 
coalesce into rather vague longitudinal stripes ; top of the head 
dark speckled brown with short close hairs, becoming paler on the 
cheeks along which are two ill-defined blackish markings ; ears 
moderate, slightly pointed, of a uniform speckled brown, the anterior 




edge with long upright white hairs ; fore and hind limbs with three 
more or less well-defined black rings encirchng them ; soles of both 
pairs of limbs quite black ; tail short with ill-defined black spots 
and a black tip. 

Skull resembling that of F. cajfra, but smaller. 

Dimensions. — From an old mounted specimen ; head and body 
20-0, tail 6-0, hind foot 4-0 ; head from ear opening to tip of nose 
2-75; skull length 3-20; extreme breadth 2-28; length of upper 
cheek teeth 1"25. 

Fig. 11. — The Black-footed Cat [Felis nigrijpes). 

Distribution. — This wild cat seems to be only found in the 
Kalahari Desert and Bechuanaland, and is very little known. It 
was described by Burchell from an imperfect skin, which he saw 
at Litakun, near Kuruman, forming part of a cloak or kaross. There 
is a single very old specimen in the South African Museum, 
obtained at Kuruman many years ago by Dr. Moffat, and there are 
specimens in the British and Berlin Museums. Dr. Gray, in his 
catalogue, placed this species as a synonym of F. caligata {= F. 
cajfra), in which he was followed by Elliot in his monograph, and 
it is perhaps in consequence of this that the species has been so 
often overlooked. It is much more like a very small edition of 
F. serval, and bears no external resemblance to F. cajfra. 


13. Felis caffra. The Caffek Cat. 

Felis caffi'a, Desmarest, Mammal. SiqojpL, p. 540 (1822) ; A. Smith, 

Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 10 (1826); id. S. Afr. Quart. Journ. 

ii, p. 123 (1834); Layard, Cat. Mamm. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 39 (1861); 

Elliot, Monogr. Felidae. pi. xxxi (1883) ; LydeMer, Handb. 

Carnivora i, p. 155, pi. xix (1895). 
Felis chaus, apud Thiinberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 304 (1811) 

[nee Gtildenst.] 
Felis caligata, ajnid Smuts, Enum, Mamm. Ca^i., p. 30 (1832) ; [nee 

Temmincy] . 

Literature. — NicoUs and Eglington (1892) p. 89, description ; Kirby 
(1896), p. 552 native names and habits in Eastern Transvaal ; Kirby (1899), 
p. 322, distribution in the Beira-Zambesi district; Bryden (1899a), p. 583, 
habits, &c., &c. 

Vernacular Names. — Bull Head or Wild Cat, Wilde Kat or Graanw- 
kat of the Colonists ; Ingada or Inxataza of Amaxosa (Cloete) ; Impaka or 
Imbodhla of Swazis and Zulus (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour speckled greyish brown, the fur 
being dark slate for the basal third, then yellowish, the tips ringed 
black and white, below becoming yellowish owing to the absence of 
the ringed tips ; along the middle of the back a line of darker fur 
with darker under-fur ; head dark, speckled with irregular darker 
marks, and a dark spot in front of each eye ; chin white ; whiskers 
chiefly white with some black bristles ; ears rounded, reddish brown 
posteriorly, a few long white hairs along the front inner margin ; 
fore and hind limbs darker than the body, ringed with about five 
black bars ranging in distinctness and also varying in development 
in different individuals ; elbow joint of fore limb and soles of fore 
and hind feet black, tail short, not half the length of the head and 
body, with a dorsal band, three rings and tip black. 

The female is lighter in colour and the black is not nearly so 
marked ; the kittens show very distinct traces of transverse stripes. 

Skull (fig. 9, p. 28), intermediate in size between those of the 
serval and the black-footed cat, with narrow, pointed and rather 
short nasals. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male, head and body 2 ft. 1 ; 
tail 9'5 ; hind foot 5-75 ; head from ear opening to tip of nose 3-25 ; 
skull, total length 4*85 ; breadth 2-60 ; upper cheek teeth 1-50. 

Variation. — Kirby, p. 552, and also Mr. Cloete in his notes, 
communicated to me, both distinguish two varieties, a larger and 
smaller race, the former with a shorter tail, more tawny colour and 


less black soles ; but although no doubt individuals vary a good 
deal, especially through age and sex, no sufficient grounds have 
been shown for distinguishing two species in South Africa. 

Whether the caffer cat should be distinguished from that of 
Abyssinia and North-east Africa [Fells caligata of Temminck and 
Felis maniculata of Cretzschmar), is a difficult question, and only 
a comparison of a large number of skins and skulls from various 
localities can settle this matter satisfactorily. 

Distribution. — If the forms above-mentioned are to be con- 
sidered as specifically identical with F. cajfra, this species has a 
very wide distribution, including Syria, Arabia, Sardinia, and Africa 
from Algeria to the Cape. In South Africa it appears to be fairly 
abundant everywhere, and it is quite common throughout the 
Colony, even in the immediate neighbourhood of Cape Town ; there 
are specimens in the South African Museum from the Cape, Paarl, 
Worcester, Beaufort West, Middelburg and Namaqualand divisions 
of the Colony. 

Habits. — Observers have not paid much attention to this wild 
cat, and the following account is derived chiefly from Kirby, and 
from manuscript notes sent me by the late Mr. Cloete, of Bowden. 

The caffer cat is nocturnal, though sometimes seen in cloudy, 
cool weather, during the day time ; usually, however, it spends the 
day among thick bushes, whence it is sometimes put up by parties 
out shooting ; occasionally in an open country it takes refuge in the 
deserted earth of an ant-bear (Orycteropus). 

Its food consists of small mammals, such as rats and mice, game 
birds to which it is very destructive, and occasionally the young of 
the smaller antelopes ; it is also a great fowl-house raider. Layard 
mentions a case of thirty fowls belonging to the late Sir Thomas 
Maclear, being destroyed in a few days, at the Eoyal Observatory 
near Cape Town ; occasionally too, it will attack lambs and kids ; 
it does not appear to relish carrion. 

The wild cat brings forth its young in holes under stones, or in 
thick bushes, the number of kittens being from two to four; it 
breeds freely with the domestic cat, and in many parts of the 
country it is difficult to keep the ordinary domestic tom cats, 
owing to the superior fighting powers of the wild cat which comes 
down around the farms during the breeding season. It is a very 
plucky and ferocious animal, earing little for man and his vicinity. 

It has been maintained by many naturalists that the European 
domestic cat is chiefly derived from the north-eastern race of this 


species found in Egypt ; at least, the domestic form is certainly not 
derived from the European wild cat {Felis catus). It is in any case 
certain that F. caligata is the species so thoroughly domesticated by 
the ancient Egyptians, and used by them for fowling purposes. 
These cats were also held sacred by the Egyptians, and enormous 
numbers of their bodies have been found preserved and embalmed 
in tombs, especially in the neighbourhood of Bubastis and Beni- 
Hassan in Egypt. 

14. Felis caracal. The Caracal. 

Felis caracal, Guldenstadt, Nov. Comm. Acad. Petrop. xx, p. 500 
(1766) ; Thunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. ill, p. 304 (1811) ; A. Smith 
Descrip. Cat. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 31 (1826) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. 
p. 29 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 125 (1834) ; 
Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 40 (1861) ; Elliot, Monogr. 
Felidae, pi. xli (1883) ; Li/deMer, Handb. Carnivora, i, p. 188, 
pi. xxiii (1895). 

Caracal nubicus, Fitzinger, Sitzb. AJcad. Wien Ix, pt. i, p. 205 (1870). 

Felis nubica, Matschie, Sitzb. Ges. Naturf. Berlin , p. 114 (1892). 

Literature. — le Vaillant (1796), ii, p. 284, obtained in Great Namaqua- 
land ; Daniell (1820), figured on pi. xii ; Livingstone (1857), p. 50, notice of, 
in the Kalahari, under name of "tuane"; Farini (1886), p. 461, in the 
Kalahari ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 88, description and distribution; 
Bryden (1893), p. 61, note on occurrence in Bechuanaland ; Bryden (1899a), 
p. 585, general account. 

Vernacular Names. — Lynx, Eoode-kat or Eooi-kat of Colonists ; Incawa 
of Amaxosa (Cloete) ; Tuane of Bechuanas (Livingstone and Bryden). 

Description. — General colour dark brick-red, darkest on the 
middle of the back ; fur of the same colour throughout, though 
paler towards the roots, some of the hairs black tipped, especially 
along the middle of the back, below paler but hardly white; head 
the same colour as the back with a black ring round the eye, 
extending forwards to the nose ; two small black spots on the 
forehead and on the cheek at the roots of the whiskers, which are 
black at the base and white beyond ; the cheek markings are not 
always well defined ; lower cheeks, chin, and upper throat white, 
ears acutely pointed, bearing a long tuft of black hairs intermingled 
with some white ones more than an inch in length ; back of ears 
greyish black, formed also of black hairs with a few white inter- 
mixed, and a quite black patch at the base of the ears on the head ; 


front of ears with long greyish hairs ; limbs long, of the same 
colour as the back; tail about one third of the length of the head 
and body, also of the same colour as the back. Young with a more 
woolly coat, and often showing traces of spots. 

Skull of about the same size as that of F. served, but without 
the small anterior premolar of the upper jaw, so that there are only 
two premolars above instead of three. 

This animal resembles the true lynxes of the northern hemi- 
sphere in its long limbs, its pencilled ears, and in the absence of 
the anterior upper premolar, but it has a longer tail, and has not 
the ruff round the neck, so characteristic of the true lynxes, and 
may therefore be regarded as an intermediate form between these 
animals and the typical cats. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen in the South African 
Museum ; head and body 2 ft. 11 ; tail 11-50 ; hind foot 8-25 ; from 
ear opening to tip of nose 5"0 ; the largest specimen met with by 
Mr. Cloete measured 4 ft. 3 from nose to tip of tail in the flesh ; 
skull length 4-5 ; breadth 3-20 ; upper cheek teeth 1-80. 

Distribution. — Like most of the cat family, this species has a 
wide distribution ; it is found throughout the western part of India, 
in Persia and Arabia, and also over the greater part of Africa, 
except perhaps on the west coast and in the south-eastern districts, 
such as Mozambique and Nyasaland. 

In South Africa the rooi-kat appears to be found throughout 
the Colony, but is nowhere common ; it is perhaps more abundant 
in the western portion, as it seems to be fairly common in German 
territory, the Kalahari and Bechuanaland, but gets scarcer to the 
eastward in Mashonaland, the Transvaal, and the Orange Free 
State, and I have not heard of its occurrence in Zululand or Natal. 
The South x\frican Museum contains specimens from the Paarl 
and Uitenhage divisions. 

Herr Matschie (see above) believes that the African race can be 
specifically distinguished from that of Asia ; if tbis is so the name of 
the former will be F. nubica. 

Habits. — For this species again my chief sources of informa- 
tion are the notes of Mr. Cloete. According to this observer the 
rooi-kat is found in mountainous, fairly open country, spending the 
day in bush or kloof, and coming out abroad chiefly at night, though 
should temptation, in the form of a convenient flock of sheep or 
goats offer, it will not hesitate to attack during the day. When 
pursued with dogs it usually takes refuge in a tree ; the male will. 


however, sometimes face dogs in the open, standing at bay, scratch- 
ing, spitting and " kaahing," It preys on small antelopes and 
often ravages sheep-kraals, and if lambs or kids are not available, 
will occasionally attack a full grown sheep. Mr. Cloete once 
found an entire mungoose {Herjjestes pulverulentus), in the stomach 
of an individual shot by him. 

Two to three young are usually born, though Mr. Cloete relates 
a case of finding five young ones of the same age in a hole of a 

Like other wild cats, the rooi-kat is exceedingly fierce and 
bold, especially the female in defence of its young. 

The skin of the rooi-kat is highly prized by the Bechuanas for 
making rugs or karosses, the value of which is as much as £4 
or £5. These karosses are said to be a remedy for rheumatism when 
used as blankets, and the fat of the animal is also used as an 
ointment for the same purpose. 

In Persia and India the Caracal is known as the "siyah-gush" 
(blackears), and is trained for hunting and capturing birds, 
especially pigeons. 


Cynailurus, Wagler, Nat. Syst. Ampliih., p. 30 (1830) C. jubatus. 
Queparda, Gray, List Mamm. Brit. Mus., p. 46 (1843) C. jubatus. 

This genus is closely allied to Fells ; it differs from it in having 
the claws less curved, and hardly at all retractile, so that they are 
always visible; the dentition is the same as that of Fells, i.e., i. f, 
c. \, pm. f , m. i, = 30 ; the upper carnassial has no internal cusp, 
though still retaining the corresponding root ; the posterior upper 
molar is more rounded and in a line with the other molars than in 

One species only is usually recognised, though some naturalists 
regard the African hunting leopard as specifically distinct from that 
of India. 

15. Cynaelurus jubatus. The Hunting Leopard. 

Felis jubata, Erxleben, Syst. Beg, Anirn, p. .510 (1777) ; Thimberff, 
Mem. Acad. Peters, iii, p, 304 (1811) ; A. Smith, Descr. Cat. Mamm, 
S. Afr. Mus. p. 8 (1826) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 26 (1832) ; 
A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joiirii. ii, p. 122 (1834). 


Felis guttatus, Herma7in, Observ. Zool. p. 38 (1804). 

Gueparda jubata, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 38 (1861). 

? Felis lanea, P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Sac. 1877, p. 532, pi. Iv 

[Beaufort WestJ ; Layard, ibid. 1878, p. 655 ; P. L. Sclater, ibid. 

1884, p. 476. 
Cynailurus jubatus, Elliot, Monogr. Felidae, pi. xliii (1883) ; 

LydeTcher, Handh. Carnivora, p. 202, pi. xxv (1893). 
Cynaelurus guttatus, NoacJc, Zool. JaJirb. iv, p. 163 (1889) [Kalahari] . 

Literature. — Harris (1840) figured on pi. xxviii, fig. 2 ; Drummond 
(1875), p. 289, described as maned leopard in Ziiluland ; Farini (1886), p. 
461, occurrence in Kalahari ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 86, descrip- 
tion and habits; Bryden (1893), p. 60, on its occurrence in Bechuanaland ; 
Kirby (1896), p. 553, vernacular names, habits, and measurements in the 
Eastern Transvaal ; Kirby (1899a), p. 587, general account. 

Vernacular Names. — Luipard or sometimes Vlackte tijger of Dutch 
Colonists ; Shlozi of Amaxosa (Cloete) ; Ngulule of Ziilus (Drummond) ; 
Nki or Nkwani of Bechuanas (Smith) ; Ihlose of Swazi, Sigakaka of 
Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour ochraceous yellow ; fur smooth, 
not very long, and of the same colour throughout, covered every- 
where with round black spots about half an inch in diameter at the 
largest ; below lighter, almost white, with longer and more woolly 
hair and indistinct spots ; round the neck and more so on the 
shoulders the hair is thicker, more woolly and upstanding, forming 
a kind of incipient mane ; head short and thick, with small, rather 
indistinct spots, and a characteristic black line from the anterior 
angle of the eye to the edge of the lip in the neighbourhood of the 
canine tooth ; pupil round ; ear short and rounded, posteriorly 
with a black patch and tawny tip ; chin white, unspotted, chest 
whitish and spotted ; limbs very lank and long, spotted like the 
back ; claws large and always visible, as they are only partially 
retractile ; tail long, about half the length of the head and body, 
spotted at first, distally the spots tend to become rings, of which 
there are six to eight more or less imperfect ; the tip of the tail is 
bushy and usually white. 

In the young the fur is woolly, grey, and not so smooth, and 
the spots absent, or at least not nearly so well defined. 

Skull much rounded above from behind forwards ; inter-orbital 
and post-orbital portions of the skull very much wider than the 
corresponding parts in the leopard ; orbits, sometimes at any rate, 
completed posteriorly ; no internal cusp to the posterior upper pre- 


molar ; the first upper premolar crushed in close between the 
canine and the middle premolar ; the upper molar rounded and 
hardly transverse in position. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted female, head and body 3 ft. 11 ; 
tail 1 ft. 11*5 ; hind foot 10-5 ; from ear-opening to tip of nose 
7 "5 in. ; Kirby gives the total length of the largest met with 
by him as 7 ft. 6, and the height at shoulders 2 ft. 6 to 2 ft. 8. 
Skull length 7*20 ; breadth 2-75 ; length of upper cheek teeth 2-75. 

Varieties. — An example of a pale variety, in which the ground 
colour is isabelline, the spots fulvous blotches, and in which the 
characteristic face streak is absent, was brought alive to the Zoological 
Gardens in London, and described and figured as Felis lanea by 
Mr. P. L. Sclater ; another individual which, like the former, was 
obtained in the neighbourhood of Beaufort West, has long been in 
the South African Museum. It appears to me that these specimens 
are merely examples of an incipient albinism, just as the Grahams- 
town leopards described above are examples of commencing 
melanism, and that no specific differentiation can be established in 
either case. 

Many authors have sought to draw a distinction between the 
hunting leopards of Asia and Africa ; should this be correct the 
name C. guttata must be applied to our species or sub-species. 

Distribution. — The hunting leopard inhabits much the same 
geographical area as the caracal ; it is found throughout the greater 
part of India westwards of Lower Bengal, Persia, and Transcaspia. 
In Africa it is found in all the dryer parts, in Somaliland and 
British East Africa as far as Kilima-njaro, on the Nyasa-Tanganyka 
plateau and in parts of Angola, but it does not appear to enter the 
West African Forest region or the damper and more afforested 
parts of South-east Africa. 

In the Colony it is found sparingly in the western and midland 
districts : north of the Orange Eiver it is common in German 
territory, the Kalahari and Bechuanaland, and exists in Rhodesia, 
the Transvaal, Zululand and Natal, though now very rare in the 
latter Colony, and found only in the Drakensberg range. There are 
examples in the South African Museum from Beaufort West in the 
Colony, Natal, the Lydenberg district of the Transvaal and the 
Nyasa-Tanganyka plateau. 

Habits. — The hunting leopard inhabits an open grass country 
where there are scattered bushes ; it is never found in thick forest. 
It is less nocturnal than the leopard, and is frequently seen abroad 


in daytime, especially in cool and cloudy weather. When pur- 
sued it frequently takes to a tree ; this was the case with both the 
individuals which came under the notice of Mr. Cloete in the Albany 

The pace of this cat is very great. Both Kirby and all Indian 
naturalists are agreed that for a short distance at any rate it will 
easily outstrip a horse ; in fact, Mr. Blanford, in his "Mammals 
of India," states that it is the swiftest of all mammals. The voice 
of the adult is a deep grunt something like that of a leopard, 
while the young give vent to a whistling sound. 

The prey of the hunting leopard consists of small quadrupeds, 
such as hares and small bucks, though Kirby relates the case of one 
which overpowered a female kudu. In the neighbourhood of farms 
it will attack goats, young cattle, and has even been known to 
destroy ostriches by driving them against the wire fences enclosing 

The animal is a shy and secretive one, and is hence probably 
often overlooked and so reckoned rare ; it has never been known to 
attack man, and in captivity is described as being gentle, timid and 
easily excitable. 

In India it is often known as the cheetah or chita, though the 
name is not a good one, as it is also applied to the true leopard 
by the Hindustani-speaking natives. It is there frequently caught 
and tamed, and trained to hunt antelopes, and no native Eajah's 
court is complete without one or two. Only the adult animal is 
caught, as it is said that the young ones will never hunt unless 
taught by their mother. 

After six months' training they are taken out hooded, usually 
in a cart, and loosed when within 200 to 400 yards of the antelopes ; 
these are knocked over after a violent rush, and as many as six are 
sometimes secured in this manner in one day. 


Carnivores with a somewhat elongate head and body and short 
limbs, as compared with the previous family. The claws vary in 
retractibility, and so does the extent to which the soles are clothed 
with hairs, this depending on the fact that some of the family 
are digitigrade, some plantigrade. The number of digits is usually 


Auditory bulla externally constricted and divided into two 
chambers ; alisphenoid canal nearly always present ; the second 
pair of lower incisors usually extending above the level of the first 
and third pairs, premolars three or four, molars one or two, upper 
carnassial with no anterior lobe. 

This family is confined to the Old World, and contains a good 
number of South African representatives. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Claws strongly curved and more or less retractile ; 

toes 5 — 5 ; perineal glands present. 

a. Shorter animals with longer legs ; soles com- 
pletely clothed with hair Viverra, p. 50. 

h. Slenderer animals with shorter legs ; soles with 

a long narrow naked line Genetta, p. 52. 

B. Claws exserted, lengthened, and not retractile ; no 

perineal glands. 

a. A bare line runs from the nose to the upper lip ; 

toes 5 — 5. 

«'. Soles naked or hairy ; three to four pre- 
molars, if three, a space between the anterior 
one and the canine Herpestes, p. 59. 

6'. Soles always naked ; three premolars above 
and below, with no space between them and 
the canine in front Helogale, p. 68. 

b. No naked groove between the nose and the 

upper hp. 
a\ Toes 5—5. 

a^. Soles hairy ; four premolars above and 

below Bliynchof/a le, p. 69. 

6^. Soles bare; three premolars above and below Crossarchus, p. 72. 
b.^ Toes 5 — 4 ; soles hairy ; four premolars above 

and below Cynictis, p. 73. 

c'. Toes 4 — 4 ; soles bare; three premolars above, 

three or four below Suricata, p. 76. 


Yiverra, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat., 12th ed., i, p. 63 (1766) V. zibetha. 

Animals with a somewhat short and stout body as compared 
with other members of the same group ; limbs long, tail short and 
tapering ; underside of tarsus completely clothed with hair ; claws 


long, not very retractile, five in number on both feet ; a pouch at 
the root of the tail for the storage of the secretion of the perineal 

Skull with auditory bulla small and somewhat pointed in front. 

Dentition i. f , c. {, pm. |, m. |=40, as in Genetta, but the teeth 
stouter and less compressed and the third upper premolar with no 
internal cusp. 

Only one African species, that below described, is known ; four 
others are found in India and South-eastern Asia. 

16. Yiverra civetta. The Civet Cat. 

Viverra civetta, Schreber, Sailgeth. iii, p. 418, pi. cxi (1778) ; Lyclekker, 
Handb. Carnivora i, p. 211, pi. xxvii (1895) ; Kirby, Haunts of Wild 
Game, p. 553 (1896) [Eastern Transvaal] . 
Viverra orientalis, Matschie, Archiv. f. Naturg., p. 352 (1891) ; id, 

Sailgeth. Deutsch-Ost-Afrihas, p. 72. fig. 40 (1895). 
Vernacular Names. — Civet Kat of the Boers ; Mpicamadliloti (that 
which puzzles spirits, inrefei'ence to its secretive habits) of the Swazis, Lisisi 
of the Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. —General colour yellowish grey, covered with in- 
distinct dark brown spots which tend on the anterior half of the 
body to form transverse markings ; cheeks, throat and limbs black, 
upper lip and hinder cheeks white ; ears short, broad and rounded, 
with black bases and white tips ; along the back from between the 
ears to the root of the tail a crest of much longer hairs, at first 
tawny yellow at their bases with black tips, getting entirely black 
towards the hinder part of the back ; tail about half the length of 
the head and body, the proximal half with white rings interrupted 
above by a black dorsal band, the distal half quite black. 

This description has been drawn up from a flat skin obtained by 
Mr. G. A. K. Marshall, near Salisbury ; another one, also in the South 
African Museum, is very similar, but is without the crest and is 
perhaps that of a female. 

Dimensions. — Of the flat skin described above, head and body 
36-0, tail 18-0. 

Distribution. — The civet cat is found throughout the tropical 
portion of Africa, and extends south of the Zambesi into Mashona- 
land and the Eastern Transvaal, where it has been met with by 
Messrs. Marshall and Kirby. 


Habits. — These animals appear to be nocturnal and hence to be 
very seldom seen, and little is known about their habits. In the 
Transvaal, Kirby relates that they are found in the low country 
and in the kloofs, and were occasionally killed by his dogs. In 
tropical Africa they are frequently caught by the natives, and either 
kept in cages or tied up by a ring put through their noses, for the 
purpose of collecting the secretion which is stored up in the 
receptacles on either side of the tail ; this is the civet of commerce, 
formerly in considerable demand as a perfume. 

The civet cat is a dire foe to poultry, and possesses to the full 
the bloodthirsty propensities of weasels and wild cats. 


Genetta, G. Cuvier, Eigne Animal i, p. 156 (1817)... G. vulgaris. 

Elongated animals with slender bodies and long tails, with soft 
spotted or clouded fur ; the underside of the metatarsus has a long 
narrow bare line of skin extending up to the heel, in this differing 
from Viverra; perineal glands round the anus present, but no 
pouch for storing up their secretion ; five toes to each foot, pro- 
vided with partially retractile claws. 

Skull with an elongated bulla, constricted in the middle and 
divided into two chambers by a septum ; dentition i. f , c. i, pm. 
f , m. I = 40, all the teeth sharp pointed and compressed; the upper 

carnassial with an internal lobe, the lower with a considerable 


The species of this genus are sadly in need of revision, and there 

is considerable confusion as to their number. Trouessart, in his 

catalogue recognises six, and of these four are found in our region ; 

of the others, one {G. vulgaris) is South European and North 

African, the other (G. jpardina) is tropical African. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Dorsal stripe and body spots black. 

a. Spots large, in three rows; tail tip black; 

third upper premolar with no internal cusp G. tigrina, p. 53. 




h. Spots small in five or six rows, tail tip white ; 

third upper premolar with an internal cusp G.feKna, p. 55. 

JB. Dorsal stripe black, spots rusty red G. senegalensis, p. 57. 

C. Dorsal stripe and spots rusty red G. ruhiginosa, p. 58. 

Fig. 12. — Qennetta tigrina, left half of palate (| nat. size). 

17. Genetta tigrina. The Laege-spotted Genet. 

Viverra tigrina, Schreber, Saiigeth. iii, p. 425 pi. cxv (1778) ; Tliun- 

herg, Mem. Acad. Peter's, iii, p. 306 (1811) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. 

Cap. p. 17 (1832). 
Genetta tigrina, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 94 (1834) ; 

Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 33 (1861) ; Lydehher, Handb. 

Carnivora i, p. 219, pi. xxviii (1895). 

Vernacular Names. — Also applied to other species of the genus ; Musk- 
kat or Misselyat-kat of Colonists ; Inywagi of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; 
Insimba of Swazis and Zulus (Kirby) ; Tshipa of Basutos (Kirby). 




Description. — General colour grey, with a tinge of yellow owing 
to the extreme tips of the longer hairs being black, under fur slaty ; 
a black dorsal stripe slightly crested posteriorly from just behind 
the shoulders to the root of the tail ; nape of the neck and shoulders 
with several ill-defined stripes and markings, sides of the body with 
black somewhat square spots, the larger more than an inch in 
diameter, arranged in about three longitudinal rows ; head tawny 
grey with a white spot below the anterior part of each eye and also 
over the front of each lip, the two spots separated by a black patch 
whence spring the whisker bristles which are partly black and 

Fig. 13.— Sole of the hind foot of Genetta tigrina. 

white ; lower lips and chin black, throat whitish ; ears rounded, 
thinly covered with white hairs, a few longer ones at the base 
posteriorly; fore limbs from above the elbow joint downwards black 
with a few whitish longer hairs, toes paler ; hind limbs below the 
knee joint almost black ; soles with a narrow naked line extending 
three quarters of the way back to the heel (fig. 13) ; tail long, a little 
less than the length of the head and body, clothed with long hair, 
and bearing about twelve alternately black and dirty-white rings, 
the black ones slightly broader. 

Skull long and narrow, the third upper premolar with no trace 
of the internal cusp present in G. felina in the skull examined (fig. 
12, p. 53). 

This species differs from G. felina in its darker limbs, larger 
squarish spots and black tipped tail with predominating black rings, 


and also in the character of the third upper premolar, if this be 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen in the South African 
Museum ; head and body 22-5 ; tail 17"5 ; hind foot 3-5 ; from ear 
opening to tip of snout 3-65; skull, length 3'60; breadth 1*85; 
upper cheek teeth 1-55. 

Distribution. — This genet is apparently fairly common through- 
out the Colony, the Museum possesses several examples from the 
neighbourhood of Cape Town, where, however, it is not so abundant 
as the allied small-spotted form ; there is also in the Museum a skin 
from Pondoland in the extreme east. Beyond the Colony it has 
been recorded from Matabeleland, Nyasaland, Kilima-njaro, Abys- 
sinia and Somaliland. 

Habits. — This animal was first made known by a live specimen 
sent by the Cape Governor, Tulbagh, in 1759 to Holland, where it 
lived for some time in the menagerie of the Stattholder, and was 
described by Vosmaer under the name of the Bizamkat; on this 
description Schreber founded his Vivei'ra tigrina. 

The animal is nocturnal in its habits, remaining concealed during 
the day in thick grass and bushes, or oftener lying extended along 
the horizontal branch of a tree ; its food consists of small game, 
and it is a great poultry robber ; in disposition it is bloodthirsty, 
fierce and untameable, though, when attacked by dogs, it is con- 
sidered to be cowardly, not defending itself but only hissing and 
emitting an evil- smelling yellow secretion from the glands opening 
in the neighbourhood of the anus. 

18. Genetta felina. The Small-spotted Genet. 

Viverra felina, Tliunherg, K. Velens. ATiad. Handl. StocJcholm, xxxii, 
p. 166, pi. vii (1811) ; Smuts, Enum. Mmnm. Cap. p. 18 (1832). 

Viverra genetta, apud A. Smith, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 18 (1826). 

Genetta felina, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 95 (1834) ; 
Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 33 (1861). 

Vernacular Names. — The names applied to the large-spotted genet 
apply equally to this species. 

Description. — General colour whitish grey, with the tips of some 
of the longer hairs black, under-fur slaty ; dorsal stripe black, 
extending from the shoulder to the base of the tail, slightly crested 
posteriorly ; sides of the body covered with a much larger number 








of smaller black spots than in G. tigrina, arranged in about five 
irregular longitudinal rows, the largest not more than three 
quarters of an inch in diameter ; head markings and ears as in G. 
tigrina ; fore-limbs black below, but above the same colour as the 
back with almost white toes ; hind limbs as in G. tigrina, but toes 
white ; tail with about thirteen or fourteen alternate rings of black 
and white, the black rings being narrower than the white ; tip of 
the tail white. 

Skull long and narrow, a little larger but otherwise hardly 
differing from that of G. tigrina ; the third upper premolar with a 
distinct internal cusp and root. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 23*50; 
tail 17"50 ; hind foot 3-0 ; head from ear opening to the tip of the 
nose 3-25 ; skull, length 3-80, breadth 1*90 ; upper cheek 
teeth 1-70. 

Distribution. — This species appears to be rather commoner 
round Cape Town than the former one, and the South African 
Museum possesses several examples from the neighbourhood ; it 
also occurs at Graaff Eeinet and Kuruman and has been recorded by 
M. Barboza de Bocage from Angola; whether it extends further 
north it is impossible to say until a thorough revision of the species 
of this genus has been undertaken. 

Habits. — All that was said about the habits of the large- 
spotted genet may equally apply to this species, since the distinc- 
tion between the two is hardly recognised in the Colony. 

19. Genetta senegalensis. The Senegal Genet. 

Viverra senegalensis, Fischer, Synopsis Mavim. p. 170 (1829). 
Genetta senegalensis, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1832, p. 63 ; id. Cat. 

Cam. Mamm. B. M., p. 50 (1869) ; Noaclc, Zool. Jalirb. iv, p. 169, 

pi. iv, figs. 30, 32 (1889) [Kalahari] . 

Description. — General colour whitish grey as in G. felina, the 
spots on the sides of the body also have much the same distribution 
as in that species, but are a rusty brown instead of black and 
contrast strongly with the well-marked crested dorsal stripe which 
is black ; head markings, limbs, and tail as in G. felina. 

The skull, judging from the description of Gray and the figure of 
Noack, resembles that of G. tigrina in not having the internal cusp 
on the third upper premolar. 


The specimen in the South African Museum, from which the 
description is drawn up, agrees very well with that of Gray above 
quoted. The species, however, was founded on a figure of the 
" Genette de Senegal" in F. Cuvier's Mammiferes, and this cer- 
tainly has the spots black, not red, so that it is probable that 
Gray's species and that of Cuvier are not identical. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen in the South African 
Museum ; head and body 20-50 ; tail 18-00 ; hind foot 2-60 ; from 
ear opening to tip of nose 3-10 ; skull [apud Gray] length 3-2 ; 
breadth 1-8. 

Distribution. — The South African Museum possesses an example 
of this species from the Lake Ngami district, obtained by Chapman ; 
and Noack has recorded it from the Kalahari ; thence its range ex- 
tends northwards through Angola to West Africa. 

20. Genetta rubiginosa. The Eusty-spotted Genet. 

Genetta rubiginosa, Pucheran, Rev. Zool. (2) vii, p. 154 (1855) ; Socage, 
Jorn. Sci. List. (2) i, p. 177 (1890). 

Description. — General colour greyish- white with a red tinge, the 
limbs of the same colour, and only showing a few small black or 
blackish spots; the dorsal stripe and spots on the body of a 
brilUant brick-red, except those of the lowest row, which are 
blackish ; tail somewhat elongated, having as a rule, towards the 
base four red rings, followed by four or five black ones, which 
alternate with narrower rings of white with a tinge of red ; a con- 
siderable space at the tip of the tail formed by a coalescence of two 
or three black rings. 

The description is translated from that of Bocage, and agrees 
very well with specimens from Bechuanaland, now in the South 
African Museum. 

Dimensions. — From Bocage ; head and body 18-90 ; tail 18-90 ; 
from ear to tip of nose 3-0. 

Distribution. — This species was originally obtained from Cape 
Colony by M. Verreaux, and has since been recorded from Angola 
by M. de Bocage. 

It is often to be found in karosses or skin rugs made in 
Bechuanaland, where it is proba.bly common. There are two flat 
skins obviously prepared for this purpose in the South African 





Ichneumon, Lacej^ede, Mem. cle VInst. iii, p. 492 

(1801) [nee Linn] H. ichneumon. 

Herpestes, Illiger, Prodr. Syst. Mamm. p. 135 

(1811) H . ichneumon. 

Atilax, F. Guvier, Hist. Nat,. Mamm. iii, hvr. 54 

(1826) H. galera. 

Animals with long slender bodies and with very short wide 
ears hardly projecting beyond the surrounding fur ; a narrow naked 
groove always present from the nose to the upper lip ; legs somewhat 
short ; body covered with a grizzled fur caused by the individual 


. '^t^^iits.^' 

Fig. 15. — Left half of palate and lower jaw of Herpestes galera (| nat. size). 

hairs bemg ringed with two distinct colours ; tail at least half as 
long as the head and body ; tarsus sometimes naked, sometimes 
hairy beneath ; five toes to fore and hind feet, the first very short 
and with a very small claw. Skull long and narrow, considerably 
contracted behind the post-orbital process, bony orbits complete or 

nearly so, palate long. Teeth, i. f , c i, pm. 

3 to 4' 


36 to 40 ; 


the dimensions of the teeth very constant, but the number of pre- 
molars varies, even within the hmits of a single species. 

This is a large genus and contains nineteen species according 
to Trouessart's Catalogue, distributed over Africa (except Mada- 
gascar), Southern Spain and Southern Asia as far as the Malay 
Peninsula and Borneo. Six are found within our limits. 

The present account is founded on an excellent revision of the 
African species of the genus, published by Thomas (Proc. Zool. Soc. 
1882, p. 59). 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Tarsus nearly or quite naked below ; 

posterior upper molar about half the size 
of its anterior fellow ; only two cusps to the 
posterior lower molar. 

a. Tail distinctly black tipped. 

aK Large, head and body more than 20 in. H. caffer, p. 60. 
h^. Small, head and body less than 15 in. 

c<?. Fur grizzled H. gracilis typicus. p. 62. 

h^. Fur bright rufous H. gracilis badius, p. 62. 

b. Tail not black tipped. 

c^ Large, head and body more than 20 in., 

dark rufous H. galera. p. 63. 

d\ Medium, head and body 14 to 15 in. 

grizzled H. pulverulentus, p. 65. 

e^ Small, head and body 10 to 13 in., pale 

grizzled H. punctatissimus,^. 66. 

B. Tarsus always hairy beneath ; posterior 

upper molar about f the length of its 

anterior fellow. 

/'. Skull larger, over 4 in., lower posterior 

molar with 4 external cusps H. grandis, p. 67. 

g^. Skull smaller, less than 4 in., lower 

posterior molar with 3 external cusps, 

tail usually white H. albicauda, p. 66. 

21. Herpestes caffer. The Laege Geey Mungoose. 

Viverra cafra, Omelin, Linn. Syst. Nat. i, p. 85 (1789). 
Viverra grisea, Tliunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 305 (1811). 
Herpestes griseus, a^nid Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 19 (1832). 
Ichneumon caffer et madagascarensis, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart, Journ. 
ii, p. 114 (1834). 
Herpestes bennettii. Gray, Charlesw, Mag. N. H. i. p. 578 (1837). 


Herpestes ichneumon, apud Grill, K, Vetens. Ahad. Handl. Stochholm 
ii, 2, p. 14 (1858) ; Laijard, Cat. Mamni. S. Afr. Mm. p. 33 (1861) 
\nec Linn.'] 

Herpestes caffer, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 66. 

Vernacular Names. — Gi-ijse Muishond and Kommetje-gat-kat of 
Colonists ; Umvuzi of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Mvunti of Swazis (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour speckly grey ; the fur is coarse 
and is quite short on the head, but gets longer towards the hinder 
end of the body, where it reaches a length of nearly four inches ; 
each hair bears up to twelve black and white alternate rings ; face 
in front of the eyes black ; ears very short and broad, hardly show- 
ing above the fur ; limbs getting darker towards the toes, which are 
almost black; underside of the tarsus usually naked, sometimes 
though rarely the posterior part hairy ; tail tapering, with shorter 
hairs towards the tip, which latter is provided with a brush of quite 
black, long hairs, extending beyond the bony tip of the tail a distance 
of from four to five inches. Skull slender and somewhat narrower 
than that of H. galera, breadth nearly always a little over half the 
length ; a small anterior premolar in the lower jaw, making four 
in all. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 26-0 ; 
tail 18-0 ; hind foot 3-50 ; from ear to tip of nose 4-0 ; skull (apud 
Thomas), length 4-3; breadth 2-14; upper cheek teeth 1-3. 

Distribution. — This mungoose is found all over Africa south of 
the Sahara, though apparently nowhere abundant ; in North Africa 
and Spain it is represented by an allied species, the true ichneumon, 
a sacred animal of the ancient Egyptians. In South Africa the large 
grey mungoose, though widely spread, appears to be nowhere com- 
mon ; there are examples in the South African Museum, from the 
Cape and Stellenbosch divisions in the west, and from Pondoland 
in the east, and it is also found in Natal. 

Habits. — Little has been recorded of the habits of this animal ; 
it is said to be found in rocky places, and to feed upon mice, small 
birds and perhaps frogs. 

22. Herpestes gracilis. 

This species is found throughout the whole of the Ethiopian 
region, and in consequence of its great colour variation has been 
divided into four sub-species by Thomas ; of these two are described 
below, the others are : — 


(1) H. gracilis melanurus from West Africa, with dark rufous 
annulated fur. 

(2) H. gracilis ochraceus from Abyssinia, with hght sandy-yellow 
annulated fur. 

22a. H. gracilis typicus. The Slender Mungoose. 

Herpestes gracilis, Biippell, N. Wirh. Abyss, p. 29, pi. viii, fig. 2 

(1835) ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 68 ; Bocage, Jorn. Sci. 

Lisbo7i (2) i, -p. 178(1890). 
Herpestes mutgigella, Biippell, N. Wirh. Abyss, p. 29, pi. ix, fig. 1 

Herpestes punctulatus. Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1849, p. 11 [Port Natal] . 
Herpestes ornatus, Peters, Beise Mozamb. Saiigeth. p. 117, pi. xxvi 


Description. — Form small and slender, general colour yellowish 
or greyish brown, fur short and annulated, with alternate black and 
whitish to reddish brown rings ; below and extremities somewhat 
paler, the black rings not being so marked ; the tarsus somewhat 
hairy, the naked portion as a rule occupying the distal two-thirds 
only ; tail nearly as long as the head and body, coloured like the 
back, with a very strongly marked black tail brush, the hairs of 
which project one or two inches beyond the bony tip. 

Skull like that of H. caffra, but much smaller; orbits in both 
the skulls examined completed posteriorly; teeth slender and 
sharp, only three premolars in the lower jaw. 

Distribution. — Africa, south of the Sahara, from Cape Verde to 
Abyssinia in the north (the type having been obtained by Kiippell 
near Massowa on the Eed Sea) thence southwards through East 
Africa as far as Natal, and the Eastern part of the Colony ; there 
are examples in the South African Museum from the neighbourhood 
of Lake Ngami, from Pondoland and from the Weenen district of 

22b. H. gracilis badius. The Euddy Mungoose. 

Ichneumon ratlamuchi et cauui, A. Smith, App. Beport Exped. 

Explor. S. Africa, p. 42 (1836). 
Herpestes badius, A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pi. iv (1838). 
Herpestes gracilis var. badius, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 68 ; 

NoacJi, Zool Jahrb. iv, p. 182 (1889). 


Description. — General colour bright rufous, without a sign of 
annulation, tail tip as in the typical sub-species. Iris red ; skull 
also as in the typical sub-species. 

Distribution. — This sub-species appears to be found in the drier 
parts of South Africa ; the type was obtained from Old Latakoo in 
the neighbourhood of Kuruman in Bechuanaland. The form has 
also been recorded from the Kalahari ; and there is a richly coloured 
example in the South African Museum from Upington on the 
Orange Eiver ; it is said by Thomas to extend to Zanzibar. 

Dimensions. — (Applicable to both sub-species) from a mounted 
specimen in the South African Museum. Head and body 12-0 ; tail 
11-0 ; hind foot 2-1 ; from ear to tip of snout 2-1. Skull, length 
2-70 ; breadth 1-40 ; upper cheek teeth 1-07. 

Habits. — This little mungoose lives in dry districts, where there 
is plenty of brushwood and undergrowth ; it is very shy, hiding 
quickly when discovered. In East Africa it is said to specially affect 
old ant-hills round which it plays ; its food consists apparently 
chiefly of insects, these were found by Smith in the stomach of his 
specimens, and by Noack in the mouth of others ; it is also said to 
devour mice, lizards and snakes. 

23. Herpestes galera. The Water Mungoose. 

Mustela galera, Erxleben, Syst. Beg. Anim. i, p. 453 (1777). 

Viverra uems et Mustela afra, Kerr, eel. Linn. Syst. Nat. pp. 160, 

175 (1792). 
Atilax vansire, F. Ciivier, Hist. Nat. Mamm. iii, livr. 54 (1826). 
Herpestes paludinosus, G. Cuvier, Begne Anim. ed. 2, i, p. 158 (1829) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 21 (1832) ; Orill, K. Vetens. Ahad. 

Handl. Stockholm ii, 2, p. 14 (1858) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. 

Mus. p. 34 (1861). 
Mangusta urinatrix, A. Smith, Zool. Journ. iv, p. 437 (1829). 
Ichneumon urinator, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ., ii, p. 115 (1834). 
Herpestes galera, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 72 ; LydeTiher, 

Handb, Carnivora, i, p. 253 (1895). 

Vernacular Names. — Zwarte Muishond and Bruin Kommetje-gat-kat 
of the Colonists ; Ivuzi of Amaxosa (Cloete) . 

Description. — General form large, stout and thickset, especially 
about the head and neck ; colour above and below dark brown, the 
hairs not nearly so long as in H. caffer, and annulated with alternate 


bands of pale yellow and brown, the latter predominating, these 
annulations are sometimes obsolete or absent ; under-fur thick, 
woolly and light brown ; head the same colour as the back ; limbs 
dark brown, the annulations being absent ; tarsus usually bare up 
to the heel, sometimes the posterior third hairy ; tail little over 
half the length of the head and body, stout and gently tapering, of 
the same colour as the body, getting a little darker towards the tip, 
but never with a distinct black tuft. Skull stout and heavy, parti- 
cularly the lower jaw ; teeth strong ; three lower premolars only. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 24-0 ; 
tail 13-0 ; hind foot 3-9 ; from ear to tip of nose 4-0. Skull, length 
4-55 ; breadth 2-60 ; upper cheek teeth 1'80. 

Distribution. — West and South Africa ; the form occurring in 
North-east Africa being distinguished by Thomas as a sub-species 
on account of its larger size. The present typical variety is found 
in French Congoland, Angola, Nyasaland and German East Africa, 
and appears to be common everywhere south of the Zambesi ; 
the South African Museum possesses specimens from the Cape 
division and from the Zambesi Eiver. 

Habits. — This species, known to Buffon as the " Vansire" from 
the description given by Flacourt (Histoire de la grande isle Mada- 
gascar, p. 154, 1661), of a specimen obtained by him in that island, 
was only subsequently found to be an African and not a Madagascan 

This mungoose is a thoroughly aquatic animal, at any rate in 
the Colony, being almost invariably found in marshy places or on the 
banks of rivers and streams, concealed in rushes. When pursued 
with dogs it takes to the water, swimming and diving with great 
ease, and will even remain for a considerable period entirely 
immersed, with the tip of its nose alone above water, hidden in the 
weeds in order to escape its enemies. The fresh water crab 
{Thelphusa), so common everywhere throughout the Colony, is said 
to constitute the chief article of diet of this animal, but fishes, frogs,- 
and insects all contribute, and the fowl yard when handy is by no 
means neglected. 

From the glands on either side of the anus this animal is able 
to diffuse a strong odour described as being " sweet sickening." 




24. Herpestes pulverulentus. The Small Gkey Mungoose. 

Herpestes caffra, ajpud A, Smith, Descrip. Cat. 8. Afr, Mus. p. 21 

(1826) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 34 (1861) [nee Gmelin']. 

Herpestes pulverulentus, Wagner, Munch. Gel. Anzeig. ix, p. 426 

(1839) ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 74. 
Herpestes axDiculatus, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 551. 
Vernacular Names. — Grijse Muishond, Neetliaar, or Pepper and Salt Cat 
of tlie Colonists ; ilitse of Amaxosa (Cloete). 

Description. — General colour resembling that of" H. caffer, a 
speckly grey, caused by the long hair being banded with alternate 
rings of black and white ; a woolly under-fur dark brown at the 

Pig. 16. — The Small Grey Mungoose {Herpestes pulverulentus). 
(From life.) 

base, lighter above ; head and extremities slightly darker than 
the body ; naked area of tarsus a narrow band hardly extending to 
the heel ; tail as in H. caffer, but without any trace of the black 
tuft of hair at the tip. Skull resembling that of H. gracilis, but 
somewhat stouter and the teeth rather larger. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 13-50 ; 
tail 10-50 ; hind foot 2-65 ; from ear to tip of nose 2-7. Skull, length 
2-80; breadth 1-55 ; upper cheek teeth 1-20. 

Distribution. — This species appears to be fairly abundant through- 
out the Colony and Natal, but we have no evidence of its extension 
further north ; in the South African Museum there are specimens 
from the Malmesbury, Stellenbosch, Colesberg, Beaufort West, 
Griqualand West and East London divisions, while the British 
Museum contains examples from King Williams Town and Natal. 

Habits. — This little mungoose, as I am informed by Mr. Cloete, 
inhabits dense bush or rocky veld, and is not found as a rule in the 
open ; a favourite resort is an old hollow stump ; when pressed 


it will climb trees, especially those with sloping stems, but it is 
not very active in this respect, and is in no sense an arboreal 
animal. Its food consists of insects, mice, rats, small birds and 
their eggs. 

25. Herpestes punctatissimus. The Pale Mungoose. 

Herpestes punctatissimus, TemmincTc, Esq. Zool. Guin., p. 108 (1853) ; 
Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 74. 

Description. — General colour pale grey ; fur short and harsh, 
the hairs on the back barely half an inch in length, finely grizzled 
black and creamy white ; below like the back, except the hairs 
have longer pale tips and less black ; tail hairs rather longer 
than those of the body, uniformly annulated, no trace of the darker 
tail tip ; extremities the same colour as the body ; tarsus naked 
[Thomas]. Skull of the only specimen known imperfect. 

This mungoose appears to differ from H. pulvericlentus , to which 
it is evidently very closely allied, by its lighter colour and its 
smaller size. 

Dimensions. — Head and body 13-0 ; tail 10-2 ; hind foot 1'75 
[Thomas] . 

Distribution. — The only known example of this species was 
obtained by Dr. Brehm at Algoa Bay, and is now in the Leyden 
Museum ; there was said to have been a second example in the same 
Museum from Gaboon, but this is now no longer there. 

26. Herpestes albicauda. The White -tailed Mungoose. 

Herpestes albicaudus, G. Cuvier, Begne Anim. 2nd. ed. i, p. 158 (1829) ; 
. Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 75. 

Herpestes leucurus, Ehrenherg, Syvib. Phijs. pi. xii, dec. 2 (1832). 
Ichneumon albicaudis, J.. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 115 (1834). 
Ichneumia albescens, I. Geoffr., Mag. Zool. pp. 16, 35 (1839) [descript. 

not fig.] . 
Herpestes loumpo, TemmincTt, Esq. Zool. Guin., p. 93 (1853). 
Ichneumia nigricauda Pucherayi, Bev. et Mag. Zool. vii, p. 394 (1855). 

Description. — Of large size with a somewhat slender body ; 
general colour grey ; a very thick woolly under-fur, light slaty at 
the base, dirty white at the tip, covers the body, beyond which pro- 
ject sparse, long coarse hairs, chiefly black, though some have a 


white ring ; the head is the same colour, but with a shght tinge of 
rufous on the snout and a black ring round the eye, the hair being 
much shorter and closer ; extremities black from the elbow and the 
hock joints respectively ; tarsus completely hairy to the root of the 
toes ; tail a little shorter than the body without the head, of the 
same colour as the back at the base, but the white hairs gradually 
predominating so that the last two-thirds of the tail are completely 
white. In some specimens, especially those from West Africa, the 
bases of the tail hairs only are white and the tips black, so that the 
animal appears to have a black tail ; such examples have been 
obtained occasionally in Natal. 

Skull stout and heavy, brain case short, teeth rounded, posterior 
molars above and below larger than in H. caffer ; the lower anterior 
molar with five cusps instead of four. 

Dimensions. — Head and body 22-50 ; tail 16-0 ; hind foot 4-45 ; 
from ear to tip of snout 3*40 ; skull (apud Thomas) length 3'80 ; 
breadth 2 •07. 

Distribution. — The greater part of Africa, from Guinea in the west 
and Nubia in the east to the eastern part of the Colony, extending 
into Arabia as far as Muscat. In South Africa it is abundant in 
Natal and westward as far as the midland districts of the Colony 
and northwards to Matabeleland ; the South African Museum 
contains specimens from the Albany division of the Colony and 
from Estcourt in Natal. "^ 

27. Herpestes grandis. The Giant Mungoosb. 

Herpestes grandis, TJiomas, Proc Zool. Soc. 1889, p. 622, pi. Ixii. (skull 
and dentition). 

Description. — Only known from a skeleton, the external 
characters cannot therefore be described. 

Allied to H. albicauda, from which it differs in being larger, and 
in the form and dimensions of the teeth ; in H. grandis the canines 
are longer above by 2 mm., below by 3 mm., than in the other 
species ; in the posterior lower molar there are two antero- 
internal cusps instead of one and the single median external cusp 
present in H. albicauda is doubled ; furthermore the posterior edge 
or talon of the same tooth, which is simple in H. albicauda, is 
regularly crenulated in this species ; in consequence of these com- 
plications the whole tooth is practically the same size as its neigh- 


bour in front, the anterior molar, whereas in H. albicauda it is only 
about 86 per cent, of the latter. 

Dimensions. — Length of skull, from incisors to condyle 4-50 ; 
breadth 2-5. 

Distribution. — The type, a skeleton now in the British Museum, 
was obtained by Mr. T. E. Buckley, either on the Limpopo Eiver 
or in Zululand. No other specimen is known. 


Helogale, Gray,Proc. Zool. Soc. 1861, p. 308 H. parvula. 

Slender animals with elongated bodies and short legs, with a 
naked line between the nose and upper lip, with five toes to each 
foot and a naked tarsus ; the characters by which the genus is 
separated from Herpestes are : {a) the shape of the skull, which is 
shorter, broader and smoother ; (b) the number of the teeth, which 
is always 36, i.e., i. f , c. -i, pra, f , m. | == 36 ; the premolars are 
constantly three in number, and there is no diastema or interval 
between the anterior premolar and the canine, as in those species of 
Herpestes which have only three premolars. In addition to the 
single species mentioned below, two others from East Africa and 
Somaliland respectively, are described, but they do not seem to be 
worthy of being considered as anything more than sub-species or 
geographical races. 

28. Helogale parvula. Wahlbbeg's Mungoose 

Hespestes parvula, SundevaU, Oefvers. Akad. Forli. StocJcholm, iii, 

p. 121 (1847) [Natal, Wahlberg] . 
Helogale parvula, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1861, p. 308 [figs, of skull] ; 

Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 79 ; JenUnh, Notes Leyd. Mas. xi, 

p. 31 (1889) ; Socage, Jorn. Sci. Lisbon (2) i, p. 180 (1890) [habits 

in Angola] . 

Description. — Small and slender ; general colour above and 
below dark, finely grizzled grey-brown, the hairs annulated with 
black or brown and yellowish white ; extremities a little darker ; 
tail shorter and rather darker than the body; no trace of rufous on 
any part of the body [Thomas] . The characters of the skull are 
given under the genus. 

The geographical sub-species replacing this one further north in 


tropical Africa is distinguished by its greater size and by its bright 
rufous throat and belly. 

Dimensions. — Head and body 9-5 ; tail 5-5 ; hind foot 1"5 ; 
skull, length from condyle 1-82 ; breadth 1-13 [Thomas] . 

Distribution. — Natal, extending northwards to Mozambique, 
where it merges with a geographical race, Helogale loarvula undu- 
lata, which extends northwards along the east coast to Kilima- 
njaro, beyond which a third geographical race, H. parvtda atkinsoni 
takes its place as far as Somaliland ; the typical subspecies is 
also recorded from Angola. An example from the Waterberg 
district of the Transvaal is in the Pretoria Museum, but it is not 
represented in the South African Museum. 

Habits. — This species seems to be a rare one, as except for the 
record of its occurrence in Angola by M. B. de Bocage, it is only 
known from the original specimens collected by Wahlberg many 
years ago, and from the example recently obtained in the Transvaal. 

M. de Anchieta writes to M. de Bocage regarding this little 
mungoose that it inhabits both cultivated and uncultivated lands; 
that it is social in its habits, often joining forces to attack snakes ; 
it lives in holes in trees or underground, or in deserted termite's 
nests, and plays havoc in poultry-yards. 

Mr. E. D. McHawker (Proc. Zool. Soc. 1898, p. 764) gives a 
good account of the habits of the allied species, H. atkinsoni, in 

He states that they hunt in packs of about fifteen individuals, 
and that they take refuge in a deserted termite's nest or among a 
heap of stones ; that their food consists, judging from their drop- 
pings, of locusts and other insects, and that they become very tame 
and make delightful pets. 


Rhinogale, Gray Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 573 [7iec 

Gloger, 1842] E. melleri. 

Rhynchogale, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1894, p. 139... E. melleri. 

This genus agrees in most of its characters with Herpes tes ; the 
toes are five in number on both fore and hind feet, and the tarsus 
is hairy ; it differs, however, from the typical genus in having no 
naked line running from the nose to the upper lip ; the skull has a 




Fig. 17.— Skull of Bhynchogale melleri (from Gray, Proc. Zool, Soc). 


rounded form without any marked angles or crests, and the palate 
is deeply concave both transversely and longitudinally, a character 
which separates it from all other mungooses ; dentition i. — |, c. i, 
pm. f , m. I = 40 ; exceptionally as in the type of the species as 
described by Thomas there are five upper premolars. 

This genus contains only the single species described below. 

29. Rhynchogale melleri. Meller's Mungoose. 

Ehinogale melleri, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 575 [figs, of skull, 

&c.] ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 85, pi. iii. [animal] . 
Ehynchogale melleri, Thomas, Proc. Zool. 8oc., 1894, p. 139. 

Description. — Fur harsh and rough ; form resembling that of H. 
alhicauda, general colour dark-ashy, darker along the middle line of 
the back, woolly under-fur dark slaty, with pale brown tips, longer 
hairs ringed brown and white ; head coloured like the body, nose 
completely surrounded by hair, so that there is no bare line between 
the nose and the upper lip ; extremities the same colour as the 
body, or a little darker ; tarsus hairy to the toes ; tail with long 
hairs much as in H. alhicauda, with a dark dorsal line and black 
tip, all the hairs being white at the base ; iris dark brown with sea 
green centre. 

Skull and teeth described above in the generic diagnosis. 
, Dimensions. — Of the type specimen from Thomas ; head and 
body 22-0; tail 15-5; hind foot 3-8; of a young specimen in the 
South African Museum measured in the flesh, head and body 17"50 ; 
tail 13-50 ; height at shoulder 7'50 ; skull of type from Thomas, 
length 3-38 ; breadth 1-85. 

Distribution. — The type obtained by Dr. Meller, now in the 
British Museum, probably came from the Lower Zambesi; since 
then the British Museum has received specimens from Nyasa- 
land ; in the South African Museum is a young example from 
Komatipoorfc on the Pretoria-Delagoa Bay railway, presented by 
Mr. H. F. Francis, which brings the species well within the South 
African limits. 

Habits. — Mr. A. Whyte, who collected the Nyasaland specimens, 
found wild fruits within the stomachs of those examined. 



Grossarchus, F. Cuvier, Hist. Nat. Mamm. ii. livr. 

47 (1825) C. obscurus. 

This genus resembles the preceding one in having no naked 
line from the nose to the upper lip, and in having five toes to each 
foot, but on the other hand, it has a naked tarsus. 

The skull resembles that of Herpestes, but the vacuity in the 
floor of the bulla is usually in adult skulls filled up, leaving a row 
of small holes. 

Dentition — i. |, c. i, pm. |, m. f = 36 : teeth somev^hat rounded 
without sharp cutting edges; the posterior lower molar with an 
extra cusp in the middle of the outer edge as in H. alhicauda. 

This genus is confined to Africa ; in addition to the one species 
described below, some four or five others are known from West, 
Central, and North-eastern Africa. 

30. Grossarchus fasciatus. The Banded Mungoose. 

Viverra ichneumon B, Schreher, Sdicgeth. iii, p. 430, pi. cxvi, (1778). 
Herpestes fasciatus, Desmarest, Diet. Sci. Nat. xxix, p. 58 (1823). 
Ichneumon taenionotus, A. Smith, 8. Afr.. Quart. Joitrn. ii, p. 114 

(1834) [Natal]. 
Crossarclius fasciatus, Thomas, Proa. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 90 ; Pous- 

argues, N. Arch. Mus. Paris (3) vi, p. 123 (1894) ; Matschie, Sdugeth. 

Deutsch-Ost-Afrihas, p. 81, fig. 47 (1895). 

Description. — Of medium size ; general colour grizzled grey, on 
the hinder half of the body a series of about twenty alternate black 
and dirty-white bands, the posterior part of each white band 
shading gradually through rufous into the black ; these bands are 
«eaused by the regular manner in which the individual hairs are 
arranged, so that all the light and dark rings come together ; belly 
and head of the same colour as the anterior part of the back ; no 
bare line between the nose and upper lip ; limbs becoming a little 
darker, almost black, towards their extremities ; five toes to each 
foot ; tarsus bare to the heel ; tail about half the length of the 
head and body, and of the same colour as the latter, gettiDg black 
towards the tip. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted specimen in the South African 
Museum : head and body 16-0 ; tail 7*5 ; hind foot 2-35 ; from ear 


opening to nose tip 2*40; skull, length 2-77, breadth 1-52; upper 
cheek teeth -75. 

Distribution. — The banded mungoose is found throughout 
Eastern and South-eastern Africa from Kilima-njaro southwards 
throughout Nyasaland to the Transvaal, Natal and Kaffraria ; in 
Natal it is the common mungoose of the coast lands. The South 
African Museum contains examples from near Lake Ngami, the 
Waterberg district of the Transvaal, and from near Durban. 

Habits. — A good account of this animal by Bohm is given in 
Matschie's work. He says that they are usually found near rivers, 
and live in small social communities, often in old ant-heaps ; they 
generally sit up on their haunches like the meerkat, and, in fact, 
closely resemble it in every respect ; their voice consists of twitter- 
ings, trillings and pipings, when pleased, but when angry they growl 
and bark something like a dog ; they live on insects, for which they 
diligently scratch the ground, also on fruits and seeds, which latter 
can always be found in their excrement ; eggs and snails they break 
by picking them up in their fore paws and dashing them down 
between their hind feet against a stone or a wall ; they are further 
said to sprinkle their food with urine before eating it. This 
mungoose is frequently seen in captivity, especially in Zanzibar ; 
it makes a docile and amusing pet, and is said to be most useful in 
ridding a house of cockroaches and other insect pests. It is eaten 
with relish by the Wagalla, a tribe in German East Africa. 


Cynictis, Ogilhy, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1833, p. 48 C. penicillata. 

This genus contains animals of the same general character as 
Herpestes, but without a naked line from the nose to the lip ; there 
are five toes to the fore feet, but only four to the hind ; the tarsus 
is quite hairy ; the skull resembles that of Herpestes especially H. 
gracilis and the teeth are forty in number, i.e., i. f , c. i, pm. |, m. #. 
The only two authenticated species are confined to South Africa. 

Key of the Species. 

a. Breadth of the skull exceeds the length of the 

palate by at least a quarter of an inch C. loenicillata, p. 74. 

6. Breadth of skull about equal to the length of the 

palate C. scloiisi, p. 75. 


31. Cynictis penicillata. The Bushy-tailed Meebkat. 

Herpestes penicillatus, G. Cuvier, Beg. Aniyn. ed. 2, i, p. 158 (1829) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 20 (1832). 
Mangusta levaillantii, A. Smith, Zool. Journ. iv, p. 487 (1829). 
Cynictis steedmani, Ogilhy, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1833, p. 49. 
Cynictis typicus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 116 (1834). 
Cynictis ogilbyii, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 117 (1834) ; id, 

lllustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pi. xvi (1839) ; Laijard, Cat. Mamm. 

S. Afr. Mus. p. 34 (1861). 
Cynictis lepturus, A. Smith, lllustr. S. Afr. Zool. Mamm. pi. xvii (1889). 
Cynictis penicillata, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 83 ; NoacTi, 

Zool. Jahrh. iv, p. 185 pi. iv, figs. 39, 43 (1889) ; Haagner, Zoologist 

(4), iii, p. 179 (1899). 
Literature. — Steednian (1835), ii, p. 296, description and habits v^ith 
figm-e ; Farini (1886) p. 463, habits in the Kalahari. 

Vernacular Names. — Geel or Rooi Meerkat of Colonists ; Igala of 
Amaxosa (Cloete). 

Description. — General colour yellowish brown to pale yellowish 
grey ; hair on the body soft and short, fur slaty at the base, then 
light yellow, the tips of the longer hairs ringed brown and white, 
below paler almost white; head like the back; chin and throat white; 
ears dark brown posteriorly but with white hairs along the margin ; 
limbs somewhat pale, claws very dark, five to fore, four to hind 
limbs ; tarsus hairy behind the toe pads ; tail about as long as the 
body without the head, covered with long thickset hairs giving it 
a somewhat distichous, bushy appearance, tail hairs yellow at the 
base and tip with a broad black band between ; tail tip usually 
wbite ; iris of eye bright red. Skull resembling that of H. gracilis 
but a little larger with a more inflated bulla, having a vacuity in 
its floor ; lower jaw with four premolars. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 15*5 ; 
tail 9-0 ; hind foot 2-80 ; from ear opening to tip of nose 2-90 ; 
skull length 3-65 ; breadth 1-45 ; upper cheek teeth 1-10. 

Distribution. — Chiefly found in the drier parts of the eastern 
half of the Colony extending eastwards to Tembuland and King 
Williamstown, northwards through the Free State, the high veld of 
the Transvaal, Bechuanaland and the Kalahari to Lake Ngami, 
but apparently replaced in the western Karoo by the other Meerkat 
[Suricata tetradactyla) ; there are examples in the South African 
Museum from Graaff Eeinet, Potchefstroom, and the neighbourhood 
of Lake Ngami. 


Habits. — These animals are found in the dry barren Karoo 
plains and never in bushveld ; they associate in colonies of twenty 
individuals upwards, forming burrows in mounds where the earth 
is loose, and sometimes inhabiting the deserted earths of the 
springhaas {Pedetes caffer) ; at the mouth of these burrows they 
are frequently to be seen seated on their haunches and looking 
around for any sign of danger, whereat they disappear with great 
rapidity down into the ground. 

They are diurnal in habits and wander forth in the daytime 
in search of food; their pace is described as a walk, but when 
excited or frightened they move along in a series of bounds clearing 
the ground very quickly. 

Their food consists of rats, mice, small birds and insects. When 
near a farm they will devour eggs and young chickens, they are 
also said to be particularly partial to the eggs of the large leopard 
tortoise {Testudo pardalis) which they dig up, guided, it is said, by 
the strong smell of the urinary excretion, dropped by the tortoise 
when burying its eggs. 

This meerkat is said to be very savage when captured, but 
when subdued by hunger, becomes much more docile, though 
always treacherous and apt to bite ; it never seems to become 
quite so tame as the true meerkat {Simcata tetradactyla). 

32. Cynictis selousi. Selous' Meerkat. 

Cynictis selousi, de Winton, Ann. Mag. N. H. (6) xviii, p. 469 (1896). 

Description. — This species is only known from the skull, which 
differs from that of C. penicillata in being much broader and more 
rounded ; the squamosal part of the zygoma is not so expanded 
laterally, and is only bowed up slightly ; the ascending process 
of the malar bone is very slender, barely meeting the post-orbital 
process ; the auditory bullae are considerably inflated, and the 
breadth of the skull is nearly equal to the length of the palate, 
whereas in C. penicillata it exceeds it by -25 at all ages. 

Dimensions. — Of skull, length 3-0 ; breadth 1-70. 

Distribution. — The type and only specimen known is a skull, 
and was obtained by Mr. Selous at Essex Vale, near Bulawayo, 
and is now in the British Museum. 






^ViV\Cdiidi,Desmarest, Tabl. Meth. Mamm. iiiNouv.Dict. 

cl'Hist. Nat. ed. 1, xxiv, p. 15 (1804) S. tetradactyla. 

Rhyzaena, Illiger, Prodr. Syst. Mamm. p. 134 (1811) S. tetradactyla. 

Mungoose-like animals with no naked line from the nose to the 
upper lip, with a slender snout projecting far beyond the lips ; with 
four toes on both fore and hind limbs ; claws of fore limbs 
exceedingly long, double those of the hind limbs ; tarsus naked ; 
skull quite different in general shape to that of the other mungooses, 

Fig. 18. — A, left half of palate; B, lower jaw of Suricata tetradactyla, 
c, carotid foramen ; /, fissure in the floor of the auditory bulla (after Mivart). 

being short and broad, the zygomatic arches widely diverging out- 
wards from in front ; the auditory bullae are flattened, the meatus 
somewhat prolonged, with a fissure or line of fine holes marking 
its course. Dentition i. |, c. ^, pm. 3-^, m. | = 36 to 38. Only the 
single species mentioned below is described ; it is confined to South 

33. Suricata tetradactyla. The Slendek-tailed Meeeeat. 

Viverra suricatta, Erxlehen, Syst. Regn. An. p. 488 (1777). 
Viverra tetradactyla, Schreber, Sdugeth. iii, p. 434, pi. cxvii (1778) ; 
Thunberg, Mem, Acad. Peters, iii, p. 305 (1811). 


Mus zenik, Scopoli, Delic. Flor. et Faun, ii, p. 84 (1786). 

Suricata capensis, Desynarest, N. Diet. d'Hist. Nat. ed. 1, xxiv, p. 15 

Surikata viverrina, Desmarest, N. Diet. d'Hist. Nat. ed. 2, xxxii, p. 297 

Ryzaena surakatta, A. Smith, Descrip. Cat. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 32 (1826). 
Rhyzaena capensis, Smitts, Enum. Mamm. Caj). p. 22 (1832). 
Rhyzaena typicus, A. Smith, S, Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 117 (1834). 
Suricata zenick, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mas. p. 35 (1861). 
Suricata tetradactyla, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1882, p. 92 ; NoacTc, 

Zool. Jahrh. iv, p. 188, pi. v, fig. 44-6 [skull] (1889) [Kalahari] ; 

LydeJclter, Handb. Carnivora i, p. 276 (1895), 

Literature.— Holub (1882), p. 142, on its habits ; Martin (1890), p. 157, 
account of habits in captivity. 

Vernacular Names. — Meerkat of Colonists. 

Description. — Form small and slender ; general colour grizzled 
grey, under-fur woolly, pale brown ; the whole back is irregularly 
transversely marked with alternate black and white bands, caused 
by the regular arrangement of the black and white rings on the 
longer hairs ; below pale yellowish ; head grizzled grey, a black 
patch round the eye ; snout projecting considerably beyond the 
lips and surrounded by hair, ears very low, but conspicuous by the 
deep black of the skin and hairs on their anterior surface ; tail short 
and slender, about half the length of the head and body, becoming 
reddish yellow towards the tip, of which the extreme 1| inches is 

Skull and teeth described above in the generic diagnosis. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 14-5 ; 
tail 7*0 ; hind foot 2-35; ear opening to tip of nose 2-60; skull, 
length 2-57 ; breadth 1-45 ; upper cheek teeth 1-1. 

Distribution. — This meerkat seems to be a somewhat more 
westerly form than the bushy-tailed meerkat, it is found in all the 
upland divisions of the Colony from Namaqualand and Ceres in 
the west, as far as Griqualand East in the east, and northwards 
throughout the Orange Free State and Great Namaqualand. In 
the South African Museum are examples from the Namaqualand 
and Woodhouse divisions of the Colony. 

Habits. — This species is first mentioned by Buffon, who possessed 
an example purchased in Holland, which he believed to have come 
from Surinam in South America ; this error was corrected by 
Schreber, who saw an example in the menagerie of the Staat- 
holder of Holland, and who showed that the name " suricate " was 




wrongly applied to this animal, and that it really belonged to a 
lemur from Madagascar, In habits this species closely resembles 
the bushy-tailed meerkat, living in small colonies in burrows on 
the Karoo. Its voice is described by Buffon as resembling a 
policeman's rattle when it is pleased, and the bark of a young dog 

Fig. 19. — Suricata tetradactyla. 

when annoyed. Its food consists of small animals, and particularly 
of insects and their grubs, which it digs up with unerring dexterity; 
in captivity meat, fish, and eggs are relished. Two young ones 
are usually born at a time ; it is extremely tame and docile in 
captivity, more so than the bushy-tailed form, and is very commonly 
kept as a pet throughout the country. 






Proteles, Is. Geoffr. Mem. du Museum, xi, p. 355 (1824)...?. cristatus. 

General form hyaena-like, but fore feet with five toes, of which 
the poUex is much shorter than the others, hind feet with only four 
toes ; the claws are not retractile, and the animal is digitigrade. 

Pig. 20. — Palate and lower jaw of Proteles cristatus showing the rudimentary 

The skull has no alisphenoid canal, and the auditory bulla is 
divided into two chambers. 

Dentition. — i. ^, c. i, pm. f , m. a, = 32 ; the incisors and 


canines are normal in shape and size, but the molars are very- 
small, almost rudimentary and set very far apart in the jaw, so 
that they cannot be of the slightest use to the animal as far as 
mastication is concerned. 

The species described below is the only representative of the 
family and the genus, and has long been a puzzle to naturalists ; 
it has relationships to both the Hyaenidae and the Viverridae, but 
on the whole most authors are agreed to place it in a special 
family by itself. 

34. Proteles cristatus. The Aaed Wolf. 

Viverra ciistata, S])arrman, Besa till Goda Hopfs-udden (1783) ; id. 

English Translation, {Dublin ed. in 8vo) ii, p. 192 (1785). 
Viverra liyaenoides, Desmarest, Manim. p. 538 (1820). 
Proteles lalandii, Is. Geoffr., Mem. du Museum xi, p. 371 pi. ss (1824) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 23 (1832). 
Proteles typicus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 96 (1834). 
. Proteles cristatus, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 35 (1862) ; 

Floiver, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1869, p. 474, pi. xxxvi [animal] . 

Literature. — Steedman (1835) ii, p. 114, description and affinities ; 
Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 92, description, distribution, and habits; 
Bryden (1893), p. 59, occurrence in Bechuanaland ; Kirby (1896) p. 554, 
native names and habits in Eastern Transvaal; Scbonland, Zoologist (4), 
i, (1897), p. 155, habits; Bryden (1899a) range and habits; Hobson, Cape 
Agricultural Journal xv. (1899), p. 351, habits and depredations. 

Vernacular Names. — Grey Jackal apud Sparrman ; Nadrou Jackal 
apud Smith; Aard Wolf or Maanhaar {i.e., Mane-liair) Jackal of the Colonists ; 
Inci of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Isuagci of Swazis, Taku of Basutos (lih'by). 

Description. — Form hyaena-like but smaller ; general colour dirty 
yellowish grey, under-fur thick and woolly, with dark slaty basal, 
and yellowish white apical halves through which project a number 
of longer coarser hairs, partly white, partly black and white ; 
along the line of the back from the nape to the tail these hairs are 
much more numerous, from seven to eight inches in length, and 
form a regular black crest, erectile at the will of the animal. On 
the shoulders two or three horizontal, and on the body five or six 
transverse black stripes ; beneath lighter, no black ; head dark grey, 
with short hairs only ; face in front of the eyes brown and nearly 
bare of hair, lower jaws and chin also brown ; ears rather narrow 
and pointed, about three inches long, thinly covered with white 




hairs in front and brown behind ; legs with indistinct black bands 
above, becoming black below the knees and hocks ; five toes and 
claws (the first falling far short of the others) to the fore feet, four 
only to the hind ; completely digitigrade ; tail short, half the length 
of the body, very bushy, yellowish at the base, apical three quarters 
black, composed of long coarse hairs white at the base, followed by 
an indistinct darker ring, then a white ring, the terminal quarter 
being black 

Fig. 21. — Proteles cristatus. 

In the female the woolly hair is less rufous, and the general 
colour is somewhat lighter. 

Skull and dentition as described above. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen : head and body 32*0 ; 
tail without terminal hairs 6-0, with 10'50 ; hind foot 5*50 ; from 
ear opening to tip of snout 5-50 ; skull length 5-55 ; breadth 3*40 ; 
upper cheek teeth 2-25. 

Distribution. — The aard wolf is found from Somaliland through 
Central Africa to the Colony, but does not appear to occur in 
Nyasaland or in the German territories to the east, or in West 

In South Africa it is not uncommon throughout the Colony and 


Natal, though seldom seen ; it is also abundant in German South- 
west Africa, in Bechuanaland, the Orange Free State, the Trans- 
vaal, and the western portion of Matabeleland. 

The South African Museum posesses examples from Stellen- 
bosch and Beaufort West, from Potchefstrom in the Transvaal, and 
from Maritzburg in Natal. 

Habits. — The aard wolf was first described by Sparrman, the 
celebrated Swedish traveller, who obtained a specimen near the 
little Eish Eiver, in what is now the Somerset East division of the 
Colony. He stated that the animal was known to the farmers as 
the grey jackal, and gave a very recognisable description of it, 
though he unfortunately lost the specimen subsequently. 

A few years later the Erench traveller and collector Delalande, 
obtained specimens from near Algoa Bay, which M. Is. Geoffroy 
St. Hilaire named after the collector. 

The aard wolf is found both in open treeless and in bushy veld ; 
it is purely nocturnal in its habits, passing the day in burrows and 
holes, or sometimes lying out in thick bush. 

The earths are sometimes constructed by the animals them- 
selves, but more often they make use of those of the aard-vark 

It is a slow animal and can be run down by an active man, and 
is easily outpaced by dogs. 

The question of the food of the aard wolf is one that has given 
rise to considerable discussion ; Sparrman and other authors who 
have examined the stomachs of these animals, found that they 
contain nothing but termites or white ants ; this is further confirmed 
by Mr. Cloete, who writes that he has examined the stomachs of 
more than fifty, and never found any trace of anything else than a 
purely insectivorous diet, ants being the chief constituent. He 
further examined the excrement of these animals for traces of any 
other than insectivorous diet, but without result. These researches 
are fully confirmed by the extraordinary rudimentary condition of 
the molar teeth, which would certainly prevent the animal from 
dealing with any bony matter. 

Notwithstanding this, it is constantly reported by farmers that 
young sheep and kids are carried off by the aard wolf, and that 
they will also devour carrion and ostrich eggs. 

Other farmers state that they do not devour kids and lambs, 
but kill them merely for the sake of the milk contained in their 
stomachs, much in the same way as the baboons, which appear also 


to have only recently acquired these destructive habits. Of this 
latter fact there can be little or no doubt, as it is confirmed by many 
farmers whose observations are above suspicion, but I still consider 
that it is very doubtful whether they ever actually carry off and 
devour the bodies of their victims. 

Mr. Cloete informs me that he has found that from two to four 
young ones are produced at a birth. 

The aard wolf when attacked discharges a yellow viscous fluid 
from the glands on either side of the anus, which has a musky 
smell characteristic of the animal. 

Most observers describe the aard wolf as a cowardly and timid 
animal ; Mr. Cloete combats this statement, saying, that though not 
wishing for one moment to class it with such desperately pug- 
nacious animals as the otter, ratel, or bush-pig, at the same time, 
compared with such animals as the black-backed jackal, it is a 
perfect paragon of courage. It is commonly hunted with fox 
terriers and affords good sport, making a kind of roar, ending in a 
yell as it charges the dogs. 


Genus HYAENA. 

Hyaena, Zimmermann, Spec. Zool. Geogr. p. 365 (1777). H. striata. 

Carnivorous animals with the front limbs longer than the hind ; 
digitigrade with four toes to each foot, all supplied with strong 
non-retractile claws; tail short, less than half the length of the 
body ; opening above the anus under the tail is a median glandular 
sac which receives the secretion of the scent glands lying on either 
side of the rectum. 

Skull with incomplete orbits, and strong sagittal crest for the 
attachment of the powerful jaw muscles ; the auditory bulla is not 
divided into two chambers, and there is no alisphenoid canal. 

Dentition, i. f , c. i, pm. |, m. i = 34 ; upper carnassial with a 
blade of three lobes and an anterior internal cusp, upper molar 
very small, and often deciduous, especially in the spotted species, 
and transversely placed ; lower carnassial with a two-lobed blade 
and small posterior talon, all the teeth large and strong. 

This genus is the only one of the family, and contains in 
addition to the two South African species a third, the striped 




Fig. 22. — Skull and left half of palate of Hyaena crocuta H nat. size). 


hyaena [Hyaena striata) of Southern Asia and Northern Africa. 
From the tertiary beds of Europe and India, too, a large number 
of extinct forms alHed to all the three existing species have been 

Key of the South African Species. 

a. General colour brown, unspotted, with long hair and 

pointed ears H. hrunnea p. 85. 

b. General colour fulvous, spotted darker, hair short 

and ears rounded H. crocuta, p. 87. 

35, Hyaena brunnea. The Brown Hyaena or Strand Wolf. 

Hyaena brunnea, Thunberg, K. Vetensh. Ahad. Handl. Stochholm, 

p. 59, pi. i. (1820) ; Murie, Trans. Zool. Soc. vii, p. 503, pi. Ixiii. 

(1871) [anatomy]. 
Hyaena fusca, E. Geoffr., Diet. Class. Hist. Nat. viii, p. 444, pi. 

cxlviii, fig. 2 (1825) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cax). p. 24 (1832) ; 

A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 119 (1834). 
Hyaena striata, apud A, Snm,th, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mies. p. 14 (1826) 

{nee Zimmermann). 
Hyaena villosa, A. Smith, Trans. Linn. Soc. xv, p. 461, pi. xix. (1827) ; 

Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 36 (1861). 

Literature. — Sparrman (1785) i, p. 175, describes a specimen which 
he wrongly identifies with the striped Hyaena; Moodie (1835) i, p. 249, 
account of habits ; Steedman (1835) ii, p. Ill, describes and figures under 
name of Hyaena villosa with account of its habits a.nd occurrence in 
central districts away from sea: Harris (1840), figured on plate xxx. ; Dela- 
gorgue (1847) i, p. 46, describes its habits of scavenging along the sea- 
shore in search of fish and Crustacea m the Piquetberg division ; 
Gumming (1855), i, p. 167, met this animal in Griqualand West; NicoUs 
and Eglington (1892), p. 92, range, habits and description; Bryden (1899a), 
p. 596, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Strand Jut or Strand Wolf of the Colonists; 
Incnka of Amaxosa (Stanford). 

Description. — Form hyaena-like, with hind quarters falling 
away, broad head and very thick neck ; general colour ashy-brown, 
the body covered with very long coarse hairs, reaching on the 
posterior part of the back a length of nearly 10 inches ; no woolly 
under-fur ; head of the same colour as the body but with short, 
close hair, with darker almost black cheeks, chin and throat ; a 
narrow bare line connects the nose and the upper lip ; ears large 




and pointed, about 5| inches long, very scantily covered with hair ; 
behind the ears a light-coloured, almost white collar encircles the 
neck, the chest and belly also lighter ; limbs with imperfect dark 
brown bands, with four toes in front and behind ; tail short, 
about a quarter the length of the body, covered with long coarse 
hairs like the back. 

Skull narrower, and more pointed than that of the spotted 
hyaena ; in the skull examined, an adult, but not an old one, the 

Fig. 23. — Hyaena brunnea. 

premaxillae and frontals do not meet, being separated by the nasals 
and maxillae ; the reverse is the case in the spotted form ; the teeth 
in this species are not quite so large and strong, but the posterior 
upper molar is much larger and three-rooted, whereas in the spotted 
hyaena it is very small and usually deciduous, the lower carnassial 
molar, though considerably smaller, resembles that of the other 
species in not possessing any trace of an inner cusp. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted female ; head and body 3 ft. 10 ; 


tail without hairs, 7'0 ; with hairs 12-0 ; hind foot 90 ; from ear 
opening to tip of nose, 9*5 ; skull, length 9*0 ; breadth, 6"50 ; 
upper cheek teeth 4"75. 

Distribution. — The strand wolf seems to be confined to south- 
west Africa, and not to extend north of the Zambesi ; in the Colony 
it was formerly abundant especially along the sea coast, it has now 
from persistent poisoning and trapping become very rare ; it never 
seems to have extended far to the east or to have reached Natal ; 
in German South West Africa, the Kalahari, and western Matabele- 
land it is said to be still fairly common, and I have also heard 
of its occurrence in the Waterberg district in the north-west 
Transvaal. There are specimens in the South African Museum 
obtained some years ago from Groenekloof in the Malmesbury 
division, and from the Nieuveld near Beaufort West, and one, a 
female, has quite recently been acquired from the Fish Eiver Bush 
near Grahamstown. 

Habits. — As is the case with so many South African animals, 
little has been recorded about the habits of this species ; it was at one 
time supposed that it was found only along the coast but this is 
now known to be by no means true. 

Like its spotted cousin this species is nocturnal in its wanderings, 
remaining concealed during the daytime ; those which have their 
home along the coast are said to be ichthyophagous, feeding on 
dead fish, crabs and an occasional stranded whale, but they are 
certainly also a danger to the sheep and cattle kraals, in fact the 
specimen in the South African Museum from Groenekloof is said 
to have killed three of Mr. Van Eeenan's calves before it was finally 
destroyed. Sir A. Smith had a live specimen for some time, and 
gives a good general account of its habits in captivity. He describes 
it as a timid and cunning animal ; he further states that it is the 
general belief in the Colony that they regurgitate, for the benefit of 
their young, a portion of the food which they themselves have 
swallowed, and that he observed that they occasionally did bring 
up their food again and chew it afresh. 

36. Hyaena crocuta. The Spotted Hyaena ok Tiger Wolf. 

Canis crocuta, Erxleben, Syst. Begn. Anim. p. 578 (1777). 

Hyaena maculata, Tlmnherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 302 (1811) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mmmn. Caj). p. 24 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. 

Journ. ii, p. 119 (1834). 


Hyaena capensis, Desmarest, Mamtn. p, 216 (1820). 

Hyaena erocuta, A. Smith, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 12 (1826) ; 
Watson, Proc. Zool-.Soc. 1877, p. 369 pis. xl, xli ; id. ihid. 1878, 
p. 416, pis. xxiv, XXV ; 1879, p. 79 pis. v, vi ; 1881, p. 516 pi. xlix 
[complete account of anatomy especially of urinogenital organs]. 

Crocuta maculata, Layard, Cat. Mamni. S. Afr. Mus. p. 36 (1862). 

Literature. — Kolben (1731) ii, p. 108 ; a quaint account of the " Tyger 
Wolf"; Sparrman (1785), i, p. 167, observations on this animal in the 
Caledon division; Lichtenstein (1812), ii, p. 15, notes on the habits of 
an individual caught in the neighbourhood of Cape Town in 1804 ; Steed- 
man (1835), p. 198, and Moodie (1885), p. 249, observations on habits; 
Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxx, fig. 1 ; Grout (1863), p. 292, habits in 
Natal; Drummond (1875), p. 307, account of in Zululand; NicoUs and 
Egliagton (1892), p. 90, range, description and habits ; Kkby (1896) p. 554 
names, habits, and occurrence in the Eastern Transvaal ; Kirby (1899) 
p. 323, distribution in Mozambique ; Ku-by (1899a) p. 592, raiige and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Tyger Wolf, or simply Wolf of the Colonists ; 
Isadawane of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Impisi of Swazis, Zulus, and Matabeles 
(Drummond and Kirby) ; Kwiri of Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — Form large and massive in front, falling off towards 
the hind quarters, which stand about four inches lower ; general 
colour dirty yellow, fur rather woolly with no trace of the longer 
coarser hairs ; along the neck and front part of the back the hairs 
are rather longer and somewhat forwardly upstanding, forming a 
species of reversed mane ; body, shoulders and haunches covered 
with irregular circular spots of a dark brown or black colour which 
vary considerably in arrangement and distinctness ; below, chest 
and belly somewhat paler. Head large, unspotted, rather darker 
about the muzzle ; ears shorter and broader than in the other 
species, about 4 inches in length ; posteriorly covered with tawny 
hairs, anteriorly with white ; lower part of the extremities a little 
darker than the body ; both fore and hind feet with four claws, those 
of the former considerably larger than those of the latter ; tail 
short, thinly haired at the base, ending in a brush of long black 
hairs forming the terminal half. 

Skull larger, more massive and blunter than the other species ; 
the other distinguishing characters are described above in the 
account of the brown hyaena. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 4 ft. 6 ; 
tail without terminal hairs 9'0, with 14'0 ; hind foot 9"50 ; from ear 
opening to nose 9*50 ; skull, length 9-75 ; breadth 7*25 ; upper cheek 
teeth 5'1. 



Distribution. — The spotted hyaena is found over Africa south 
of the Sahara from Senegal, Abyssinia, and SomaUland southwards ; 
in the Congo basin, however it has hitherto not been noted, it may 
perhaps be absent ; it was formerly abundant throughout the 
Colony. Sparrman speaks of it as being extremely common near 
the Cape Town shambles in his times, but now poisoning and 
trapping have greatly reduced its numbers, and there are few except 
in out-of-the-way districts ; in Natal there appear to be some few 
left unexterminated ; north of the Orange Eiver the spotted hyaena 
seems to be found everywhere, and is specially common in Ovampo- 
land and in the Eastern Transvaal and Portuguese territory, both 
in elevated and low country. In the South African Museum are to 
be found a skull from Beaufort West, and a mounted skin recently 
obtained from the Beira district. 

This species is now generally identified with the cave hyaena of 
Europe, the remains of which have been found throughout Europe 
from Yorkshire to Gibraltar, and as far east as the Madras Presidency 
in India. 

Habits. — Much has been written about the spotted hyaena, and 
all travellers, without exception, combine to revile it for its cowardice, 
greed, and cruel treachery. The animal is nocturnal, spending the 
day in holes (frequently those of aard-vark's (Orycteropus) whence 
the rightful owners are displaced) and caves, or even in thick bush, 
and sallying forth at night along well-defined paths stretching in 
all directions singly, in pairs, or small troops in search of food. 

The hyaena soon proclaims its presence by its remarkably 
powerful voice, which consists of two distinct cries, first a long 
drawn out mournful note beginning low and ending high, compared 
by Sparrman to the letters " aause," this is the usual cry of the 
animals to one another ; the other cry resembles the laugh of a 
maniac more than anything else, and is only given vent to under 
sexual or any other great excitement ; it is from the latter cry that 
this species is sometimes known as the " laughing hyaena." The 
appetite of the animal is boundless ; it is entirely carnivorous, but 
it seems to prefer putrid and decaying matter, and never kills an 
animal unless driven thereto by hunger ; sheep and donkeys are 
generally attacked at the belly, and the bowels torn out by the 
sharp teeth of the marauder, and horses are also a frequent object 
of attack, but in this case shackling is effective as the horse, unable 
to escape, faces the hyaena, which incontinently bolts. 

This animal is an excellent scavenger, perhaps this may be said 


to be its only good point ; it is asserted that it will sometimes 
hide food in running water for a future occasion, so as to prevent 
its odour from spreading around. 

The hyaena has been known to attack and carry off young 
children, though the least attempt at pursuit will cause it to drop 
them ; many stories, too, are told of its assaults on sleeping natives, 
in this case it invariably goes for the face of the man with its 
powerful jaws. Drummond states that he has seen many men who 
had been thus mutilated, some with noses wanting, others with the 
whole mouth and lips torn away ; this is also confirmed by other 

Although the hyaena is well endowed with acute senses of scent 
and hearing and also is exceedingly strong, it is undoubtedly a 
very cowardly animal, and also very treacherous and cunning ; 
unless absolutely obliged it will never face opposition but will 
always make off; if possible it always attacks from behind, select- 
ing some weak and dangerous spot. Drummond relates an instance 
of where no less than seven cows were mortally injured in a single 
night by two hyaenas, who attacked them in succession, jumping up 
and seizing the udders and biting them off with their powerful 

The hyaena is so wary that it is difficult to trap or to exterminate 
it with spring guns, in fact the poisoned meat method seems to be 
the only really successful plan of getting rid of it. 

It was believed by the authors of classical times, and it is still 
the prevalent notion among the South African Colonists, that the 
hyaena is hermaphrodite, and a large number of curious stories 
concerning its reproductive habits are consequently widely spread 
in South Africa. 

These notions have doubtless arisen in consequence of the fact 
that the external reproductive organs of the female closely resemble 
those of the male, and without dissection it is exceedingly difficult 
to distinguish the two sexes from one another. 

A full account of these peculiarities, and of the general anatomy 
of the spotted hyaena, is given in the series of papers by Dr. Watson 
quoted in the synonymy. 


Division CYNOIDEA. 

Family CANIDAE. 

The dogs, wolves, jackals, and foxes form a single family and 
are easily recognised as distinct from the rest of the Carnivora. 

The principal characters are a somewhat elongate muzzle, with 
moderate tail, and well-developed limbs ; feet digitigrade, with four 
toes to the fore and four or five to the hind feet ; in the skull the 
post-orbital processes are short, so that the eye is never surrounded 
by a ring of bone, the auditory bulla is inflated but not divided ; 
an alisphenoid canal is present. 

There are always four premolars on either side above and 
below, the upper carnassial bears two cusps, the anterior back- 
wardly-directed one being the larger, the posterior forming a com- 
pressed ridge ; there is also a small inner lobe at the anterior end 
of the tooth ; the first upper molar is large and broader than it is 
long, with two cusps on the external border, the second upper 
molar is similar but smaller ; the lower carnassial is also a large 
tooth with anteriorly a well developed bilobed blade of which 
the hinder cusp is the larger ; on to this latter hangs a small inner 
tubercle, while the posterior part of the tooth is formed of a well 
marked tuberculated heel. 

The family is almost world-wide in its distribution and is 
mostly carnivorous in its habits ; some of its members are pre- 
datory, several hunt in troops, all have very acute senses of smell, 
sight, and hearing. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Toes 4-5. 

a. With two molars above and three below. 

a^. Tail (without terminal hairs) less than half the 
length of the head and body ; post-orbital pro- 
cesses of the skull smooth and convex Cmiis, p. 92. 

&'. Tail more than half the length of the head and 

body ; post-orbital processes of the skull concave Vtdpes, p. 97. 
6. With three to four molars above and four below ... Otocyon, p. 99. 

B. Toes 4-4; skull and other characters as in Cams Lycaon, p. 101. 


Genus CANIS. 

Ganis, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed., i, p. 56 (1766) C. familiaris. 

This genus contains the animals usually known as wolves, dogs, 
and jackals ; the number of toes (except ia some domestic dogs) 
is always four on the front and five on the hind feet ; the tail has, 
as a rule, a moderate brush and is less than half the length of the 
animal ; the pupil is round and there are from eight to ten mammae. 

The skull is strong, with a frontal sinus within the frontal bone, 
and with smooth convex post- orbital processes. 

The dentition is as follows — i. |, c. i, p.m. f , m. f = 42 ; all 
the teeth are strong and powerful. 

This genus contains the greater number of the members of the 
family and is distributed over almost the whole world. 

Key of the South African Species. 

a. Back silvery black, contrasting with the rufous- 

tinged sides C. mesomelas, p. 92. 

b. Back and sides light silvery grey, a diagonal 

white side stripe C. adtcsttis, p. 95. 

37. Ganis mesomelas. The Black-backed Jackal. 

Canis mesomelas, Schreher, Sdugeth. iii, p. 370, pi. xcv. (1778) ; 
Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersh. iii, p. 302 (1811); A. Smith, 
Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 11 (1826) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. 
Cap. p. 16 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 85 (1834) ; 
Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 29 (1861) ; Noach, Zool. Jahrb. 
iv, p. 164 (1889) [Kalahari] ; Mivart, Monogr. Canidae, p. 45, pi. xii. 
(1890) ; Lorenz, Ann. JcJc. Hofmus. ix. notizen, p. 66 (1894) [western 
Transvaal] . 

Literature. — Kolben (1781) ii p. 125, described under the name of 
Tenlie or Kenhe; Moodie (1835), p. 357, on its habits ; Livingstone (1857), 
p. 50, mentioned under the name of Pukuye ; Hall, Cape Monthly Mag. 
(1860), p. 286, habits and account of hunting; Grout (1863), p. 292, 
described as Impunguche ; Nicolls and Eglington (1892) p. 94, description, 
distribution and habits; Bryden (1893), p. 60, common in Bechuanaland ; 
Kirby (1896), p. 555, occurrence in the Eastern Transvaal with vernacular 
names; Bryden (1897), p. 110, jackal hunting in Bechuanaland with fox 
hounds; Kirby (1899), p. 324, distribution in Mozambique; Hobson, Cape 
Agricultural Journal, xv. (1899), p. 351, habits and depredations. 


Vernacular Names. — Jackhals, rooi Jackhals, red, golden or sometimes 
silver Jackal (which last however is best reserved for V. chama), Fox 
(near Cape Town where hunted) of Colonists ; Pukuye of Bechuanas 
(Livingstone) ; Impungutshe of Swazis (Kir by), Amaxosa (Cloete), and 
Zulus (Grout). 

Description. — About the size of a large English fox ; general 
colour of back greyish black, the under-fur woolly and reddish 
yellow, beyond which project long hairs, black at the base and tip, 
with a broad white median portion ; sides of the body rufous, the 
line of colour division between the back and sides sharply marked 
by a black line, below from chin to vent much paler. 

Head rufous, the muzzle a purer colour, posteriorly mixed with 
white hairs ; ears fairly large about four inches in length with a 
few white hairs anteriorly, posteriorly and a patch at their base 
rufous ; limbs of the same colour as the sides ; tail about one -third 
the length of the head and body, bushy like an English fox's brush, 
composed of long rather woolly hairs, basally greyish yellow, with 
black tips becoming more developed towards the extremity of the 
tail, which appears quite black. 

The upper molars are smaller than the corresponding teeth in 
C. adustus, measuring along their outer edge -45 and -26 respectively 
against -55 and '35 ; on the other hand the upper carnassial is larger 
being -71 length against -61 in C. adiistus ; the anterior internal 
cusp of the same tooth is very small. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen in the South African 
Museum ; head and body 39-0 ; tail 14-0 ; hind foot 6-25 ; from 
ear opening to tip of nose 7-50; skull length 6-20; breadth 3-30; 
upper cheek teeth 3-45. 

Distribution. — This animal is found everywhere abundantly 
throughout South Africa, and extends northwards through Angola 
and Central Africa to Somaliland and middle Nubia. It is not 
recorded from German East Africa, Mozambique, West Africa or 
French Congo. 

Habits. — In the more thickly inhabited parts of the country 
this jackal is strictly nocturnal in its habits ; it cannot, perhaps, be 
called a social animal, though occasionally in the evening a few 
may be seen together. Like the English fox, during the daytime, 
it lies out in the thick bush, but the young are born in an " earth," 
either excavated by the animal itself or more often constructed by 
an aard-vark ; to this earth, if hard pressed by dogs, the jackal will 
generally retreat. 


This animal may almost be said to be omnivorous ; it is fond of 
carrion and will kill lambs, kids, hares and fowls when carrion is 
not available. Mr. Cloete further states that it will break ostrich 
eggs for the sake of their contents, and that he even once found a 
water tortoise in the stomach of an individual examined by him. 

The usual voice of the jackal is described by Mr. Cloete as a 
" wailing-laughing " sound; another form of voice is a quacking or 
cackling sound to which it gives vent when attacked, and finally, 
especially when young ones are about, a short "wuff" somQthing 
like the bark of a dreaming dog, but louder, can be heard. 

As has already been stated the young are born in holes or earths, 
and six seem to be the usual number of puppies. Mr. Cloete gives 
the following account : " The young ones have almost always a 
'back door' by which they can escape; this is just large enough 
for the puppies to squeeze through, whatever their size ; as a rule, 
as soon as the terriers go down the earth in which there are young 
ones, they fly out through one of these small ' back door ' holes 
through which, as a rule, the terriers are unable to follow, and 
should there be no one to intercept them on the surface make away 
into the veld as hard as they can ; the parents are very rarely 
found in the holes with the young ones ; they are generally lying 
in the nearest patch of bush and may often be seen watching the 
proceedings from a safe distance. The male helps the female in 
foraging for the little ones, they either carry the food in their mouths 
or, should they not be able to get a good piece to carry away, eat 
their fill and then vomit the contents of their stomachs for the 
young ones to eat." 

In disposition the jackal is " most cowardly," again quoting 
Mr. Cloete, " making no resistance to speak of when caught by a 
determined dog, yet frequently chasing and biting small curs which 
it sees are afraid of it." It will seldom attack big sheep. It 
is very cunning, and difficult to trap, unless very special precau- 
tions are taken and will also frequently refuse to take a poisoned 
bait, but after chewing it slightly will drop it on the ground 
again and make off. 

This is the jackal which is so abundant everywhere all over the 
Colony, and which is so terribly destructive among the flocks of 
the stock-farmer. A reward of 7s. 6d. a tail is paid in the Colony 
to encourage their destruction, but although very large sums have 
been expended in this way, but little apparent effect has hitherto 
been produced. 



On the Cape flats, in the neighbourhood of Cape Town, it has 
been hunted with foxhounds for a great number of years, and has 
given very good sport ; and in Bechuanaland also there has been 
from time to time a regular pack of hounds hunting this species, 
chiefly owing to the energy of Major-General Sir Frederick 
Carrington ; an account of this hunt will be found in Mr. Bryden's 
book quoted above. 

38. Canis adustus. The Side-steiped Jackal. 

?Canis variegatoides, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joitrn. ii, p. 87 (1834). 
Canis adustus, SimdevaU, Oefvers. Akad. Forliandl. StocTiholm iii, 

p. 121 (1847) [Magaliesberg] ; Socage, Jorn. Sci. Lish. (2) i, p. 182 

(1889); Mivart, Monogr. Canidae, p. 49, pi. xiii (1890); Lorenz, 

Ann. Til. Hofmus. ix, notizen, p. 66 (1894) ; Pousargues, Ann. Sci. 

Nat. (8) iii, p 278 (1896). 
Canis lateraHs, P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1870, p. 279 pi. xxiii 

[Gaboon] . 
Canis holubi, Lorenz, Verh. hh. Zool. hot. Ges. Wien xlv, p. 110 

(1896) ; id. Ann. hk. Hofmus. xi, p. 6 (1896) ; [Pandamatenka and 

Leshumo Valley, near Victoria Falls.] 

Description. — Form rather stout; general colour silvery grey, 
rather blacker on the back ; on either side of the body a more or 
less distinct diagonal white stripe with a similar black one bordering 
it below ; the hair on the back is long, from 3 to 4 inches, and 
consists of a rather coarse, pale reddish under-fur beyond which 
project longer black hairs with a broad white subterminal band ; 
the regular arrangement of the bands on these long hairs causes 
the side stripe ; head speckly grey with a rufous tinge, ears short, 
about 3 inches long only, posteriorly the same colour ap the head 
anteriorly with a few long white hairs ; chin pale brown, contrasting 
with the rufous brown throat and chest ; limbs with a slight rufous 
brown tinge and traces of a black transverse band above the hocks 
on the hind legs ; tail about half the length of the head and body 
covered with long hairs, but not so brush-like as in the other 
species ; basal third yellowish, distal two thirds mingled black and 
yellowish, tip pure white. 

The female is considerably lighter in colour, much less rufous 
and with the side stripes very faintly marked. 

The skull is more massive than that of C. mesomelas, and the 
teeth differently proportioned as described above. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 29-50 ; 


tail 14-0 ; with terminal hairs 18-0 ; hind foot 6-50 ; from ear 
opening to tip of nose 7*50 ; skull, length 6"10 ; breadth 3'5 ; 
upper cheek teeth 3-50. 

Synonymy. — The history of this species is by no means clear as 
is seen by the four names included in the synonymy ; the earliest 
of these is C. variegatoides of Smith, who, however, in his descrip- 
tion does not mention the white tail tip, or the side stripes so 
characteristic of this species ; further he described the colour of the 
ears as chestnut, which is difficult to reconcile with the present 
species as generally understood. The plate of Mr. P. L. Sclater's 
C. lateralis, from Gaboon, agrees with individuals I have examined, 
except that in it the colour of the ears is represented as a pare 
rufous brown instead of a speckled grey. 

Senhor Barboza de Bocage has compared specimens of side- 
striped jackals from Angola and from Gaboon (true G. lateralis), 
and states that though externally the two forms agreed very well, 
that the skull of the Angola jackal is larger and somewhat differ- 
ently shaped from that of Gaboon. 

Finally, two examples of a side-striped jackal obtained near the 
Victoria Falls, by Dr. Holub, were examined by Dr. Lorenz von 
Liburnau ; he at first identified these with Canis aclustus, of 
Sundevall, which he believed to be specifically distinct from C. 
lateralis, but subsequently he came to the conclusion that they 
represented a third species differing from all those hitherto de- 
scribed in their shorter and thicker heads, their more stumpy noses, 
and their higher legs. 

On the whole I am inclined to identify with one another all the 
side-striped jackals, including C. adustus, which, though always 
described as coming from Caffraria, was really obtained in the Maga- 
liesberg range near Pretoria, and which was doubtless a female 
or a young male with an ill-developed stripe. 

Distribution. — Central Africa extending to Kilima-njaro and 
Gaboon in the one direction, and to Angola, the Transvaal and 
Nyasaland in the other ; south of the Zambesi it has been obtained 
in the Magaliesberg in Western Transvaal and near the Victoria 
Falls ; the South African Museum possesses a pair shot by Mr. 
Selous close to Bulawayo, and it is probably the common jackal 
of Ehodesia. 

Habits. — To Du Chaillu and Dr. Pechuel-Loesche we are chiefly 
indebted for accounts of the habits of this jackal ; it is stated to 
hunt in packs and to prey on small mammals, sick individuals of 




larger species, and also to feed on the fruit of the oil palm ; it will 
interbreed with domestic dogs and can be tamed with facility. 

Genus YULPES. 

Yulpes, Brisson, Begn. Anim., p. 239 (1756), 

.V. alopex 

Animals of slighter build with a more pointed muzzle, and a 
tail usually exceeding half the length of the head and body and very 
bushy ; ears large, pupil vertically elliptical, six mammae. 

Skull with no frontal sinus, and with the post-orbital processes 

Teeth like those of Ganis but less powerful. 

Fig. 24.— Skull of Vulpes chama [Proc. Zool. Soc). 

This genus includes the well known English fox, which under 
slight modifications is found throughout the whole of the northern 
regions of the old world and other Asiatic, North American and 
African species. 

The only South African representative, described below, is at 
once distinguishable from the jackals by its much longer tail, its 
smaller size, and different colouration. 


39. Yulpes chama. The Silvee Fox. 

Canis chama, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 89 (1834) ; P. L. 
Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc, 1875, p. 81, pi. xvii. ; Mivart, Monogr. 
Canidae, p. 140, pi. xxxiii. (1890). 
Canis variegatoides, a2nul Layard, Cat. Mamm. 8. Afr. Mits. p. 30 

(1861) {nee Smith). 
Fennecus caama, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc, 1868, p. 520, fig. 7 [skull]. 
Vernacular Names. — Silver or Vaal Jackal of the Colonists ; Asse apud 

Description. — Form slender and delicate, with long limbs and 
tail ; general colour silvery grey above and on the sides, fur very 
soft and thick, under-fur pale lavender-slate at the base, getting 
paler above, the longer projecting hairs having black tips and a 
broad white subterminal band, lower sides and below yellowish 
with a rufous tinge ; head pale rufous, intermingled with white 
hairs, darker on the muzzle ; upper lip towards the angle of the 
mouth, lower lip and chin very dark brown ; ears large, about 3| 
inches long, covered posteriorly with short soft reddish brown hairs ; 
anteriorly with a few long white hairs, a pale yellowish patch at 
the base of the ears ; legs becoming paler towards the toes, with a 
distinctly marked black band between the knee and hock of the hind 
leg ; tail long, very thick and bushy, mingled yellow and black 
with black tip, hairs woolly with black extremities. 

Skull slender, with post-orbital processes little developed and 
concave above ; the anterior internal cusp of the upper carnassial 
tooth well developed. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted specimen ; head and body 23-50 ; 
tail 12-50 ; hind foot 5-25 ; from ear opening to nose 6-0 ; skull 
length 4-53 ; breadth 2-45 ; upper cheek teeth 2-40. 

Distribution. — This little fox seems to be generally distributed 
over South Africa, though by no means common ; it was described 
originally from Namaqualand, bub extends eastwards as far as 
Grahamstown and the uplands of Natal, and appears fairly common 
in Beaufort West ; north of the Orange Eiver it is distributed 
through German South-west Africa, Griqualand West and the 
Orange Free State ; the South African Museum has examples from 
Beaufort West, Caledon and the neighbourhood of Cape Town, 
where it however is not common. 

Habits. — Little is recorded about this fox ; it appears to be 
nocturnal and extremely wary, and its diet usually consists of 
insects and fruit. It has never been known to injure stock. 





Otocyon, Wiegmann, Archiv. /. Naturg. iv, p. 290 

(1838) 0. megalotis. 

Fox-like animals with four toes to the fore, five to the hind feet, 
and with very long ears. 

Skull also resembling that of the smaller foxes. 

Fig. 25.— Skull of Otocyon megalotis (Proc. Zool. Soc). 

Dentition. — i. #, c. i, 


ra. — - = 46 or 48. This genus 

possesses a greater number of molar teeth than any other hetero- 
dont mammal and it is this which separates it from the pre- 
ceding genus; the teeth are of the same general character as 
those of the foxes, but the cusps are more pointed especially in 
the case of the lower carnassial. 

The species described below is the only known one. 

40. Otocyon megalotis. Delalande's Fox. 

Canis megalotis, Desmarest, Mammal. Suppl. i, p. 538 (1822) ; Smuts, 
Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 15 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, 
p. 90 (1834). 

Canis lalandii, Desmoulins, Diet. Class. Hist. Nat. iv, p. 18 (1823). 

Otocyon caffer, Wiegmann, Archiv. f. Naturg. iv, p. 290 (1838) ; Noach, 
Zool. Jahrb. iv, p. 166 (1889) [Kalahari] . 




Otocyon lalandii, Layard, Cat. Mamni. S. Afr. Mws. p. 31 (1861) ; 

Huxley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1880, p. 258, fig. 12 [skull] . 
Otocyon megalotis, Mivart, Mo?iogr. Canidae p. 202, pi. xlv & figs. 
56-59 [skull] (1890); Lorenz, Ann. hk. Hofinus. ix, notiz. p. 67 
Literature. — Livingstone (1857), p. 50, its occurrence in the Kalahari; 
Bryden (1893), p. 60, common in Bechuanaland ; MiUais (1895), p. 11, 
figm-ed in a woodcvit; Ivii'by (1896), p. 555, occurrence in the Eastern 

Vernacular Names. — Motlose of Bechuanas (Livingstone) ; sometimes 
known as the Cape Fennec, a name which should be more correctly applied 
to V. chama. 

Fig. 26. — Otocyon megalotis. 

Description. — In its slender form and general colour it somewhat 
resembles V. chama; the under-fur hov^ever, is a pale yellow and 
not slaty, the head shows no sign of reddish but has a dark streak 
running through the eyes and down the centre of the nose ; the chin 
is dark brown and the rest of the under-surface very pale, almost 
white ; the ears are very large for the animal being about 4^ inches 


in length, posteriorly and along the upper margins they are covered 
with thick soft dark brown fur, with a few white hairs anteriorly ; 
the limbs grow darker towards the toes which are quite black ; the 
tail is thick and bushy and somewhat pointed, the last third being 
black, the hairs are all yellowish with black tips, those towards 
the end of the tail being quite black. 

The skull and dentition are described in the account of the 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 25-0 ; 
tail without terminal hairs 10-50, with 13-0 ; hind foot 5-25 ; from 
ear opening to tip of nose 6-0 ; skull length 4-30 ; breadth 2-51 ; 
upper cheek teeth 1-35. 

Distribution. — Like ViUpes cliama this fox is found only in the 
western parts of South Africa, though it extends northwards through 
the dryer parts of Central Africa to Somaliland ; in the Colony it 
is said to reach as far east as Graaff Eeinet and Uitenhage ; it is 
certainly common at Beaufort West whence the South African 
Museum possesses an example and where it was sketched by 
Millais. It is found throughout German territory, the Kalahari, 
Bechuanaland, and perhaps the dryer portions of Ehodesia and the 
Transvaal as it is recorded from the eastern portion of that Eepublic 
by Kirby. 

Habits.^ — -This fox was originally obtained by the French 
traveller Delalande, and was described by Desmarest from his 

It is purely nocturnal in its habits and found singly or in pairs; 
its food is said to consist of mice, birds, insects and fruit ; others 
report termites alone form the bulk of its nourishment. It is easily 
tamed and becomes playful and affectionate, and is valued by the 
Bechuanas for its skin of which excellent karosses are made. 

Genus LYCAON. 

Lycaon, Griffith, Cuvier's Anwi. Kingcl. v, p. 151 (1827). ..L. pictus. 

This genus resembles Canis in most respects, differing only in 
the fact that there are four toes on both fore and hind feet ; the 
skull also is shorter and broader and the teeth more massive. 

Only one recent species, that below described, is known, but in 
the cave-deposits of Glamorganshire in South Wales, a lower jaw 
found closely resembling that of the recent species, indicates that 


the genus had formerly in Pleistocene times a wider distribution 
than at present. 

Fig. 27. — Skull of Lyeaon pictus. 

41. Lycaon pictus. The Cape Hunting Dog or Wilde Honde. 

Canis avireus, a^ud Thunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersh. iii, p. 302 (1811) 

{nee Linn.). 
Hyaena picta, TemmineTc, Ann. Gen. Sci. PJiys. iii, p. 54, pi. xxxv 

Hyaena venatica, Burcliell, Travels, i, p. 456 (1822). 
Lycaon tricolor, Griffith, Cuvier's Anim. Kingd., v, p. 151 (1827). 
Canis pictus, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap., p. 14 (1832). 
Lycaon typicus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joiirn. ii, p. 91 (1834). 
Lycaon venaticus, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc., 1868, p. 497, fig. 1 [skull]. 
Lycaon pictus, Garrod, Proc. Zool. Soc., 1878, p. 373 [anatomy] ; 

Mivart, Monogr. Canidae, p. 196, pi. xliv & fig. 55 [skull] (1890). 

Literature. — Masson (1776), p. 278, occurrence of "Wild Dogs" near 
Saldanha Bay ; Sparrman (1785), p. 166, description of its habits in Cale- 
don; Paterson (1790), p. 83, met this species in Uitenhage ; Burchell (1822), 
i, p. 456, described as a new species ; ii, p. 229, further discussion and 
notes on systematic position ; Moodie (1835), i, p. 256, on its habits ; Harris 
(1840), figured on pi. xxx, fig. 3 ; Delagorgue (1847), p. 374, occurrence in 
Zululand with discussion of habits and systematic position ; Gumming 
(1855), i, p. 169 account of meeting with wild dogs in Griqualand West ; 
Grout (1863), p. 293, native names and habits in Zululand; Drummond 
(1875), p. 311, account of habits in Zululand; Selous (1881), p. 356, 
observation on a solitary wild dog pursuing a sable antelope ; Holub 
(1882), i, p. 302, note on habits; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 93, 
description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893) p. 314, occurrence in 
Khpima's country; Kirby (1896), p. 555, on habits, distribution and 




vernacular names in the Eastern Transvaal; Kirby (1899), p. 324, distri- 
bution in Mozambique, 

Vernacular Names. — Wilde Honde of the Colonists ; Inkentyane 
(Drummond), Inkentshana (Kirby) of the Zulus ; 'Budaja of Swazis (Kirby) ; 
Matshabidi of Basutos (Kirby) ; Ixwili of Amaxosa (Stanford). 

Description. — Form, large and wolf-like ; general colour, pale 
yellow with irregular dark brown markings, separating the yellow 
into patches, sometimes with white brown-margined patches, but 
the markings varying very much Vv^ith individual specimens ; fur 
coarse and woolly with no long straight hairs ; muzzle, lower 

Fig. 28. — Lycaon picttis (after Flower). 

cheeks, chin and throat brown or black, from the former passes 
back a band of the same colour to between the ears; ears large, 
wide, rounded and patulous covered posteriorly and along the upper 
margins with brown hairs, and anteriorly with a few long yellow 
hairs ; limbs mottled with yellow, white and brown like the back ; 
with four toes only, to both fore and hind feet as in Hyaena; tail 
short, rather bushy, mottled like the back with the distal half 
pure white. 

Skull and dentition as described above. 


Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 45-5 ;' 
tail ll'SO, with terminal hairs 14 ; hind foot 8*25 ; from ear opening 
to tip of nose 9-50 ; skull length 8-25 ; breadth 5'30 ; upper cheek 
teeth, 3-0. 

Distribution. — The hunting dog is found over the greater part 
of eastern and southern Africa, from Abyssinia and Somaliland 
through Uganda and East Africa to the Colony. It is still found 
in the Colony, especially in unsettled districts such as the Addo 
and Fish Eiver bush, and is also recorded from all the other 
territories and states which go to form South Africa. 

Habits. — This animal though not distinguished till 1821 by 
naturalists in Europe was previously well known to the colonists, 
and is mentioned by some of the earlier writers ; and in consequence 
of its peculiar habits has always attracted a good deal of attention. 

The wilde honde is always found in packs of from four to sixty, 
but usually about fifteen individuals ; they travel rapidly and are 
migratory, seldom remaining long in one place. Mr. Selous gives 
an account of a solitary individual whom he observed pursuing a 
sable antelope, but this is quite exceptional. They travel both by 
day or night in a long untiring gallop, not very speedy but which 
is effective in exhausting their victims. 

Cumming states that they have three distinct cries, a sharp 
angry bark of surprise, a chattering somewhat like that of monkeys 
chiefly heard at night, and thirdly and most commonly a soft and 
melodious " ho, ho," like the second note of the cuckoo ; this is 
used to rally the pack, and is mentioned by many other observers. 

Their food consists of the sheep and cattle of the farmer, and 
the larger antelopes, even the sable and gnu ; they appear to be 
always ravenous, and a troop has been seen to kill, tear to pieces 
and completely clear away a large buck in about fifteen minutes. 

They hunt their prey like well trained hounds. Drummond 
says : " It is a marvellous sight to see a pack of them hunting, 
drawing cover after cover, their sharp bell-like note ringing through 
the air, while a few of the fastest of their number take up their 
stations along the expected line of the run — the wind, the nature of 
the ground, and the habits of the game all taken into consideration 
with the most wonderful skill. And then to see them after they 
have found, going at their long unswerving gallop so close together 
that a sheet might cover them, while those which had been stationed 
or had stationed themselves, it is hard to say which, drop in one 
by one as the others find themselves unable to make the running 


any longer; and the chase, generally a gnu or waterbuck pressed 
first by one and then another, though it may distance the pack 
for a while soon comes back to it, and is in the end almost invari- 
ably run into." 

They always attack their victim just below the tail and try to 
tear out the viscera. 

The visits of these animals are greatly dreaded by farmers, as 
they kill more than they eat, and as many as sixty or seventy sheep 
or goats are destroyed in one night out of each of which only a 
few mouthfuls are taken. Drummond states that he had seen them 
dash into a herd of cattle feeding not a hundred yards from the 
house, and drive out a beast, disappear over the rising ground with 
it, and kill it and pick its bones before the saddle could be placed on 
the horse to follow. 

Smuts states that ten to twelve puppies are born at a birth ; the 
females bring forth their young in large holes or earths on the open 
plains, which are connected with one another by underground 
passages; in these earths they never take refuge, but if pursued 
make off into bush. 

In disposition this animal is exceedingly bold, and shows little 
or no fear of man, and instances are even known of their attacking, 
or at any rate naaking very unpleasant demonstrations towards a 
man on foot, though they will not meddle with a man on horseback; 
they have been occasionally caught and tamed, but apparently never 
become quite docile. 

Moodie states that when crossed with domestic dogs they 
produce a mongrel offspring of bad character. 

Division ARCTOIDEA. 

This section of the Carnivora consists of three families ; those 
containing the bears, the. racoons, and the weasels, of which only 
the last-named have South African representatives. 

In external appearance no very marked character separates this 
section from the other two previously considered, but in their 
osteology and anatomy they possess many points in common, and 
show considerable distinctions from the members of the other 
groups, of which the following are the most important. 

In the skull the auditory bulla is simple and not divided inter- 


nally into two separate chambers, and the inferior lip of the 
auditory meatus is prolonged into a shoit spout; the mastoid 
process is separated from the paroccipital and is very prominent ; 
the condylar foramen is quite distinct and not fused with the 
foramen lacerum posterius ; there is no caecum to the intestine, 
and there are invariably five toes to both fore and hind feet armed 
with non-retractile claws. 


This family contains the Otters, "Weasels and Badgers, and is 
characterised by the absence of an alisphenoid canal to the skull, 
by the number of molar teeth, either | or i, and by the fact that 
the mner tubercular portion of the single upper molar is longer 
than the outer secant portion. 

The family is a large one and widely distributed, especially in 
the northern regions ; only four genera containing five species 
reach South Africa. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Feet short and rounded ; hind toes webbed; habits 

aquatic Lutra, p. 106. 

B. Feet elongated, toes not webbed, claws nearly 

straight ; habits terrestrial. 

a. Form stout; tail short; external ear rudimentary. Mellivora, p. 109. 

b. Form long and slender ; tail more than half the 

length of the body, external ears present. 
aK Form mungoose-like with pointed snout, and 

three premolars above and below Zo villa, p. 112. 

&'. Form weasel-like, very short on the legs as 

compared with the length of the body ; snout 

soiuewhat rounded, only two premolars above 

and below Poecilogale, p. 114. 

Genus LUTRA. 


Lutra, Erxlehen, Syst. Eegn. Anim. p. 445 (1777) L. vulgaris. 

Aonyx, Lesson, Man. Mamm. p. 157 (1827) L. capensis. 

Animals of aquatic habit, with rounded heads, elongated bodies, 
short limbs and webbed hind toes ; claws sometimes well developed 


sometimes rudimentary ; soles of the hind feet naked, but not quite 
as far as the heels ; ears small. 

Skull large and depressed, with a large brain case, and a short 
facial portion. 

Dentition, i. |, c. i, pm. f, m. | = 36 ; upper carnassial with 
a sharp-edged tricuspid blade and a large inner lobe, anterior 
premolar small, set inside the regular tooth line. 

All Otters resemble one another very closely externally and are 
difficult to distinguish ; Mr. Thomas' memoir in the Proceedings of 
the Zoological Society for 1889 is here followed. 

Otters are spread all over the world except in Australia; only 
two species are found in the Ethiopian Eegion, and both of these 
reach South Africa. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Larger, head and body about 30 inches ; claws 

quite rudimentary L. capensis, p. 107. 

B. Smaller, head and body about 20 inches ; 

claws well developed L. maculicollis, -p. 108. 

42. Lutra capensis. The Cape Otter. 

Lutra capensis, Selling, Cuvier's Thierr. i, p. 214 (1821) ; Thomas, 

Proc. Zool. Soc. 1889, p. 196. 
Lutra inunguis, F. Cuv. Diet. Sci. Nat. xxvii, p. 247 (1823) ; Smuts, 

Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 13 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. 

ii, p. 84 (1834) ; NoacTt, Zool. Jahrb. iv, p. 168 (1889) [Lake Ngami] . 
Aonyx delalandi, Lesson, Man. Mamm. p. 157 (1827); Layard, Cat. 

Mamm. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 28 (1861). 

Literature. — Moseley (1892) p. 132, habits and occurrence near 
Simonstown ; Kirby (1896) p. 556 occurrence in Eastern Transvaal. 

Vernacular Names. — Otter of the Colonists ; Intini of Swazis and Zulus 
(Kirby) and Amaxosa (Cloete) ; Itini of Basutos (Kirby.) 

Description. — Form robust, the largest of all otters except the 
Brazilian ; general colour rich dark brown, woolly under-fur brown, 
somewhat lighter towards the base, bristly hairs also brown, below 
a little lighter ; all the fur smooth and short ; head broad, tip 
of the nose, upper lip, cheeks, chin and throat white, gradually 
shading into brown on the chest and shoulder ; nose pad broad, not 


connected with the upper lip by a bare line ; whiskers white ; ears 
short, only about an inch in length, flattened against the sides of 
the head and covered with brown fur ; limbs short and stout ; toes 
with no trace of claws on the fore-feet, but the third and fourth 
toes of the hind feet bearing a small, flat, rounded nail ; only the 
bases of the toes of the fore-legs webbed, between those of the hind 
foot the web extends to the distal joint ; tail thick at the base, 
tapering, covered, like the body, with short fur. 

Young with longer and rougher fur and a slightly shorter tail. 

Dimensions. — From a large mounted specimen in the South 
African Museum ; head and body 32-0 ; tail 18-0 ; from ear opening 
to tip of nose 5-50 ; hind foot 6-50 ; skull length 5-45 ; breadth 
3"60 ; upper cheek teeth 1-58. 

Distribution. — This otter is found over the greater part of Africa 
southwards from the Gold Coast on the west and Zanzibar on the 
east ; it seems to be fairly common in the Colony, especially along 
the coast and elsewhere, wherever suitable conditions exist ; it also 
occurs in Natal, the Transvaal and Ehodesia, including Lake 
Ngami, and the Zambesi Eiver. It is not at all rare in the neigh- 
bourhood of Cape Town and a large male example was quite 
recently received from the Lorenz Eiver, near Somerset West, 
weighing no less than 31 lbs. 

Habits. — Little is recorded about the habits of this otter, 
probably it resembles the European species in this respect. 

The Cape otter, however, is often found near the sea, in places 
where there are no streams, and probably are in some places adapt- 
ing themselves for marine life ; their food doubtless consists chiefly 
of fish, where these are absent, as is often the case in South African 
Elvers, it contents itself with other fresh-water animals especially 
crabs and frogs ; when an opportunity presents itself it will destroy 
ducks and other water fowl. 

43. Lutra maculicoUis. The Spotted-necked Otter. 

Lutra maculicoUis, Lichtenstein, Arch. f. Naturg. i, p. 89, pi. ii, fig. 1 

(1835) ; TJiomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1889, p. 196. 
Hydrogale maculicoUis, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1865, p. 132 [fig. of 

skull] . 

Description. — General colour dark brown, darker than the 
other species, with a thick woolly under-fur; below slightly paler; 
upper and lower lips white ; throat and chest pale, spotted with 




light red ; fore and hind feet each with five well developed strong 
claws, all the toes, both fore and hind, fully webbed to the tips ; 
tail coloured like the body and but slightly shorter than it. 

Dimensions.— From a skin ; head and body 21*0 ; tail 14-0 ; hind 
foot about 4-0; from ear to nose-tip about 3-0; skull length i'O; 
breadth 2-3 ; upper cheek teeth 1-2. 

Distribution. — The spotted-neck otter was described by Lichten- 
stein, and the specimens were said to have obtained in the Bam- 
busbergen in the north-eastern portion of the Colony ; it is reported 
from West and South-east Africa, from Liberia, the Camaroons, 
Angola, Nyasaland and Natal ; the South African Museum has 
an example obtained in the Waterberg district of the Transvaal. 



MelliYOra, Storr, Prodrom. Method. Mamm. p. 34 (1780) ...M. ratel. 

Body stout, limbs short and strong, fore claws large and well 

developed, tail short, external ear rudimentary ; mammae four in 

Fig. 29. — Left half of palate and lower jaw of Mellivora ratel. 

number ; anal glands developed, two in number ; sole of the hind 
foot naked to the heel. 

Skull with the lower jaw held in its place by the projection of 
the edges of the glenoid cavity as in the European badger. 


Dentition. — i. f , c. i, pm. f , m. ^ = 32 ; no lower tubercular 
molar ; the upper molar with a very small outer and very large inner 
rounded lobe, upper carnassial large with the inner cusp quite at its 
anterior end. 

In addition to the South African species another closely allied 
form, distinguished by the absence of the white dividing band 
between the grey of the back and the black of the belly, is found 
in Southern Asia from Transcaspia to India. 

44. MelliYora ratel. The Eatel. 

Viverra ratel, Sparrman, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. Stochholm, xxxviii, 

p. 147, pi. iv, fig. 3 (1777). 
Viverra capensis, Sclireher, Saugeth. ill, p. 450, pi. cxxv. (1778). 
Ursus mellivorus, G. Cuvier, Tahl. Elem., p. 112 (1798). 
Meles mellivora, Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersh. iii., p. 306 (1811). 
Gulo capensis, Desmarest, Mamm. p. 176 (1820) ; Smuts, Enum. 

Mamm. Cap. p. 11 (1832). 
Gulo mellivora, A. Smith, Descr. Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 17 (1826). 
EateUus typicus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 83 (1834). 
Mellivora ratel, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 26 (1861) ; 

Socage, Jorn. Sci. Lisb. (2) i, p. 184 (1889) [habits] ; Matschie, 

Saugeth. Deutsch-Ost-Afrilcas, p. 84, fig. 49 (1895). 
Mellivora leuconota, P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1867, p. 98, pi. 

viii. [young specimen] ; id. ibid. 1871, p. 232. 

Literature.— Kolben (1731) ii, p. 124, described amusingly but some- 
what inaccurately as the Eattle-Mouse ; La Caille (1763), p. 182, described 
as the " Blareau puant " at considerable length ; Sparrman (1785) ii, p. 194, 
figured and described with an account of its habits ; Barrow (1801), p. 293, 
on its habits as a honey eater and its tenacity of life ; Kirby (1896), p. 556, 
occurrence in the Eastern Transvaal with vernacular names ; Kirby (1899), 
p. 324, distribution in Mozambique. 

Vernacular Names.— Eatel or Honey-Eatel of Colonists; Icelesi of 
Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Sisele of Basutos ; Indundundwana or Insele of 
Swazis and Zulus (Kirby). 

Description. — Form stout and thickset ; general colour above 
from forehead to base of tail greyish brown, becoming darker 
posteriorly ; sides and lower parts quite black including the face 
and ears ; a band of pure white, about an inch in breadth, runs 
along each side dividing the grey back from the black under-parts ; 
fur very coarse, no under-fur ; external ear completely absent ; fore 
limbs very powerful, with nearly straight stout claws, of which the 




middle three are the longest, being over an inch in length ; claws 
of the hind feet comparatively small ; tail short, one fourth the 
length of the head and body, rather bushy, black except at the base 
where it is white. In the young the white lateral dividing line does 
not seem to be present. 

Dimensions. — Head and body 32-0 ; tail 6-50 without, 8-30 with 
the terminal hairs ; from ear opening to tip of nose 4-0 ; hind foot 
5-0 ; skull length 5'80 ; breadth 3-40 ; upper cheek teeth 2-30. 


Fig. 30. — MelUvora ratel. 

Distribution. — Found throughout Africa southwards from 
French Congoland in the west, and from Kordofan and Nubia in 
the east ; in South Africa it is plentiful everywhere, though it does 
not seem to be often seen owing to its retiring nature. There are 
examples in the South African Museum from the Albany and Cape 
divisions of the Colony. 

Habits. — This animal, which is strictly nocturnal, is found 
chiefly in caves and rocky situations, and has its lair either among 
the roots of trees, or actually in a hollow tree, though according to 
Sparrman it does not climb trees. 


Its skin is very thick, so much so that the sting of a bee cannot 
penetrate it ; it is also very loose so that a dog cannot well obtain a 
firm grasp of the animal, and even then it can nearly always turn 
and bite its assailant. 

The ratel is practically omnivorous, it robs the poultry yard 
and eats snakes ; a cobra has been found in the stomach of one by 
M. Bocage. But perhaps its favourite and most notorious food is 
the comb and honey of wild bees ; by Sparrman it is said to destroy 
the nest and carry off the honey to some special repository ; it has 
also been related that it is sometimes able to find the bees' nest by 
following the honey-guide {Indicator) as it flutters through the 

When pursued it takes refuge, as a rule, in a hole, and bites 
most savagely and tenaciously ; it further defends itself by emitting 
an offensive odour from its anal glands. It is very difficult to kill, 
only, it is said, by actually crushing its skull or by stabbing to the 
heart can this be effected. 

Though dangerous to tackle, when once in captivity it soon 
becomes tame and makes an amusing pet. It has a curious habit 
of turning constant somersaults when confined in menageries. 


Zorilla,Is. Geoffr. Diet. Class. Hist. Nat. x, p, 215 (1826). ..Z. striata. 
Ictonyx, Kaujp, Thierreich i, p. 352 (1835) Z. striata. 

Form somewhat slender with short limbs, the fore feet large, 
with five stoat non-retractile claws, the first and fifth being slightly 
shorter ; tail long, with long hairs, giving it a bushy appearance. 

Skull of much the same general proportions as that of a 
mungoose, but with the bony palate prolonged considerably back 
behind the level of the molars, and the posterior wing of the 
pterygoid bones connected with the auditory bulla by means of a 
thin bony bridge. 

Dentition. — i. i, c. i, pm. |, m. ^ = 34 ; teeth sharp and 
pointed, upper and lower carnassials with sharp well-marked inner 
cusps, and the latter with a talon. 

Several of these small skunk-like forms are found in Africa ; 
only the earliest and best known species reaches South Africa. 




Fig. 31.— Palatal view of skull and lower jaw of Zorilla striata. 

45. Zorilla striata. The Steiped Muishond. 

Viverra zorilla, Erxleben, Syst. Begn. Anim. p. 492 (1777) ; Thimberg, 

Mem. Acad. Peters, iii, p. 306 (1811). 
Viverra striata, Shaiv, Gen. Zool. i, pt. 2, p. 387, pi. xciv (1800). 
Mephitis capensis, A. Smith, Descrip. Cat. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 20 (1826). 
Mustela zorilla, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 12 (1832). 
Putorius zorilla, A. Smith, 8. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 84 (1834). 
Zorilla striata, Layard, Cat. Mamm. 8. Afr, Mus. p. 28 (1861). 
Vernacular Names. — Stink or Getrepte Muishond, or simply Muishond 
of the Colonists ; Iqaqa of Amaxosa (Cloete). 

Description.— Form slender; general colour black with four 
longitudinal stripes of white divided by three narrower black ones 
which run from behind the occiput to the root of the tail, the median 
black stripe being somewhat widened over the pelvis ; rest of the 
body and limbs entirely black. A woolly under-fur is present as 
well as an outer longer fur, the latter being very soft and fine. Fore 
feet with large claws, especially those of the three middle toes ; 
claws of the hind feet much smaller ; all slightly curved. Head 
with a pointed snout, black with three white spots on the forehead 
and cheeks ; ears small and rounded, black with narrow white 
margins along the upper part of conch ; tail nearly as long as the 
head and body, clothed with long hairs mingled black and white in 
different proportions ; tip generally white ; young, with a very short 
completely white tail. The skull is described above. 


Dimensions. — Measured in the flesh by Mr. A. Eoss ; head 
and body 14-75; tail without hairs, 9-25, with, 12-50; from ear 
opening to tip of nose 2-60 ; hind foot 2-50 ; skull length 2-50 ; 
breadth 1-60 ; upper cheek teeth 1-0. 

Distribution. — Central and South Africa from Benguela, 
Uganda, and Mozambique southwards ; found throughout all the 
country south of the Zambesi, and not uncommon in the neighbour- 
hood of Cape Town. In the South African Museum are examples 
from Upington in Gordonia, from Namaqualand, the Cape and 
Albany divisions, and from near Johannesburg. 

Habits. — This little animal seems to take the place of the 
weasels of Europe and the skunks of North America, to which 
latter they have many points of likeness, both in appearance and 
odour. It is nocturnal, spending the day in holes and recesses 
and issuing forth at night in search of food. M. Bocage states 
that it is a good digger, and that it does not climb trees, but that 
it can swim well when forced into water ; when moving about 
it walks with its tail upright or carried forwards over its back. 

Its food consists of small mammals, birds, birds' eggs, lizards 
and frogs, and it is a great poultry-yard thief. When irritated it 
emits, like most of the family, a most disgusting odour proceeding 
from the secretion formed in the anal glands ; this odour closely 
resembles that of the American skunk, though perhaps it is not 
quite so strong and pungent ; the act can always be performed 
at the will, and is usually indulged in when dogs are in pursuit. 
It is gentle and easily tamed, and becomes greatly attached to 
its master, and is most useful in keeping down the rats and mice 
in a house. 


Poecilogale, Thomas, Ann. Mag. N. H. (5) xi, p. 370 

(1883) P. albinucha. 

Body very much elongated and legs very short, head somewhat 
truncated and rounded ; the skull much shortened, and the audi- 
tory bulla so flattened that it is hardly noticeable, the opening of 
the meatus being anteriorly directed. 

Dentition. — i. |, c. i, pm. i, m, In = 28 or 30; anterior pre- 
molars quite absent with no trace even of the diastema where they 
should stand ; the number of teeth, therefore, is much reduced as 




compared with Mustela, with which at one time the only species of 
the present genus was associated ; the second lower molar is present 
though very small in one out of three skulls available for ex- 

Fig. 32. — Skull of Poecilogale albinucha. 

This genus was formed by Mr. Thomas for the reception of 
the single species below described. 

46. Poecilogale albinucha. The Snake Muishond. 

Zorilla albinucha, Gray, Proc, Zool. Soc, 1864, p. 69, pi. x. 
Poecilogale albinucha, Thomas, Ann. Mag. N. H. (5) si, p. 370 [wood- 
cut of skullj (1883). 
Vernacular Name. — Slang muishond (snake-weasel) of the Colonists. 

Description. — Body very elongated and weasel-like ; fur short 
and soft, general colouration closely resembling that of the pre- 
ceding species, but the whole of the top of the head from between 
the eyes is white or sometimes yellowish ; along the back run 
three long, narrow black stripes, the middle one commencing on 
the occiput, the lateral ones behind the shoulder divided from 
one another and from the black of the body by four wider, white 
or sometimes pale yellow stripes, running from the white head 
to the root of the tail ; rest of the head, body and limbs shiny 
black ; ear conch very small just at the junction of the black and 
white ; limbs very short, the claws of the front a little longer than 
those of the hind feet, but not much curved ; tail about half the 
length of the head and body, covered with long coarse white 

Dimensions. — From a skin ; head and body 12-0 ; tail 5-5, with 





terminal hairs 6-5 ; hind foot 1-0 ; ear opening to nose-tip 1-25 ; 
skull length 1-90; breadth 1-0; upper cheek teeth '4. 

Distribution. — Central and South East Africa, from Angola, 
Nyasaland, and German East Africa to Natal and the eastern part 
of the Colony ; the South African Museum possesses examples of 
this species from the Cradock, Queenstown, and Pondoland divi- 
sions of the Colony, from the Eustenburg district of the Transvaal, 
and from Natal. 


This suborder contains the members of the Order Carnivora 
specially adapted to aquatic life, e.g., the eared seals, or otaries, 
the walrus, and the seals proper. They are distinguished from 
the land Carnivora chiefly by the structure of their limbs, which are 
modified for aquatic progression. 

The two proximal segments (arm and forearm) are in these 
animals greatly shortened, while the third segment (hand and 
fingers) is elongated and expanded, and forms a flipper which is 
composed of five digits enveloped in a common integument ; the 
tail is always very short. 

The incisors are always fewer than f ; the molar teeth are also 
much modified and simplified as compared with those of the land 
Carnivora ; they are all more or less alike, having only two roots 
and compressed pointed crowns, and are never broad or tuber- 
culated as in the land forms, nor are there ever differentiated 
carnassial teeth. 

The brain is large; the kidneys are divided into a number of 
lobules ; and the mammae, either two or four in number, are abdo- 
minal in position. 

Of the three families into which the suborder is divided South 
Africa possesses a representative of one only, the Otariidae or eared 
seals, though two antarctic members* of the Phocidae or true seals 
have been reported to have reached our shores; the third family 
containing the walrus is exclusively arctic. 

* MachrorMnus leoninus, the sea-elephant, and Ogmorhinus leptonyx the 



These animals when on land have the hind feet turned forwards 
under the body to support the trunk and aid in progression ; in 
addition a small external ear is present ; skull with a post-orbital 
process and an alisphenoid canal. 

Only two genera are now generally recognised, Otaria, containing 
only O.jiibata, the Patagonian sea-lion, and Arctocephalus described 
below containing all the other species. 


Arctocephalus, F. Cuvier, Mem. Mus. Hist. Nat. xi, 

p. 205 (1824) A. ursinus. 

Head rounded, eyes large, pinna of the ear narrow and pointed ; 
skin of both the limbs extending beyond the nails with a lobed 
margin deeply incised on the hind feet ; nails small, sometimes 
rudimentary or absent. 

Skull with a flat palate and a hook-like process to the 

Dentition.— i. |, c. i, pm. f , m. ^ = 34 or 36 ; milk teeth 
shed a few days after birth ; molars all of the same pattern usually 
single-rooted with a single, pointed cusp and smaller accessory 
ones in front and behind. 

If the Patagonian sea-lion be excluded, the number of well- 
established species of this genus is eight ; of these, four, among 
which is the Cape species, are distinguished by the possession 
of a woolly under-fur below the long stiff bristles, and are known 
as fur-seals ; the most important of these commercially is the 
North Pacific species {A. ursinus), from which the largest propor- 
tion of the world's "seal skin" is now obtained, and which has 
been the object of so much negociation and diplomatic controversy 
between England and the United States, The other two are A. 
australis, from the South American coasts, and A. forsteri, from 
the Australian and New Zealand coasts, both of which are now 
very scarce and therefore not considered to be worth pursuit. 

The other four species, A. stelleri from the North Pacific, 
A. californiana from California, and A. hookeri and A. lohatus from 
Australian seas, are all hair seals with no woolly under-fur, and 
commercially speaking comparatively valueless. 

Fig. 34. — Skull of Arctocephahis pusillus. 


47. Arctocephalus pusillus. The Cape Sea-Lion or Eobbe. 

Phoca pusilla, Schreber, Sdugeth. iii, p. 314, pi. Isxxv, (1778) ; Smuts, 

Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 31 (1882). 
Phoca antarctica, Tliunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 221 (1811). 
Otaria peronii, Desmarest, Mamm. p. 250 (1820) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. 

Quart. Journ. ii, p. 126 (1834). 
Otaria delalandii, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1859, p. 107, pi. Ixix. [skull] . 
Arctocephalus ursinus, apud Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 40 

(1861) [tiecLinn.] 
Arctocephalus antarcticus, Allen, Bull. Mus. Comx). Zool. ii, p. 45 
LiTERATTJEE. — Jarcline, South African Quart. Journ. i (1832), p. 286, 
account of mdustry ; Jackson, Eeport of the Behring Sea Commission 
(1893) p. 154, Eeport on the Condition of the Seal Fishery on the Coast 
of the Cape of Good Hope. 

Vernacular Names. — Seal, Sea-dog or Kobbe of the Colonists. 

Description. — General colour rich brown, rather darker on the 
muzzle and lighter on the hind neck ; a soft light brown woolly 
under-fur is entirely covered and concealed by coarse bristle-like 
hairs, lighter at their base, browner at their tips ; head massive, 
whiskers consisting of a very small number of exceediDgly thick, 
stiff bristles; external ear narrow and pointed, about an inch and 
a half long ; fore limbs converted into flippers enclosed in a common 
integument, which is produced about half an inch beyond the end 
of the digits, hardly excised into lobes but distinctly scalloped ; no 
trace of nails or claws ; hind limb directed forwards, the integu- 
ment produced far beyond the digits and deeply incised into thin 
flipper-like fingers ; the three middle toes with large claws, the 
fifth toe with only a rudiment and the first toe without even this ; 
tail very short. 

The old males have a well-developed mane of long hairs all 
round the neck ; the females are much smaller than the males and 
have no trace of the mane. 

The young when born are jet black, but after a few months they 
become silvery grey from the gradual development of white tips to 
the hairs ; there are present, too, in the young five rudimentary 
nails on the toes of the fore feet. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male specimen ; head and body 
6 ft. 1 ; tail 3'0 ; hind foot to nails 13-0, to end of projecting integu- 
ment 18*0 ; from ear opening to tip of snout 9'0 ; skull length 
11-0 ; breadth 6'5 ; upper cheek teeth 4-0. A very old male 




measured in the flesh about 8 ft. from the nose to the root of the 
tail, an average female about 4 ft. 4. 

Distribution. — The coasts of South-western Africa extending 

Fig. 35. — Arctocephalus pusillus. 

northwards to Hollam's Isle, South of Walfisch Bay, and perhaps 
further north to Cape Cross, and eastwards to Bird Island in 
Algoa Bay. 


Habits. — The name applied to this species is founded on a 
plate of a young individual in Schreber's Saiigethiere, and this 
again is taken from Buffon's description of a specimen stated to 
have come from India, but which no doubt really reached Europe 
from the Cape. In consequence of this several other names have 
been assigned to the species. 

Compared with what has been learnt about the Northern Pacific 
fur-seal, these animals are very little known. 

They resort to land twice a year, in winter between June and 
August when they shed their fur, and it is chiefly males that then 
arrive, and in summer between November and January when they 
come for breeding purposes ; their migrations are irregular, and 
they can be seen at any time along the coast singly or in pairs. 
Their food consists apparently entirely of small fish. 

The males arrive at maturity at three years, and the very old 
males, which reach an enormous size and fight very desperately 
at the breeding times, are locally known as " big wigs." 

The chief breeding islands (these animals never seem to land on 
the mainland) are as follows : — HoUam's Isle, south of Walfisch Bay, 
Long Island, near Angra Pequena, Jacob's Eock in Saldahna Bay, 
Eobbensteen in Table Bay, and Dyer's Island off the Caledon 
Coast. To these in November the females come and give birth to 
two pups ; the period of gestation is just twelve months, as the 
female takes the male again immediately after the birth ; the pups 
are suckled for about six months, they have a loud and piercing 
cry resembling that of an infant, and their teeth are sharp from 
quite an early age. Should they lose their mother while still 
sucking they can as a rule obtain a foster-mother, as females will 
suckle pups not their own. 

The seals are seldom if ever killed at sea, but only on the 
islands when they arrive for breeding or shedding their fur; at 
this time men armed with wooden clubs are sent to the islands 
for the purpose. 

The number killed of late years has not been very great, as 
they have been nearly exterminated, and it is considered very 
desirable to allow them to increase. The fur is somewhat shorter 
and less abundant than in the Northern Pacific species, but still 
it sells well on the London market at perhaps an average price 
of 25s. a skin. 


In this order are comprised what we may roughly describe as 
the hoofed or herbivorous animals, such as pigs, deer, antelopes, 
sheep, oxen, tapirs, rhinoceros, horses, elephants, and hyraxes or 
dassies. Although some of these differ very markedly from one 
another not only in outward appearance but also in internal struc- 
ture, the study of the large number of allied fossil forms tends to 
bring them together, but at the same time it is difficult to construct 
a diagnosis, which will accurately fit them all. 

The following, however, are their most important characteris- 
tics: — Ungulates are terrestrial and mainly vegetable-feeding 
mammals, with limbs adapted to progression and not to prehension, 
with from five to only one digit usually ending in a solid hoof 
enclosing the last phalanx, though in some cases there are broad 
blunt nails ; no clavicles ; humerus with no entepicondylar fora- 
men ; scaphoid and lunar bones always distinct ; a full set of milk- 
teeth not completely replaced until adolescence ; molars broad 
with ridged or tuberculated crowns. 

This order containing the largest of all terrestrial animals is 
particularly well represented in South Africa. Out of twelve recent 
families usually recognised, six have representatives, six are absent, 
the most important of the latter being the deer {Cervidae), which 
are spread all over the rest of the world except Australia — the 
others are the peccaries {Dicotylidae) , the camels {Gamelidae), the 
chevrotains (Tragulidae), the prong-bucks {Antilocapridae) and the 
tapirs (Tapiridae). 

The following key gives the most conspicuous characters by 
which the six represented families can be at once distinguished. 

A. Never more than 4 toes to both limbs, 

a. Two middle toes, the 3rd and 4th, equal 

and forming a symmetrical pair [Artiodactyla] . 
a^. No incisors in the upper jaw ; a rumi- 
nating stomach ; 2nd and 5th digits 
. incomplete [Pecora] . 


a'. Horns always present in males at 
least, and consisting of a liorny sheath 

enclosing a bony core Bovidae, p. 127. 

b'^. Horns consisting of hairy skm enclos- 
ing a bony core Giraffidae, p. 258. 

6'. Incisors usually present in the upper jaw ; 
not rmninating [Suina] . 
a^. Toes 4-4 subequal, all reaching the 

ground ; muzzle broad and rounded... IIi]);po])otamidae,i^. 266. 
h^. Toes 4-4 outer pair not reaching the 
ground; muzzle forming an elongate 

mobile snout Suidae, p. 272. 

h. The 3rd toe always larger than the others 
[Perissodactyla] . 

a\ Only one toe developed to each foot Equidae, p. 282. 

&' . Three toes to each foot ; median dermal 

horns on the nose Bliinocerotidae, p. 297. 

B. Five toes to fore limbs (5th small and rudi- 

mentary), 3 to hind feet ; incisors triangu- 
lar and sharp-pointed ; small and rodent- 
like animals Procaviidae, p. 308. 

C. Five toes to each limb (only 8 hoofs on hind 

foot), of very large size with nostrils at 

the end of a long prehensile proboscis Elei)hantidae, p. 316. 


The animals comprised in this suborder are those popularly 
known as cloven-footed ; in these the third and fourth digits of both 
limbs are equally developed and are each provided with hoofs flattened 
on their inner surfaces so as, to form a symmetrical pair, the middle 
line of the foot running between them (fig. 36), whereas in the 
Perissodactyla the middle line runs through the middle of the third 
toe. Other distinctive characters are as follows : — nasal bones not 
expanded posteriorly, no alisphenoid canal, dorso-lumbar vertebrae 
always nineteen in number ; femur with no third trochanter, 
astragalus with two nearly equal facets for the articulation of the 
navicular and cuboid ; premolars and molars dissimilar, the former 
usually with single, the latter with double lobes ; stomach complex, 
caecum small, placenta diffuse or cotyledonary. 

This suborder, although it can be traced back as far as the 
Eocene age, was not in early times nearly so widely diffused as the 



Perissodactyla, though now-a-days it has become the predominant 
group of the order and is widely spread all over the world except 
in the Australian region. 


A B 

Fig. 36. — Skeleton of the right fore feet of A, the pig, and B, the buffalo {Bos 
caffer), to show the modifications of the artiodactyle limb. 

Division PECORA. 

Artiodactyles with no incisors in the upper jaw, with selenodont 
molars, i.e., with folds of enamel forming a crescent-shaped pattern 
on the surface of the tooth after wear ; with a ruminating stomach ; 
usually with horns or antlers attached to the frontal bones ; with 
the third and fourth metatarsals and metacarpals fused to form a 
cannon-bone and with the second and fifth toes small and some- 
times wanting altogether, their metatarsals and metacarpals never 
being complete. 

The stomach of the Pecora is a most complex organ and com- 
prises four well defined cavities ; these are (1) the rumen or paunch 
— much the largest — which has its mucous membrane closely 
covered with villi resembling pile or velvet ; (2) the reticulum or 



honey-comb bag with the lining membrane arranged in shallow 
hexagonal cells'; (3) the psalterium or manypHes, the inner surface 
of which is composed of numerous longitudinal folds; (4) the 
abomasum or reed which is the digestive stomach proper. The 
food when swallowed is received in the paunch, and after being 
retained there for a period and undergoing a softening process, is 
regurgitated into the mouth where it undergoes the process known 
as " chewing the cud," that is retrituration by the molar teeth. 

Pig. 37. — Stomach of a ruminant opened to show its internal structure, 
a, oesophagus , h, rumen or paunch ; c, reticulum or honeycomb bag ; d, psalte- 
rium or manyplies ; e, abomasum or reed ; /, duodenum. (From Flower. ) 

There are four generally recognised recent families of the Pecora 
easily distinguished by their horns. Of these South Africa possesses 
representatives of two, Bovidae and Giraffidae. The other two are 
(1) the Cervidae in which the horns, or rather antlers, are out- 
growths of true bone covered during growth with a soft vascular 
skin, called " velvet," which peels off when the antler has attained 
its full size. Antlers are grown and shed periodically, as a rule 
annually, and are usually branched. This family is widely distri- 
buted over the New World, Europe, North Africa and Asia, but 
does not reach the true Ethiopian region south of the tropic of 
Cancer; (2) the Antilocapridae ox prongbucks of North America in 
which there are branched horns fixed on to unbranched bony cores 
and in which the horns are shed periodically, a new one being 
formed under the old one on the bony core beneath. 


Family BOVIDAE. 

Frontal appendages when present, consisting of a long bony 
process attached to the skull, termed the horn core ; this is 
ensheathed with the true horn, which is therefore hollow, and 
consists of an epidermic development of hard fibrous matter ; these 
horns are not periodically shed as is the case in the Deer family 
where the appendages which are of an entirely different nature 
consisting of bony matter only, and should more properly be 
called antlers. 

Skull with one orifice to the lachrymal canal inside the orbit. 

Lateral toes sometimes completely absent, sometimes repre- 
sented by small false hoofs alone, but never with a well-developed 

Gall bladder always present ; placenta with very numerous 

Dentition, i. §, c. f , pm. f m. f = 32, upper incisors and canines 
absent, lower canines resembling the incisors and following behind 
them without a gap, molars usually hypsodont {i.e., with long 

This is a very extensive family numbering among its members 
antelopes, goats, sheep and oxen, and is found throughout Europe, 
Asia, Africa and North America. 

The first section of the family containing the antelopes is 
specially characteristic of the Ethiopian region and South Africa is 
very rich in this group. 

In the following account much use has been made of the " Book 
of Antelopes" by Messrs. P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, a complete 
monograph of this group now in the course of publication. 

As no less than twenty genera of this family are represented in 
South Africa, it will perhaps be most simple to give a key to the 
various subfamilies into which for the sake of convenience the 
family may be divided. 

It may be here explained that by " rhinarium " is meant the 
naked and usually moist area of skin surrounding the openings of 
the nostrils ; that the antorbital glands are situated in front of the 
eye and open on the cheek ; where these are large there is often a 
depression in the skull for their reception, in front of the orbit 
termed the antorbital fossa. 


Key of the South African Subfamilies. 

A. Horns in the male sex only. 

a. Larger animals from 2 ft. 6 and upwards 

at the shoulder, with large rhinarium and 
no antorbital glands ; horns generally 
ringed and curved forwards Cervicaprinae, p. 183. 

b. Smaller from 2 ft. and downwards at the 

shoulder, rhinarium present or absent, 
horns short, straight and usually ringed 
only at the base Neotraginae, p. 165. 

B. Horns present or absent in the female. 

c. Horns never ringed or knotted, usually 

spu-ally twisted with an anterior ridge, 

rhinarium large TragelapJiinae, p. 229. 

d. Horns lyrate and ringed, rhinarium much 

reduced, muzzle hairy, antorbital glands 

present or absent Antilopinae, p. 202. 

e. Horns short and straight, rhinarium well 

develojped, antorbital gland o]pening along 

a narrow, naked line CephalopMnae, ■p. 156. 

C. Horns always present in both sexes. 

/. Horns medium, lyrate or doubly twisted, 
antorbital gland small, rhinarium large, 
nostrils large and valvular Bubalinae, p. 128. 

g. Horns long, exceeding the length of the 
head, no antorbital glands, rhinarium re- 
duced Hipiwtraginae, p. 214. 

h. Horns romid or angulate, never knotted or 
ringed, rhinarium very large, nostrils 
lateral, no antorbital glands Bovinae, p. 252. 

Subfamily BUBALINAE. 

Antelopes usually of large size with, as a rule, the body standing 
much higher at the withers than at the rump ; the antorbital 
glands are small, the nostrils are large and valvular with a well- 
developed rhinarium, tail long and tufted, false hoofs large, two 
mammae, horns present in both sexes, of median length and rather 
varying shape. 


Key of the South African Genera. 

a. With elongated heads and doubly curved horns Bubalis, p. 129. 

b. With normal faces and lyrate horns Dcmialiscus, p. 137. 

c. With tufted faces and maned necks, horns with 

expanded bases Connochaetes, p. 147. 


Bubalis, Lichtenstein, Mag. nat. Freund. Berl. vi, 

p. 154 (1814) B. buselaphus. 

Alcelaphus, Blainmlle, Bull. Soc. Philom. p. 75 

(1816) „ B. buselaphus. 

Damalis (gen.) and Acronotus (subgen.) H. Smith, 

Griff. Anivi. Kincjd. iv, pp. 343, 845 (1827) B. buselaphus. 

Animals of considerable size characterised by their great height 
at the withers as compared with that at the rump ; head long and 
narrow with a semilunate bare space above the nostrils, which are 
approximated and lined with stiff bristles ; antorbital gland small ; 
false hoofs present ; no knee brushes ; tail long, reaching below 
the hocks ; two mammae. 

Horns present in both sexes, of moderate length, ringed and 
doubly curved, the tips posteriorly directed and the bases approxi- 

Skull with the frontals produced upwards and backwards to 
form a long support to the horns, with no supra-orbital pits or 
lachrymal vacuities, but with a shallow fossa for the reception of the 
antorbital gland in front of the eye. 

This genus contains the hartebeests, of which two species occur 
within the limits of South Africa. In addition to these there are 
known to science seven other species from other parts of Africa and 
Arabia. These are : 
Bubalis buselaphus (Pallas), from North Africa and Arabia. 

major (Blyth), from West Africa. 

tora (Gray), from Northern Abyssinia and Upper Nubia. 

sioaynei (P. L. Sclater), from Somaliland and Shoa. 

cokei (Gunther), from British and German East Africa. 

jachsoni (Thomas,) from Uganda and Central Africa. 

neumanni, Eothschild, from the neighbourhood of Lake 




In addition to these fossil species have been recorded from the 
PHocene beds of India and the Pleistocene beds of Algeria. 

Fig. 38. — Skull and horns of Buhalis lichtensteini $ 
{Proc. Zool. Soc). 

Key of the South African Species, 
a. Colour dark fulvous witli marked black 

blazes on face, front of shoulders and 

hips ; horn pedicel extremely elongated, 

horns forming a V when viewed in front ... B. caama, p. 131. 
h. Colour much lighter with no marked black 

blazes ; horn pedicel very short and thick ; 

horns curved in towards one another before 

the final backward twist B. lichtensteini, p. 134 


48. Bubalis caama. The Eed Habtebeest. 

Antilope bubalis, a;pud Schreher, Sdugeth. pi. cclxxvii (1787) [nee 

Pallas] . 
Antilope dorcas, aj^ud Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 316 (1811) 

[nee Linn.\ . 
AntUope caama, O. Cuvier, Diet. Sei. Nat. ii, p. 242 (1816). 
Damalis (Acronotus) caama, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cajp. p. 88 (1832) ; 

A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 221 (1834). 
Bubalis caama, Siondevall, K. Vet. AJcad. Handl. Stockholm, 1844, p. 

208 (1846) ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 1 [hybrid with 

Sassaby] ; P. L. Selater and 0. Thomas BJc. Antelopes i, p. 33, pi. 

iv (1894) ; Lorenz, Ann. hh. Hofmus. is, notiz. p. 59 (1894) ; 

[Orange Free State] ; Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 362 

[Transvaal] . 
Bubalus caama, A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pi. sxx. (1840). 
Alcelaphus caama, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 76 (1861) ; 

BucUeij, Proc. Zool. Soe. 1876, pp. 285, 292 ; id. ibid. 1877, p. 454 

[distribution] ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soe. 1881, p. 763 [distribution] . 

Literature. — Tachard (1686), p. 104, short notice; Kolben (1731), ii, p. 
126, described under name of the "Hart" ; Sparrman, Swedish Acad. Trans, 
xl. (1779), p. 151, pi. V, first accurately describes the Hartebeest of South 
Africa ; Buffon (1782). Suppl. vi, p. 135, figure from Allamand, to whom a 
description and skin were sent from the Cape by Colonel Gordon, under the 
name of the Caama or Bubale ; Sparrman (1785), i, p. 137, ii, pp. 12, 215, pi. i, 
fig. 1, met with the Hartebeest several times during his journey, and gives 
a general account of it; Paterson (1789), p. 81, description under name of 
Ca/pra dorcas in Uitenhage ; Thunberg (1795), i, p. 145, description as Capra 
dorcas of a specimen obtained at Groenekloof close to Cape Town ; Barrow 
(1801), i, p. 359, still at Groenekloof ; Lichtenstein (1812), ii, p. 23, recorded 
as jplentiful m Aberdeen in 1804 ; Burchell (1822), i, p. 420, ii, p. 81, 
numerous in Hanover and other northern Karoo districts ; Harris (1838) , 
p. 142, in the Marico district of the Transvaal ; id. (1840), figured on pi. vii ; 
Cumming (1855), i, p. 118, shot in the Philipstown and Hopetown divisions ; 
Grout (1863), p. 303, native names and habits in Natal ; Holub (1882), i, p. 
267, records great herds near Mafeking in 1873 ; Theal (1888), i, p. 51, notes 
that it was abundant close to Cape Town in 1652 in Van Eiebeck's time ; 
NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 45, pi. iv, fig. 13, description, distribution 
and habits; Bryden (1893), pp. 387, 505, habits and distribution; Ward 
(1896), p. 65, horn measurements ; Bryden (1897), p. 225, chapter on hunt- 
ing ; Bryden (1899a), p. 150, account of habits and distribution. 

Vernacular Names. — Hartebeest of the Dutch and English Colonists ; 
Kaama of the Hottentots (Smuts) and Bechuanas (Bryden) ; Ixama of 
Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Indhluzele of Zulus (Stanford) ; 'Ama mgama of 
Makalakas and Masawas (Selous). 




Description. — Eorm somewhat ungainly owing to the great 
height at the shoulders as compared with the croup ; general colour 
a rich sienna brown with black or nearly black blazes on the front 
part of the face, somewhat interrupted between the eyes, on the 
occiput between the horns and ears continued as a narrow line down 
the ridge of the neck, on the shoulder continued down the front of 
the legs and on the thighs ; round the rump and along the belly 
much paler, almost white. 

Fig. 39. — The Red Hartebeest {Bubalis caama). 
(Flower and Lydekker.) 

Face very long and narrow ; nose slit-shaped with a semi-lunar 
rhinarium above it ; a rough tuft of hair covers the opening of the 
antorbital gland, often agglutinated by the waxy secretion ; ears 
long and pointed, with a covering of white hairs inside ; tail long 
with a number of long black hairs commencing close to the root 
directed posteriorly to form a compressed fringe. 

Female of the same size as the male but paler in colour ; the 
young are also like the female, with no sign of the black patches. 

Horns elevated on a bony projection of the skull, black, ringed, 
nearly circular in section at the base, the basal third directed 


slightly outwards, the middle third slightly inwards and forwards, 
the distal third horizontally backwards forming nearly a right angle 
with the middle third ; horns of the female of the same shape but 
much more slender. Skull with the frontal portion very narrow 
and backwardly produced. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body measured 
along the curves from the nose to the root of the tail 7ft. 9 ; tail 
with hairs 22, without, 17 ; height at shoulder 3ft. 11 ; ear from 
notch 7"0 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 17"5 ; skull length 16, 
breadth 5"4: ; horns (measured along the front curve) of the male 
20, of the female 19 ; record according to Ward 25. 

Distribution. — The hartebeest was formerly found all over the 
Colony, and was common in the immediate neighbourhood of Cape 
Town, as is mentioned in Van Kiebeck's journal quoted in Theal's 
History ; at the end of the last century it still survived at 
Groenekloof about 30 miles north of Cape Town, and Sparrman 
and other travellers met with it in Caledon and on the 
Zwartkops Eiver near Port Elizabeth. On the karoo near Beaufort 
West they are said to have lingered till 1864. 

At the present day there are still a few surviving in the deserts 
of Namaqualand and Kenhardt south of the Orange Eiver, and 
north of this they are fairly abundant in Gordonia and Griqualand 
West and along the borders of the Kalahari as far as the lake 
Ngami region. 

The hartebeest is still found, though rarely, in Basutoland, the 
Orange Free State and the Eastern Transvaal ; in Natal a few 
are preserved on certain of the upland farms ; they are also fairly 
abundant in parts of German South-west Africa. 

This species of hartebeest barely reaches the confines of 
Matabeleland, and has never yet been recorded from north of the 

The South African Museum possesses a fine mounted pair from 
Khama's Country (Bechuan aland), shot by Mr. Selous in 1885, and 
skulls and horns from Damaraland and from Boshoff in the Orange 
Free State. 

History. — The hartebeest was known from the earliest times 
in South Africa, and is mentioned by Tachard and Kolben though 
the descriptions are hardly recognisable. Sparrman was the first 
to give a really adequate account of the animal, but both he and 
Buffon, who derived his information from a skin and a description 
sent by Colonel Gordon to Professor Allamaad of Leyden, confused 


the animal with the allied bubale of North Africa, and it was no 
till 1816 that Baron George Cuvier showed that the South African 
hartebeest really was quite a distinct animal. 

Habits. — The hartebeest is found usually in open, somewhat 
desert country in small herds of about ten individuals ; it is wary 
and suspicious, but of a very curious disposition, frequently turning 
during flight to gaze at its pursuer and so faUing an easy prey to 
the marksman ; its pace though without the appearance of speed 
is very great, and it is exceeded in this respect only by the sassaby 
among South African antelopes. In addition to man the harte- 
beest finds a constant enemy in lions and wild dogs. 

During the breeding season the males fight fiercely on their 
knees with their horns, according to Harris ; only one calf is 
produced at birth. 

Like most of the larger South African antelopes the hartebeest 
suffers a good deal from the larvae of bot-flies, which are hatched 
in the nasal and even the frontal cavities of the skull of the animal, 
and which it endeavours in vain to get rid of by constant blowings 
and sneezings. 

The flesh is dry and rather tasteless, but it is much used for 
the manufacture of biltong. 

Mr. Selous has described the skull of an individual which he 
regards as a natural hybrid between a hartebeest and a sassaby; 
the animal was shot near Tati in Southern Matabeleland, and 
though the skull resembles in most respects that of the hartebeest, 
the horns are distinctly intermediate in character (see fig. 43, p. 145). 

49. Bubalis lichtensteini. Lichtenstbin's Haetebeest. 

Antilope lichtensteinii, Peters, MiWi. Ges. nat. Fr. (1849) ; id Beise 
Mozamh. Sdugeth. p. 190, pis. xliii, xliv (1852). 

Bubalis lichtensteini, TemmincTt, Esq. Zool. Guin. p. 195 (1853) ; 
BarMeij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1894, p. 132 [Beira district] ; P. L. 
Sclater and Thomas, Bh. Antelopes i, p. 45, pi. v, & figs. 6a and b 
[skuUsof (? and ?] (1894). 

Alcelaphus lichtensteini, BucMey, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1877, p. 454 [dis- 
tribution] ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 763 [distribution] . 

Literature. — NicoUs and Eglington (1892) pi. iv, fig. 14, p. 46, descrip- 
tion and distribution ; Selous (1893) p. 190, note on a specimen shot on the 
Sabi River in south Mashonaland, now in tlie South African Museum ; 
Millais (1895) pp. 124, 123, habits, nomenclature, and distribution in south- 




east Mashonaland ; Ward (1896) p. 76, horn measurements ; Kirby (1899) 
p. 333, distribution in the Beira country ; Selous and Eendall (1899a) p. 160, 
range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Moff-hartebeest of the Transvaal Boers (MUlais) ; 
Vacca de Mato {i.e., wood cow) of the Portuguese (Peters) ; Konze of Masu- 
bias, Inkulanondo of Mashonas (Selous). 

Description. — Form and size much as in the common harte- 
beest ; general colour above a bright rufous, brighter than in the 
other species, paler on the sides, nearly white below ; face a little 

Fig. 40. — Lichtenstein's Hartebeest {Buhalis liclitensteini). 

darker along the line of the nose but not black, chin black, upper 
forehead and occiput between the horns and ears also black, nose 
and ears as in the other species ; no antorbital tuft, no black patch 
on the shoulder, though sometimes a patch of grey shows itself a 
few inches behind the shoulders ; along the front of the legs both 
fore and hind, a well-marked line of black extending to the hoofs ; 
rump pale, almost white contrasting with the back ; tail with the 
proximal quarter with smooth short hairs, beyond this point begins 
the posteriorly directed black fringe present in the other species. 


Female slightly smaller and paler and with two mammae, in 
other respects like the male. 

Horns (fig. 38, p. 130) very much flatter at the base and not set 
so high as in the common species ; the basal thirds directed out- 
wards, the middle thirds strongly inwards again, the terminal thirds 
horizontally backwards and parallel to one another, only the basal 
flattened portion is conspicuously ringed or rather furrowed. 

Skull without the marked frontal elevation characteristic of 
B. caavia, but the front part of the muzzle even more elongated ; 
males with a conspicuous boss in the middle of the forehead 
between the horn bases and the orbits. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen in the South African 
Museum ; head and body 7 ft. 8 ; tail without terminal hairs 17, 
with 20 ; height at shoulders 4 ft. 3 ; ear from notch 7*5 ; from ear 
opening to nose-tip 17'0 ; skull length 16 ; breadth 6-75 ; average 
horns of male 16'5 ; of female 13*0 ; record according to Ward 21-0. 

Distribution. — Lichtenstein's hartebeest is only found in the 
north-eastern part of South Africa, from the Nuanetsi and Sabi 
Elvers of South-eastern Mashonaland northwards through the 
Pungwe Valley to the Zambesi ; north of this river it extends its 
range to about opposite Zanzibar, to Nyasaland, and to the 
Barotse country beyond the Victoria Falls. 

The South African Museum possesses a mounted pair shot by 
Mr. Selous on the Sabi Eiver in South-east Mashonaland in 1885, 
a skin and skull from Nyasaland and several skulls from the Beira 

History. — The present species was first brought to the notice 
of naturalists by the celebrated German savant Dr. W. Peters, 
who made extensive journeys in Mozambique between the years 
1842-48 ; he first discovered the animal in the Portuguese provinces 
of Sena, Tette and Borer, and dedicated it to his predecessor in the 
keepership of the Berlin Museum, Lichtenstein, who had also 
travelled in South Africa. Since that time it has been found to 
extend a good deal further south by Selous, Barkly and Millais, and 
may even perhaps reach as far as Delagoa Bay. 

Habits. — There is little recorded concerning the habits of this 
hartebeest, it seems to be found in small herds on the grassy 
plains in the open, often consorting with waterbuck, impala, and 
other larger antelopes ; Millais relates that it is fond of making a 
lair for itself in reeds or bushes from which it is frequently ousted 
by the more quarrelsome sable or gnu. Its pace is good when 


pressed; ifc drinks morning and evening, and is very partial to a 
mud bath. 


Damalis, apucl Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (1) xviii, p. 233 

(1846) [7ieoH. Smith] D. lunatus. 

Damaliscus, P. L. Sclater and Thomas, Bk. Antelopes 

i, p. 51 (1894) D. pygargus. 

Antelopes agreeing in most characters with the preceding genus, 
but with more normally shaped faces, the frontal bones not being 
upwardly produced to form a support for the horns, so that when 
the skull and horns are viewed from above the parietal region is 
easily visible, which is not the case in Buhalis. 

Horns nearly equally developed in both sexes, with a simple or 
slightly lyrate curve, but not abruptly doubly curved as in Buhalis. 

The range of this genus is confined to Africa, south of the 
Sahara ; in addition to the three species below described the follow- 
ing are known : — 

D. hunteri (Scl.), Hunter's antelope from South Somaliland. 

D. korrigum (Ogilb.), the Korrigum from West Africa. 

D. tiang (Heugl.), the Tiang from the Upper Nile Valley. 

D. jimela (Matsch.), the Topi from "Uganda and East Africa. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Face white, horns forming an acute V. 

a. A very distinct white rump; horns black D. pygargits, p. 137. 

b. Eump not white though sometimes a little paler 

than the rest of the body ; horns pale D. albifrons, p. 141. 

B. Face dark, almost black ; horns wide-spreading, 

forming an obtuse V D. lunatus, p. 144. 

50. Damaliscus pygargus. The Bontebok. 

Antilope dorcas, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 6 (1766) \jiec Linn.] . 
Antilope pygarga, Pallas, Spic. Zool. i, p. 10 (1767), xii, p. 15 (1777) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Manini. Cap. p. 73 (1832) [in part] . 
Antilope maculata, TJiunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 315 (1811). 
Antilope personata. Wood, Zool. Journ. iv, p. 524 (1829). 


Gazella pygarga, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 189 (1834) [in 

part] . 
Damalis pygarga, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 77 (1861) ; id., 

Proc. Zool. Soc. 1871, p. 625. 
Damaliscus pygargus, P. L. Sclater and 0. TJiomas, BJc. Anteloi^es i, 

p. 73, pi. viii & fig. 10 [woodcut of animal] (1895). 

LiTEEATURE. — Masson (1776), p. 287, note on Bontebok's occurrence 
near the Kaffir Kuils River in Eiversdale ; Sparrman (1785) i, p. 187, ii, 
p. 237, account of the occurrence of the Bontebok in Caledon ; Paterson 
(1790), pp. 12, 21, numerous in Caledon and Swellendam; Barrow (1801), 
p. 307, formerly much more abundant in Swellendam, now reduced to troops 
of twelve to twenty; Moodie (1835), p. 282, then confined to a district 
between the Breede and the Duivenhoek Elvers in Swellendam ; Harris 
(1838), p. 308, though accurately noticing distinctions from the Blesbok, 
describes the Bontebok as occurring in considerable numbers in the Orange 
Free State; id. (1840), pi. xvii; Gray (1850), p. 21, pi. xx, fig. 3 [juv.] 
pi. xxii, figs. 2, 3 [adult], figured from life; Nicolls and Eglington (1892), 
p. 32, pi. vii, fig. 27, description and distribution ; Ward (1896), p. 85, horn 
measurements; Bryden (1897), p. 273, general account; Selous (1899), 
p. 176, range and habits. 

Vernacular Name. — The Bonte-bok {i.e., pied goat) of the Dutch 

Description. — General colour a rich brown, palest on the shoul- 
ders and saddle, darkest, almost a purplish black, on the sides and 
upper parts of the fore and hind limbs ; face white from between 
the base of the horns to the nose, the patch above the forehead 
much narrower than below the level of the eyes, where it suddenly 
expands ; ears white inside with a white patch at the base ; below 
pure white sharply marked off from the dark sides, the colour 
extending up between the hind legs to form a conspicuous pure 
white rump patch continued round the root of the tail ; forelimbs 
in front, above and below the "knees" dark, almost black, inside 
and around the "knees" white; hind limbs outside as far as the 
hocks and a small patch on the front part of the toes dark, rest 

Tail reaching halfway to the hocks, basal half covered with short 
white hairs, posterior half with the usual backwardly directed fringe 
of long black hairs ; no suborbital brushes ; sexes alike. 

The young animal at the time of birth shows no traces of the 
white face or rump, but is fawn coloured throughout and slightly 
paler below. 

Horns with twelve or thirteen transverse ridges prominent in 




front, much less noticeable behind, the bases somewhat compressed ; 
the basal two thirds curved gently outwards and backwards, the 
terminal third smooth and slightly recurved inwards and forwards, 
colour quite black. Skull long and slender with slight depressions 
in front of the orbits for the reception of the autorbital glands. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male, head and body 5 ft. 2 ; 
tail without 9-5, with terminal hairs 18'0 ; height at shoulders 37, 

Fig. 41. — The Bontebok {Damaliscus pygargus), 
(Book of Antelopes.) 

ear 5*5 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 13 ; Harris gives the height 
at 46, but this, I think, must be an exaggeration, or due to a 
different system of measurement. 

Horns 14 to 15, the record according to Ward being 16|. Skull 
length 12-8, breadth 5-05. 

Distribution. — The bontebok is now found only on two farms 
situated on what is known as the Strand Veld between the village 
of Bredasdorp and Cape Agulhas, the extreme southern point of 


These farms are named " Nachtvacht " and " Zeekoe Vley " 
and are the property of Mr. J. D. Albertyn and Dr. Albertyn 
respectively ; formerly they belonged to Messrs. van der Byl and 
van Breda, to whom, together with the present owners, is due the 
credit of having preserved this interesting species from complete 
extinction since the early part of the century. 

Formerly the bontebok was somewhat more widely spread 
throughout the south-western corner of the Colony. Sparrman 
mentioned seeing a herd near the Bot Eiver in Caledon and 
Smuts notes it from the Breede Eiver in Swellendam, but Harris, 
although he was the first to clearly point out the difference 
between this species and the blesbok, was, I believe, in error 
in asserting that the former was found in vast numbers on the 
plains of the interior, and in this he has been followed by nearly 
all subsequent writers. It is a remarkable fact, moreover, that no 
one has subsequently found the bontebok in the interior either in 
the Orange Free State or in the eastern part of the Colony, while 
the blesbok still remains preserved on several farms throughout 
the Orange Free State and the Transvaal. 

The herds now preserved are said to number about 300 indivi- 
duals, and the South African Museum possesses a good series of 
examples all from Mr. Albertyn's farm at Nachtvacht. 

History. — The bontebok or pied goat was well known to the 
earlier Dutch settlers, and is mentioned by nearly all the travellers 
at the end of the 18th century ; it first became known to European 
naturalists through the description of the celebrated Russian natur- 
alist, Pallas, who gave a very good and recognisable account of it, 
but compared it with the " Dorcas " of Aelian, now identified as 
one of the gazelles. This mistake he subsequently corrected, and 
selected for it the very appropriate name of Antilope i^ygarga, 
which it has since borne. 

Even in those times the bontebok was becoming increasingly 
rare, and now it may be said to be quite extinct in a feral state, 
although preserved as above-mentioned on certain farms in the 
south-western part of the Colony. 

Habits. — The bonteboks on the farms, where they are preserved 
in large camps or runs enclosed in a wire fence, roam about in 
herds of from eight to fifteen individuals ; their best pace is a some- 
what lumbering canter, which, though not appearing to be rapid, is 
enough to require a very good horse to overtake them ; they run in 
single file usually upwind with their noses down near the ground. 


Their food consists of the herbage of the veld which in the Bredas- 
dorp division is composed of rhenoster bush, coarse grass and 

The young are born in the latter end of August or the beginning 
of September, but the time varies a good deal. The period of gesta- 
tion appears to be from nine to ten months. The young are easily 
found and caught, lying either under a bush or even in the open, 
but are very difficult to rear even with cows' milk. 

They are wary and suspicious and not easily approached. 

51. Damaliscus albifrons. The Blesbok. 

Antilope albifrons, Burchell, Travels ii, p. 335 (1824). 
Damalis albifrons, Layard, Cat. Mamm. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 77 (1861). 
Alcelaphus albifrons, Buchleij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, pp. 286, 292. 
Damaliscus albifrons, P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, BTi. of Antelojjes i, 
p. 79, pi. ix, & fig. 11 [woodcut of animal] (1895). 

LiTERATUEE. — Harris (1838), p. 287, saw great herds on the plains of the 
Orange Free State; id. (1840), figured on pi. xxi ; Gray (1850), p. 22, 
pi. xxii, fig. 1 ; Gumming (1855), i, pp. 93, 179, accomat of distribution and 
habits ; Holub (1882), p. 267, found in great herds near Mafeking in 1873 ; 
Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 31, pi. iii, fig. 9, description and distribution ; 
Bryden (1893), p. 508, on the distribution ; Millais (1895), pp. 45 and 235, 
sketches and notes of a herd preserved in the Transvaal ; Ward (1896), 
p. 83, horn measurements ; Bryden (1899), p. 183, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Blesbok of the Dutch ; Ilinqua of Amaxosa (Stan- 
ford) ; None or Nunni of the Bechuanas (Harris and Bryden). 

Description. — Closely resembling D. pygargus in most respects, 
except that the general colour is rather more reddish and without 
the purplish gloss ; the white blaze on the face is sometimes 
divided by a narrow transverse band between the eyes ; the rump 
is not white, a very small area round the base of the tail being 
paler than the rest of the animal ; ears almost white ; outside of the 
fore and hind limbs brown, not white below the knees. 

In a young female with horns 12 inches in length the body 
generally is a light greyish brown colour and shows no black 
markings ; the white, however, on the face, belly and insides of the 
legs is all well marked. Skull and horns closely resembling that of 
its ally the bontebok, except that the horns are pale in colour and 
not black ; this is specially the case with the prominent rings 
which are almost white. 




Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 5 ft. 4 ; 
tail 6-5, with hairs 12 ; height at shoulder 3 ft. 2 ; ears 5*0, from 
ear opening to nose-tip 12*0. 

The skull of a male measures in extreme length 12-50, from the 
premaxillae to the condyle 12-0, in breadth 4-90 ; the horns average 
between 15 and 16 ; Ward records a pair in the possession of Sir 
E. Loder measm^ing 18*5. 

Fig. 42. — The Blesbok [Damaliscus alhifrons) 
(Book of Antelopes.) 

Distribution. — The blesbok was formerly found in very large 
numbers on the north-eastern plains of the Colony extendiog 
northwards over the high veld of the Orange Free State, Transvaal 
and eastern portion of Bechuanaland ; it does not appear to reach 
Matabeleland or Mashon aland ; Harris in 1838 found it abundant 
on Bontebok flats in the present Queenstown and Tarka districts. 
Gumming, a few years later, notes that it was rare south of the 
Orange Eiver but very abundant further north on the Griqualand 


West and Orange Free State borders ; even as late as 1873 Holub 
records large herds in the neighbourhood of Maf eking in Bechuana- 
land. At the present day a herd is preserved in the Steynsburg 
division of the Colony whence the South African Museum has 
obtained a fine male specimen. On a good number of farms on 
the high veld of the Orange Free State, the Transvaal and Bechu- 
analand, similar herds are found, almost invariably preserved 
in large fenced enclosures or camps. 

The blesbok never seems to have extended north of the 

History. — Although vaguely referred to by Sparrman and named 
by Burchell, the blesbok was never properly discriminated from 
the bontebok till Harris' time, and even his account is not at all 
clear, as he speaks of bonteboks in the eastern part of the Colony 
and beyond the Orange Eiver where I feel certain they never 
existed. The fact seems to be that he did not discover the real 
distinctions between the two animals until the end of his hunting- 
trip when he went to the true bontebok country in Bredasdorp. 
His error, as I believe it to be, of believing the bonteboks were to 
be found with the blesboks in the north and east of the Colony 
has been followed by every other writer since,^ but there has never 
been the slightest independent evidence for this assertion, so tar as 
I have been able to discover. 

Habits. — The blesbok seems to resemble the bontebok in its 
habits, being found on the open plains of the high veld in smal 
parties ; its pace is described as being a heavy rolling canter, con- 
siderably exceeding that of the springbok. Some years back, before 
the enclosure of the country, it used to migrate southwards across 
the Vaal river in winter and back to the north in summer, where 
it calved in about November. When disturbed it almost invariably 
makes off up-wind, carrying its head low with the nose almost 
touching the ground. It is suspicious and wary, and difficult to 
approach especially when the grass is short. 

' Except Mr. Selous, who discusses the question in "Great and Small Game 
of Africa," p. 175. 


52. Damaliscus lunatus. The Sassaby. 

Antilope lunata, Burchell, Travels ii, p. 334 (1824). 

Damalis lunata, H. Smith, Griff. Cuv. An. Kingd. iv, p. 352. [plate] , v, 
p. 364 (1827) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 89 (1832) ; A. Smith, 
S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 222 (1834) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. 
Afr. Mus. p. 77 (1861). 

Bubalus liTiiatus, A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pi. xsxi (1841). 

Alcelaphus kuiatus, BucMey, Proc. Zool. Sac. 1876, p. 285 [distribu- 
tion]; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 764. 

Damaliscus lunatus, P. L. Sclater and Thomas, Bit. of Antelopes, i, 
p. 85, pi. X, & fig. 12 [skuU of hybrid with Hartebeest] (1895). 

Literature. — Daniell (1820), figured but not described on pi. 18 ; Harris 
(1838), pp. 68, 142, shot the Sassaby ia Bechuanaland and in the Western 
Transvaal; id. (1840), figured on pi. viii. ; Gumming (1855), i, pp. 135, 246, 
shot Sassaby m Griqualand West and in northern Bechuanaland ; Nicolls 
and Eglington (1892), p. 33, pi. vi, fig. 19, description, distribution and 
habits; Bryden (1893), p. 506, account of distribution; liirby (1896), p. 
540, native names and habits in the Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), 
p. 81, horn measurements ; Gibbons (1897), p. 395, occurrence in Barotse- 
land ; Kirby (1899), p. 334, occurrence in the Beira-Zambesi country ; 
Kirby (1899a), p. 190, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — The Bastard Hartebeest or Zulu Hartebeest of 
the Boers ; Tsessebe of the Bechuanas (whence the Enghsh name) ; 
Incolomo, Incomazan of the Matebele ; Inkweko of Masubias ; Unchuru of 
the Makubas ; Inyundo of the Makalakas ; Lechu of Masaras (Selous) ; 
'Mzansi of Swazis ; Igalowana of Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General form hartebeest-like, higher at the withers 
and falling off considerably behind ; colour a rich chocolate brown 
with somewhat irridescent satiny reflections ; darker, almost black 
patches on the face extending back between the horns to the 
occiput, on the shoulder extending down the outside of the legs 
and forming a ring above the " knees " and on the haunches extend- 
ing down and round the leg at the hocks ; rhinarium semilunate as 
in the hartebeest ; suborbital gland opening marked by a patch of 
bare skin ; ears long and pointed, covered inside with white hairs 
and outside with brown which becomes quite black at the tips. 
Eump and posterior part of the belly paler than the back but not 
white ; tail not reaching the hocks ; proximal portion like the body, 
distal portion with a posteriorly directed fringe of long black hairs 
as in the hartebeest. 

Female resembling the male, but rather more slender : with 
two mammae. 




The young are of a bright yellowish red colour. 

Horns with the basal two thirds ringed and forming a very wdde 
angle, the distal third smooth and curved shghtly inwards and 
forwards ; horns of the female only differing from those of the male 
in being a little slighter. 

Fig. 43.— Skull and horns of a supposed hybrid between the Eed Hartebeest 
and the Sassaby (Proc. Zool. Soc). 

The supposed hybrid between this and the hartebeest mentioned 
by Mr. Selous has been noticed in the account given of the latter 

Dimensions.— Of a mounted male, head and body 6 ft. 10 ; tail 
14 with, 19 without terminal hairs ; height at shoulder 4 ft. ; ear 
7-0 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 17-5. 


Weight, according to Ward, 300 lbs. ; horns of the above 
measured male 14-5, of a female 13-25, record head from Mashona- 
land belonging to Sir J. Willoughby 15-75, according to Ward. A 
skull of a male measures 16-25 in extreme length and 6-5 in breadth. 

Distribution. — The sassaby is found throughout Matebeleland 
and Mashonaland extending westward past Lake Ngami to Northern 
Ovampoland and south-eastwards into the low country of the 
Transvaal and Portuguese East Africa, perhaps reaching as far 
south as Swaziland. When first discovered it reached Bechuana- 
land and the North-western Transvaal but there it now seems to 
be extinct or exceedingly rare. It extends to the north of the 
Zambesi in the Barotse country, as recorded by Selous and Gibbons, 
but it does not seem to be found in Central Africa generally. 

A good mounted pair in the South African Museum were shot 
by Mr. Selous in Mashonaland in 1882. 

History. — Although to Burchell must be assigned the credit of 
first describing the sassaby, it was apparently known some years 
previously, as on pi. 18 of William Daniell's illustrations it will be 
found figured under the name of *' Sassyby a buck not hitherto 
described, from the Booschwana country." The original sketch for 
this plate was no doubt made by Samuel Daniell, the brother of 
William, who accompanied Truter and Somerville on their journey 
to Latakoo in Bechuanaland in 1801. 

Burchell obtained the type specimen of the species on July 9, 
1812, on the Makkwarin River between Kuruman and Litakoo in 
Bechuanaland, and named it Antilope lunata from the somewhat 
lunate shape of its horns ; and the horns and frontlet of this 
specimen are still preserved in the British Museum ; since that 
time it has become very much better known, the best accounts of 
its habits and distribution being those of Selous and Kirby referred 
to above. 

Habits. — The sassaby is found in rather open flat country as a 
rule, never among the hills or in thick jungle, it is specially fond 
of a forest country interspersed with many open glades. In the 
Portuguese low country it appears to associate in small herds of- 
from eight to ten individuals, but in Matabeleland many hundreds 
have been seen together. It is frequently accompanied by zebra 
and wildebeest. 

Both Kirby and Selous state that the sassaby is the fleetest, 
toughest and most enduring of all South African antelopes, though 
the wildebeest and sable run it very close in this respect. 


The young are born from September till November, and run 
very swiftly from their earliest youth. 

This antelope though very vigilant is rather stupid and easily 
shot ; its flesh is good eating and becomes at times loaded with fat, 
which latter, however, has a disagreeable cloging taste to the palate. 


Connochaetes, Lichtenstein, Mag. nat. Freund. Berl. vi, 

p. 152 (1814) C. gnu. 

Cemas, Oken, Lehrb. Naturgesch. iii, Zool. pt. ii, p. 727 

(1816) C. gnu. 

Catoblepas, H. Smith, Griff. Cuv. Anim. K, iv, p. 366 

(1827) C. gnu. 

Gorgon, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1850, p. 139 C. taurinus. 

Size large ; form somewhat thick and clumsy, head massive 
with a broad bristly muzzle ; nostrils large, widely separated and 
hairy within ; neck maned ; mammae two in number. 

Skull broad and heavy, not specially elongated, the ends of the 
premasillae expanded. 

Horns in both sexes without rings and with expanded bases, 
the proximal portion outwardly or downwardly directed, the distal 
portion upwardly directed at a sharp angle to the basal portion. 

This genus is confined to southern and eastern Africa, and in 
addition to the two species described below contains the two 
following : — 

G. johnstoni, Scl. from Nyasaland. 

C. albojubatus, Thos. from East Africa. 

Both these, however, are closely allied to the South African 
Blue Wildebeest, and are hardly separable except as geographical 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Tail white ; hairs of facial tuft upwardly directed ; 

basal portion of the horns directed downwards C. gnu, p. 148. 

B. Tail black ; hairs of facial tuft downwardly directed ; 

basal portion of horns directed outwards C. taurinus, p. 152. 


53. Connochaetes gnu. The Black "Wildebeest 
OE White-tailed Gnu. 

Bos gnou, Zimmermann, Spec. Zool. Qeogr. p. 372 (1777) ; Thunherg, 

Mem. Acad. Petersh. iii, p. 318 (1811). 
Catoblepas gnu, H. Smith, Griff. Cuv. An. Kingcl. iv, p. 367, v. p. 368 

(1827) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 93 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. 

Quart. Journ. ii, p. 224 (1834) ; BucMeij, Proc. Zool. Sac. 1876, 

pp. 286, 292 [distribution] ; Blaauio, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1889, p. 2, figs. 

a.-d. [breeding and growth of horns] . 
Connochaetes gnu. Gray, Cat. Ung. Brit. Mus. p. 119 (1852) ; Layard, 

Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 76 (1861) ; P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, 

BTi. Antelopes i, p. Ill, pi. xii & fig. 15 a.-e. [young animals and their 

horns] (1895). 

Literature. — Allamand (1776) Histoire Naturelle du Gnou, du Grande 
Gerbe et de I'Hippopotame, Amsterdam, contains the earhest description of 
this animal ; Buffon (1782) Suppl. vi, p. 89, early notices of the discovery 
and of the first individual brought to Europe ; Sparrman (1785), ii, pp. 141, 
190, figure (pi. ii.), description and account of meeting the wildebeest in 
Somerset East; Barrow (1801), i, pp. 259, 261, met with this animal in 
Middelburg and discussed its afiinities ; Burchell (1822), i, p. 431, ii, 
p. 109, met with in Griqualand West and Hanover, and shows that it is a 
true antelope; Steedman (1835), p. 139, account of its habits in Cradock; 
Harris (1838), p. 34, account of habits on the Eichmond plains, p. 262, note 
on its occurrence north of the Vaal Eiver ; id. (1840) figured on pi. i ; 
Gumming (1855), i, p. 62, occurrence on the northern plains of the Colony in 
great abundance in 1843-4 ; Bryden (1889), p. 293, records its surviving in 
Victoria West ; NicoUs and Eghngton (1892), p. 48, pi. vii, fig. 25, descrip- 
tion, distribution and habits ; Millais (1895), pp. 219, 226, habits, distribu- 
tion and sketches ; Ward (1896), p. 92, horn measurements ; Bryden (1897), 
p. 252, general account ; Bryden (1899a), p. 206, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Black Wildebeest or Zwart WUdebeest of the 
Colonists ; T'gnu of Hottentots (Smuts) ; Inxu of the Amaxosa (Stanford) ; 
Inkankone of Zulus (Drummond). 

Description. — General form somewhat ox-like owing to the width 
of the face and the form of the horns ; general colom^ rich chocolate 
brown somewhat darker about the face and neck especially in the 
male ; very broad across the nose with large slit-like nostrils 
clothed within with white bristles, bordered above by a semi-lunar 
bare space : eyes surrounded by a few stray white bristles ; opening 
of the suborbital gland concealed by a tuft of hairs ; an upwardly 
directed patch of long black hair on the middle line of the face, 
similar patches on either side along the chin and throat and on the 
chest between the front legs ; an upright stiff mane along the neck 




from between the horns to the shoulder, the longer middle hairs of 
this are black, the outer shorter hairs a yellowish white. Ears 
rather long, narrow, rounded and drooping, owing to the position of 
the horns ; legs slender and well formed, with conspicuous false 
hoofs and narrow, well pointed true hoofs ; tail long, reaching the 
hocks, the longer hairs nearly touching the ground, these long hairs 
begin close to the base of the tail, and are coloured white. 


^' 'J 

Fig. 44. — Young Black Wildebeest, eight months old. 
(Book of Antelopes.) 

Female very similar, but more slenderly built, especially about 
the neck; udder with two mammae, not four as usually stated; 
this has been settled by a carefal examination of both mounted and 
living specimens in South Africa and in the Zoological Society's 
Gardens in London. Buckley states that there is a slight seasonal 
change from brown in summer to almost black in winter. 


Skull with the occipital portion somewhat lengthened to form a 
support for the very wide palms of the horns ; premaxillae wide in 

Horns without rings, the bases or palms very wide and thick, 
and in the old males rough with cross wrinkles, due apparently to 
splitting ; from the bases the horns extend downwards and forwards 
over the eyes for about half their length, and then curving in an 
acute angle point directly upwards for the rest of their length. 
Horns of the female similar to those of the male, but smaller, and 
with their bases much less approximated. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male ; head and body along the 
curves 6 ft. 6 ; tail 18, with long hairs 33 ; height at shoulders 
3 ft. 6, of the corresponding female 3 ft. ; ear 6*0, from ear 
opening to nose tip 15*0. 

Good horns of a male measure 25 along the outside curve, and 
10 across the palm ; of a female 21 and 5 respectively ; the largest 
pair of horns in the South African Museum measure 27"25 and 
10-5, the record as given by Ward is 30|. 

A skull of a male measures 15-5 in basal length, and 6-25 in 
extreme width. 

Distribution. — The black wildebeest never extended northwards 
much beyond the Vaal Eiver and the southern half of the Transvaal, 
and though formerly extremely abundant, especially on the high 
veld of the Orange Free State and northern part of the Colony, is 
now practically extinct in a true feral condition ; small herds are 
preserved on some of the farms in the southern part of the Transvaal, 
and in the Orange Free State, where Millais met with them and 
sketched them, and whence the South African Museum possesses a 
mounted pair. South of the Orange Eiver it is doubtless extinct ; 
the last herd is said to have survived in the Victoria West district 
till a comparatively late date, and there is the skull of a male in the 
Museum, shot there about the year 1878. It is possible that a 
few black wildebeests may still be found in the Kalahari and 
Gordonia, and also in German South-west Africa. 

Formerly, this antelope was found throughout all the interior 
districts of the Colony in great abundance. Sparrman records it 
from Somerset East in 1800 ; Pringle from Bedford 1820 ; Burchell 
from Hanover, and Harris from the plains of Eichmond in the 

History. — The black wildebeest must have been known to the 
Dutch settlers from the earliest part of the last century, but no 


mention of it in scientific literature occurs till 1776, when Allamand, 
a Dutch naturalist, described a living specimen brought to Holland 
and placed in the menagerie of the Prince of Orange. Buffon, a few 
years later, copied Allamand's account and gave additional informa- 
tion obtained by him through the Vicomte de Querhoent, and through 
Foster, who saw a living specimen at Cape Town about 1773. 

On Buffon' s description Zimmermann founded the specific name 
which it has since borne. 

Harris and Millais give, perhaps, the best recent accounts of 
the habits of this animal. 

Habits. — The wildebeest is an inhabitant of the open plains, 
associating in herds of varying numbers described as from 8 to 50 
individuals ; it was frequently found in company with ostriches and 
quaggas ; at certain times of the year the very old males are found 
solitary. Their voice is described as a loud bellowing snort with a 
metallic ring in it, and to somewhat resemble the Hottentot name 

Their pace is very considerable, but the advantages to be 
derived from this attribute are considerably diminished by their 
great curiosity and their extraordinary antics, which they display 
when disturbed ; these consist of pawing the ground with their 
hoofs, tearing it up with their horns, striking sideways at one 
another, lashing round with their long tails, prancing and darting 
about in all directions ; they are described at great length by nearly 
all observers, and can further be witnessed in the case of animals 
in captivity. It is possible that to a certain extent these antics may 
be due to their efforts to free themselves from the larva of a botfly 
[Aestrus sjp.) which is invariably found in their nostrils and frontal 
sinus in great abundance. They frequently feed kneeling on the 

In the breeding season the males become very fierce, vicious and 
pugnacious, and the females after a period of gestation of 8 to 8| 
naonths, produce a single calf usually about December ; the mother 
suckles the calf for seven or eight months, but it commences to eat 
grass when about a week old. 

In captivity the wildebeest does very well both in Europe and 
Africa, though the males are dangerous to meddle with ; Mr. F. E. 
Blaauw has been very successful in acclimatising and breeding 
these animals in his park near Hilversum, in Holland, and he 
had reared in 1894 no less than sixteen young ones from a single 
pair purchased in 1886. 




An interesting feature of the development of the gnu is the 
growth of its horns ; these at first are perfectly straight, upright 
and slightly divergent; as the animal grows the straight portion 
first formed gradually becomes the terminal portion, and the basal 
downwardly directed part is gradually formed ; finally the wide 
palm is developed and these grow gradually together till they almost 

The white-tailed gnu forms the dexter supporter of the arms of 
the Colony of the Cape of Good Hope (see frontispiece), and it would 
be a thousand pities if so characteristic a form was allowed to 
become altogether extinct, as seems not unlikely to happen. 

Fig. 45. — Horns of Black Wildebeest, A, eleven weeks old : B, 19 months old. 

{Proc. Zool. Soc). 

54. Connochaetes taurinus. The Blue Wildebeest ok 
Beindled Gnu. 

Antilope taurina, Burchell, Travels ii, p. 278 (1824). 

Catoblepas taurinus, H. Smith, Gri-ff. Cuv. An. Kingd. iv, p. 369 v, 
p. 368 (1827) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 94 (1832) ; A. Smith, 
S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 233 (1834) ; id. lUustr. Zool. S. Afr. 
Mamm. pi. xxxviii (1849). 

Catoblepas gorgon, H. Smith, Qriff. Cuv. An. Kingd. iv, p. 371, v, p. 
369 (1827) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 233 (1834) ; Selous, 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 764 [distribution] ; Barhley, ibid. 1894, 
p. 131 [Pungwe Valley] . 

Connochetes gorgon, Lajard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mies. p. 76 (1861). 


Connochaetes taurinus, P. L. Sclater, List Anim. Zool. Gardens 8th ed., 
p. 150 (1883) ; Lorenz, Ann. kk. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz. p. 60 
(1894) [Western Transvaal] ; Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 360 
[Eastern Transvaal] ; P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bk. of Ante- 
loi^es i, p. 95, pi. xi, & fig. 13 [woodcut of animal] (1895). 

Catoblepas reichei, Noack, Zool. Anz. p. 153 (1893) [Upper Limpopo] . 

Literature. — Barrow (1806), p. 409, account of the discovery of the 
species by Messrs. Truter and Somerville, near Kuruman in Bechuanaland, 
under the name of the Kokoon ; Daniell (1820), figured on pi. 37, also as 
Kokoon ; Harris (1838), p. 59, first met this animal near where Vryburg 
now is ; id. (1840), figured on pi. iv ; Methuen (1848), p. 74, met with near 
Eamahinthe Orange Free State ; Gumming (1855), i, pp. Ill, 167, shot this 
species south of the Orange Eiver and also in Griqualand West ; Living- 
stone (1857), p. 56, note on habits ; Holub (1882), p. 107, in Western 
Transvaal; Bryden (1889), p. 293, distribution present and past; NicoUs 
and Eglington (1892), p. 47, pi. iii, fig. 8, description, distribution and habits ; 
Bryden (1893), pp. 356, 370, 375, 504, notes on habits and distribution, past 
and present ; Millais (1895), p. 205, notes and sketches of this animal in 
south-east Mashonaland; Kirby (1896), pp. 281, 540, native names, habits 
and hunting in the eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 89, horn measure- 
ments; Bryden (1897), p. 200, chapter on huntmg ; Kirby (1899), p. 332, 
distribution in Beira-Zambesi Country ; Bryden (1899a), p. 194, range and 

Vernacular Names. — Bastard or Blaauw Wildebeest of the Dutch 
Colonists ; Kaop of the Namaquas and Hottentots (Harris) ; Kokon of the 
Bechuanas (Harris) ; Inkone-kone of Matabele (Selous) of Swazis and Zulus 
(Kirby) ; Ikokoni of Basutos (Kirby) ; Eevumba of the Makalaka and Numbo 
of the Masubias (Selous). 

Description. — Larger than the other species, of a general bluish 
silvery grey colour with indistinct traces of brown transverse mark- 
ings across the sides of the body ; head not so wide as in the black 
species and with a somewhat arched profile ; occiput, back of the 
ears, face and chin black or nearly so ; hair on the face not reversed 
or tufted as in the other species but downwardly directed ; a bare 
spot marks the opening of the antorbital gland ; mane composed of 
long stiff upright black hairs extending from the occiput to the 
middle of the back behind the shoulder ; tufts of black hairs on 
either side below the jaws and along the throat, but none between 
the fore legs ; legs paler and browner than the general body colour ; 
tail long, with terminal hairs extending to the false hoofs, the 
proximal third with short hairs like those of the body, the distal 
two thirds with long straight black hairs. 


Female resembling the male but with a more slender neck, and 
altogether less robust, also with two mammae. Horns with a 
comparatively small palm or base as compared with those of the 
other species, spreading outwards horizontally for about two thirds 
of their length and then curving right round so that the points 
are directed inwards and slightly backwards towards one another. 

Skull large and heavy with a slightly arched profile. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male ; length of head and body 
along the curves 7ft. 6 ; tail without hairs 1ft. 7, with 3ft. 2 ; height 
at shoulders 4ft. 3 ; ear 7"25 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 17"5. 

A good pair of male horns measures 24 along the outer curve ; 
of female horns 14 ; the records as given by Ward are 31|- from 
an individual obtained near Delagoa Bay, and 31 from one in the 
Lydenburg district of the Transvaal. 

Skull of a male, length 18, width 7*5. 

Distribution. — The blue wildebeest was formerly found all over 
South Africa from the Orange Eiver to the Zambesi ; contrary to 
what is usually believed to be the case it even extended south of 
the former river, as is proved by the narrative of Gordon Gumming, 
who recounts the obtaining of a specimen under rather peculiar 
circumstances in' what is now the Hopetown Division of the Golony. 
Throughout the high veld of the Orange Free State, Griqualand 
West and the Transvaal, it was formerly extremely abundant, as is 
evidenced by the writings of Harris and others, though now prac- 
tically extinct. At the present time the blue wildebeest is to be 
found along the eastern borders of the Kalahari, from about the 
Molopo Eiver northwards, in German South-west Africa, Ngami- 
land, Matabele and Mashonaland, in Portuguese territory, and the 
low hunting veld of the Eastern Transvaal southwards to about 
the northern portion of Zululand. North of the Zambesi in the 
Barotse and Mashukulumbe country a blue wildebeest is said to 
exist in considerable numbers, but whether this is of the present 
species or of the form recently described from Nyasaland has not 
yet been definitely decided. 

The South African Museum possesses examples either of skins 
or horns of this species from Damaraland, Khama's territory, the 
Beira Country and the Lydenburg district of the Transvaal. 

History. — The first travellers who met with this species of 
wildebeest, and who recognised its distinctness were Messrs. Truter 
and Somerville, who made a journey in 1801 as far as Litakun or 
Litakoo, in what is now the Kururaan district of Bechuanaland, to 


purchase cattle ; an account of this journey is to be found in 
Barrow's Voyage to Cochin China, and a figure of the antelope under 
the name of kokoon was subsequently published by Daniell in 1820. 

To the observant and learned Burchell, however, we are indebted 
for the Latin name, and the earliest specimens brought home, one 
of which is still preserved in the British Museum ; he met with the 
animal in June 1812 at the Khosi fountain between Klaarwater and 
Litakun in Southern Bechuanaland. 

The best and most complete modern account of the natural 
history and hunting of the blue wildebeest is to be found in Kirby's 
book above quoted. 

Habits. — The blue wildebeest is found in open down country 
devoid of bush, or sometimes in open glades of forest, but never in 
hilly or rocky places ; Bryden asserts that this, like many other 
large antelopes, is now taking to bushy and forest country more 
and more, to escape the attacks of men ; troops of from fifteen to 
sixty individuals are usually seen together though the old bulls are 
often found solitary ; mingled with the herds are often seen other 
animals, especially Burchell's zebra. Harris describes them as 
inseparable from one another and terms them the Damon and 
Pythias of the animal creation ; giraffe, ostrich and pallah are 
also often found associating with this species. 

In pace wildebeests are swift and enduring, but when hunted 
they frequently turn impelled by curiosity to gaze at the pursuer 
and so fall victims ; they gallop in a string, the females leading, 
the bulkier males bringing up the rear. They are seldom found far 
from water, where they drink usually at sundown and in early 
morning, and where also they are fond of wallowing, kneeling and 
rolling, and plastering themselves with mud. They usually lie 
down in a shady hollow during the day and feed in the late 

Altogether compared with the other wildebeest they are somewhat 
clumsy and stupid, and without their fire and dash, but still they 
exhibit all the quaintness and temper which make the other so 
remarkable ; every one states that they are very tough animals to 
kill, often going a long distance after being badly wounded, and 
further that they will charge when wounded in a most dangerous 

Wild dogs often attack even this large and powerful beast. 
Gumming actually saw one run down by four. 

The young are bora in the Beira country between November and 


January, and are kept hidden by the mother in a patch of long 
grass or bush, and are jealously watched until old enough to run 
about by themselves. 

The flesh is not very palatable, being coarse, hard and dry. 


Antelopes of small or medium size ; rhinarium well developed ; 
antorbital gland large, opening (in the South African genus) in a 
row of pores along a naked line on the face ; no knee brushes, four 
mammae, horns short and straight, usually present in both sexes. 


Cephalophus, H. Smith, Griff. An. Kingd. v, p. 344 

(1827) C. sylvicultrix. 

SylYicapra, Ogilhij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1836, p. 138 ...C. grimmi. 
Grimmia, Laurillard, Diet. Univ. d'H. N. i, p. 623 

(1839) C. rufilatus. 

Size medium or small, build somewhat stout and clumsy ; 
rhinarium large extending right round the nostrils ; antorbital 
gland opening by a row of pores situated on a naked line which 
runs along the side of the face below and in front of the eye ; crown 
of the head with tufts of long hairs usually concealing the bases of 
the horns ; tail short or medium ; lateral hoofs present but not 
very large ; mammae four in number. 

Skull with a large antorbital depression for the reception of the 
gland ; the frontal bones projecting backwards between the parietals 
to support the posteriorly placed horn cores ; upper molar teeth low 
crowned and square in the larger spesies, with an additional column 
on the inner side. 

Horns generally present in both sexes, but not always, short, 
straight and spike-like, placed far back on the head with the bases 
generally ringed, angulated or roughened. 

This is one of the largest of the genera of the antelopes, and is 
confined to Africa south of the Sahara ; thirty-six species are recog- 
nised in the recently published "Book of Antelopes " and of these 
by far the greater number are inhabitants of the great West African 


Forest Eegion, and are consequently not very familiar either to 
naturalists or sportsmen. 

Only three species reach South Africa and these may be dis- 
criminated in the following key. 

A. Horns slanting upwards so as to form an angle 

with the facial profile ; ears longer than the 
distance from the eye to the tip of the nose 
and pointed ; height at shoulder about 22 
inches C. grivinii, p. 157. 

B. Horns in a straight line with the facial profile, 

ears shorter than the distance from the eye to 
the tip of the nose, and rounded at their tips. 

a. General colour rufous, standing about 18 in. at 

the shoulder C, natalensis, p. 161. 

b. General colour smoky brown, standing about 

13 in. at the shoulder C. monticola, Tp. 16S, 

55. Cephalophus grimmi. The Duikee. 

Moschus grimmia, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed., i, p. 92 (1766). 
Antilope nictitans, TJmnberg, Mem. Acad. Petersh. iii, p. 312 (1811). 
Cemas cana, OTcen, Lelirh. Naturg. iii, pt. 2, p. 743 (1816). 
Antilope mergens, Desmarest, N. Diet. d'Hist. Nat. (2), ii. p. 193 

(1816) ; A. Smith, Descr. Cat S. Afr. Mus. p. 24 (1826) ; Smuts, 

Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 84 (1832) ; Lichtenstein, Darstellung Sdugeth. 

pi. xi. (1828). 
Antilope (Cephalophus) platous, burchelli et ptoox, H. Smith, Griff. 

An. Kingd. iv. pp. 260-5, v, p. 344 (1827); A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. 

Journ. ii, pp. 214-5 (1834). 
Cephalophus mergens, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 215 (1834) ; 

Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 763 [distribution] . 
Cephalophus campbelliae. Gray, List Mamm. B.M. p. 162 (1843) ; id. 

Ann. Mag. N.H. (1), xviii, p. 164 (1846); id. Knoiusley Menagerie, 

p. 9 (1850) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mtts. p. 72 (1861). 
Cephalophus grimmia. Gray, Knotvsley Menag. p. 8, pis. i, ii, (1850) ; 

Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 71 (1861) ; Buckley, Proc. 

Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 283 ; 1877, p. 453 [distribution] . 
Antilope altifrons et ocularis, Peters, Beise Mozambique Sdugeth. pp. 

184, 186, pis. xxxvii-ix, xli, fig. 1, xhi, fig. 1. [animal & skuU] (1852). 
Cephalophus ptoox, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 71 (1861). 
Grimmia nictitans et irrorata. Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1871, p. 590, 

fig. 1 [skull] . 
Cephalophus grimmi, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1857, p. 277, pi. Ivii, 
[animal] ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 428 ; Bendall, Proc. 


Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 362 [Eastern Transvaal] ; P. L. Sclater and 0. 
Thomas, Bh. Antelopes, i, p. 203, pi. xxiii, & fig. 22 [skull] (1895) ; 
Lorenz, Ann. Teh. Hofmus. xi, p. 1 (1896) [Victoria falls] . 
Cephalophus grimmia flavescens, Lorenz, Ann. Teh. Hofmus, Wien, ix, 
notiz. p. 60 (1894). 

LiTEEATUEE. — Grimm, Misc. Cm-. Acad. Nat. Cui\ (1686), dec. ii, arm. 
4. p. 131, earliest description under the name of " Capra sylvestris africana " ; 
Kolben, (1731), ii, p. 116, described as tlie " Diving goat " ; Burchell (1822), i, 
p. 187, description ; Moodie (1835), i, p. 285, on the habits of the species ; 
Harris (1838), p. 215, met with the Duiker in the Pretoria district of the 
Transvaal; id. (1840), figured on pi. xv, fig. 2 ; Delagorgue (1847), i, p. 303, 
discusses the distinction between the Natal and Cape Duikers ; Livingstone 
(1857), p. 56, habits and native names; Grout (1863), p. 301, native name in 
Natal; Drummond (1875), p. 398, hunting and habits ; Nicolls and Eglington 
(1892), p. 27, pi. vii, fig. 26, description, distribution and habits; Bryden 
(1893), p. 511, distribution in Bechuanaland ; Lydekker (1893), p. 207, 
description; Kirby (1896), p. 541, native names and distribution in the 
eastern Transvaal; Ward (1896), p. 96, horn measurements; Kirby (1899), 
p. 329, distribution in Portuguese East Africa ; Kirby (1899a), p. 232j range 
and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Duiker or Duikerbok {i.e., Diving Goat) of the 
Colonists; Impunzi of Amaxosa (Cloete), Zulus (Grout), Swazi (Rendall), 
and Matabele (Selous) ; Iputi of Basuto (Kirby) ; Puti of Bechuanas 
(Livingstone) ; Pembgee of Makalakas, and Unsa of Masubias (Selous). 

Description. — Size medium, form of the body somewhat delicate; 
general colour very variable, but usually speckled yellow brown, 
each hair being in its distal portion ringed black and yellow ; below 
including the chin, belly, and insides of legs white ; along the 
median line of the face a black streak usually extending to between 
the eyes sometimes to the bases of the horns ; forehead and rest of 
the space between the eyes and horns together with the long hairs 
at the base of these bright rufous ; ears long and pointed exceeding 
the distance from the front of the eye to the nose-tip, with white 
hairs inside ; legs black in front and right round at the fetlock ; tail 
very short, barely reaching halfway to the hocks, black above, 
white below. 

Female with four mammae, and sometimes with, but more 
usually without horns. 

The above description is founded on an example from Natal 
but as mentioned below there is a considerable range of individual 
variation in this species. 

Skull long and narrow with the frontal region fiat; antorbital 


fossae of medium depth with the border rounded not ridged ; mesial 
notch of the palate extending some distance further back than the 
lateral notches. 

Horns straight, slightly divergent, set at an angle to the line of 
the facial profile, roughened with three to six irregular rings at the 
base, smooth towards the tips, rather slender throughout, the basal 
diameter going to six or seven times in their length. 

Of two female skulls in the South African Museum one only has 
rudimentary horns, these are knobs about half an inch in length. 

Fig. 46. — Head of the Duiker {CephalopJius grimmi). 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male from Natal in the South 
African Museum ; head and body 38'50 ; tail without terminal hairs 
3"0, with 5'0 ; height at shoulder 22-5 ; ear 4-5 ; ear opening to 
nose-tip 8-0. 

The horns of the males average about 3-75 in length, but have 
been known, according to Kirby, to attain a length of 6 ; according 
to Ward the record is 5*5. 

The skull of a male in the South African Museum measures 7"0 
in length, and 3*0 in breadth. 

Synonymy and Variation.— All who have had opportunities of 
observing this little antelope have remarked on the great individual 
variation manifested by it, even in comparatively restricted localities ; 


but until a good many more specimens have been collected and 
compared from different districts it will not be possible to distinguish 
any geographical races. 

According to both Kirby and Selous, the general colour of 
individuals varies from a silvery grey to a greenish and also a 
reddish brown ; the under parts also vary from a pure white to a 
colour only slightly paler than the upper surface. 

As a result of this systematists have assigned a very large 
number of specific names to slight variations in colour. C. burchelli 
and C. ptoox of H. Smith, to the descriptions of which no particular 
localities are attached, appear to have been founded on a very old 
and somewhat faded and a young specimen respectively, while 
C. campbelliae of Gray, from Natal, may possibly turn out to be 
subspecifically separable from the type of the western part of the 

Distribution. — The duiker appears to be found over a wide area 
in Africa, extending from the Colony northwards to Angola^ on 
the west, and to Somaliland on the east ; south of the Zambesi it 
seems to be common everywhere in suitable localities, and I have 
information of its occurrence in nearly every division of the Colony, 
in Natal, the Orange Free State, the Transvaal and Ehodesia. 

History. — This little antelope being common around Cape Town 
soon attracted the attention of the Colonists, so that it was noticed 
earlier than almost any other purely South African animal, being 
described in 1686 by Grimm as mentioned above. Kolben alludes 
to it under the name of the " diving goat," and Linnaeus, on 
establishing his binomial system, dedicated this species to its 
first describer Grimm ; it is noticed by nearly all the naturalists 
and sportsmen who have visited or written on South Africa. 

Habits. — The duiker is found generally in open country covered 
with scattered bush, and is most common near the sea coast ; 
it is not as a rule to be found in rocky hills or absolutely bare 
lands ; it is usually seen solitary or sometimes in pairs, and rests 
during the day in thick cover, coming out to feed in early morning 
or on moonlight nights ; in pace it is very fast, and when molested 
it makes off, taking, after five or six strides, great jumps into the air 
as if to see over the tops of bushes, and then " diving " back again 
underneath the cover ; when wounded it screams like a hare. 

According to Kirby the food of the duiker consists of the leaves 

'■ I have seen a specimen from St. Paul de Loanda. 


of shrubs, wild berries and fruits, but Dr. Lindley, to whom I am 
indebted for some notes on the smaller antelopes, informs me that 
grass constitutes the greater part of its nourishment ; this may 
easily be due to the fact that its habits in the eastern Transvaal, 
and in the south-western districts of the Colony, are very different ; 
all authors, however, agree that the duiker is almost entirely 
independent of water, and that it is found in numbers in parts of 
the Kalahari where there is no permanent water present through- 
out the year. 

Dr. Lindley informs me that the young are born in spring,'*.^., 
in September or October, and that only one, or exceptionally two 
are produced at a birth. 

The duiker is frequently seen in the European Zoological 
Gardens, and also in South Africa in captivity, but does not as a 
rule live long or thrive though it becomes fairly tame. 

The meat is said to be rather inferior and dry for eating. 

56. Cephalophus natalensis. The Eed Duikek. 

Cephalophus natalensis, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joiirn. ii, p. 217 
(1834) ; id. Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pi. xxxii (1841) ; Thomas, 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 419 ; P. L. Sclater and Tliomas, Bk. 
Antelopes, i, p. 139, pi. xvi (1895). 

Literature. — Delagorgue (1847), i, p. 262, acco-unt of habits and occur- 
rence ; Grout (1863), p. 302, described under its native name, with an 
account of habits ; Drumniond (1875), p. 391, note on its occurrence in 
Natal ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 23, pi. i, fig. 2, description and 
distribution; Lydekker (1893), p. 209, description; Kirby (1896), p. 541, 
native names and habits in the Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 98, horn 
measurements; Kirby (1899), p. 320, distribution in Mozambique; Kirby 
and Kendall (1899a), p. 218, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — The Eedbuck or Natal Eedbuck, the Roodebok 
or Eooi-bosch-bokje of the Colonists, English and Dutch ; Umkumbe or 
'Mkumbi of Zulus, 'Msumbi of Swazis and Isikupu of Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour a rich rufous, somewhat paler 
below, smoky about the neck and face, but a rich rufous again 
between the horns and eyes ; the tuft of long hairs concealing the 
bases of the horns well developed and mingled rufous and black ; 
edge of the upper lip, lower jaw and upper throat whitish ; ears 
shorter than the distance from the front of the eye to the tip of 
the nose, broad and rounded at their tips, posteriorly with a thin 


sprinkling of short smoky hairs, inside with a few white hairs ; tail, 
slender, reddish at the base with mixed black and white, rather 
longer hairs at the tip. 

Skull smaller than that of the common duiker, and with a some- 
what rounded profile owing to the convexity of the frontals, edge of 
the median palatal notch nearly on a level with those of the lateral 

Horns short, nearly concealed by the long hairs, set parallel to 
the facial profile, pyramidal with stout bases, their diameter going 
about three times in their length ; basal portion with about three 
rings, tips longitudinally striated ; the females almost invariably 
provided with similar but shorter and smaller horns. 

Dimensions. — Of a male now in the South African Museum, 
measured in the flesh by Mr. Francis ; head and body 31-50 ; tail 
without hairs 4, with 5-50; height at shoulder 17; ears 3'0; from 
ear to nose-tip 6-5. 

Skull basal length 5*85 ; greatest width 2-75. 
Horns from 2-50 to 3'0, the record, according to Ward, being 
3-25 ; the horns of the female are about half the length of those of 
the male. Eams weigh 26 to 28 lbs., ewes 28 to 31 lbs. 

Distribution. — The type of this species was obtained in the 
immediate neighbourhood of Durban, and it has since been ascer- 
tained to range thence northwards along the coast and low country 
as far as Zanzibar ; it is reported also to range as far as Pondo- 
land and Tembuland in the extreme east of the Colony, but I have 
seen no specimen thence ; it is not uncommon in the eastern 
Transvaal and Swaziland, and the South African Museum possesses 
examples both from Natal and from Komatipoort in the Lydenburg 
district of the Transvaal. 

History. — This little antelope was first discriminated by Sir 
Andrew Smith in 1834, at the time of the commencement of the 
settlement at Natal ; as can be seen by the list of literature and 
synonymy not much attention has been paid to it since ; perhaps the 
best account will be found in Mr. Kirby's works there quoted. 

Habits. — The red duiker is essentially a forest dweller ; it is 
found chiefly along the coast, and in the low country, inhabiting 
the thickest bush and kloofs where there is water, and seldom 
emerges except in the evening or in wet weather ; it is, as a rule, 
solitary in its habits and endowed with very acute senses ; when 
disturbed it makes great rushes through the bush and reveals, 
according to Delagorgue, its presence when in flight by a nasal 


sniffing ; its call is a sharp whistle seldom heard ; when caught it 
emits a deep and somewhat rough sound quite different from the 
hare-like scream of the common duiker ; according to Kirby its 
food consists entirely of leaves, wild fruits and berries ; the female 
produces one young one every year. There is considerable diverg- 
ence of opinion as regards its palatability, Drummond and Eendall 
not appreciating it at all, while Delagorgue and Kirby both state 
that the flesh is excellent. 

57. Cephalophus monticola. The Blue Duikee. 

Capra monticola, Thunberg, Eesa ii, p. 66 (1789), id. English Trans. 

ii, p. 58 (1793). 
Antilope monticola, Thunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 314 (1811). 
Antilope pygmaea, apud A. Smith, Descr. Cat. 8. Afr. Mtts. p. 23 

(1826) ; Smitts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 86 (1832) [nee Linn.] . 
Antilope (Cepiialophus) caerula et perpusilla, H. Smith, Oriff. An. 

Kingd. iv, p. 268-9, v, p. 348 (1827) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. 

ii, p. 216-7 (1834). 
Antilope minuta, Forster, Descr. Anim. p. 383 (1844). 
Cephalophus monticola. Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (1), xviii, p. 167 

(1846) ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 427 ; Eendall, Proc. Zool. 

Soc. 1895, p. 361 [Transvaal] ; P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Book 

of Antelopes, i, p. 191, pi. xxi, fig. i (1895). 
Sylvicapra monticola. Grill, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. Stochhohn, ii, 2, 

p. 19 (1858). 
Cephalophus pygmaeus, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 72 (1861). 
Cephalophus bicolor, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1862, p. 263, pi. xxiv 

[piebald var] . 

Literature. — Sparrman (1785), i, p. 297, once saw this species in the 
Zitzikamma forest in Knysna ; Moodie (1835), ii, p. 139, notes it as 
abimdant in the Alexandria division; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxvi, 
fig. 3 ; Grout (1863), p. 301, occurrence in Natal ; Drummond (1875), p. 392, 
hunting in Natal ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 29, pi. iv, fig. 11, 
description and distribution ; Lydekker (1893), p. 207, description ; Ward 
(1896), p. 97, horn measurements : Kirby (1899 a), p. 229, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Blaauwbok or Kleenebok of the Dutch Colonists ; 
Pete of the Natal Colonists ; Noumetje (Smith) or Gnometie (Sparrman) of 
the Hottentots ; Iputi of Amaxosa (Cloete) ; Ipiti of the Zulus (Grout). 

Description. — The smallest of South African antelopes, being 
about the size of a hare and standing higher at the hind quarters 
than at the shoulders ; general colour a smoky grey brown, below 


and on the insides of the legs becoming white ; a longitudinal black 
patch on the nose, and a dark smoky brown patch on the forehead 
bordered on either side by a somewhat more rufous brown line ; 
ears short, broad and rounded, their length falling short by a 
considerable amount the distance from the anterior bor-der of the 
eye to the tip of the nose, posteriorly dark brown, anteriorly with 
sparse white hairs and a dark brown edging ; limbs, which are very 
slender, distinctly rufous brown contrasting with the general colour 
of the body ; hoofs narrow and pointed ; tail short with spreading 
fluffy hairs, black in the middle line above, white on the sides and 

Skull like that of the red duiker with a somewhat swelling 
frontal region, and horn cores backwardly directed in a line with the 

Horns present in both sexes as a rule, like those of the red 
duiker but smaller, roughly ringed at their bases and smooth 

Dimensions. — Of a male now in the South African Museum 
measured in the flesh by Mr. Kirby ; head and body along the 
curves 24 ; tail without terminal hairs 2-25, with 3-0 ; height at 
the shoulder 14 ; ear 1-75 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 5-0. 

Skull length 4-50 ; breadth 2-25. 

Horns of a male average about 1-75, the record according to 
Ward is 2-06. 

Distribution. — The blaauw-bok is found only in the more wooded 
districts of the Colony, that is along the Coast from George east- 
wards to Natal and Zululand ; whether its range extends beyond 
the limits of South Africa is at present uncertain, but a species 
closely allied, if not identical, appears to occur in Nyasaland and 
Mozambique, and according to Professor B. de Bocage in Benguela 
and Loando on the West Coast. 

The South African Museum possesses specimens from the 
Knysna and Humansdorp divisions of the Colony. 

History. — The blue duiker was known to the travellers of the 
end of the last century. Sparrman noticed it but did not venture to 
name it, so that to Thunberg another Swede belongs the credit — if 
credit there be — of having first given what one cannot but regard as 
a most unsuitable name to this animal ; furthermore to his descrip- 
tion, which obviously does apply to the present species, he adds the 
Dutch name for it of "ourebi," which, of course, is connected with 
quite a different animal. The name " pygmaea ' also frequently 


applied to this species, more properly, as has been shown by Sir 
Victor Brooke, belongs to the little, so-called royal antelope of West 
Africa, so that, though perhaps reluctantly, we must adopt Thun- 
berg's name. 

Habits. — Little is recorded about the habits of this buck ; 
it is found only in the densest bush and forest moving about 
during the day and resting at night ; it feeds on the leaves of shrubs 
and bushes and on berries. It drinks, according to Kirby, once a day 
in the evening, but in very hot weather will often drink again at 
midday ; the alarm cry is a sharp whistling shriek ; the fawns are 
usually born during the rains, i.e., in September or October. The 
flesh is palatable, according to Kirby, though stated by others to be 
somewhat musky. 

Subfamily NEOTRAaiNAE. 

Small antelopes with naked or hairy muzzles ; antorbital gland 
with a round opening ; false hoofs present or absent ; horns in the 
male only, short, straight and ringed basally, at least. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Nose truncate not elongated, a considerable 

rhinariiim, no tuft of hairs on the crown. 
a. Hoofs cylindrical and blunt ; hair very coarse 

and pithy, like bristles Oreotragiis, p. 165. 

h. Hoofs normal and pointed. 

cO-. A glandular naked spot below the ears, knee 

brushes and accessory hoofs Ourehia, p. 169. 

h^. No glandular naked spot below the ears or 
knee brushes. 

a?. Horns vertical and upright Baphicerics, p. 172. 

¥. Horns directed backwards parallel to the 

back Nesotragiis, p. 178. 

B, Nose elongated, rhinarium practically absent ; 

tuft of hairs on the crown of the head Madoqiia, p. 181. 


Oreotragus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 212 

(1834) 0. saltator. 

Small antelopes clothed with thick pithy bristles resembling the 
coat of a musk-deer or prongbuck and entirely different from that 


of other South African antelopes ; muzzle with a large naked 
rhinarium between the nostrils ; antorbital glands very large open- 
ing by a circular aperture on a bare patch of skin in front of the 
eye ; hoofs cylindrical and blunt, quite different from those of other 
antelopes, as the animal walks on the tips only of the hoofs which 
are thus vertical, and the leg is normally without a bend at the 
pastern or hock joint, and forms a straight line down to the hoofs ; 
accessory hoofs present ; two mammae. 

Skull short and broad with large antorbital fossae, frontal bones 
not backwardly projecting as in Cephalophits, but bearing the horn 
cores above the orbits. 

Horns present in the males only, short, straight and slightly 
curved forwards. 

Only one recent species of this genus is recognised from South 
and East Africa, extending from Cape Colony to Abyssinia. A 
fossil form named 0. hastata by Gervais is known from the pliocene 
deposits of the South of France. 

58. Oreotragus saltator. The Klipspeinger. 

Antilope oreotragus, Zimmermann, Geogr. Gescli. iii, p. 269 (1783) ; 
Thunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 311 (1811) ; A. Smith, Descr. 
Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 24 (1826). 
Antilope saltatrix, Boddaert, Elench. p. 141 (1785), 
Tragulns oreotragus, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 79 (1832). 
Oreotragus typicus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 212 (1834). 
Oreotragus saltator, Layard, Cat. Maynm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 70 (1861) ; 
Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 361 [Transvaal] ; P. L. ScJater 
and 0. Thomas, Bh. Antelopes, ii, p. 5, pi. xxv (1896). 
Nanotragus oreotragus, BrooTte, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1872, p. 642 ; Buchley, 
ibid. 1876, p. 283 [distribution] ; Selous, ibid. 1881, p. 762 [dis- 
tribution] . 
Literature. — Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 188, pi. xxii, earliest notice of 
species ; le Vaillant (1796), ii, p. 28, account of habits ; Steedman (1835), ii, 
p. 9, notice with plate, of the habits near Beaufort West ; Harris (1838), p. 
214, met with in the Pretoria District; id. (1840), figured on pi. xxiv, fig. 2 ; 
Drummond (1875), p. 396, habits and occurrence in Natal; Bryden (1889), 
p. 67, account of shooting in the Colony with photograph of head ; NicoUs 
and Eglington (1892), p. 26, pi. v, fig. 18, description, distribution and habits ; 
Bryden (1893), pp. 440, 511, common in Bechuanaland ; Selous (1893), p. 
162, habits in Mashonaland ; Lydekker (1893), p. 219, description; Millais 
(1895), p. 92, sketches and notes in Zoutspansberg, Transvaal ; Kirby 


(1896), p. 543, native names and habits in the Eastern Transvaal ; Ward 
(1896), p. 117, horn measurements; Kirby (1899), p. 329, distribution in 
Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 235, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Klip-sprmger or KHp-bok of the Colonists ; Kainsi 
of Hottentots (le Vaillant) ; Igogo of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; 'Ligoka of Swazi, 
Ikumi of Basuto (Kirby) Ee-go-go of Matabele ; Ingululu of Makalakas, 
Kululu of Masaras (Selous). 

Fig. 47. — The Klipspringer (Oreotragus saltator). 

Description. — General colour speckled yellow and brown ; hair 
very coarse, flattened in section, wavy, close lying and thick, form- 
ing a species of cushion all over the body of the animal ; colour 
white to pale grey at the base, yellow at the tip, brown in the 
intermediate portion ; below including the chin and the inner side 
of the limbs, paler, often quite white ; head triangular and pointed ; 
rhinarium large but not completely surrounding the nostrils ; 


antorbital gland opening on a bare spot in front of the eye ; ears 
of moderate length slightly longer than the distance from the front 
of the eye to the nostrils, clothed along the margins with black and 
inside with white hairs ; limbs like the body ; hoofs as described 
above ; tail very short, hardly projecting beyond the contour of the 
body, about an inch in length. 

Horns in the male only, short and straight and set somewhat 
distant from one another, nearly upright, the basal third irregularly 
ringed, the distal two-thirds smooth. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 38-0, tail 
about I'O; height at shoulders 23-0; ears 3-40, ear to nose-tip 6-0; 
skull length 5-25 ; breadth 3-13. 

Horns average about 3 inches in length ; Kirby states his record 
to be 5|; Ward gives 5f in the case of a head from Mashonaland. 

Distribution. — The klipspringer appears to be found in suitable 
localities throughout the whole of South Africa from the Cape 
Peninsula to the Zambesi ; beyond our boundary it ranges through 
East Africa as far north as Somaliland and Abyssinia. 

The klipspringer seems to be recorded from almost every district, 
where there are rocky hills ; the South African Museum possesses 
examples from Pretoria, Worcester and Beaufort West, and there 
is still a considerable number of these antelopes on the hills 
running from Table Mountain to Cape Point in the immediate 
neighbourhood of Cape Town. 

History. — The earliest notice of the klipspringer with which I 
am acquainted, is by Buffon (1782), whose account was derived 
from the Fosters, the naturalists who accompanied Captain Cook on 
his second voyage round the world and stayed for some time at the 
Cape ; although the description is accurate and quite obviously 
refers to our species the plate is very poor, and is much more like 
an oribi than a klipspringer. 

Not much attention has been since paid to this species, but 
Harris and Bryden give on the whole the best account of their 
habits and shooting. 

Habits. — The klipspringer, as its name implies, is found always 
among rocks and boulders, and in the Colony is said only to 
occur at considerable elevations ; further north, however, it frequents 
the low rocky "kopjes" which rise out of the plains, and form so 
characteristic a feature of the landscape, while in Mashonaland 
Mr. Selous reports that it is frequently found at quite low eleva- 
tions in rocky river beds. 


They associate in small troops of three to eight, and are extra- 
ordinarily active and agile " bounding from ledge to ledge on which 
no human eye can mark a footing, balancing at one moment upon 
the giddy verge of a precipice where hardly sufficient space exists for 
the hoof to rest, at the next casting themselves recklessly into the 
bottomless chasm and pitching as if by miracle upon some project- 
ing peak where all four feet appear to be gathered into the space of 
one " ; when caught on level ground they can be easily overtaken ; 
their food consists chiefly of the alpine plants and grasses clothing 
the hill-tops, but they descend regularly generally during the night 
to drink ; nothing is recorded about their breeding habits. 

In captivity they become very tame though, as a rule, they do 
not live long. They can be easily shot, especially if hunted by 
dogs, when they generally take refuge on some more or less 
inaccessible pinacle and form an easy mark for the bullet. 

Their hair is stated to be greatly valued for stuffing saddles, in 
consequence no doubt of its elasticity, and their flesh is by all 
stated to be excellent eating. 

Mr. Bryden relates a curious story to the effect that the 
Bechuanas are in the habit of catching the young klipspringers 
alive and carrying them about, pinching them from time to time to 
make them squeal ; this they do as a charm to bring down rain. 


Ourebia, Launllard, Diet. Univ. d'Hist. Nat., i, p. 622 

(1839) 0. scoparia. 

Scopophorus, Gray, Ann. Mag. N.H. (1) xviii, p. 232 
(1846) . scoparia. 

Small antelopes with normal hair and hoofs, the latter being 
sharp-pointed and triangular, so that the animal does not rest on 
their points ; tufts of long hair on the knees ; accessory hoofs 
present ; a glandular bare spot below the ear ; tail short and tufted 
with a few long black hairs. 

Skull with very large antorbital fossae whose edges are sharply 
ridged above and below ; nasal bones long. 

Horns in the male only, straight, slanting backwards and ridged 

This genus is confined to Africa, south of the Sahara ; five 
species, all rather closely allied, are recognised and described in 


the recently published Book of Antelopes, and of these only the one 
below treated of enters our region. 

59. Ourebia scoparia. The Oeibi. 

Antilope ourebi, Zivimermann, Geogr. Oescli. iii, p. 268 (1783) ; A, 

Smith, Descr. Cat. 8. Afr. Mus. p, 21 (1826). 
Antilope scoparia, ScJireher, Saugeth. pi. cclxi, (1785) ; Lichtenstein 

Darstell. Saugeth. j)!. xiii (1828). 
Antilope (Eedunca) scoparia, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Caj). p. 78 (1832) ; 

A. Smith, S. Afr. Qtiart. Journ. ii, p. 211 (1834). 
Ourebia scoparia, Laurillard, Diet. Univ. d'Hist. Nat. i, p. 623 (1839) ; 

P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh. Antelopes, ii, p. 15, fig. 23 [wood- 
cut of animal] (1896). 
Scopophorus ourebi, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus., p. 70 (1861). 
Nanotragus scoparius, Broohe, Pi-oc. Zool. Sac. 1872, p. 642; Selous, 

ibid, 1881, p. 761 [distribution] . 
Neotragus scoparius, Barhley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1894, p. 132 [Pungwe 

Valley] ; Bendall, ibid, 1895, p. 361 [Eastern Transvaal] . 

Literature. — Allamand (1776), v, p. 33, pi. v. first description of the 
Ourebi; Barrow (1801), p. 138, met with the " Orabie " near Algoa Bay; 
Harris (1838), p. 215, occurrence m the Pretoria district; Grout (1863), 
p. 302, native names, habits and description in Natal; Drummond (1875), 
p. 395, on hunting and habits in Natal; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 25, 
pi. V, fig. 15, description, distribution and habits ; Lydekker (1893), p. 218, 
description; Kirby (1896), p. 542, native names and habits in the Eastern 
Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. Ill, horn measurements; Kkby (1899), p. 329, 
distribution in Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 239, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Ourebi, Ourebikje, or sometimes perhaps Bleekbok 
of the Colonists : lula of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; of Zulus (Drummond) ; and 
of Swazis (Kirby) ; Pulukudukamani of Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour a yellow rufous, darkest on the 
frontal region ; below and inside the upper part of the limbs white, 
sharply defined from the colour of the back and sides ; rhinarium 
large, extending right round the nostrils ; upper and lower lip and 
a broad eyebrow white, antorbital gland opening in a small depres- 
sion in front of the eye ; ears rather narrow, in length hardly 
reaching the distance from the front of the eye to the nose-tip ; 
covered posteriorly with short rufous hairs, anteriorly and within 
with long white hairs, their margins narrowly edged with brown, a 
conspicuous glandular bare spot l:)elow the base of the ear on either 
side ; limbs slender, with long hairs clothing the knees and forming 


brushes, false hoofs small, true hoofs narrow and pointed ; tail very 
short coloured like the body with a few longer black hairs. 

Skull with a long slender muzzle ; supra-orbital vacuities present ; 
antorbital fossae large and open, sharply ridged above and below. 

Horns short, slender, evenly tapering, set fairly near one another 
and curving slightly forwards, their basal thirds covered with closely 
set rings. 

Fig. 48.- — Fore leg of the Oribi (Ourebia scoparia) to show the knee-tufts. 

Female with knee brushes but no horns. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 40-0 ; 
tail with hairs 4-0, without 2-0 ; height at shoulder 25'0 ; from ear 
opening to nose tip 7*0 ; ear from notch 3-8 ; skull, basal length 
5-8 ; greatest breadth 2-9. 

Horns average about 4 to 5 inches ; Selous gives 5 as his 
longest pair, and "Ward gives 6 as the record from a pair obtained 
in the Transvaal. 

Distribution. — The oribi is found only in the eastern part of 
our region ; in the Colony it is found in Uitenhage and the greater 
number of the districts further east to Natal where it is not 


uncommon in the midland districts, Zululand and the Pungwe 
Valley ; from the seabord it extends inland to Basutoland, the 
eastern Transvaal and the low country of Mashonaland about 
Victoria ; it is also, according to Selous, found in the neigbourhood 
of the Victoria Falls on the Zambesi. Oribis are said to be 
common north of that river, in Barotseland, Nyasaland and 
Mozambique ; but these animals are usually referred to another 
species {Ourehia hastata) which, however, appears to be distinguish- 
able only by its tail, which is somewhat slenderer and shows some 

History. — The first writer who appears to have noticed this 
antelope was Professor Allamand, who described and figured it in 
Holland in 1776 ; on his description the Latin names of Zimmer- 
mann and Schreber are founded. Barrow, the English traveller, 
met with it on his eastern journey near Algoa Bay where it is still 
to be found ; among subsequent writers, Drummond and Kirby 
have given some accounts of its habits. 

Habits. — The oribi is found chiefly in open grass country and 
treeless plains, though in the Pungwe valley Barkley asserts that it 
frequents bush and not open country ; they go in pairs or sometimes 
in small troops of four or five which, however, usually break up 
into couples on being disturbed. 

They are very swift and active and it takes a very good dog to 
run them down. They try to escape by leaps and doubles like 
a hare; notwithstanding this they are easy to approach, lying very 
close and trusting to their resemblance to their surroundings to 
escape detection ; they are seldom far from water ; their flesh is 
exceedingly palatable and their skins were much sought after in 
former days by the Kafiir chiefs who paid as much as a cow for 


Raphicerus, H. Smith, Griff. An. Kingd. v, p. 342 

(1827) E. campestris. 

Calotragus, Sundevall, K. Vet. Akad, Handl. Stock- 
holm, 1844, p. 192 (1846) K. campestris. 

Small antelopes with no naked glandular spot below the ears, 
no knee tufts, and with the accessory hoofs present or absent ; 
tail very short ; inguinal pores present ; two mammae. Skull stout 


and strong, with small but deep antorbital fossae with unridged 
edges above and below. 

Horns in the males only, short and vertical. 

This genus is confined to South and East Africa. In addition 
to tlie well-known steenbok and grysbok from South x\frica noticed 
below two other species have been described, these are : — 

Baphicerus neumanni. — Closely allied to the steenbok and dis- 
tinguished from it only by the absence of the black marking on the 
head, obtained in German and British East Africa. 

Baphicerus sharpei. — A curious intermediate form with the 
white grizzling of the grysbok and the feet of a steenbok, only 
known from a single specimen obtained by Mr. A. Sharpe in 
Angoniland in British Central Africa. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. General colour pure brown, no accessory hoofs 

to limbs B. campestris, p. 173. 

B. General colour reddish brown grizzled by numer- 
■ ous interspersed white hairs, accessoiy hoofs 

present B, melanotis, p. 176. 

60. Raphicerus campestris. The Steenbok. 

Antilope campestris, Thunherg, Mem, Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 313 (1811). 
Antilope tragulus, palida et rupestris, Lichtenstein, Mag. nat. Fr. 

Berlin, vi, p. 176 (1814) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 81 (1832). 
Antilope pediotragus, Afzel, N. Act. Ui)s. vii, pp. 260, 264 (1815). 
Antilope rupestris, BurcJiell, Travels, i, p. 202 (1822) ; A. Smith, Descr. 

Cat. S. Afr. Mus. p. 23 (1826). 
Cerophorus stenbock et acuticornis, Blainville, Ball. Soc. Philom, p. 

75 (1816). 
Antilope (Raphicerus) subulata, H. Smith, Griff. An. Kingcl. iv. pp. 

249, 253 (1827). 
Tragulus rupestris, rufescens et pediotragus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. 

Journ. ii, p. 212 (1834). 
Calotragus tragulus. Grill, K. Vetens. Ahad. Handl. Stockholm, ii, 2, 

p. 20 (1858). 
Calotragus campestris et rufescens, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. 

p, 68 (1861). 
Nanotragus tragulus, Broohe, Proc. Zgol. Soc. 1872, pp. 642, 874 ; 

Buckley, ibid. 1876, p. 283 [distribution] ; Selous, ibid. 1881, p. 762 

[distribution] . 


Nanotragus campestris, Lorenz, Ann. kit. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz. 

p. 60 (1894). 
Neotragus campestris, Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 361 [Eastern 

Transvaal] . 
Eapliicerus campestris, P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bk. Antelojjes, 

ii, p. 41, pi. xxvii, fig. 1 (1896). 

Literature. — Masson (1776), p. 269, earliest mention of the Steenbok ; 
Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 185, notice of this species derived from accounts 
of the Fosters ; Thunberg (1793), ii, p. 7, note on this species near Cape 
Town; Harris (1838), p. 215, met with in the Pretoria district; id. (1840), 
figured on pi. xxv, fig. 2 ; Livingstone (1857), p. 56, note on habits and native 
name m Bechuanaland ; Grout (1863), p. 302, on its native name and habits 
in Natal ; Drummond (1875), p. 395, shooting ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), 
p. 24, pi. ii, fig. 6, description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), 
p. 510, distribution m Bechuanaland; Lydekker (1893), p. 217, description ; 
Kirby (1896), p. 542, native names and habits in the Eastern Transvaal; 
Ward (1896), p. 114, horn measurements ; Kirby (1899), p. 329, distribution 
m Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 251, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Steinbok, or more correctly Steenbok, Vlaktebok 
and Bleek-bok of the Colonists, Dutch and English ; Itshabanqa of Amaxosa 
(Stanford) ; Iquina of Zulus (Grout) ; Ingaina of Swazis, Impulupudi of 
Basutos (Kirby) ; Phuduhurvi of Bechuanas (NicoUs and Eglington) ; 
Umgwena of Matabele (NicoUs and Eglington) ; Ee-pen-nee of Makalakas ; 
Kapu of Masubias ; Gaiee of Masaras (Selous) ; Shipeni of Shangaans 

Description. — Form slim and slender ; general colour a rufous 
brown, often with a light silvery sheen ; below, includiog the 
buttocks, white or nearly so ; head pointed and slender ; rhinarium 
large between the nostrils only ; behind it a black mark extends 
backwards along the nose half-way to the eye ; forehead rather 
more richly coloured than the rest of the body ; antorbital glands 
opening by a round aperture on a bare black space in front of the 
eye ; a white supra-orbital stripe above the eye ; ears large, broad 
and patulous varying somewhat in size but always far exceeding 
in length the distance of the front of the eye from the nose-tip, 
posteriorly very thinly covered with dark, anteriorly with a few 
long white hairs ; a black Y-shaped mark on the head between the 
horns usually present but not constant ; a patch of black bare skin 
at the groin where the inguinal glands open ; limbs slender, no 
knee brushes or false hoofs ; true hoofs long, narrow and pointed ; 
tail very short, the same colour as the back. 

Female similar, but hornless and with two mammae. 


Skull with a rather deep somewhat triangular recess for the 
reception of the antorbital gland ; a vacuity in the frontals above ; 
the upper surface roughened and ridged. 

Horns smooth, slender, straight and black, a little roughened 
sometimes at the base but practically unridged, generally slightly 
curved forwards. 

Dimensions. — Of a male; head and body 34-5; tail without 
hair 1-50, with 2-25 ; height at shoulder 20-0 ; ears 3-8 ; ear open- 
ing to nose-tip 6-50. Skull, basal length 5-0 ; greatest breadth 2-60. 

Horns average 4 to 4-50 in length ; Selous gives 5-0 as his record, 
Ward 5-8. 

Distribution. — The steenbok is on the whole the commonest 
and most widely distributed of all the South African antelopes ; it 
is found everywhere, from the immediate neighbourhood of Cape 
Town to Ovampoland and from Natal to the Zambesi ; where any 
protection is afforded to it, it becomes exceedingly abundant, and 
there are large numbers on the Cape Flats and on the farms near 
Stellenbosch and Malmesbury ; north of the Zambesi a steenbok is 
certainly found, but it is uncertain whether it is this or the allied 
species {E. neumanni) lately described. 

History.— The first definite information published about this 
little buck is found in Buffon's Supplement, where are quoted des- 
criptions of this and the grysbok as well as of the bleekbok, from 
a communication received from the Fosters who accompanied 
Captain Cook on his second voyage of circumnavigation. Buffon 
rightly, as I think, considered the bleekbok as only of a slight 
colour variation of the steenbok, in which opinion he was upheld 
by Thunberg, to whom we owe the Latin names bestowed on both 
this and the grysbok. Lichtenstein went even further and united all 
these forms, the steen- grys- and bleek-boks, under one specific tiame. 
This, however, is obviously unjustifiable, as there are very dis- 
tinct structural differences between the two first. Layard and most 
South African sportsmen still continue to regard the steenbok and 
bleekbok as distinct animals, but personally the only distinction I 
have been able to discover is a slight variation in the intensity 
of the colouration, and I cannot make out that this is in any way 

Habits. — The steenbok is found in open flats with scattered 
bush, but never in very mountainous or very thickly forested dis- 
tricts. They usually associate in pairs or are found only singly. 
When disturbed, they make off at a very good pace, galloping high 


and throwing up their quarters at each stride ; they seldom go more 
than a hundred yards or so, however, without looking round, and 
so giving an opportunity for a shot. Often they lie very close, with 
their ears well back, so that, even in comparatively bare country, one 
can ride within 30 or 40 yards of them. They feed on grass and the 
shoots of bushes in early morning up till about 9 o'clock, and again 
in the afternoon after 3 o'clock, sleeping and resting between 
those hours. They can exist without water for long periods, as is 
evidenced by the fact that they are found far away in the depths of 
the Kalahari. One, or more rarely two, young ones are produced 
during the year, usually in early summer. 

In South Africa they are often coursed with greyhounds and 
afford good sport running either up or down wind ; they are said, 
when hunted, to occasionally go to ground in aard-varks' holes. 

In captivity they become tame and gentle, and thrive very well. 
Their flesh is very palatable, though a little dry. 

61. Raphicerus melanotis. The Geysbok. 

Antilope melanotis, Thitnberg, Mem. Acad. Petersh. iii, p. 312 (1811) ; 

Lichtenstein, Darstell. Sciiigetli. pi. xii (1828) ; ^4. Smith, Descr. 

Cat. S. Aft: Mm. p. 22 (1826) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 82 

Antilope grisea, G. Cuvier, Diet. Sci. Nat. ii, p. 244 (1816). 
Tragulus melanotis, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joiorn. ii, p. 213 (1884). 
Calotragus melanotis, Sundevall, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. Stochholm, 

1844, p. 192 (1846) ; Grill, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. ii, 2, p. 21 (1858) 

[Knysna] ; La yard. Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 70 (1861). 
Nanotragus melanotis, 5rooA-e, Proc. ZooZ. Soc. 1872, p. 642; Selous, 

ibid. 1881, p. 762 [distribution] ; Lorenz, Ann. kk. Hofmiis. Wien ix 

notiz. p. 60 (1895) [distribution] . 
Neotragus melanotis, Bendall, Five. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 361 [Eastern 

Transvaal] . 
Eaphicerus melanotis, P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bk. Antelopes ii, 

p. 35, pi. xxvii, fig. 2 (1896). 

Literature. — Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 185, earliest description as 
Grysbok ; Tliunberg (1793), ii, p. 11, met with this species near Cape Town ; 
Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxvi, fig, 2 ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892) p. 26, 
pi. viii, fig. 29, description, distribution and habits ; Moseley (1892), p. 129, 
records Grysbok from near Simonstown ; Bryden (1893), p. 511, notes as 
rare in Bechuanaland ; Lydekker (1893), p. 219, description; Kirby (1896), 
p. 543, native names and habits in the Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), 
p. 117, horn measurements ; Kirby (1899a), p. 249, range and habits. 


Vernacular Names. — Grysbok of the Colonists ; Inxunxu of Amaxosa 
(Stanford) ; Inhlengana of Swazis ; Isikupi of Basutos (Kirby) ; Sasb- 
lungwan of Matabele, Teemba of Makalakas (Selous). 

Description. — General form stouter and less slender than the 
steenbok ; general colour grizzled dark rufous brown ; the fur long 
and coarse with a number of pure white hairs interspersed among 
the red ones causing the grizzled appearance ; below paler but not 
pure white ; chin, throat and eyebrow also a dirty white ; ears large, 
broad and rounded, exceeding in length the distance from the front 
of the eye to the nose-tip, dark grey and nearly naked posteriorly, 
anteriorly with a few long white hairs, a black or dark Y-shaped 
mark on the crown usually present ; false hoofs present but small 
and inconspicuous ; true hoofs shorter and broader than in the 
steenbok ; tail very short, the same colour as the body. Horns like 
those of the steenbok, but rather shorter, stouter and more curved 
forwards. Skull with the antorbital fossa rounded and larger than 
in the other species. 

Dimensions. — From a male ; head and body 30-5 ; tail I'O, with 
hairs 2-0 ; height at shoulder 19-50 ; ear 3-8 ; ear to nose-tip 6"50 
skull, length 5-20 ; breadth 2-80. Horns about 4 inches. 

Distribution. — The grysbok is by no means so universally 
distributed as the steenbok ; so far as one can judge it appears to 
be found only near the sea and in the low-lying districts, and not 
on the plateaus of the karoo or the high veld of the interior. It 
is abundant in the neighbourhood of Cape Town and extends along 
the coast through the Caledon and Knysna districts to Albany and 
the eastern part of the Colony, where, however it becomes rare ; 
in the eastern Transvaal it is also rare, though not uncommon in 
the Limpopo Valley, according to Kirby ; further north, again, it is 
abundant in north Mashonaland and in the Zambesi Valley, as far 
as the Victoria Falls, according to Selous. On the other hand it is 
distinctly stated to be absent from Matabeleland, the high veld of 
the Transvaal, the Kalahari and German South-west Africa. 

I have it recorded by correspondents from the Orange Free 
State, and in Natal from the slopes of the Drakensberg only. 

History. — The early history of the grysbok is the same as that 
of the steenbok, this animal having been first mentioned in Buffon's 
" Natural History," and named by Thunberg. Little, however, has 
been written on the subject since those early days, and my informa- 
tion is chiefly derived from correspondents. 



Habits. — The grysbok is also found in open country, but only 
where there is plenty of cover and shelter ; as a rule it is solitary 
spending the day in a retired lair or form, from which it is often 
difficult to dislodge it ; it moves with its head low and its pace 
is not very great, so that it can easily be run down with a 
good dog ; when caught it bleats like a kid. It feeds during the 
night and early morning, and in the south-western districts of the 
Colony is specially fond of the tendrils and young shoots of the 
vine and other fruit trees, in consequence of which it is much 
execrated by the farmers, and is trapped and shot on all possible 
occasions. It appears to breed all the year round, but few observa- 
tions have been made on this point. Its flesh is fair, but not so 
good as that of the steenbok. 


Nesotragus, von Dilhen, Oefvers. Akad. Forhandl. 

Stockholm iii, p. 221 (184-7) N. moschatus. 

Small antelopes with the rhinarium extending nearly all round 
the nasal openings, with no auricular glands, accessory hoofs, or 
knee brushes. 

Skull with very large antorbital fossae, which in the male are 
sharply ridged above and below, in the female are rounded off 
below, giving the two skulls a somewhat different appearance ; 
vacuities in the skull between the maxillae and premaxillae and 
further back at the hinder ends of the nasals. 

Horns in the males only, slanted back almost parallel to the 
frontal profile, strongly and finely ridged for at least half their 

This genus is confined to East and South-east Africa, ranging 
from Kilima-njaro to Northern Zululand, and is represented by two 
or perhaps three closely allied species ; of these two, if really 
distinct, are noticed below, the third the Zanzibar antelope {N. 
moschatus) from German and British East Africa is distinguished 
by its darker and more greyish colour, harsher fur, smaller ears and 
horns, and by its tail, which is of the same colour as the back. 


62. Nesotragus livingstonianus. Livingstone's Antelope. 

Antilope moschata, apitd Peters, Beise Mozamb. Sdugeth, p. 189 

(1852) [nee v. Duben] . 
Nesotragus livingstonianus, Kirk, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 657 ; P. L. 

Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh. of Antelopes, ii, p. 55, fig. 25 [skull] 

Nanotragus livingstonianus, Thomas, Proc, Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 237 

(fig. skull) [Zululand] . 
Nesotragus livingstonianus zuluensis, Thomas, Ann. Mag. N. H. (7), 

ii, p. 317 (1898). 

Fig. 49.— Skull of Nesotragus livingstonianus S 
{Proc. Zool. Soc). 

Literature. — Livingstone (1857), p. 209, perhaps alluded to under the 
name of Tianyane ; Lydekker (1893), p. 217, note on; Neumann (Field, 
vol. Ixxx. September, 1898), p. 368, account of distribution and habits of 
this antelope ; Ward (1896), p. 110, horn measu.rements ; Kirby (1899), p. 
331, distribution in Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 256, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names.— Ithlengane of Zulus (Neumann); Inhlengan at 
Inhambane (Francis) ; Rumpsa at Tette (Peters), and Shupanga (Kirk). 


Description. — General colour rich rufous brown, the hairs being 
tipped with a lighter shade giving a slight speckled look to the 
animal, paler on the flanks and legs, pure white below and inside 
the legs ; rhinarium extending round the lower side of the nasal 
opening but not entirely encircling it, a black almost hairless patch 
along the ridge of the nose extending nearly as far as the eyes ; 
sides of the face and neck paler than the forehead ; chin, upper 
throat and an indistinct eyebrow, white ; ears broad, rounded at 
the tips, very nearly naked within and without, posteriorly dark 
ashy, anteriorly white ; no false hoofs ; limbs slender with a black 
band encircling them just above the hoofs, which are long, pointed 
and up curved at the tips ; tail longer than in the last genus, almost 
black above, white below ; iris sea green with an outer ring of 
light brown. Female hornless and with two mammae. 

Horns thick and heavy, set in a line with the frontal profile, 
straight and strongly ringed for three quarters of their length, in 
the adult male above described there are twenty-three rings. 

Dimensions. — From a male measured in the flesh ; head and 
body along curves 27-0; tail 3-5; with terminal hairs 5-0; height 
at shoulder 16-25 ; ear 2-45 ; ear to nose-tip 5-75. Skull, length 
4-75 ; breadth 2-40. 

Horns average about 3 -50, those of the large male in the South 
African Museum 4'0 ; Ward records 4-50. 

Distribution. — The range of the Livingstone antelope extends 
from northern Zululand along the coast to the Zambesi and 
Nyasaland. It is common near Delagoa Bay, and is often hawked 
about the streets of Lourengo Marquez by the Kafiirs as venison ; 
from Inhambane further north the South African Museum has a 
good series of skins obtained for it by Messrs. H. F. and W. 
Francis. As is pointed out below, the southern race is separated by 
Mr. Thomas from the typical northern race under the name of 
N. living stonianus zuluensis. 

History and Variation. — This little buck was apparently first 
obtained by Peters during his travels in Mozambique in 1842-8 ; 
Sir John Kirk, however, who accompanied Dr. Livingstone on his 
journey down the Zambesi in 1862 met with another example near 
Shupanga on that river, and recognised its distinctness from the 
Zanzibar species with which Peters had identified it and named it 
after his illustrious travelling companion ; recently Thomas, on 
comparing specimens from northern Zululand with fresh ones from 
Nyasaland, came to the conclusion that a subspecific distinction 


could be drawn between the two forms owing to the Zululand 
animal being deep rufous with black fetlocks, while the Nyasaland 
one is " grizzled fawn colour " with but slight indications of 
the black on the fetlocks ; the example in the Museum from 
Inhambane seems on the whole referable to the Zululand variety. 

Habits. — This little antelope inhabits dense scrub and under- 
growth where it is generally found in pairs ; it runs like a hare and 
endeavours to squat and conceal itself in tufts of grass ; it feeds 
chiefly on leaves and young shoots but to a certain extent on grass, 
and is said to be independent of water. They graze in the forest 
glades in early morning and late afternoon, resting during the middle 
of the day under a bush or tree, where they harmonize so exactly 
with their surroundings that it is impossible to detect them ; when 
beaten up they make off with wonderful speed, twisting and dodging 
about among the trees ; they have three distinct cries, a sharp clear 
bark like a bush-buck, uttered when suspicious, a sharp whistling 
snort when put up at close quarters, and a bubbling sound like a 
he-goat to which the males give vent during pairing time. They 
are stated to have a very strong musky odour. 


Madoqua, Ogilby, Proc. Zool. Soc. p. 137 (1836) M. saltiana. 

Antelopes of small size with pointed and somewhat elongated 
noses almost completely covered with hair, only the nasal 
septum, which is very narrow, being bare ; crown of the head 
with a tuft of long hairs ; tail very short ; accessory hoofs present 
but very minute. Skull with slender and elongated premaxillae and 
very short nasals, with large shallow antorbital fossae and with the 
last lower molar in some species without the posterior lobe present 
in nearly all ruminants. 

Horns short, straight or slightly sinuate, strongly ribbed basally. 

This genus, extending diagonally across Africa from Abyssinia 
and Somaliland to Damaraland, is essentially one inhabiting dry 
open country, and is not found in the forest districts of the west 
and south east. 

Six species are generally recognised of which one only reaches 
our faunal area, and is distinguished from the other five by its 
greater size, standing over 15 in. at the shoulder, and by its more 
pointed and developed proboscis. 




63. Madoqua damarensis. The Damaraland Dik-dik. 

Neotragus damarensis, Guntlier, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1880, p. 20 (fig. 

Madoqua damarensis, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1894, p. 329; P. L. 
Sclater and 0. TJiomas, Bh. Antelopes, ii, p. 79, fig. 28 [pt. of skull] 
Literature. — NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 56, description and dis- 
tribution ; Lydekker (1893), p. 215, note on; Kirby (1899a), p. 266, 

Fig. 50. — Head of the Damaraland Dik-dik [Madoq^ua daviarensis). 

Description. — General colour speckled dark grey, the hairs 
long, pale for the greater part of their length with black subterminal 
and pale rufous terminal bands ; the sides, face, neck, shoulders 
and flanks want the black and are therefore pale rufous and not 
speckled, below and inside the legs pure white ; nasal opening, except 
for a small portion of the septum, completely surrounded by hair, 
the snout being pointed and proboscis-like ; chin and a ring round 
the eye white ; antorbital opening a somewhat semi-lunar slit in a bare 
patch in front of the eye ; a long tuft of straight hairs dark at the 
base conceals at least half the horns ; ears moderate, grey behind, 


a few white hairs inside ; limbs slender, pale rufous with small 
accessory hoofs and very short, compact, triangular true ones ; tail 
very short hardly projecting at all, the same colour as the back. 

Female hornless and with two (?) mammae. 

Skull with the premaxillae and lachrymals forming a suture, 
with the naso-frontal suture forming an acute angle directed back- 
wards, and with the posterior lower molars provided with the 
posterior accessory lobe absent in some of the species of the genus. 

Horns stout and tapering, in a line with the frontal profile, with 
about nine conspicuous rings occupying more than half the length 
of the horn and with smooth tips. 

Dimensions. — Of an old mounted example ; head and body 26-0 ; 
tail 1-0, with hairs 2-5 ; height at the shoulder 15-5 ; ear 2*5 ; from 
ear opemng to nose tip 5'50. 

The horns of a male measure 2-90. 

Distribution. — The type of this species, a female now in the 
British Museum, was obtained in 1879 by Mr. Eriksson at Omaruru 
about forty miles north of Walfisch Bay in German South-west 
Africa ; the South African Museum possesses a male presented by 
the same collector, and a young male obtained by James Chapman 
and two flat skins. 

It appears probable that the species extends to the southern 
portion of Angola as evidenced by the collections of Anchieta and 
van der Kellen. 

Nothing regarding the habits of this antelope is recorded except 
that it inhabits rocky and barren hills near the sea coast, and is 
difficult to procure owing to its great agility. 


Antelopes of large or medium size, with well developed rhinaria 
and no antorbital glands ; false hoofs well developed, horns in the 
males only, generally ringed and forwardly curved. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Taillong and tufted ; horns long, and fur coarse... Cobus, p. 184. 

B. Tail short and bushy. 

a. A glandular patch below the ear, fur coarse Cervicapra, p. 193. 

b. No glandular patch, horns short and straight, fur 

woolly Pelea, p. 199. 


Genus COBUS. 

Kobus, A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. 

pt. 12, pi. xxviii. (1840) C. ellipsiprymnus. 

Adenota, Gray, Proc. Zool., Soc. 1850, p. 129 ...C. kob. 
Onotragus, Gray, Cat. Bum. Bt. Mus. p. 17 (1872).C. leche. 

Antelopes of considerable size with naked muzzles and with no 
antorbital glands ; tail long almost reaching the hocks, somewhat 
tufted at its extremity ; false hoofs well developed. 

Skull with no antorbital fossae but with a perforation in the 
middle of the frontal bone at the base of the horn cores into the 
orbit, and a large lachrymal vacuity between the lachrymal, frontal, 
nasal and maxillary bones ; bulla large and swollen ; premaxillae 
reaching the very long nasals, anterior true molars of each jaw with 
a median supplementary lobe. 

Horns in the male only, curved forwards, lyrate or sublyrate 
and ringed for the greater part of their length. 

This genus is now confined to Africa, south of the Sahara, 
whence thirteen generally recognised species are known ; in addition 
to these some four or five fossil forms have been described from 
the pliocene beds of India, China and Algeria showing that the 
genus had formerly a considerably greater distributional area. 

Of the 13 recent species three are South African, and are noticed 
at length below ; the others are as follows : — 

G. unctuosus (Laurill.), the sing-sing from West Africa. 

0. cratvshayi, ScL, Crawshay's waterbuck from Lake Mweru 
in British Central Africa. 

C. penricei, Eothsch., Penrice's waterbuck from South Angola. 

C. defassa, Euppell, the defassa from Abyssinia and East 

G. maria, Gray, Mrs. Gray's waterbuck from the swamps of 
the White Nile. 

G. leucotls (Licht. & Pet.), the white-eared kob also from the^ 
upper Nile. 

G. thomasi, Scl., Thomas' kob from Uganda. 

G. kob (Erxl.), Buffon's kob from West Africa. 

G. annulipes (Gray), the kob of later authors also from West 

G. senganus, Scl. & Thos., the senga kob from North Nyasa- 


Key of the South African Species. 

A. Height at shoulder about 4 ft ; hair sepia- 

brown and grizzled C. ellipsiprymnus, p. 185. 

B. Fur rufous brown, height at shoulder about 

3 ft. 

a. Legs black in front ; horns long, twice the 

length of the skull G. leche, p. 189. 

b. Legs not black in front ; horns short, not 

twice the length of the skull C. vardoni, p. 191. 

64. Cobus ellipsiprymnus. The Waterbuck. 

Antilope ellipsiprymnus, Ogilby, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1833, p. 47. 
Aigoceros ellipsiprymnus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 186 

Kobus ellipsiprymnus, A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pis. 
xxviii, xxix (1840) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mils. p. 75 (1861) ; 
Lorenz, Ann. kk. Hofmtos. Wien ix, notiz. p. 61 (1894). 
Cobus ellipsiprymnus, Buckley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 284 ; Selous, 
ibid. 1881, p. 758 [distribution]; P. L. Sclater, ibid. 1893, p. 505 
pi. xxxix [breediag in the Zool. Gardens] ; P. L. Sclater and 
0. Tho77ias, Bk. Antelo])es, ii, p. 97, pi. xxxii (1896). 
Literature. — Steedman (1835), ii, p. 94, account of first discovery of 
the waterbuck with figure ; Harris (1838), p. 171, first met waterbuck in 
the Rustenburg district of the Transvaal ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xiv ; 
Delagorgue (1847), i, p. 425, notes as not uncommon in Zululand; Gumming 
(1855), ii, p. 133, first met this species on the Notwani Eiver, on the north- 
west frontier of the Transvaal ; Drummond (1875), p. 367, habits and 
shooting ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 44, pi. iv, fig. 12, description, 
distribution and habits; Bryden (1893), p. 504, distribution; Lydekker 
(1893), p. 223, description and figure of head; Millais (1895), pp. 120, 147, 
189, 195, figures and sketches with notes on habits ; Kirby (1896), p. 544, 
native names and habits in eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 118, horn 
measurements ; Kirby (1899), p. 328, distribution in Mozambique ; Bryden 
(1899a), p. 269, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Waterbuck of English Golonists, Waterbok or 
Kxing-gat of Dutch ; Ipeva of Zulus (Drummond) ; and Swazis (Kirby) ; 
Ipiklwa of Basutos (Kirby) ; Tumogha of Bechuanas (Selous) ; Situmogha 
of Matabele (Nicolls and Eglington) ; Eetumulaa of Makalakas, Eekulo of 
Masubias (Selous) ; Mashigi-gig of Makobas and Botletli (Nicolls and 

Description. — General form thickset ; colour a sepia-brown, most 
pronounced on the face and extremities of the limbs, somewhat 
paler below, all the hair very coarse and with a somewhat grizzled 
appearance, owing to its quite light bases and darker tips ; in the 




middle of the back is a kind of whorl whence the hairs radiate out 
in all directions ; round the neck the hairs somewhat longer and 
coarser, though they can hardly be said to form a distinct mane ; 

Fig. 51. — Head of the Water-buck (Cobus ellipsiprymnus). 

a patch round the nose, the chin, a wide line above and in front of 
the eye, a narrow line round the throat and another encircling the 
rump white ; rhinarium only between the nostrils, black ; ears 


rather short and rounded, brown posteriorly, edged with darker, 
clothed within with long white hairs ; limbs sturdy, false hoofs well 
developed, true hoofs short, stout and triangular ; tail slightly tufted 
with dark hairs, almost reaching the hocks. 

Female somewhat smaller, with the white stripes and patches 
not so well marked, and with the hair somewhat longer and more 
shaggy, especially around the neck ; no horns, and four mammae. 

Horns large and strong, sublyrate, gently curved backwards and 
then forwards, strongly ridged and ringed for three quarters of 
their length. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 7 ft. 4 ; 
tail 15'50, with terminal hairs 20-0 ; height at shoulder 4 ft. 2 ; 
of a female 3 ft. 10-5 ; from ear opening to nose-tip IG'O ; ear from 
notch 7*0; skull basal length 14-75 ; breadth 6-75. 

An average length for the horns is 28, Mr. Selous records 31 
from Mashonaland ; a pair in the South African Museum obtained 
many years ago on Lake Ngami, by Chapman, measm'e 32-5 ; 
Mr. Eoland Ward, however, in his measurements, gives a record 
of 36'5 of a pair from near Delagoa Bay in the possession of 
Mr. Barber. 

Distribution. — The waterbuck is not found within the limits of 
the Cape Colony proper, but from the Limpopo Eiver northwards 
it becomes fairly abundant ; it is met with in the northern part of 
German South-west Africa, i.e., Ovampoland, in Matabeleland and 
Mashonaland, especially along the Botletli Eiver and near Lake 
Ngami ; it is very common throughout the Portuguese territories as 
far south as Zululand, and Kirby states it is exceedingly abundant 
in the low country of the eastern part of the Transvaal. Beyond 
our limits the waterbuck is plentiful throughout Nyasaland, German 
and British East Africa and as far north as the Shebeyli Eiver in 

The South African Museum possesses a fine mounted pair 
obtained by Mr. Selous, the male at Macloutsie in the Bechuana- 
land Protectorate, the female on the Hanyani Eiver in Mashonaland 
as well as skulls from Lake Ngami, the Beira district and North 

History. — Although the waterbuck was vaguely known to exist 
even before the Cape finally passed into the hands of the EngHsh, 
the first specimen, a much mutilated skin, was obtained by means 
of the offer of a large premium by the Governor, Sir Lowry Cole 
(1828-34), and it was on this specimen that Sir Andrew Smith drew 


up his earliest description. In the meantime, however, a Mr. A. 
Steedman, an African traveller, took to England a complete spec- 
imen on v^hich Ogilby founded his description and the Latin 
denomination which it has since borne. Steedman's example is 
said by him to have come from the " West of Latakoo twenty-five 
days north of the Orange Eiver," which would be somewhere on the 
edge of the Kalahari desert, a somewhat unlikely locality, and 
probably accounted for by the fact that this traveller does not 
appear to have ever reached so far north, and that he obtained 
his example from natives or traders ; neither Smith, Harris nor 
Gordon Gumming, at any rate, met with the waterbuck till they 
reached the head waters of the Limpopo and its affluents, a good 
deal further north ; Smith as above-mentioned, Selous and Kirby 
all give good accounts of this animal which is now very well known. 

Habits. — Waterbucks, as their name implies, are always found 
fairly near water ; as a rule they go in herds numbering usually 
ten to fifteen individuals, though sometimes when the animal is 
abundant the herds are much larger. They seem fond of rough and 
broken country and the sides of steep shady hills near rivers and 
streams to which, as a rule, they make off if disturbed. The herds 
nearly always contain a very large proportion of females with a few 
old males, the other males either congregate by themselves or are 
found solitary. While feeding, which they do in the early morn- 
ing and evening, the ewes, according to Millais, keep guard with 
ears playing backwards and forwards and eyes equally alert for the 
approaching enemy. Although appearing heavy and clumsy animals 
their pace is considerable, especially on rough ground across which 
they make their way with great agility. When wounded and taking 
refuge in reedbeds or similar shelter they have been known to be 
very dangerous, charging fiercely with their horns. 

Every one is agreed that the flesh of the waterbuck is almost 
uneatable, as it is so very coarse and strong, besides being endowed 
with a very powerful and disagreeable scent, easily perceptible even 
during life. 

Mr. Selous further relates that when in good condition the fat 
of the meat is peculiarly sticky, clogging the teeth and making it 
impossible even for a hungry man to make a meal. 

The waterbuck is not often seen in Europe, but a pair in the 
Zoological Gardens of London from British East Africa, presented 
by Mr. G. S. Mackenzie, bred in 1893, and a young female, born in 
the Gardens on May 4, was the first instance so far as is known of 
such an occurrence in captivity. 


65. Cobus leche. The Lechwe. 

Adenota leche, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1850, p. 130, pi. xx ; Laijard, 

Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mies. p. 75, (1861). 
Kobus leche. Gray, Knowsley Managerie, p, 23 (1850). 
Heleotragus leche, KirTc, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 658. 
Cobus lechee, Buchley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 291 ; Selous, ibid. 

1881, p. 760; P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh. Antelox^es, ii, p. 149, 

pi. xhi & fig. 36 [woodcut of head] (1897). 

Literature. — Oswell (1851), in Journ. E. Geogr. Soc. xx, p. 150 and 
Livingstone (1851), in Journ. E. Geogr. Soc. xxi, p. 23 give the earliest account 
of the lechwe ; Andersson (1856), p. 448, pi. xiii, occurrence on Lake Nganii ; 
Livingstone (1857), p. 71, seen and described for the first time on Lake 
Ngami in 1849, p. 204, occurrence on the Zambesi; Chapman (1868), p. 141, 
habits and occurrence on the Botletli Eiver ; Selous (1881), p. 137, habits 
and occurrence on the Chobe Eiver in 1874; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), 
p. 42, pi. vii, fig. 22, description, distribution and habits; Selous (1893), 
p. 450, account of habits on the Chobe ; Bryden (1893), p. 315 on the 
Botletli Eiver, p. 362-4 on its habits and structure, p. 506, distribution ; 
Lydekker (1893) p. 225, note on, with figure of head ; Oswell m Badminton 
Big-game shooting (1894), i, p. 122, account of the first discovery and of 
habits ; Ward (1896), p. 125, horn measurements ; Gibbons (1897), p. 398, 
distribution in Barotse country ; Selous (1899), p. 299, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Lechee or Leegwee of the Makalolo, Inya of the 
Masubias (Selous). 

Description. — A little smaller than the waterbuck with the hair 
firmer and less coarse ; general colour a fulvous-brown darkest 
along the back, becoming lighter on the sides and white below and 
on the insides of the legs ; white marks also present round the eyes, 
at the base of the ears, along the upper jaw and from the chin and 
throat to the breast ; ears moderate, pale brown posteriorly with 
a few long white hairs inside and no brown tips ; front limbs with 
a dark almost black band running down the front of the leg to the 
hoofs, darkest above the knee ; hind limbs with the dark marks 
only extending a short way above the hoofs ; just above the 
hoofs are white rings, but these vary considerably in development, 
and are often hardly discernible ; false hoofs well developed, true 
hoofs somewhat elongated and pointed, the space between them 
{i.e., the pasterns) being quite naked, a character which distin- 
guishes this species from all other waterbucks ; tail reaching to 
about the hocks the same colour as the body with a tuft of long 
black hairs at the end. 

The female closely resembles the male but is a little smaller, 


with no horns and four mammae. The young males have black 
tips to the ears like the adult pukus. 

Skull considerably smaller than that of the waterbuck, with 
much smaller nasals, which are not reached by the premaxillae, 
and with very much smaller lachrymal vacuities. 

Horns more curved than in the waterbuck, the lower third 
curving outwards, the middle thirds almost parallel to one another 
and the tips bent forwards almost at a right angle, very strong, 
ringed to within a few inches of their tips, black, with the ridges 
somewhat paler, the tips quite smooth and black. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 6ft. 2 ; 
tail 10, with terminal hairs 15 ; height at shoulder 38, of a female, 
36 ; from ear to nose-tip 12-50 ; ear from notch 5*50. A skull 
measures about 12-5 in basal length, and 5-4:0 in greatest breadth. 
Average horns are about 24 to 26 inches ; Selous records 27 and 
Ward 28*5 ; the latter measurement from a pair of horns in Mr. F. 
H. Barber's possession. 

Distribution. — The lechwe is found within our area only in 
Lake Ngami and on the river flowing out of it, called formerly the 
Zouga, now better known as the Botletli ; it is also met with in the 
upper waters of the Zambesi and its affluent the Chobe. North of 
the Zambesi Selous obtained this waterbuck on the swamps of 
the Lukanga river, 150 miles south-west of Lake Bangweolo, and 
Mr. A. Sharpe has met with it on Lake Mweru ; this is the most 
northerly extension hitherto recorded. 

History. — This species was first discovered on the banks of the 
Zouga or Botletli River by Livingstone and his two companions, 
Oswell and Murray, who travelled with him in 1849 on his first 
journey to Lake Ngami. An example was sent home to England 
by Oswell to Captain Vardon, and was exhibited by him at a meeting 
of the Zoological Society, on June 11th, 1850 ; thus the species 
came to be included in a " Synopsis of Antelopes and Strepsiceres," 
read by Gray before the Society the same evening, and was also 
included in the " Gleanings from the Knowsley Menagerie," by the 
same author, who, however, perhaps unintentionally, makes it 
appear that Captain Vardon and not Oswell was responsible for the 
discovery ; our subsequent knowledge of this animal is chiefly due 
to the observations of Mr. Selous. 

Habits. — After the sitatunga {Trcujelaplms selousi) this is doubt- 
less the most water-loving and aquatic in its habits of all antelopes ; 
it is usually found knee, or even belly deep in water, among 
the reeds and papyri, in considerable herds, consisting sometimes 


of females with only a few old males, at other times of males only. 
When disturbed the males stretch their horns back flat along their 
sides and trot away ; if further pressed they break into a kind of 
lumbering gallop, even when the water is up to their necks they 
move by tremendous leaps and bounds accompanied by a great deal 
of splashing ; on reaching deep water they swim well and strongly, 
though not so fast as a native can paddle ; in winter when the 
country is flooded, advantage is frequently taken of this to drive 
them into the deep water when they are mercilessly assagaied. 

Selous, as well as other observers, remarks on the great tenacity 
of life shown by these antelopes, as well as the puku. The skin 
is in very great request among the natives for karosses, and the 
flesh is said to be less distasteful than that of other waterbucks. 

66. Cobus Yardoni. The Puku. 

Antilope vardoni, Livingstone, Miss. Trav. p. 256 [plate on p. 71] 

Heleotragus vardonii, KirJc, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 657. 
Cobus vardoni, Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 759, pi. Ixv ; P. L. 
Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh, Antelopes, ii, p. 141, pi. xli & fig. 35 
[horns] (1897). 
Literature. — Selous (1881), pp. Ill, 130, 147, pi. v, on localities and 
habits, Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 43, pi. viii, fig. 30, description, dis- 
tribution and habits ; Lydekker (1893), p. 227, note on ; Ward (1896), p. 129, 
horn measurements; Selous (1899), p. 294, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Poku or Puku throughout its range ; Impookoo 
of Masubias (Selous). 

Description. — A good deal smaller than the waterbuck ; general 
colour a rich orange yellow, a little paler round the eyes on the 
chin and lower surface of the body ; a small tuft of black hairs 
marks the opening of the antorbital gland ; ears with long, white 
hairs within, posteriorly pale fulvous with well-marked black tips ; 
no whorl of hairs in the middle of the back ; on the fore and hind 
limbs is an indistinct patch of black just above the hoofs, but there 
is no marked black stripe in front of the legs as in the lechwe ; 
space between the false and true hoofs, i.e., the pasterns, hairy ; 
true hoofs triangular and stout, not elongated, false hoofs large ; 
tail short and slender, the same colour as the back with a small 
terminal black tuft. 

Horns stout with a slight forward and outward curve at the base 




and with the tips directed forwards, strongly ridged and ringed for 
three-fourths of their length. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 5 ft. 9 ; 
tail 7*5 ; with terminal hairs 10*0 ; height at shoulder 2 ft. 11 ; ear 
5 ; ear to nose-tip 12. A skull measures, length 11-0 ; breadth 4'47. 
Horns measure about 15 to 16 inches ; Selous in " Great and Small 
Game" records a pair measuring 2025 from the neighbourhood of 
Lake Bangweolo, 

Distribution. — This antelope is found in the upper part of the 
Zambesi Valley and in its affluents, especially the Chobe, and 
extends northwards through the Barotse country as far as Lake 

Fig. 52. — Horns of the Puku (Cohtis vardoni) : a, side view ; h, front view. 
{Proc. Zool. Soc). 

An alhed form {Cohus senganus, P. L. Sclater and Thos. Bk* 
Antelopes, ii, p. 145) has recently been described from the country 
between Lake Mweru and Lake Nyasa but will very probably be 
found to be indistinguishable from the puku. 

The South African Museum possesses a mounted male from 
Barotseland presented by Major Coryndon. 

History. — This waterbuck was first discovered and named by 
Livingstone on the Zambesi in the neighbourhood of Libonta in the 
Barotse country far above the Victoria Falls in 1853 ; it is figured. 


together with the lechwe, in a plate purporting to be a view of the 
Eiver Zouga or Botletli, but there is no evidence to show that 
Livingstone or any subsequent traveller found it so far south. 

For nearly all our subsequent knowledge of this antelope we are 
indebted to Mr. Selous. 

Habits. — The puku is decidedly less aquatic than the lechwe ; 
it may generally be seen 200 to 300 yards away from the river 
cropping the short grass or lying in the shade ; it is found in herds 
of three to four dozen individuals of both sexes, though at times 
the rams run by themselves ; Selous states that he never saw 
mixed herds of lechwe and pukus, but this is not borne out by 
other observers, as Mr. A. Sharpe speaks of lechwes and pukus 
running together in enormous herds in the Mweru and Luapula 

The flesh of the puku is stated by Selous to be even more 
nauseous and unpalatable than that of the common waterbuck. 


Cervicapra, Blainville, Bull. Soc. Philom. p. 75 

(1816) C. redunca. 

Redunca, H. Smith, Griff. An. Kingd. v. p. 337 

(1827) C. redunca. 

Eleotragus, Gray, ListMamm. B.M. p. 165 (1843) ...C. arundinum. 

The animals comprising this genus resemble the waterbucks in 
most respects, but are of smaller size and have very bushy short 
tails ; they are further provided with a glandular and generally 
naked spot on the side of the head just below the ears. 

The skull is light with large lachrymal vacuities and no antor- 
bital fossae, the premaxillae hardly reach the nasals ; the horns 
are present only in the males and are curved forward and upwards. 

Except for one extinct species from the pleistocene beds of 
Algeria this genus is confined to Africa south of the Sahara whence 
five species are generally recognised. Of these, two come within 
our limits, the others are : — 

C. holior (Rupp.), the bohor, from Abyssinia and East Africa, 
closely allied to the Cape Reedbuck. 

G. redunca (Pall.), the nagor, from Senegal and Gambia in 
West Africa. 

G. chanleri, Rothschild, Chanler's reedbuck, from British East 


Africa closely allied to if not identical with C. fulvorufula, the South 
African rooi rhebok. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Size larger, height at shoulder about 34 in., 

yellowish brown, horns about 12 in C. arundinum, p. 194. 

B. Size smaller, height at shoulder about 28 in., 

greyish brown, horns about 5in G. fulvorufu la, p. 197. 

67. Cervicapra arundinum. The Ebed-buck. 

Antilope arundinum, Boddaert, Elencli. Anim. p. 141 (1785). 

Antilope eleotragus, Schreber, SdugetJi. pi. cclxvi (1787) ; Tlmnhevg, 
Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 314 (1811). 

Antilope cinerea, Bechstein, Syst. Uebers.vierf. Thier.ii, p. 643 (1800). 

AntUope isabellina, Afzel, N. Act. U2:>s. vii, p. 250 (1815). 

Redunca isabellina, Smuts, Enum. Mamvi. Cap. p. 75 (1832) ; A. 
Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 210 (1834). 

Redunca eleotragus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 210 (1834). 

Eleotragus arundinaceus, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 74 

Cervicapra arundinacea, Selotos, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 758 [distribu- 
tion] ; Lorenz, Ann. TcJc. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz. p. 61 (1894). 

Cervicapra arundinum, Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 358 ; P. L. 
Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh. Antelopes, ii, p. 157, pi. sliii & fig. 37 
[horns] (1897). 

Literature. — Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 187, earliest mention of the 
Reedbuck, with plate from AUamand ; Sparrman (1785), ii, p. 240, met 
with Reedbuck only once in Somerset East ; Barrow (1801), p. 87, met 
with this species near Algoa Bay ; Harris (1838), p. 165, shot the species in 
the north-west Transvaal; id. (1840), figured on pi. xxvii, fig. 2; Grout 
(1863), p. 398, habits and native names in Natal ; Drummond (1875), p. 397, 
account of habits and hunting in Natal ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 
36, pi. vii, fig. 23, description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 
507, distribution ; Lydekker, (1893), p. 227, note on ; Millais (1895), pp. 
107, 108, 113, distribution with sketches and note on the soft horn bases ; 
Kirby (1896), p. 545, native names, habits and distribution in the Eastern 
Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 134, horn measurements ; Millar, Zoologist 
(4), iii (1899), p. 146, care of young; Kirby (1899), p. 328, distribution in 
Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 805, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Reedbuck of English, Reitbok of Dutch Colonists ; 
Inthlangu of Amaxosa (Stanford), of Zulus (Drummond) and of Swazis 
(Kirby), also Imsigi or Umzibi of Zulus (Stanford) and Matabele (Selous) ; 


Iklabu of Basutos (Kirby), Cipohata of the Beehuanas (Nicolls and 
Eglington) ; Eebeepa of Makalakas, Imvwee of Masubias and Beniba of 
Masarwas (Selous). 

Description. — General colour a slightly speckled fulvous brown, 
the hairs being dark brown at the base and yellow at the tip ; the 
colour is darkest on the back, and becomes paler, sometimes quite 
white, below, as well as on the insides of the limbs, on the sides of 
the face and round the lips ; black markings on the face usually 
absent, but a black patch on the nose in some specimens and on 
the crown in others ; on the nose is a rounded swelling not often 
seen in mounted specimens, but very well shewn in Millais' sketches 
of the fresh-killed animal ; ears moderate, fulvous posteriorly, 
clothed inside with the usual long white hairs ; about an inch 
below the ears is the oval glandular patch bare in the adult, clothed 
with fine white hairs in the young ; round the neck the hair is 
somewhat lengthened but hardly forms a mane ; fore limbs with 
well marked black stripes running down their fronts and encircling 
them just above the hoof, hind limbs with less well marked stripes 
not reaching the hocks, false hoofs well developed, true hoofs 
triangular and pointed ; tail reaching about halfway to the hocks 
exceedingly thick and bushy, fulvous above, white below, the 
colours strongly contrasted. 

Female like the male, but a little smaller and without horns- 
Horns divergent, curved backwards and upwards, forming an 
even quarter of a circle, ringed for about two-thirds of their length, 
the soft growing pad at their bases, which in most species is 
absorbed at maturity, here remains persistent through life as a 
rounded fleshy swelling, though in some cases this space, about 
two inches wide, becomes hard and longitudinally corrugated, 
according to Kirby. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male ; head and body 4 ft. 5 ; tail 
7, with terminal hairs 9'50 ; height at shoulder 34-5, of a female 
29*0 ; ear from notch 5-75 ; ear openiog to nose-tip 10"50. Skull 
basal length 10-50 ; breadth 4-75. 

Horns average 12 to 13 inches in length ; the longest pair men- 
tioned by Ward are 16f in. in length, obtained by Major Trollope in 
British Central Africa, the longest pair from South Africa measure 
15| and are in the possession of Mr. C. D. Eudd. 

Distribution. — The reedbuck never appears to have been found 
in the western part of the Colony, but in the eastern districts 
along the river valleys it was common in the earlier days, and is 


still to be obtained, though somewhat rarely, in the divisions of 
Bathurst, Komgha, and Tembuland ; from Natal and Zululand 
onwards, it is common in the low comitry up to the Zambesi, 
along the East Coast rivers and their affluents, especially those of 
the Limpopo and Zambesi, and thence it extends over the greater 
part of Ehodesia, Ngamiland and the Transvaal low country. It 
reappears again in Ovampoland. Beyond our limits it occurs on 
the West Coast as far as Angola and on the East to Nyasaland 
and Mozambique. 

The South African Museum possesses examples from Beira, 
Damaraland and Nyasaland. 

History. — As can be seen by the long list of synonyms there has 
been a good deal of obscurity and confusion regarding this antelope. 
It was first brought to the knowledge of Europeans by the Dutch 
Naturalist, Allamand, who derived his notes and drawings from 
Colonel Gordon, a Scotchman, in the service of the Dutch East 
India Company. On Buffon's copied account from Allamand, 
Boddaert and Schreber founded their Latin names as given above, 
of which Boddaert' s has priority. Among modern writers Millais 
has noticed and described several points passed over by previous 

Habits. — The reedbuck lives always in grassy or reedy valleys 
in the neighbourhood of streams and vleys ; according to Selous 
it is very reluctant to enter or cross water, crouching and taking 
refuge in the thick vegetation along the margins of rivers ; Kirby, 
however, states that it takes to water very readily, swimming with 
great vigour and avoiding pursuit by sinking itself in some deep 
waterhole so that only the nostrils appear on the surface. 

As a rule not more than three or four individuals are found 
together, i.e., a male, female, and one or two young ones. Most 
sportsmen have noticed that when distressed, this buck gives vent 
to a loud and characteristic whistle. Their pace is not very great ; 
they move over good or bad ground indifferently with a slow, 
rolling gallop, and in consequence of their habit of standing to 
look round after they have gone a short distance are easily shot ; 
when in shelter they lie very close, squatting flat on the ground 
almost like a rabbit, an attitude which is very well depicted in 
one of Millais' sketches. Their food consists solely of grass. 

The flesh of the reedbuck is described by most writers as 
"scarcely palatable"; Kirby states that he regards a well-larded 
leg as a real delicacy, so that statements on this point are 


68. Cervicapra fulyorufula. The Rooi Ehebok. 

Antilope fulvorufula, Afzel, N. Act. Ujjs. vii, p. 250 (1815). 

Antilope lalandia, Desvioulins, Diet. Class. cVHist. Nat. i, p. 445 

Redunca eleotragus, ryjMfZ Smuts, Enuin. Mavim. CajJ. p. 75 (1832) 

[nee ScJireb.] . 
Eedmica lalandii, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Jour, ii, p. 210 (1834). 
Eleotragus reduncus, ajfud Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 74 

(1861) [nee Pall.]. 
Cervicapra redunca, Gunther, Proc. Zool, Soc. 1890, p. 604, fig. i, 

[cranial characters] . 
Cervicapra lalandii, Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895 p. 359. 
Cervicapra fulvorufula, P. L. Sclater and 0. Tho-mas, Bh. Antelojies, 

ii, p. 175, pi. xlv & figs. 41-2 [horns] (1897) ; Thomas and Kirhij, 

Proc. Zool. Soc. 1897, p. 694 [on an albinoid variety] . 

Literature, — Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 188, noticed by AUamand as a 
smaller variety of the Reedbuck ; Harris (1838), p. 215, shot in the Pretoria 
district of the Transvaal ; Delagorgue (1847) p. 473, account of an individual 
shot in Zululand ; Drummond (1875), p. 398, note on its occurrence in 
Natal ; Bryden (1889), p. 298, account of habits and distribution in the 
Colony; NicoUs and Egiington (1892), p. 34, pi. i, fig. 4, description, 
distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 510, distribution in Bechuana- 
land; Lydekker (1893), p. 228, note on; Millais (1895), p. 188, shot in 
south-east Mashonaland; Kirby (1896), p. 546, native names and habits m 
eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 132, horn measurements ; Kirby 
(1899a), p. 314, range and habits with account of Lydenburg albinoid 

Vernacular Names. — Rooi Ehebok of the Colonists; Inxala of 
Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Inhlang' amatshe (Reedbuck of the rocks) of Swazis 
and Zulus (Kirby). 

Description. — Smaller than the reedbuck ; general colour, grey, 
brown, or fawn, hair long and somewhat soft and woolly, below 
together with the inside of the fore and hind limbs pure white ; 
face, especially the forehead, fulvous with a somewhat indistinct 
black mark along the top of the nose ; ears long and narrow almost 
equalling the horns with the usual long white hairs inside ; the 
glandular spot below the ear is only marked by shorter hairs and 
is not conspicuous; limbs dark but with no defined black markiogs; 
hoofs very small and short ; tail like that of the reedbuck short and 
very bushy, grey brown above, white below. Female similar to the 
male, but hornless, and with two mammae. Horns very short, the 
basal half ringed, the terminal half smooth, evenlv curved forwards. 




Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 4 ft. 2 ; 
tail 6-50, with terminal hairs 9-0 ; height at shoulder 27-0 ; ear from 
notch 5-75 ; ear to nose-tip 9-0 ; skull length 8-65, breadth 4-20. 
Horns measure from 5 to 6 inches in length ; the record given by 
Ward is 7|. 

Distribution. — The rooi rhebok is found all over the eastern half 
of the Colony, extending westwards as far as the divisions of 

Fig. 53.— Head of the Booi Rhebok [Cervicapra fulvorufula) S • 

Prince Albert, Beaufort West and Carnarvon ; beyond the Colony 
it is stated to be found through Natal, Zululand, the Free State, 
Swaziland, the Transvaal and Bechuanaland, but it does not seem 
to be known from north of the Limpopo, and is, therefore, absent 
from Ehodesia. 


PELEA 199 

The South African Museum possesses a good mounted pair from 
near Burghersdorp in the Colony, the male of which has been 
figured in the Book of Antelopes, and a skull from Barberton in the 

History and Yariation. — Like the reedbuck this species was 
first brought to the notice of European naturalists by Allamand, 
and on his account was founded the Latin name here adopted as 
being the oldest given ; there has always been a good deal of 
confusion regarding this antelope, some of the earlier writers regard- 
ing it as merely a smaller variety, or even the young of the reed- 
buck, but there is no doubt that it is quite distinct. 

Mr. Kirby has recently described a very curious albinoid 
variety discovered by him on a range of hills, the Steenkampberg 
near Kruger's Post in the Leydenburg district of the Transvaal ; 
in this form the legs are white from the knees downwards, the 
hoofs, the tail above as well as below, a spot on the forehead and 
a line along the middle of the back are also all white ; a consider- 
able herd of these all agreeing with one another in this curious 
coloration were found by Mr. Kirby on the top of the mountain, 
whence several specimens now in the British Museum were obtained 
and preserved. 

Habits. — The rooi rhebok is found on the dry stony slopes of 
hills, not usually on the top but on the bushy sides just below the 
krantzes ; as a rule they associate in small parties of four to eight 
individuals, and when feeding or resting post a sentinel, usually an 
old ram, who keeps a sharp look-out, and on the approach of danger 
gives the alarm by a shrill whistle. When disturbed they make 
off with a free, easy gallop, but can often be again brought to a 
stand by a sharp whistle. As they run their bushy tails are thrown 
up so as to show the underlying white. Their flesh is good eating. 
They are entirely grass-feeders, and drink once a day. The young 
are born between October and December. 

Genus PELEA. 


^elesi, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1850, p. 126 P. capreolus. 

Antelopes of moderate size, with woolly fur of peculiar texture, 
with a very large and swollen rhinarium, extending a considerable 
distance back behind the nasal openings, and with no sub-auricular 
glandular patches. 

Skull resembling tbat of Cervicapra, with no antorbital fossae, 


and with short premaxillae not reaching the nasals ; the bullae are 
small and the lachrymal fissure is very narrow and little developed. 
Horns of medium length, nearly vertical, slender, ringed and 
straight or slightly bowed forwards. Only one species is recognised, 
that described below, confined to South Africa. 

69. Pelea capreolus. The Vaal Ehebok. 

Antilope capreolus, Bechstein, Sijst. XJehers. Vierf. Thiere i, p, 98 

(1799) ; Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 312 (1811) ; Lichten- 

stein, Darstellung Sciugeth. pi. viii (1827). 
Antilope lanata, Desmoidins, Diet. Class. cVHist. Nat. i, p. 445 (1822). 
Antilope villosa, Burchell, Travels ii, p. 802 (1824). 
Eedunca capreolus, Smuts, Enum. Mamvi. Cajj. p. 77 (1832) ; A. Smith, 

S. Aft: Quart. Journ. ii, p. 107 (1834). 
Pelea capreolus, Gray, Cat. TJng. B. M. p. 90, pi. xxxvi, iig. 2 [skull] 

(1852) ; Layard, Cat. Mamni. S. Afr. Mas. p. 73 (1861) ; Lorenz, 

Ann. JcJc. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz. p. 60 (1894) ; Bendall, Proc. Zool. 

Soc. 1895, p. 360 [Transvaal] ; P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bk. 

Antelopes, ii, p. 189, pi. xlvi and fig. 44 [head] (1897). 

Literature. — Masson (1776), p. 270, early mention of the rhebok ; 
Sparnnan (1789), ii, p. 239, short notice of rhebok ; Moodie (1835), i, p. 284, 
habits and occurrence in Swellendam; Harris (1838), p. 214, shot in the 
Pretoria district of the Transvaal ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxv, fig. 1 ; 
Gray (1850), p. 12, pi. xii, fig. of young and head ; Drummond (1875), pp. 370, 
396, habits and hunting in Natal ; Bryden (1889), p. 125, on habits and 
shooting in the Colony with plate ; Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 33, pi. 
vii, fig. 24, description, distribution and habits; Moseley (1892), p. 129, 
occurrence near Sinionstown ; Bryden (1893), p. 510, fomid in the Bechuana- 
land hihs ; Lydekker (1893), p. 220, description and habits ; Kirby (1896), 
p. 544, habits and native names in the eastern Transvaal; Ward (1896), 
p. 130, horn measurements ; Kirby (1899a), p. 319, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Ehebok or Vaal Ehebok of the Colonists ; Ihula 
(Cloete), Iliza (Stanford) of Amaxosa; Iliza of Swazis and Zulus (Kirby); 
Pshiatla of Basutos (Kirby) ; Peeli of Bechuanas (Burchell). 

Description. — Form slender and graceful ; general colour grey- 
brown, with a somewhat fulvous tinge on the legs and face, below 
to the tail pure white ; fur short, soft, thick and woolly, somewhat 
like that of a rabbit, with sub-terminal brown and terminal pale 
tips ; rhinarium very large, extending backwards and much swollen ; 
an indistinct ring round the eye ; chin with a black transverse band ; 
throat white ; ears very long, narrow and pointed ; no antorbital 


gland as in the reedbucks ; neck long and slender ; legs somewhat 
darker in front ; false hoofs present ; true hoofs short, triangular 
and compact ; tail short, reaching to about the groin ; basally the 
same colour as the back, terminally and below white. 

Female resembling closely the male, but hornless and with two 

Horns set almost at a right angle to the facial profile, slender 
and nearly straight, ringed for a little more than half their length. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 4ft. ; 
tail 3-50, with terminal hairs 6"50 ; height at the shoulders 29'0 ; 
ear from the notch 6*5 ; from ear to nose-tip 8-5 ; skull length 8-20, 
breadth 4-10. 

The average length of the horns is about 8, but there are a 
pair in the South African Museum from the Caledon Division 
measuring 10|, and Ward records a pair attaining a length of 11^ 
from Spitzkop in the Eastern Transvaal. 

Distribution. — The rhebok is widely spread everywhere in 
Africa, south of the Limpopo, wherever there is suitable ground ; 
although mentioned in the Book of Antelopes as inhabiting Mata- 
beleland and Mashonaland I have not heard of its occurrence there, 
nor is it mentioned by Selous. 

In the Colony it is found nearly everywhere, and is often met 
with on Table Mountain and on the range running southwards to 
Cape Point ; in Natal and Zululand it occurs in the Drakensberg, 
and westwards of this through the Republics to Great Namaqualand. 

In the South African Museum are a mounted pair, the male 
from the Worcester, the female from the Caledon division of the 

History. — The earliest mention of the rhebok, so called by the 
Colonists from its fancied resemblance to the roe-buck or roe deer 
of Europe, is to be found in Masson and Sparrman's travels, and 
on the latter's description, Bechstein, in 1799, founded the name it 
now bears ; later on Desmoulins redescribed the same animal from 
specimens transmitted to Paris from the Cape by Delalande and 
again Burchell, when he met with the species in Bechuanaland 
bestowed on it a third name. I am indebted to Dr. C. L. Lindley 
for some observations on the habits of this animal. 

Habits. — The rhebok is always found on the flat tops or near the 
top of the mountain ranges and hills found almost all over South 
Africa ; from these it seldom descends except occasionally to obtain 
water. It is generally seen in small family parties of six to ten 


individuals led by an old ram. When resting or feeding a sentinel 
is posted on a neighbouring hillock or kopje who gives the alarm 
v^ith a sharp snort or cough, on vphich the troop make off, headed 
by the old ram, usually in a predetermined course, so that if this 
is known it is not difficult to cut them off and get an easy shot ; 
their pace is not very great and consists of a peculiar gallop, 
during which the hind quarters are constantly jerked up in the air, 
giving one the impression, says Dr. Lindley, that they are lame in 
the hind leg ; furthermore when they run off they always keep their 
tails erect showing the underlying white. 

They feed in the early morning, chiefly on grass, and they 
usually produce two young at a birth ; they are seldom seen in 
captivity, only four having ever reached the Zoological Gardens 
in London. 

The meat is dry and not very palatable ; it is sometimes 
rejected by the Dutch farmers in consequence of the number of 
botfly larvae found, at certain seasons of the year, lying between the 
skin and the flesh. 


Antilopes of medium or small size with hairy muzzles, the 
rhinarium being greatly restricted ; tail short ; two mammae ; horns 
lyrate and ringed, sometimes absent in the females. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. No false hoofs ; tufts of hair on the hind legs Aepyceros, p. 202. 

B. False hoofs present; no tufts on the hind legs Antidorcas, p. 208. 


Aepyceros, Sundevall, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. 1845, 
p. 271 (1817) A. melampus. 

Antelopes of median size with slender tails extending nearly to 
the hocks, with no false hoofs but with glandular tufts of hairs on 
the cannon bones of the hind feet. 

Skull without antorbital fossae and with very small, almost 
rudimentary lachrymal vacuities ; premaxillae large and expanded 




forming a long suture with the nasals, and sometimes reaching 
even the lachrymal bones ; a smooth oval vacuity between the pre- 
maxillae and maxillae on the side of the skull. 

Horns long, broadly lyrate, half ringed and shghtly compressed, 
female hornless. 

Fig. 54. — Hind feet of Aej^yceros melampus to show the glandular tufts on the 
cannon bones. 

This genus is found throughout eastern and southern Africa, 
from the Soudan and Angola southwards. 

The two species generally recognised are separable as 
follows : — 

A. Face the same colour as the body A. melam^nis, p. 203. 

B. Face with marked brown patch rumiing down the 

muzzle A. petersi, p. 207. 

70. Aepyceros melampus. The Pallah. 

Antilope melampus, Lichtenstein, Beise ii, p. 544, pi. iv, (1812) ; Smuts, 
Enum. Manmi. Cap. p. 74 (1832) ; A. Smith, S, Afr. Quart. Joiirn. ii, 
p. 209 (1834). 

Aepyceros melampus, Siindevall K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. 1845, p. 271 
(1847) ; Kirh, Proc. Zool Soc. 1864, p. 656 [Zambesi] ; Buckley, 


iUd. 1876, pp. 283, 291 ; 1877, p. 454 [distribution] ; Selous, ibid. 
1881, p. 757 [distribution] ; BarUey, ibid. 1894, p. 132 [Pungwc 
valley] ; Loreiiz, Ann. Teh. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz. p. 61 (1894) ; 
Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 359 [eastern Transvaal] ; P. L. 
Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh. Anteloiies, iii, p. 17, pi. xlviii. & fig. 47 
[head] (1897). 
Aepyceros melampus holubi, Lorenz, Ann. hh. Hofmus, Wien ix, notiz. 
p. 62 (1894). 

Literature. — Barrow (1806) p. 407, the earliest mention of the Pallah, 
met with near Kuriiman by Messrs. Truter and Somerville ; Lichtenstein 
(1812) ii, p. 334, translation of description; Burchell (1824) ii, p. 801, 
noticed near Kuruman and described under Lichtenstein' s name ; Harris 
(1838) pp. 141, 213, met with Pallah on the Marico and Limpopo rivers 
in North-west Transvaal; id. (1840), figui-ed on plate xv, fig. 1; Living- 
stone (1857), p. 56, habits ; Nicolls and Eglmgton (1892), p. 41, pi. i, 
fig. 3, description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 509, distribu- 
tion; Lyddeker (1893), p. 229, description with figure of head; MUlais 
(1895), pp. 60-3, description and sketches of a Pallali shot in the Middel- 
burg district of tlie Transvaal ; Kirby (1896), p. 546, native names and 
habits in the Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 143, horn measure- 
ments ; Kirby (1899), p. 328, distribution in Mozambique; Kirby (1899a), 
p. 323, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Pallah of English ; Roode or Rooibok of Dutch 
Colonists ; Pala of Bechuanas (Lichtenstein and Burchell) and of Basutos 
(Kirby) ; Impala of Zulus, Swazis (Kirby) and of Matabele (Selous) ; Impaya 
of Shangaans (Kendall) ; Eepala of Makalakas ; Inzezo of Masubias ; Kug-ar 
of Masaras (Selous). 

Description. — General colour fulvous brown, darkest on the 
back and upper part of the sides, paler at the lower part of the 
sides and pure white below, hair thin, fine and lying fiat and 
smooth ; rhinarium a V-shaped bare space narrowly bordering the 
nostrils above only ; no antorbital gland ; a white patch above and 
in front of the eye, chin and throat also white ; a dark patch in 
front of the eye and on the crown of the head often present, but by 
no means constant ; ears moderate, fulvous posteriorly with white 
hairs inside and a black edging round the tip. Limbs slender, 
with no false hoofs, the true hoofs short, triangular and pointed, 
with a ring of white above them ; attached to the lower ends of 
the canon bones of the hind legs is a brush of very dark brown 
hairs surrounding the opening of a peculiar gland containing a fatty 
secretion ; a long narrow stripe of the same dark brown colour on 
either side of the tail on the buttocks ; tail nearly reaching the 
hocks, rather slender with a median black or dark brown stripe 




commencing on the posterior part of the back and continued nearly 
to the tip, the sides being the same colour as the back, gradually 
paling to white at the end. 

Female like the male, but without horns and with four mammae. 
Horns graceful, lyrate, convex forwards below, concave above, 
evenly spreading ringed to within a few inches of the tips. , 

Fig. 55. — Head of a male Pallah [Aeinjceros melampiis) 
(Book of Antelopes.) 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 4 ft. 8 ; 
tail 10-50, with terminal hairs 13 ; height at shoulders 34 inches ; 
ear 5'50; from ear opening to nose tip 11-50. 

A male skull measures 11-10 in total length, and 4-90 in breadth. 


The length of the horns varies a good deal in different parts of 
Africa, those from East Africa being the longest, measuring about 
22 in. in a straight line ; the largest yet recorded are a pair 
obtained by Lord Delamere in East Africa, which measured 30 
along the curves, and 24 straight ; the longest pair from South 
Africa, recorded by Ward, are a pair belonging to the Hon. Walter 
Rothschild, measuring 26| along the curve, and 21 straight. 

Distribution. — There can be little doubt that the pallah 
never existed in Cape Colony proper, and that Kuruman, in 
Bechuanaland, where it was first found, was its most southern 
limit ; although now extinct in this locality, it is still found along 
the Limpopo and its affluents, in Zululand, the Eastern Transvaal, 
Portuguese East Africa and throughout Ehodesia, in suitable 
localities, and where not persecuted. North of the Zambesi it 
extends through Nyasaland, Mozambique and East Africa, both 
German and English, as far as the White Nile at Scherk-el Akaba, 
according to Heuglin. 

The South African Museum possesses a fine mounted male from 
near Beira, and a young male with incipient horns from Komati- 
Poort in the eastern Transvaal. 

History and Variation. — The earliest published description of 
the pallah is to be found in the account of Truter and Somerville's 
expedition to Bechuanaland, published in Barrow's voyage to 
Cochin China in 1806. While the explorers were staying at Litakoo 
in 1801, the Boer hunters attached to the party brought in several 
new animals, among them one of the present species, of which they 
gave a very good description under the native name. Subse- 
quently Lichtenstein, when returning from a visit to the same 
place in 1805, obtained a male at Kosi fountain, a little further 
south, which he described under the Latin designation it has since 

Of recent years, Matschie, Thomas and Lorenz have separated 
the pallahs of German East Africa, Nyasaland and Barotseland 
respectively, from the type as distinct species or sub-species, but the 
differences appear to be trifling, and in addition to that, the colora- 
tion and dimensions of the animal appear to be by no means 
constant even in the same locality. 

Habits. — The pallah is never found in the open country or very 
far from a river; its favourite resorts seem to be the forest-clad banks 
of streams where it finds plenty of shelter with occasional open 
spaces. It is a gregarious animal, consorting in herds of varying 


numbers, from small family parties to troops of as many as two 
hundred ; such large congregations usually consist of females alone, 
or females with one or two old males, the young males keeping by 
themselves in small parties ; when undisturbed they are easy to 
shoot since they almost always stop and look round after going a 
short distance ; where persecuted, however, they naturally become 
far more wary ; the alarm note is a whistle, and during the rutting 
season the males are very noisy, giving vent to a deep guttural 
bark. Their pace is moderate and not to be compared with that 
of a springbuck. Their powers of leaping are extraordinary, Kirby 
measured three successive bounds of 26, 16 and 28 ft., making 70 ft. 
in all ; they live entirely on grass, and drink three times a day. 
Nothing appears to be known about their breeding, but the young 
are born in November or December, and are said to be half grown 
in March, 

Only two examples have apparently ever been brought to Europe, 
and these did not live very long. 

71. Aepyceros petersi. The Angolan Pallah 

Aepyeeros petersi, Bocage, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1878, p. 741 ; P. L. Sclater, 

Proc. Zool. Soc. 1890, p. 460 ; P. L. Sclater and 0. Tliomas, Bk. 

Antelopes, iii, p. 25, fig. 48 [woodcut of head] (1897). 

Description. — Similar so far as is yet known, to A. melampus 

in all respects, except that on the face there is a prominent brown 

patch running along the top of the muzzle. 

Distribution. — The Angolan pallah was described by Professor 
Barboza de Bocage, from specimens procured by d'Anchieta at 
Capangombe and Humbe, in the Province of Mossamedes, north 
of the Cunene Eiver in Angola. In 1889, Captain F. Cookson 
obtained a pallah belonging to this species, in Kaoko-land, south 
of the Cunene in German South-west Africa. This brings the 
animal within our limits. 

The species is not represented in either the South African or 
British Museums. 






Antidorcas, Sundevall, K. Vet. Ahacl. Handl., 1845, 

p. 271 (1817) A. euchore. 

Antelopes of medium size, with the rhinarium much reduced, 
and no knee brushes ; false hoofs present ; hinder part of the back 
provided with a peculiar " fan " of long hairs erectile at the will of 
the animal. 

Fig. 56. — Side view of skull and horns of Antidorcas euchore (| nat. size). 

Skull small, with deep antorbital fossae, no lachrymal vacuities, 
and very large open posterior nares ; the anterior upper premolar 
generally absent, the lower one always, so that the dentition is 
i. §, c. f , pm. ^-^, m. I =: 28 or 30, in this differing from other 
genera of the family [except Saiga] all of which have three pre- 
molars above and below. 


Horns of males stout, strongly ringed, lyrate and doubly twisted, 
the lower portion convex inwards and forwards, the upper portion 
outwards and backwards, the points turned inwards ; female also 

Only one recent species, the springbuck, formerly associated 
with the genus Gazella, but easily distinguished therefrom by its 
dentition and by its erectile "fan" is generally recognised. It is 
confined to Africa south of the Zambesi. 

72. Antidorcas euchore. The Speingbuck. 

Antilope marsupialis, Zimmermann, Geogr. Gesch. ii, p. 427 (1780). 
Antilope eucliore, Zimmermann, Geogr. Gesch. iii, p. 269 (1783) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 72 (1832) ; Liclitenstein, Darstellung 

Saugeth. pi. vii (1834). 
Antilope saccata, Boddaert, Elench. Anim. p. 142 (1785). 
Antilope saltans, Kerr, Linn. An, K. p. 312 (1792) \iiee Pallas]. 
Antilope pygarga, Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 315 (1811). 
Gazella euchore, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joicrn. ii, p. 191 (1834) 

Broohe, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1873, p. 550 ; BucMeij, ibid. 1876, pp. 282, 

291 ; Selous, ibid. 1881, p. 757. 
Antidorcas eucliore, Sundevall, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. 1845, p. 271 

(1847); Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 67 (1861); P. L. 

Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bh. Antelopes, iii, p. 55, pi. Ii & fig. 53 [horns] 


Literature. — Masson (1776) p. 281, earliest mention of springbuck 
observed in the cold Bokkeveld ; AUamand, Dutch ed. Buffon iv (1778), 
p. 142, pi. Ix, gives a notice of the springbuck ; Sparrman, K. Vet. Akad. 
Handl., Stockholm (1780) p. 275, description; Buffon (1782) suppl. vi, 
p. 176, translation of AUamand, and further description from Foster ; 
Sparrman (1785) ii, p. 88, account of large herds met with on the plains 
of the Fish Eiver, with plate ; Thunberg (1795) ii, p. 24, as met with in the 
Bokkeveld in 1773, described as Capra lyijgarga ; Burchell (1824) ii, 
p. 109, account of habits on the karoo of Hanover ; Harris (1840) figured 
on pi. iii, with a description of habits of " trek bokken " ; Gumming (1855) 
i, pp. 62, 68, springbucks and their habits and migrations ; Livmgstone 
(1857) p. 56, on habits ; Bryden (1889) pp. 226, 296, account of habits 
and shooting, with plate ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892) p. 29, pi. vi, fig, 
20, description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893) pp. 376, 509, 
account of and distribution in Khama's country ; Lydekker (1893) p. 288, 
description and habits ; Millais (1895) pp. 14-17, habits and shooting, 
in the Beaufort West division of the Colony, with illustration of their 
attitudes and heads ; Ward (1896) p. 163, horn measurements and dis- 
tribution; Scully, "Between Sun and Sand" (1898) in chapter viii, p. 99, 


a very detailed account of the "trek bokken" in Bushmanland will be 
found ; Bryden (1899) p. 332, range and habits ; Cronwriglit Schreiner in 
Cosmopolitan Mag., vol. xxvi, for Febr. (1899) p. 483, and Cape Times 
newspaper of March 17th (1899) account of the trekboks in 1896. 

Vernacular Names. — Springbuck of the English, Springbok, or some- 
times Pronk-bok of the Dutch colonists ; Ibadi of the Amaxosa (Cloete) ; 
Tsepe, or Insaypee, of Bechuanas and Eetsaype of Makalakas (Selous). 

Description. — General colour rufous fawn, slightly darker pos- 
teriorly, hair smooth and close-lying, and a little longer on the upper 
part of the neck of the male, forming an incipient mane ; underside 
of neck, chest, belly and inside of limbs pure white, separated from 
the pale brown of the back by a very conspicuous dark brown 
lateral band ; rhinarium a narrow line of bare skin bordering the 
nostrils above ; all the face and chin pure white, save for a stripe 
of dark brown running from the base of the horns to the angle of 
the mouth, interrupted by the eye and the black bare space in front 
of it, in the centre of which is placed the opening of the antorbital 
gland ; ears long and pointed, fawn brown posteriorly, dirty white 
within, with a few long white hairs along the edges ; limbs fine 
and slender, with well-developed false hoofs, and narrow, pointed 
true ones. Along the middle of the hinder half of the back there is 
a. line of long white hairs, which under ordinary circumstances are 
hidden by the overlapping brown hairs on either side ; these white 
hairs, of which the longest attain a length of 5 or 6 inches, can be 
erected at the will of the animal and form the so-called fan ; the 
white of the fan is continued down over the rump to the belly; 
tail rather short the pr6ximal half stout and white, the distal half 
black and slender with a posteriorly directed fringe of long black 

Female like the male, but with more slender horns and four 

A very young male, with horns about an inch long, has a brown 
patch running along the top of the muzzle to the nose. 

Out of eight skulls examined, 4 adult males, 2 young males, 
and 2 females, only one, an adult male, had the anterior premolar 
present on one side of the upper jaw ; in two other males, bowever, 
there were small sockets showing that this tooth had been lost ; 
the other five skulls were without traces even of the sockets ; in the 
lower jaw the anterior premolars seem to be constantly absent. 

Horns of the male as described above under this genus, those 
of the female more slender, less prominently ringed and more 


straight, with the tips, as in the males, directed inwards and a little 

Dimensions. — From a momited male ; head and body 4ft. 9 ; 
tail 8-50, with terminal hairs, 13 ; height at shoulder 2ft. 6 ; 
length of ear 5-75 ; from ear to nose-tip 9*0 ; skull, length 9-20, 
breadth, 4-20. 

A good pair of male horns in the South African Museum 
measures 14 in. along the curve, those of a female 10-25 ; the 
largest male pair recorded by Ward reach 19'0, the female 13. 

Distribution.— The springbuck is found at the present day, 
throughout the whole of the dryer districts of the Colony from 
Namaqualand in the west, to Albert and Queenstown in the east 
and south as far as the Zwartberg and other ranges forming the 
southern boundary of the Karoo ; it is not, and never has been, 
found in the Cape, Stellenbosch, and other south-western and 
southern districts ; north of the Colony it extends throughout 
German South-west Africa, Bechuanaland, the Orange Free State, 
and the high veld of the Transvaal, and it is found along the desert 
and dry strip of coast north of the Cunene Eiver certainly as 
far as Benguella. It does not appear to reach Mashonaland or 
Matabeleland proper. 

Over a considerable part of its range, especially in the more 
settled parts of the Colony, the Free State, and the Transvaal, this 
antelope only now exists within the fences of the large farms, and 
can hardly be said to be any longer truly feral. 

The South African Museum possesses a good mounted series 
of males, females, and young of various ages, from Culmstock 
in the Middelburg, and Langberg in the Kimberley divisions 

History. — Perhaps the earliest mention of the springbuck was 
made by Masson, an English botanical collector, who travelled in 
South Africa in 1771-3. Subsequently Colonel Gordon shipped to 
Holland a dozen live examples, of which one only survived the 
voyage, and was described and figured by Allamand, in the Dutch 
edition of Buffon, while still living in the Menagerie of the Prince 
of Orange under the name of "La Gazelle a bourse sur le dos." 
Buffon, in his supplement published in 1782, reprinted Allamand's 
account and added additional information derived from the Fosters, 
who spent some time at the Cape, when with Captain Cook on his 
second voyage ; it is on these two early descriptions that Zimmer- 
mann founded the Latin names Antilope viarsupialis and J^. eicchore, 


of which the former has priority by three years ; as, however, it 
has been altogether lost sight of, and the latter name is miiversally 
used it seems a pity to revert to the older name, though doubtless 
it will before long be revived by some ardent purist in nomenclature. 

i\.moDg modern accounts that of Millais is illustrated with a 
life-like series of sketches made from the living animals on the 
veld, and that of Scully contains a vivid description of the great 
migrations which even now take place, though not on so vast a 
scale as formerly. 

Habits. — Springbucks are always found on the open dry plains 
so characteristic of the central and western parts of the Colony ; 
they seldom seek any shelter except during very cold weather 
or during the lambing season, when they sometimes resort to 
bush country ; they are found in herds of varying size, and were 
often seen associating with gnus, quaggas, ostriches and blesboks 
in the old days ; now alas ! in the Colony they are almost the only 
survivors of the "open country bucks." Their pace is very great 
exceeding that of a horse, though with a very good greyhound they 
can be run down; this, it is said, is never possible in the case of the 
blesbok. "When startled, or even in pure playfulness, they take 
great leaps up into the air with the head down, body curved and 
legs held quite stiff and close together, at the same time displaying 
by the action of the skin muscles the singular white fan, already 
alluded to, which resembles, according to Harris, the spread tail of 
a peacock ; the fan is never fully displayed except when leaps are 
taken. This whole display is termed by the Boers pronken, which 
is the same, I imagine, as the English to prink or make a brave 
show ; when disturbed or startled, after a few preliminary "pronks," 
they speed off up wind, and should they come to a road or track 
they clear it with a great bound of from 10 to 20ft. without the 
least exertion. After a time, like most South African ante- 
lopes, they turn to gaze at the unexpected object of their fears, 
but usually so wary are they, that this is well beyond the reach of 
the bullet. 

Their cry is described as a feeble bleat ; their food consists of 
the various small bushes, chiefly belonging to the orders Covipositae 
and Portulacaceae with which the karoo is clothed, but further 
north in Bechuanaland, where the country is covered with grass 
the springbok finds its nourishment on this ; they are able to go 
without water for a considerable time, though if it should be 
accessible they drink every second day. 


The young are born in November, after a gestation period of 
about 171 days, and in the case quoted, which took place in the 
Zoological Gardens at Cologne, the single young was about 18in. 
in height at birth, and was generally of a yellowish grey colour with 
the side stripes but little marked. 

The flesh is excellent eating, as I myself can affirm, and it is 
usually quite easily obtained during the season in Cape Town. 

Far the most interesting fact, however, in the natural history of 
the springbuck is its periodical migrations, about the marvels of 
which much has been written, but about which little is known 
which will assist in forming an adequate theory on the subject. 
The Boers divide the springbucks into two classes, the " hou-bokken," 
which remain fairly constantly on one veld, and the " trek-bokken," 
which are migratory, and generally smaller and less well nourished. 
In the old days the numbers of animals taking part in a trek were 
extraordinary, and many stories are told illustrating this, such as 
their passing through the streets of small villages, their being so 
crushed together that they could be killed by a blow with a stick, 
and even that herds of sheep and their guardians who have met 
trek-bokken in a narrow pass or " poort " between the hills have 
been entirely overwhelmed and trampled to death. In 1896 there 
was a great trek, and on the borders of the Prieska and Hope Town 
divisions in the north of the Colony Mr. Cronwright Schreiner came 
across an undisturbed portion of the herd completely covering an 
immense amount of country, the numbers of which he and his 
companions estimated at 500,000 at the very lowest computation. 

During the trek an enormous destruction takes place ; all the 
neighbouring farmers and their people turn out and kill thousands ; 
the skins are cured and the flesh made into " biltong," or sun-dried 
and cured meat for future consumption. In addition to their human 
foes the herds are followed by various wild carnivores, leopards, 
hunting dogs, hyaenas and jackals, and even strange antelopes are 
carried along with the flood ; Mr. Cronwright Schreiner, on the 
occasion above alluded to, heard of the appearance in the neigh- 
bourhood of three hartebeests and a kudu, animals which have been 
unknown in those parts for many years. 

The cause of the migration is doubtless due to want of water 
and consequent absence of food. 

There is no doubt that the swarms which migrate towards the 
more settled parts of the Colony come from the vast tracts of almost 
waterless country occupying the districts of Namaqualand, Ken- 


hardt and Calvinia in the north-west of the Colony known as 
" Bushmanland," and probably these again are re-inforced by 
additional numbers coming from the desert country to the north of 
the Orange Eiver and the Kalahari. 

Mr. Scully, who has resided in Namaqualand, states that "the 
trek is due to the instinct that impels the does to drop their young 
somewhere on the western fringe of the desert, which extends north 
and south for several hundred miles." 

This fringe is the limit of the western rains. These fall between 
April and September when the desert is at its driest, and bring out 
the green herbage necessary for the new-born fawns. The fawning 
season over " the herd melts slowly away, and flows gradually east- 
wards until some night, distant flashes of lightning on the cloudless 
horizon indicate where perhaps hundreds of miles away the first 
thunderstorm of the season is labouring down from where its bolts 
were forged in the far north. Next morning not a buck will be 
visible, all will have vanished like ghosts, making for the distant 
track of the rain." 

Subfamily HIPPOTRAaiNAE. 

Antelopes with long horns, curved, straight or spiral, of nearly 
equal development in both sexes ; rhinarium very small, no ant- 
orbital glands, four mammae. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Horns stout and scimitar-shaped, rising vertically 

upward from the head Hii^potragus, p. 214. 

B. Horns slender and straight, running back parallel 

to the back Oryx, p. 224. 


Egoceros, Desmarest, Mammalogie, ii, p. 475 (1822) 

[nee Aegoceros, Pallas] H. leucophaeus. 

Aigoceros, H. Smith, Griff. Anim. Kingd. v, p. 324 

(1827) [nee Pallas] H. leucophaeus. 

"Ozanna, Beichenbach, Vollst. Naturgeseh. In- u. 

Auslandes, iii, p. 126 (1845) H. niger. 

Hippotragus, Sundevall, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. 

Stockholm, 1844, p. 196(1846) H. leucophaeus. 

* This name has been recently "rediscovered" and is adopted by some 
authors ; its exact date however seems uncertain. 


Antelopes of large size and graceful and slender form with a 
comparatively small rhinarium occupying the V-shaped space above 
and between the nostrils ; tail long and tufted ; mammae four ; 
accessory hoofs well developed. 

Skull long with a very convex frontal region, the large horn 
cores rising almost vertically immediately above the orbits ; lachrymal 
fissure almost obsolete ; antorbital fossae absent, premaxillae not 
reaching the nasals. 

Horns long, evenly divergent, vertical basally, thence strongly 
curved backwards like a scimitar, heavily ringed ; females provided 
with horns similar to those of the male but of shorter and more 
slender build. 

This genus is now confined to Africa south of the Sahara, though 
formerly it ranged over northern Africa, Southern Europe and Asia, 
as is evidenced by fossil remains from the Miocene and Pliocene 
beds of those countries. 

Three quite distinct species can now be recognised, all of them 
inhabitants, or formerly inhabitants, of South Africa ; of one of these, 
the roan (H. equinus), four sub-species or geographical races, in- 
habiting different regions in Africa are distinguishable. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. General colour pale grey or brown, horns only 

slightlj' exceeding the head in length. 
a. Smaller about 45 in. at the shoulder ; face 

without black markmgs H. leucoi^haeus, p. 215. 

h. Larger about 55 in. at the shoulder, face with 

strongly contrasted black markings H. equinus, p. 217. 

B. General colour black, horns much longer than 

the head H. niger, p. 221. 

73. Hippotragus leucophaeus. The Blaauwbok. 

Antilope leucophaea, Pallas, Misc. Zool. p. 4 (1766) ; id. Sjncil. Zool. 

i, p. 6 (1767), xii, p. 12 (1777) ; Schreber, Sdugeth. pi. cclxxviii. 

(1784) ; Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 313 (1811). 
Aigoceros leucophaea, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 68 (1832) ; A. 

Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 185 (1834). 
Hippotragus leucophaeus, Sundevall, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. 1844, p. 

197 (1846); Kohl, Ann. kJc. Hofmtis. Wieni, p. 83 (1886) ; P. L. Sclater 

and 0. Thomas Bh. of Anteloj^es, iv, p. 5, pi. Ixxvi. & fig. 88 [horns] 



Literature. — Kolben (1731), ii, p. 114, described as the " Blew Goat" ; 
Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, pp. 168, 194, pi. sx, description copied from Alla- 
mand and note on the Fosters' account; Sparrman (1785), ii, p. 236, not 
met with but alluded to ; le VaUlant (1790), i, p. 130, accomit of shootmg 
in Caledon ; Thunberg 1795), ii, p. 113, note on habits and occurrence; 
Barrow (1801), i, p. 350, note on extinction ; Lichtenstein (1812), i, p. 166, 
note on its extinction; Bryden (1889), p. 290; Lydekker (1893), p. 245, 
remarks on extinction. 

Vernacular Name. — Blaauw-bok of the colonists, not to be confounded 
with the Blaauw bokje or little blue buck {Cej^Tialoplius monticola). 

Description. — Size much less than that of the two following 
species ; general colour bluish grey ; forehead brown, upper lip and 
a patch in front of the eye lighter than the general colour ; there 
are none of the marked black and white contrasts so prominent in 
H. equinu ; ears not so long or so pointed as in H. equinus, and 
without black tufts at their tips ; mane on the nape of the neck 
short, inconspicuous and directed forwards; throat mane almost or 
quite absent ; belly dull whitish, not contrasted with the sides ; 
limbs with an inconspicuous darker line down the anterior faces ; 
tail-tuft greyish but little darker than the general colour. 

Skull unknown ; none are preserved in any Museum so far as 
is known. 

Horns like those of H. equinus, but smaller, and more slender 
and perhaps a little longer in proportion to the size of the animal. 
(Sclater and Thomas). 

Dimensions. — Height at the withers of the male in Paris, 45 in., 
of female in Vienna, 40 in. ; horns of the Paris specimen measure 
21-|- in, round the curve and have 28 rings ; the pair in the British 
Museum are rather shorter, measuring 20 inches. 

Distribution. — This animal, which is without the slightest 
doubt extinct, was formerly confined to the south-western corner of 
the Colony, now occupied by the districts of Caledon, Bredasdorp 
and Swellendam. 

The last recorded specimen obtained is perhaps that mentioned 
by Lichtenstein as being in the Berlin Museum, though now it does 
not seem to be there ; it was shot in 1799. 

At the present time only five complete mounted specimens are 
known to be in existence, they are to be found in the Museums of 
Paris, Leyden, Vienna, Stockholm and Upsala. 


74. Hippotragus equinus. The Koan Antelope. 

Antilope equina, Desmarest, N. Diet. cVHist. Nat. (1), xxiv, p. 4, tabl. 
p. 32 (1804). 

Capra aethiopica, Schinz, Cuv. Thierr. i, p. 403 (1821). 

Capra jubata, Goldfus, Schr. Sckigeth. v, pi. cclxxxvii (1824). 

Antilope (Aigoceros) equina, H. Smith, Griff. Anim. Kingd. v, p. 824 
(1827) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Ca/p. p. 69 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. 
Quart. Jour, ii, p. 185 (1834). 

Antilope (Aigoceros) barbata, H. Smith, Griff. Anim. Kingd. v, p. 325 

Antilope truteri, Fischer, Syn. Mamm. p. 478 (1829). 

Hippotragus equinus, Sundevall, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. StocJchohn, 
1844, p. 197 (1846) ; BucMeij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 288 [distribu- 
tion] ; Lorenz, Ann. hJc. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz. p. 62 (1894) 
[near Victoria Falls] ; Bendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 362. 

Aigoceros equina, A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm., pi. xxvi 

Aegoceros leucopliaeus, Gray, List Mamm. B. M. p. 158 (1843) [nee 
Pallas] . 

Hippotragus leucophaeus, Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 75 
(1861) ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 755 [nee Pallas] . 

Hippotragus equinus typicus, P. L. Sclater and O. Thomas, Blc. of 
Antelopes, iv, p. 13, pi. Ixxvii & fig. 90 [head] (1899). 

Literature. — Daniell (1805), figm*ed on pi. xxiv, as the Tackhaitse ; 
Barrow (1806), p. 415, seen by Messrs. Truter aud SomervUle near 
Kurunian ; Lichtenstein (1812) ii, p. 283, occurrence in south Buchuana- 
land ; Harris (1838), p. 184, first met with in the Eustenburg district of the 
Transvaal, p. 386, description with allusion to Daniell's Tackhaitse ; Harris 
(1840), figured on pi. xviii ; Gumming (1855), i, p. 157, met with this antelope 
in the Herbert division in 1843 ; NicoUs and Egiington (1892), p. 51, pi. ii, 
fig. 7, description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 503, past and 
present distribution; Lydekker (1893), p. 243, note on; Millais (1895), 
p. 126, habits in south-east Mashonaland with sketches ; Kirby (1896) 
p. 548, vernacular names, distribution and habits in the eastern Transvaal ; 
Ward (1896), p. 181, horn measurements ; Selous (1899), p. 406, range and 

Vernacular Names. — Eoan of English ; Bastard Gemsbok or Bastard 
Eland, of the Dutch Colonists ; Qualata of Northern Bechuanas, Taikaitsa 
of Southern Bechuanas ; Ee-taka of Matabele ; Ee-pala-pala-cheena of 
Makalakas ; Impengo eetuba of Masubias (Selous) ; 'Mtagaisi of Swazis 
and Zulus, Klabakila of Basutos (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour, a pale brown, becoming some- 
what darker on the hinder part of the body ; hair smooth, short 
and somewhat coarse, rather longer on the lower side of the neck, 
forming a throat mane ; head parti-coloured, the nose, upper and 




lower lips, chin, stripe from the base of the horns past the front of 
the eye, and a rounded patch behind the eye white, rest of the face 
including the forehead and cheeks very dark brown, almost black ; 
the white patch in front of the eyes ends in a considerable tuft of 
very conspicuous longer hairs; ears very long and pointed, grey 
round the base and posteriorly, pencilled with black at the tips ; 
in life the ears droop considerably as figured by Millais.* A dorsal 

■^ ' ' 'i. As- - 




Fig. 57. — Head of the Roan (Hippotragiis eqitinus), 
(Book of Antelopes.) 

mane of stiff upstanding hairs, the longest attaining a length of 
five inches, pale grey at the base becoming brown above and finally 
black, extends from behind the ears to the middle of the back ; 
chest and inside of forelimbs chestnut-black, outside of limbs the 
same colour as the back ; belly and inside of hind limbs white ; 
tail reaching the hocks with a brush of long black hairs at its 

This point is not correctly shown in the figure. 


The female is slightly smaller than the male with the black of 
the face not so well marked and with four mammae ; the young 
again have the face almost like the body colour. 

According to Selous, there is considerable variation in the 
general colour of this antelope, some being of a strawberry roan, some 
dark brown, others almost white. 

Horns stout and strong, cylindrical, transversely ridged, somewhat 
divergent, curved backwards through a quarter of a circle, rather 
short for the size of the animal ; those of the female similar but 
shghter, shorter and less heavily ridged. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male ; head and body 8 ft. 1 ; tail 
18-5, with terminal hairs 24-0 ; height at shoulder 54-0, of a female 
62'0 ; length of ear from notch ll-O, from ear-opening to nose-tip 
19'0. A skull measures in extreme length 17'0, in breadth 7'10. 
Male horns average 29 to 30 along the curve, female 24; the 
record given by Ward is 33, the bearer of which was a specimen 
obtained in northern Matabeleland. 

Distribution and Geographical Yariation.— The roan is found 
all over Africa south of the Sahara except in the region of the great 
Congo forest ; within this large range it exhibits as is natural, a 
certain amount of variation from what may be called the typical 
form originally described from South Africa ; several of these 
geographical varieties have been considered as distinct species, but 
until a little more is known about them and direct comparisons can 
be carefully made, it seems best to regard them as sub-species only. 

The following are the sub-species recognised in the "Book of 

(1) H. eqtmius typicus, from South Africa. 

(2) H. equinus rufopallidiis, Neumann, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1898, 
p. 850, from German and British Bast Africa. 

(3) H. equinus haheri, Heuglin, Ant. & Buff. N. 0. Africa, p. 16, 
pi. ii, fig. 6 (1863), from the Upper Nile Valley. 

(4) H. equinus gambianus, P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, Bk. 
Antelopes iv, p. 13, pi. Ixxviii (1899) from West Africa. 

It is however, only with H. equinus typicus that we are here 
concerned ; there is no evidence that this subspecies ever extended 
south of the Orange Eiver, although Sir A. Smith does suggest 
that it once did so ; north of that river it was formerly found in 
Griqualand West, and southern Bechuanaland, though hardly now 
surviving in those regions ; it is still fairly abundant in German Africa, in Matabeleland and Mashonaland, in the south- 


eastern part of ^Yhich it was recently obtained by Millais ; it is also 
found, tbougb now very rarely, in the eastern districts of the Trans- 
vaal, and has been recorded as far south as Swaziland. North of the 
Zambesi the roan is not uncommon in Barotse, Manica and Nyasa- 
land, but whether these should be referred to the typical or " rufo- 
pallida " sub-species is uncertain. 

The South African Museum possesses a good mounted pair shot 
by Selous in Mashonaland in 1883. 

History. — The roan was first recognised as a new antelope 
under the Sechuana name of Takhaitse, by Messrs. Truter and 
Somerville, who in 1801, saw one in the neighbourhood of the 
Kuruman river in Bechuanaland ; the animal was not obtained, but 
was sketched from the distance by the artist Daniell, who accom- 
panied the expedition, and in consequence of his attaching a 
prominent beard to its chin in his subsequently published work, 
caused considerable confusion to later writers. In the meantime, 
Desmarest published a short description from a specimen of un- 
known locality in the Paris Museum, and it was not until some 
years later that the identity of Desmarest " equine antelope" with 
Daniell's "bearded antelope" was finally decided. Sir A. Smith, 
among writers of the middle of the century, and Millais among 
more recent authors, give excellent accounts of the habits of this 

Habits. — Eoans frequent hilly and open country with scattered 
bush ; they consort together in small troops, the number of which 
does not usually exceed 12 individuals, sometimes all females, some- 
times with one male ; the males too, are often solitary. Their pace 
is a gallop, and is not very fast ; they can be ridden down with 
quite a moderate horse. When wounded, or even when only 
pressed, they will come to bay and charge very fiercely ; an instance 
of this is given by Millais, where a horse was killed, and the rider 
had only a very narrow escape. 

When wounded, the roan gives vent to loud sounds described 
by Buckley as a sort of hissing snort, by Millais as a loud bellow. 
Though this animal has been brought alive to Europe on a good 
many occasions, so far none from South Africa seem to have found 
their way, at any rate, to the London Zoological Gardens. 


75. Hippotragus niger. The Sable Antelope. 

Aigoceros niger, Hams, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1838, p. 2 ; id. Trans. Zool. 

Soc. ii, p. 213, pi. xxxix (1841). 
Hippotragus niger, Sundevall, K. Vet. Akad. Handl., Stockliohn, 1844, 

p. 197 (1846); Laijard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 75 (1861); 

BacMeij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 288 ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 

1881, p. 756 ; Lorenz, Ann. kk. Hofmus. Wien ix, notiz, p. 62 

(1894) [Limpopo E. and Victoria Falls] ; Rendall, Proc. Zool. Soc. 

1895, p. 362 [Eastern Transvaal] ; P. L. Sclater and O. Thomas, Bk. 

Anteloj^es, iv, p. 31, pis. Ixxix, Ixxx and fig. 91 [head] (1899). 

Literature. — Harris (1838), pp. 256, 385, account of the discovery and 
shooting with description and measurements ; Harris (1840), figured on 
pi. xxiii, with description; Gumming (1855), ii, p. 6, first met with in 
Bamangwato Coiuitry ; Baldwin (1863), p. 186, met with the sable in the 
Marico district of the Transvaal in 1857, and figures it on a plate ; NicoUs 
and Eglington (1892), p. 50, pi. ii, fig. 5, description, distribution and 
habits ; Selous (1893), p. 191, note on habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 503, note 
on distribution; Lydekker (1893), p. 243, description and figure of head; 
Millais (1895), p. 133, account of habits with sketches in south-east 
Mashonaland ; Kirby (1896), p. 300, chapter on habits, p. 547, native names 
and distribution in the Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 178, horn 
measurements; Bryden (1897), p. 263, chapter on habits and hunting; 
Kirby (1899), p. 327, distribution in Mozambique ; Selous (1899a), p. 397, 
range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Sable or sometimes Harrisbuck of the English. 
Zwart-wit-pens {i.e. black-white belly) of the Dutch speaking Colonists ; 
Potoquane of the South Bechuanas ; Qualata inchu of Northern Bechuanas ; 
Umtjiele of Matabele ; Palapala of Makalakas (Selous) ; Inguarati and 
Maraballa of the Mashonas (Darling) ; Impalampala of Swazis and Ziilus, 
Palahala of Basuto (Kirby). 

Description. — General colour a very rich, deep brown ; indeed 
the adult males may be considered black ; hair of the neck not so 
long as that of the roan ; face with a median dark brown stripe 
from the horn bases to the nose-tip, bordered on either side by a 
white stripe commencing above the eye, passing along a ridge in 
front of it where the hairs are somewhat longer, and running down 
to the upper lip ; another brown stripe runs from below the eye 
forward to the nose on either side, rest of the face, upper and lower 
lips and chin white ; rhiuarium rather larger than that of the roan, 
crown of the head like the back ; ears moderate, very acutely 
pointed, white inside, pale reddish brown posteriorly, tipped darker. 
A black dorsal mane runs from the level of the ears to the middle of 
the back ; belly, inside of upper part of hind legs and rump pure 




white, sharply contrasted with the colour of the back ; tail like that 
of the roan, very dark brown, ending in a long black tuft. 

Female with more slender horns, and less dark in general colour ; 
the occipital region especially being of a reddish-brown and con- 
trasting with the rest of the body ; four mammae. 

Skull closely resembling that of the roan, but with longer 
premaxillae reaching the nasals, and with a longer palatal notch, 
reaching well beyond the level of the posterior molar. 

Fig. 58. — Head of the Sable Antelope [Hippotragus niger) 
(Book of Antelopes.) 

Horns much longer than those of the roan, somewhat laterally 
compressed, heavily ringed and backwardly curved ; those of the 
female similar, but shorter and more slender. 

Dimensions. — Of a male, adult but not very old ; head and body 
7 ft. 3 ; tail 15'0, with terminal hairs 24-0 ; height at shoulders 
49-50 (a large male often stands 54 to 56) ; ear from notch 8-0 ; 
from ear opening to nose-tip 17'50 ; a skull measures in length 
16-50 ; in breadth 6-25. Good male horns attain a length of from 


38 to 42 inches along the front curve, Ward's records are 46 from 
a specimen obtained by Mr. W. E. Bowker, in the Eastern 
Transvaal, and 45|- from .a specimen shot by Mr. J. Millais in 
south-east Mashonaland, and Mr. Selous states that he once 
measured a pair, one of which was 48, the other 47|- ; female horns 
are considerably smaller, the largest obtained by Mr. Selous 
measured 39^. 

Distribution. — The sable antelope was first obtained from the 
Magaliesberg or Cashan mountains, in the western part of the 
Transvaal, where, however, it appears to be now exterminated ; it 
is still found sparingly in south-western Ehodesia, but it is in the 
eastern Transvaal, Mashonaland, and the adjoining Portuguese 
•territory, that it occurs most abundantly. North of the Zambesi 
it extends throughout Mozambique and Nyasaland (whence there is 
a skin in the South African Museum) ; it is rare in German East 
Africa, north of which there seems no positive evidence of its occur- 
rence ; on the western side of Africa it is found near the Victoria 
Falls, and from there extends through Barotseland to southern 
Angola, where it was obtained by the botanist Welwitsch. 

In the South African Museum there is, in addition to the skin 
above mentioned, a good mounted pair obtained by Mr. Selous in 
1882, in Mashonaland. 

History. — To the celebrated Anglo-Indian Officer and Sports- 
man, Colonel W. Cornwallis Harris, belongs the sole credit of the 
discovery of this noble antelope. The event took place in 1836 on 
the northern slopes of the Cashan, or as they are now called the 
Magaliesberg range of mountains, which form the water-parting 
between the Vaal and the Limpopo rivers and which are now in 
the Eustenburg district of the Transvaal ; full accounts of the matter 
will be found in both Harris' works above quoted, and also in his 
paper in the Zoological Society's Proceedings ; his specimen, a 
male and the type of the species, is now in the British Museum. 
Of modern sportsmen, Kirby and Millais give very detailed accounts 
of the sable, the latter's work being embellished with sketches made 
in the field. 

Habits. — Sables seem to prefer the open, rolling, thinly- wooded 
high veld, but are also found in more thickly bushed low country 
to which they have probably been driven by persecution. They are 
gregarious in herds of from eight to forty individuals consisting, as 
a rule, of only one adult male, a few young males, and the rest 
females and young ; other old males are solitary or sometimes keep 
with three or four of their fellows. 


In speed they vary a good deal but are hardly equal to wilde- 
beest or sassaby ; it seems generally agreed that with a good horse 
they can be ridden down and, apart from pace, they are frequently 
circumvented owing to their insatiable curiosity. "When running 
they arch their heads so as to throw up and show off their horns 
and swing their tails from side to side. The only noise to which 
they give vent is a loud snort. 

The sable is a very dangerous animal to approach ; when at bay 
or wounded, it lies down and strikes out sideways with its horns ; 
Mr. Selous relates how he had four of his best dogs killed outright 
and four others very badly wounded in this way, though on this occa- 
sion the animal was standing at bay in a stream ; instances even 
have been told of lions being killed in this manner. 

The calves, of which as a rule only one is produced at a birth, 
are born mostly in November and December in Mashonaland after 
a period of gestation (as observed in Europe) of 272 to 281 days. 

Sables do very well in captivity ; Mr. Ehodes has a number 
of them in his grounds near Cape Town, where they breed regularly 
and form a most attractive group ; they are very tame and friendly 
and will come up to the edge of the paddock to lick the visitor's 
hand. Many, too, have been taken to Europe and are to be seen in 
the various Zoological Gardens there. 

Genus ORYX. 


Oryx, Blainville, Bull. Soc. Philom. p. 75 (1816) 0. gazella. 

Antelopes of large size with short forwardly directed dorsal 
manes, no antorbital glands, long tufted tails, false hoofs and four 

The skull differs from that of Hippotragus by being without the 
concave form of the forehead caused by the uprising of the horn 
cores, and is further distinguished by a considerable vacuity between 
the nasal, frontal, lachrymal and premaxillary bones. 

Horns present in both sexes, placed quite behind the orbits and 
directed backwards almost parallel to the back of the animal, ringed 
at their bases. 

Of this genus there are five species usually recognised, one of 
which is South African and is described below, the others, which 
are found in other parts of Africa and the deserts of south-eastern 
Asia, are as follows : — 


(1) 0. beisa (Eiippell), the beisa from Somaliland and Northern 

(2) 0. leucoryx (Pallas), the leucoryx from North Africa. 

(3) 0. callotis Thos., the pencil-eared beisa from British and 
German East Africa. 

(4) 0. beatrix Gray, the beatrix from Arabia and Syria. 

76. Oryx gazella. The Gemsbok. 

Capra gazella, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed. i. p. 96 (1766) [in part] . 
Antilope bezoartica, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 8 (1766) \_n6c Linn.] . 
Antilope recticornis, Erxlehen, Syst. Beg. Anim. p. 272 (1777). 
Antilope oryx, Pallas, S'pie. Zool. Geogr. xii. p. 16 (1777) ; Tliwnherg, 

Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 313 (1811). 
Antilope (Oryx) oryx, Blainville, Bull. Soc. Pliilom. p. 75 (1816) ; Smuts, 

Emmi. Mamm. Cai^). p. 71 (1832) ; Matscliie, S. B. nat. Fr. Berlin, 

p. 102 (1893). 
Oryx capensis, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 187 (1834) ; 

Ogilhy, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1836, p. 139 ; Buckley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 

1876, p. 289 ; 1877, p. 455 [distribution] . 
Oryx gazella. Gray, List Mamm. B. M. p. 156 (1843) ; id. Knoiusley 

Menagerie, p. 17, pi. xxiv, fig. 1, [juv] (1850) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. 

S. Afr. Mus. p. 76 (1861) ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 755 ; 

P. L. Sclater and 0. Thomas, BJc. Anteloiies, iv, p. 57, pi. ixxxiii (1899). 

Literature. — Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 155, pi. xvii, good description 
and figure from Allaniand; Sparrman (1785), ii, p. 234, account of syno- 
nomy, habits and structure ; Paterson (1790), p. 53, met with Gemsbok in 
Clanwilliam ; Barrow (1801), p. 55, met with Gemsbok in Willowmore ; 
Lichtenstein (1812), ii, p. 23, found Gemsbok plentiful in Aberdeen in 1804 ; 
Burchell (1822) ii. p. 23, notes the Gemsbok in the Hopetown district and 
describes it as A. oryx ; Steedman (1835), ii, pp. 15, 54, 56, and 119, devotes 
considerable attention to this animal and figures it ; Harris (1838), pp. 84, 
309, met with Gemsbok on the Molopo and Modder Rivers in Bechuanaland 
and the Orange Free State; Harris (1840), figured on pi. ix; Gumming 
(1855), i, p. 97, gives a good account of the habits and occurrence of this 
animal m the Philipstown and Hopetown divisions in 1843-4 and on p 
144 notes its occurrence in Herbert ; Andersson (1856), p. 279, describes the 
animal and its habits and gives a plate ; Livingstone (1857), p. 56, notes that 
it can subsist without water ; Bryden (1889), pp. 292, 386, with plate, account 
of distribution and approachuig extinction within the Colonial boundaries ; 
NicoUs and Eglmgton (1892), p. 49, pi. v, fig. 17, description, distribution 
and habits ; Bryden (1893), pp. 306, 504, occurrence in northern Bechuana- 
land ; Lydekker (1893), p. 246, description with figure ; Oswell in Badmin- 
ton Big Game Shooting (1894), i, p. 130, reminiscences of the Gemsbok, its 




habits and shooting in the fifties ; Ward (1896), p. 184, horn measurements ; 
Bryden (1899), p. 382, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Gemsbok of the Colonists ; Icowa of Amaxosa 
(Stanford) ; Kokama or Kukama of Bechuanas and Makalakas ; Ko of 
Masaras (Selous). 

Description. — General colour a fawn grey, fur close lying and 
coarse ; rhinarium not much developed, V-shaped, not extending to 
the lower side of the nostrils ; head and face parti-coloured, rich 
brown and white, the latter colour being distributed over the front 

Fig. 59. — The Gemsbok (Oryx gazella). 

of the muzzle, the upper and lower jaws and chin, in two longitu- 
dinal streaks running from the horn bases in front of the eye to the 
middle of the cheeks and connected across the forehead so as to 
form an H, and in two streaks running from the base of the horns 
behind the eye to the posterior part of the lower jaw ; the rest of 
the face, including a patch on the nose, two streaks down the 
cheeks, the occiput and the hinder part of the chin dark brown or 


black; ears moderate, rather broad, getting slightly darker at the 
tips ; a short dorsal mane forwardly directed runs along the neck 
from the withers and is dark brown in colour, behind the mane the 
line of colour is continued on, expanding on the haunches into a 
diamond-shaped patch ; from the chin a brown line runs along the 
lower side of the neck, where it gives rise to a long tuft of black 
hairs, to the chest where it expands and forks, being continued on 
either side along the flanks separating the grey of the sides from 
the white of the belly ; limbs white with complete dark brown rings 
on the upper part of leg and patches in front of the shin ; hoofs 
flattened and triangular. Tail long, reaching well below the hocks, 
basal portion short-haired and dark brown, terminal portion with a 
long black tuft. 

Female without throat tuft, with the diamond patch on the 
haunches less marked, and with slender and generally longer horns 
and four mammae. 

A young one, with horns about an inch in length, the tips of 
which are bent over and soft, is a very pale reddish brown all over, 
except a streak below the eye and the tail tuft, which are black. 

Horns springing from behind the orbits, long, straight, back- 
wardly directed, parallel to the line of the face, ringed for about half 
their length, and slightly divergent only. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted female; head and body 6ft. 3-5; 
tail 16 in., with terminal tuft 27*0; height at shoulders 45-0 
(Gordon Gumming gives 46*0 ; Nicolls and Eglington 48-0) ; ear 
from notch 7*0 ; from ear opening to nose-tip 15-5 ; a skull 
measures 16*0 in length by 6-25 in breadth. 

A good average length of the horns of either male or female is 
36"0 ; Selous gives 42 and 46'5 as the records met with by him for 
male and female respectively. Ward heads his list with a pair 
measuring 47'50, belonging to Mr. J. S. Jameson, the sex of which 
is not specified. 

Distribution. — The gemsbok is essentially a desert animal, and 
is only found in the drier parts of South Africa ; formerly it was 
widespread all over the karoo and central plains of the Golony. 
Paterson met with it in Glanwilliam on the Dorn Eiver, in 1778, 
and Gordon Gumming much later, in 1843-4, shot many in what 
are now the Philipstown and Hopetown divisions of the Colony. 
At the present time there are a considerable number still existing 
south of the Orange Eiver in Bushmanland, a desert tract between 
the divisions of Namaqualand, Kenhardt, Calvinia and Prieska; 


north of the river the gemsbok exists in considerable numbers in 
German South-west Africa and the bordering Kalahari, extending 
to the southern and western confines of Matabeleland and to 
Ngamiland. Beyond our limits the gemsbok is found along the 
narrow strip of desert country bordering the sea in the south of 
Angola as far as Mossamedes, as has been reported to me by 
residents there. 

History. — Bulfon in the 6th volume of his supplement gives 
a good description accompanied by a recognisable figure of the 
gemsbok drawn up from material furnished by the Fosters, who 
were at the Cape during Cook's second voyage ; to this is added 
further particulars derived from Allamand, who in turn obtained 
his information from Colonel Gordon in South Africa and a Dr. 
Klockner in Holland. 

It is very doubtful whether Linnaeus' and Pallas' first names 
quoted in the synonomy, really belong to the present animal ; they 
are both founded on Bay's " Indian gazelle, with long straight 
black horns," which possibly may have been the northern African 
form (0. beisa), but it will be best to leave the names as they 
now stand until further researches can be made into this vexed 

Habits. — The gemsbok and the springbok are the most typical 
desert-loving types among South African antelopes ; they are always 
found in a quite open country, or in one with only very stunted 
bush ; here the former associates in pairs, or in small family parties, 
though Gordon Gumming states that he saw as many as 25 
together on one occasion. Much discrepancy exists in the accounts 
of the speed of this animal ; the older authors such as Steedman, 
Gordon Gumming and Andersson state that it is almost impossible 
to ride one down' unless extremely well mounted; Selous and 
Nicolls and Eglington, on the other hand, assert that it is not nearly 
so fast as it is reported to be. Possibly, as Gordon Gumming 
suggests, the season and the individual condition of the animal may 
have a good deal to do with the matter. 

The gemsbok is generally stated never to drink, but this appears 
to be an exaggeration, as Andersson has seen many obtained by 
poisoning the pools of water where they do drink ; but there can be 
no doubt that they can exist independently of water for a long time, 
and that they are able to obtain the necessary liquid from the wild 
water-melons, {Citrullus sp., nat. order Cucurbitaccae) and from 
the watery bulbs {Pachypodium sp., nat. order Aijocynaceae and 


Brachystehna nat, order Asclepiadaceae) which they are able to dig 
up with their hoofs, and which are widely distributed over the 

The gemsbok is reported to be a very dangerous animal when 
brought to bay. Steedman tells a story of a horse being killed by 
the charge of a wounded animal, and even lions are said to have 
been found dead on the veld transfixed by its sharp horns ; dogs, 
too, are frequent sufferers, the animal lying down and sweeping 
with its horns in all directions and dealing great destruction among 

This animal has been often identified with the unicorn of fable 
and mythology, owing probably to the fact that when looked at 
from the side it appears to possess only one horn. Whatever may 
be the truth regarding this, the gemsbok has been adopted by the 
Cape Colony as the sinister supporter of its armorial bearings, the 
dexter one being the black wildebeest. (See frontispiece). 


Antelopes of large or median size, with a large rhinarium, 
approximated nostrils, and small antorbital glands ; horns present 
usually only in the males, not ringed or knotted but spirally twisted 
or straight ; body often decorated with white spots or stripes. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. Horns only in the males, spirally twisted. 

a. Smaller, anterior ridge of horns not well 

marked Tragelaphus, p. 225. 

6. Larger, anterior ridge of horns very strong Strepsiceros, p. 240. 

B. Horns in both sexes, straight with a spiral ridge 

encirclmg them Taurotragus, p. 246. 


Tragelaphus, Blainville, Bull. Soc. Philom. p. 75 

(1816) T. scriptus. 

Antelopes of moderate size with a large moist rhinarium, 
occupying all the space between the nostrils, and hardly extending 
to below them ; with antorbital gland present but small, and with 
a very small aperture, and with moderate very bushy tails. 


Horns in the males only, subangular, conical, and tapering, 
obscurely ridged and spirally twisted from the bases outwards and 

Skull with small supra-orbital pits and lachrymal fissures ; 
molars brachyodont, with small inner accessory columns in the 
upper jaw. 

The recent members of this genus are confined to the Ethiopian 
Eegion ; of the six species generally recognised three do not 
enter our limits, these are, — 

T. euryceros (Ogilby), the West African Bongo. 

T. gratus, ScL, the West African Harnessed Antelope. 

T. s^ekei, Scl., Speke's Antelope from Central Africa. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Hoofs normal. 

a. Smaller, about 34 '0 at shoulder, male with 
long hair around the neck and along the 

lower flanks T. scrij)tus, p. 230. 

a}. No transverse or longitudmal white lines 

in adult or young; male dark brown ... T. s. sylvaticus, p. 230. 
¥. Two or three obscure transverse stripes on 
the posterior part of the body; male 

brown T. s. roualeyni, p. 231. 

c^ Numerous white transverse and longitu- 
dinal stripes, male bright rufous T. s. typicus, p 231. 

h. Larger, about 38'0 at shoulder; male with 
long shaggy hair on the neck and along the 
flanks and belly T. angasi, p. 234. 

B. Hoofs greatly elongated and forming with the 

false hoofs a kind of swamp shoe ; male and 

female almost uniform, pale mouse brown ... T. selousi, p. 237. 

77. Tragelaphus scriptus. 

Owing to the great variability of this species, it is necessary to 
divide it into several sub-species or geographical races, of which four 
are distinguished by Mr. 0. Thomas, in his paper quoted below. 
Three of these are South African, the fourth, T. scriptus decula, is 
found only in Abyssinia and north-eastern Africa, and need not 
here concern us. 

(a) T. scriptus sylvaticus. The Colony Bushbuck. 

Antilope sylvatica, Siyarrman, K. Vet. ATiad, Handl. Stochholm, p. 197 


Antilope (Tragelaphus) syh-atica, Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Ca2). p. 87 
(1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 218 (1834). 

Tragelaphus sylvaticus, Grill, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. StochJiolm, ii, 2, 
p. 19 (1858) [Knysna] ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 78 
(1861) ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 752 ; Bendall, Proc. Zool. 
Soc. 1895, p. 359 [Eastern Transvaal] . 

Tragelaphus seriptus sylvaticus, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1891, p. 389. 

(b) T. seriptus roualeyni. Goedon Cumming's Bush Buck. 

Antelopus roualeynei, Gordon Gumming, Hunter's Life, 1st ed. ii, 
p. 165 (1850) ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 753. 

Tragelaphus seriptus roualeyni, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1891, p. 389 ; 
Lorens, Aim. IcJc. Hofmus. Wien xi, p. 6 (1896). 

(c) T. seriptus typicus. The Haenessed Antelope. 
Antilope scripta, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 8 (1766). 
Tragelaphus seriptus typicus, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1891, p. 388. 

Literature. — Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 192, description and figure 
from Allamand ; Sparrman (1785), i, p. 288, detailed account of the boschbok, 
vpith illustration on pi. vi, of vol. ii ; Moodie (1835), ii, p. 139, note on their 
abundance in the Alexandria division; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxvi; 
Drummond (1875), p. 379, occurrence and shooting in Zululand; Selous 
(1881), p. 285, the Zambesi and Chobe form figured and described ; NicoUs 
and Eglmgton (1892), p. 37, 38, pi. v, fig. 16, description, distribution and 
habits ; Lydekker (1893), p. 252, description and habits ; Millais (1895) 
p. 195, on the races found in South-east Mashonaland, figured on p. 69 ; 
Kirby (1896), pp. 117, 548, native names, habits, and geographical races of 
the Eastern Transvaal; Ward (1896), p. 194, horn measurements; Kirby 
(1899), p. 327, note on the bushbucks of Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 484, 
variation, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Boschbok of Dutch, Bushbuck of English Colonists ; 
Imbabala of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Zulus (Stanford) ; Swazis (Kirby) ; and 
Matabele (Selous) ; when referrmg definitely to a particular individual 
bushbuck, the Zxilus and Amaxosa make use of the term Unkonka for the 
male, and Imbabakazi for the female, but Imbabala is not applied to the 
doe alone as is so often stated ; Serolobutuku of Bechuanas (Selous) ; 
Shomo of Shangaans (Eendall). 

Description. — Of a male bushbuck {T. s. sylvaticus) ; general 
colour above and below a dark sepia brov^n, the hair rather coarse 
and smooth lying, the forehead and round the eyes somewhat more 
rufous ; upper and lower lip and chin, a spot below the eye, some- 
times another one in front of the eye, transverse patches on the 
upper and lower part of the neck, a patch on the inside of the legs 
above the knee, and on the inside of the lower part of the legs, a 


pair of round spots on the metacarpals and metatarsals, and finally 
a few scattered spots on the flanks all white ; ears broad and 
rounded, white inside with a row of long white hairs along the 
inner margins. Lower neck nearly always worn smooth and 
hairless, especially at the sides, possibly owing to the rubbing of 
the horns which are generally held back along the line of the neck ; 
a line of longer hairs forming a kind of erectile mane runs from in 
front of the shoulders to the base of the tail, these hairs are 
partially white and form an ill-defined white dorsal line; limbs 
slender, with small false hoofs and short compact true hoofs ; tail 
reaching about halfway to the hocks, very bushy, with long hairs 
throughout, brown above and white below. Female without horns, 
markedly smaller than the male, and with the sepia brown replaced 
by a lighter and more rufous brown, the dorsal mane being but 
little developed, and with four mammae. Young one like the 
female, but somewhat more spotted. 

Horns straight, black, spirally twisted as a rule hardly forming 
one turn, the anterior longitudinal ridge more or less obsolete, 
the posterior one marked, the bases roughened transversely, the 
tips smooth. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 4 ft. 10 ; 
tail 9-0, with terminal hairs 10-5; height at shoulder 34*0; from 
ear opening to nose-tip 10'5 ; ear from notch 5-75 ; a female 
measures 3 ft. 9-5 in extreme length, and 25-0 in height at the 

A skull measures 9-18 in length; 3-75 in breadth; and 2-45 
along the upper cheek teeth. 

Horns of an adult average 12 to 14 inches; the best pair recorded 
by Selous from the Colony, measured I65 in. ; Ward gives the 
record as 17| in., from near Zanzibar, while the largest South 
African head is one in the possession of Mr. A. Bowker, measuring 

Distribution of the Sub-species or Geographical Races. — As 
already mentioned, all the African bushbucks are best considered 
as a single species, with various geographical races or variations, 
of which the following are the most marked. 

(1) T. scriptus sylvaticus. — The Colony bushbuck ; dark brown 
especially in the male, with no transverse stripes in either adult or 
young, and with but a few spots on the haunches. 

(2) T. scriiJtus roualeyni. — The Limpopo bushbuck; dark brown, 
especially in the males, with two or three obscure transverse stripes 


on the posterior part of the body, and the haunches somewhat more 
spotted than in the Colony bushbuck. 

(3) T. scripttos typicus, — The West and Central African bush- 
buck ; bright rufous in the male, marked brilliantly with numerous 
white spots, and with longitudinal and transverse stripes ; chest 
with a blackish mane. 

(4) T. scriptus clecula. — The Abyssinian bushbuck ; rather 
smaller and stouter than the other forms ; colour yellowish rather 
than rufous ; transverse bands obsolete, but a longitudinal one 
generally present ; only the haunch spotted, dorsal line dark in 
both sexes. 

It must be remembered, however, that these are merely descrip- 
tions of the most salient types, and that a number of exceptions and 
intermediate forms are bound to occur. 

Distribution. — The Colony bushbuck is found in the Colony 
only along the south coast and in the eastern districts, extending 
as far west as Danger Point in the Caledon division, while east- 
wards where the country becomes more wooded, it spreads further 
inland ; it is one of the commonest antelopes of Natal and Zululand. 
Further north, in the Limpopo valley, the Limpopo variety com- 
mences, which extends throughout Eastern Ehodesia, Nyasaland, and 
East Africa to Mombasa. In the Upper Zambesi valley, again, the 
typical West African form has been procured by Selous which ex- 
tends upwards through French Congo and Uganda to West Africa. 

The South African Museum possesses a pair of mounted speci- 
mens from the Addo bush near Port Elizabeth, belonging to the 
typical colonial variety. 

History and Habits. — Sparrman was the earliest writer to give 
an account of the bushbuck from observations made during his 
journey along the south coast of the Colony to Algoa Bay in 1775, 
and about the same time Allamand, in Holland, published a figure 
and a description drawn up from material received from Colonel 
Gordon at the Cape ; this was reprinted in Buffon's supplement. 
Later writers and sportsmen, such as Drummond and Kirby, have 
further enlarged upon the natural history and shooting of this now 
comparatively well-known antelope from whose accounts, and from 
that communicated to me by Mr. T. G. Griffiths of Port Elizabeth, 
the following notes are gathered together. 

Habits. — The bushbuck is found only in thick bush and forest, 
whence it seldom emerges, except in very early morning or late 
evening, in order to feed along the edges or in the open glades. It 


is perhaps the most nocturnal of all South African bucks, and it is 
also very limited in its individual range, seldom wandering far from 
one particular tract of bush, in which it may nearly always be 
found. It runs, as a rule, in couples, with sometimes a kid as 
well, never in large parties. During December, January, and 
February, when the ewes are in young, and for a time after the 
birth of the kids the old males wander off by themselves, and are 
very rarely seen. The voice of the males is a loud hoarse bark or 
" baugh" repeated several times in quick succession, and is a very 
characteristic forest sound; that of the doe is similar but less rough. 
Their sense of hearing is very acute, and their general wariness 
such that it is difficult to get near them ; but when once driven out 
of cover they are not difficult to shoot, as they are heavy and rather 
deliberate in their movements ; sometimes, when hard pressed, they 
take to the water and there swim well. 

The food of the bushbuck consists, according to Kirby, of leaves 
of trees and shrubs, and also of succulent young grass, besides these, 
ground-nuts and pumpkins are much relished by them ; they are 
also said to be fond of potato tubers, and to frequently pay 
nocturnal visits to gardens to root them up. The males are exceed- 
ingly pugnacious, both among themselves and when wounded or 
hunted, they will nearly always charge with often fatal results to 
dogs if these are present ; instances even have been known of fatal 
accidents to beaters and hunters, as the horns are exceedingly 
sharp and quite capable of impaling a man. 

In the neighbourhood of Port Elizabeth bushbuck are carefully 
preserved for sport and at certain seasons of the year are shot in 
organised drives. Near Port Elizabeth they appear to breed all the 
year round but further inland in other districts the breeding season 
is confined chiefly to the months between October and February. 

In captivity the females are very docile, but the males almost 
invariably become savage and intractable. 

The flesh especially of the does and kids is fairly good eating, 
though not nearly so palatable as that of the springbuck. 

78. Tragelaphus angasi. The Inyala. 

Tragelaphus angasi, Angas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1848, p. 89, pis. iv, v ; 
Proudfoot, Proc. Zool. 8og. 1850, p. 199 ; BrooJce, Proc. Zool. Soc. 
1871, p. 487, fig. 2 [skull and horns] ; Buckley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, 
p. 285 ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1891 p. 387 ; Bendall, Proc. Zool. 
Soc. 1895, p. 359. 


Literature. — Aiigas (1849), large folio plate of Inyala with an account 
of its first discovery ; Baldwin (1863), p. 76 and plate on p. 92, short descrip- 
tion of occurrence in Amatongaland ; Drummond (1875) p. 378, with plate 
and account of shooting in Zululand; Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 39, 
pi. viii, fig. 28, description, distribution and habits ; Lydekker (1893), p. 252, 
description and distribution; Ward (1896), p. 200, horn measurements; 
Kirby (1899), p. 326, distribution in Mozambique ; Selous and Neumann 
(1899a), pp. 455, 462, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Inyala of the Zulus (Angas), and of the Mathlengas 
of Amatongaland (Proudfoot) ; and now usually adopted by the English 
Colonists ; said to be called the " Bastard Kudu" by the Dutch Colonists. 

Description. — General colour, greyish brown, a good deal lighter 
than the male bushbuck, forehead and round the eyes bright sienna 
brown : a chevron shaped mark on the nose, several spots on the 
cheeks, either side of the upper jaw, the chin, and gullet white ; 
ears oval, rufous tipped with black and fringed inside with white 
hairs ; neck covered with long shaggy hair dark, almost black, 
extending under the belly and fringing the haunches to the knees ; 
white tufts at the dewlap, under the belly, on the flanks and in front 
of the thighs ; a dorsal mane of long hairs present, black as far 
as the shoulders, thence white, from this run about five white 
transverse lines encircling the barrel ; forelegs with a black patch 
above the knee surrounded by three white spots, below the knee 
bright chestnut with two white spots on the fetlocks above the 
hoofs, hind limbs somewhat similarly coloured, hoofs normal, short 
black, and pointed, tail with long bushy hairs throughout, black 
above and at the tip, white below. 

The female is a good deal smaller than the male, is without 
horns and of a general bright rufous almost orange colour, 
becoming rather paler below and on the insides of the hind legs ; 
a line of black but not long hairs extends from the crown of the 
head to the root of the tail and from this radiate about thirteen 
pairs of white transverse markings round the barrel ; a black patch 
from between the eyes to the tip of the nose ; chevron mark in 
front of, and two spots below the eye, the upper and lower lips and 
chin white ; tail rufous-orange above, and white below with a black 
tip ; no mane or long hairs on any part of the body as is the male. 
Young, coloured like the female, but paler and more spotted. 

Horns larger and rather more spreading than those of the bush- 
buck, and with a more open spire of three quarters of a turn only, 
brown, not black, with marked pale straw-coloured tips. 


Dimensions. — Of a female ; head and body 4 ft. 10-5, tail 14-0, 
with terminal hairs 18'0, height at the shoulder 38'0 ; of a male, 
according to Angas, 40*0 ; from ear to nose-tip 10-5 ; length of ear 
from notch 5-75 ; skull, basal length 12-5, breadth 5-90. 

Fig. 60. — Skull and horns of the Inyala (Tragela^^hus angasi). 
{Proc. Zool. Soc.) 

Horns average about 22 to 24 in. along the curve and 20 in. 
measured in a straight line ; the largest pair given by Ward is 29| 
along the curve measured on a pair from Delagoa Bay in the posses- 
sion of Mr. Barber ; another pair from Zululand attain 28| in. along 
the curve and 23 1 measured straight. 


Distribution and History. — The inyala was first brought to the 
notice of naturalists some years ago by a young ^ustraHan artist 
and traveller, Mr. George French Angas, and named by him in 
honour of his father, Mr. George Fife Angas. It was in the 
neighbourhood of St. Lucia Bay in Zululand that Mr. Angas came 
across this strikingly marked antelope, north of which place it 
appears to extend through Amatongaland to Delagoa Bay ; recently 
it has been shot north of the Zambesi on the western banks of the 
Shire river near Chiromo ; it probably will also be found in the 
Lake Mweru district, and in other suitable localities in the 
intermediate regions between these extreme points. The South 
African Museum possesses a mounted female from Amatongaland 
and skulls and horns from Zululand. 

Habits. — The inyala is found only in low-lying and thickly 
forested country generally not far from water ; here it lives in small 
troops of eight to sixteen individuals, sometimes with an old male or 
two, while at other times the males run by themselves ; like the bush- 
buck they are nocturnal animals and very seldom seen during the 
daytime ; they feed chiefly on leaves, shoots and fruits, with perhaps 
occasionally a little grass, during the night only ; they give vent to 
a sonorous bark like that of the bushbuck, though somewhat deeper 
in tone ; when brought to bay with dogs they are very awkward to 
tackle, being very quick and vicious. Their flesh is excellent 

79. Tragelaplius selousi. The Sitatunga. 

Tragelaphus sp., Layard, Cat. Marnm. S. Afr. Mas. p. 78 (1861). 

Tragelaplius spekii, P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1864, p. 103, pi. xii, 
[juv.] (a fig. of horns and hoofs), [in part] ; KirJt-, ibid. 1864, p. 659 ; 
Broohe, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1871, p. 485, fig. 1, [skull and horns] ; Selous 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 753 ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1890, 
p. 590, pi. xlvii [juv. ? ] ; Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1891, p. 388. 

Tragelaphus selousi, Bothschild, Nov. Zool. v, p. 206 (1898). 

Literature. — Andersson (1856), p. 449, described under the name of 
the "Nakong"; Liviiagstone (1857), p. 204, also described as Nakong and 
" as bemg plentiful on the Upper Zambesi in 1852; Baines (1864), p. 458, 
description ; Nicolls and EgHngton (1882), p. 40, pi. viii, fig. 31, description, 
distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 506, distribution ; Lydekker 
(1893), p. 254, note on ; Oswell in Badminton Big Game (1894) i, p. 122, 
gives an account of the early discovery and shooting of this buck ; Ward 
(1896), p. 458, horn measurements ; Selous (1899), p. 470, range and habits. 




Vernacular Names.— Water skaap or Waterkudu of the Boers ; Nakong 
of the Bechuanas and Tribes near Lake Ngami (Livhagstone and Nicolls and 
Eglmgton) ; Purula, Unzuza and Sitatunga of the Barotse and natives along 
the Chobe (Selous) ; this last name is the one generally in use among 
Enghsh sportsmen. 

Fig. 61. — Skull and horns of the Sitatunga {Tragelajplms sclousi). 
(Proc. Zool. Soc.) 

Description. — General colour above and below a pale sepia 
brown or mouse-colour; hair rather fine, long and woolly, giving 
the animal a somewhat shaggy appearance ; face with an ill-defined 
V-shaped mark from above the eye to the middle of the nose, a 
spot below the eye, the chin, two ill-defined transverse markings 
on the neck, two ill- defined markings on the insides of the legs and 


also about half-way down, all white ; ears short and very broad, 
posteriorly brown with a white patch at the base of the outer 
margin, anteriorly white with a brown triangular-shaped marking 
in the middle of the outer margin, and a tuft of long white hairs 
along the inner one ; all round the neck the hairs somewhat 
elongated forming an incipient mane ; limbs like the back with 
white patches inside at the knees and hocks ; feet very remarkable 
smooth and naked below between the false hoofs, which are large 
and well developed, and the true hoofs, which are enormously 
lengthened, the whole forming an elongated sole to enable the 
animal to support itself on the surface of the very marshy ground 
on which it lives ; tail short and slender, brown above, white below. 
The female, unlike the others of the genus, resembles the male, 
except for the fact, of course, that it is hornless ; the young animal 
is transversely striped with narrow white lines. 

The horns are somewhat more twisted than those of the inyala 
or bushbuck, forming, when full grown, at least a one and a-half 
spiral; they are quite black in colour and have pale tips, which, 
however, are not so conspicuous as those of the inyala ; the 
posterior ridge is well marked throughout, the anterior is very strong 
along the middle of the horn, and altogether the ridges are more 
developed than in the other two species of the genus. 

Dimensions. — Of an adult male ; head and body 5ft. 3 ; tail 
4-0, with terminal hairs 6-0 ; height at the shoulders 42*0 ; from 
ear opening to nose-tip 11-5 ; ear from notch to tip 5*0 ; length of 
hoof of hind foot 4*0 ; skull, length 11-75, breadth 5-0. 

Average horns measure about 27 along the curves, and about 
22 in a straight line ; the record, according to Ward, from the 
Chobe Eiver in the possession of Mr. Selous, is 32| along the 
curve and 27 straight. 

Distribution. — The sitatunga within our boundaries is found 
only in the swamps between Lake Ngami and the Chobe and along 
the marshy banks of that river ; beyond the Zambesi it is recorded 
from Lake Mweru and Bangweolo in northern Ehodesia. . The 
South African Museum possesses a fine mounted male brought from 
Lake Ngami, and presented by Major Frank Johnston in 1895. 

History. — The sitatunga was first met with by Dr. Livingstone 
in 1852 on the Zambesi, though Oswell, who accompanied Living- 
stone, states that they first came across the animal in the swamps 
north of Lake Ngami ; however that may be, neither these travellers, 
Baines, nor Chapman and Green, all of whom mention the animal 


by name, seem to have given a proper description of it, and it was 
not till 1864 that a somewhat similar animal was described by Mr. 
P. L. Sclater from material obtained by Captain Speke on the 
western shores of Victoria Nyanza. Subsequently Sir John Kirk 
considered that the nakong of Livingstone was the same animal as 
Speke's antelope from Uganda. Eecently, however, Mr. Eothschild 
has decided that the South African sitatunga is not the same as the 
Uganda form, since in the former the sexes are alike, while in the 
latter they are very different ; he, therefore, has given the animal 
the new name it now bears. 

Habits. — The sitatunga seems to be on the whole the most 
aquatic of all antelopes ; it is found only in, or on the reedy shores 
of, the great lakes and swamps ; here it lives in pairs or small 
family parties, spending the day hidden in the reeds, and only 
emerging at night to feed on the young shoots ; owing to the 
peculiar structure of its feet above described it is able to support 
itself with facility on the matted vegetation of the swamps. It can 
also swim very well, but when on hard ground it is exceedingly 
awkward and cannot make any progress ; if driven from its im- 
penetrable haunts, which is often done by firing the reeds, it makes 
off with great splashing, and frequently tries to conceal itself by sink- 
ing its whole body under water, so that only its nostrils protrude ; 
under these circumstances it is frequently pursued by the natives 
and speared. Its flesh is very rank and almost uneatable. 


Strepsiceros, H. Smith, Griff. Anim. Kingcl. v, p. 365 

(1827) S. capensis. 

Large animals with the rhinarium between but not extending 
below the nostrils, with the antorbital gland and its opening very 
small ; female with an udder of four mammae. 

Horns which are present only in the male, with several open 
spirals, and with the anterior ridge more developed than the 
posterior. Skull with large and deep supra-orbital pits ; moderate 
lachrymal fissures and brachyodont molars. 

This genus closely resembles the last, from which in fact it 
differs merely in the greater development of the anterior horn ridge 
and in the more open nature of the spiral curve. 


In addition to the type species described below one other, the 
lesser kudu (S. imherhis) from Somahland and other parts of North 
East Africa is known, while from the Pliocene beds of Northern 
ludia a third, fossil, species has been described. 

80. Strepsiceros capensis. The Kudu. 

Antilope strepsiceros, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 9 (1766) ; Thunberg, 

Mem. Acad. Peters, iii, p, 317 (1811). 
Antilope (Tragelaphus) strepsiceros, Desmarest, Mamm., p. 468 (1822). 
Damalis (Strepsiceros) strepsiceros, H. Smith, Griff. Anim. Kingcl. 

V, p. 365 (1827) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 92 (1832). 
Damalis (Strepsiceros) capensis, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, 

p. 228 (1834) ; A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pis. xlii, xliii 

Strepsiceros kudu. Gray, List Mamm. B. M. p. 155 (1843) ; Gray, 

Knoiusley Menagerie, p. 26, pi. xxiv, fig. 2 [juv] (1850) ; Layard, 

Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mas. p. 78 (1861) ; BucUey, Proc. Zool. Soc. 

1876, pp. 284; 1877, 454; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 751; 

P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1884, p. 46, fig. 2 [skull and horns]. 
Strepsiceros strepsiceros zambesiensis, Lorenz, Ann. kJc. Hofmus. 

Wien ix, notiz. p. 63 (1894). 

Literature. — Kolben (1731) ii, p. 115, described quite recognisably as 
" another sort of goat of the size of a large hart " ; Buffon (1764) xii, p. 301, 
pi. xxxix, fig 1. skull and horns and (1782) Suppl. vi, p. 124, pi. xiii, general 
account of Kudu under the name of Condoura or Coedoes ; Vosmaer (1783) 
Beschryving pp. 1-15, description with plate; Sparrman (1785) ii, p. 231, 
note on the synonomy, habits and structure of the Kudu ; Thunberg (1795) 
ii, p. 89, notes the Kudu as plentiful in Uitenhage ; DanieU (1804), figured 
on pi. vi ; Burchell (1822) i, p. 337, met with Kudu in Hay ; Steedman 
(1835) ii, p. 123, gives a description ; Harris (1838) p. 214, met with the 
Kudu in the Pretoria district of the Transvaal; Harris (1840), figured on 
pi, XX ; Delagorgue (1847) i, p. 365, notes the occurrence of the Kudu in 
Zululand ; Gumming (1855) i, p. 144, found the Kudu in Herbert division ; 
Andersson (1856) p. 484, gives a plate with description and accomit of 
habits ; Livingstone (1857) p. 56, notes that it can subsist without water ; 
Grout (1863) p. 303, describes it with the Zulu name ; Drummond (1875) 
p. 347, and appendix, hunting and Zulu name; Bryden (1889) p. 291, 
distribution in the Colony ; Nicolls and Eglington (1892) p. 52, pi. i, fig. 1, 
description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893) p. 503, past and present 
distribution ; Lydeklier (1893) p. 256, description with figures ; Millais 
(1895) pp. 99-101, 171, description of shooting in Mashonaland, with 
sketches and notes of habits ; Kirby (1896) pp. 135, 548, native names, 
habits and hunting in Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896) p. 204, horn 


measurements ; Bryden (1897) p. 241, a chapter on hunting and habits ; 
Selous (1899a) p. 440, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Kudu or Koedoe of the Hottentots, whence this 
has become the common name araong both Dutch and English Colonists ; 
Iqudu of the Amaxosa (Stanford) doubtless from the Hottentot ; Umgakla 
(Grout) or Umgangxa (Drummond) of the Zulus ; Itolo of Basuto (Kirby) ; 
Itshongonono of the Swazis (Kirby) ; Tolo of Bechuanas, Eebalabala of 
the Matabele, Eezilarwa of the Makalakas, and Noro of the Mashonas 

Description. — General colour pale ashy brown, becoming, 
according to Selous, a blue grey in the old males owing to the 
skin showing through the hair which is very short and thin ; face 
a little darker ; a chevron- shaped mark from around the eye 
extending across the nose, the upper lip, lower lip, chin, and a 
varying number of round spots below the eye on the cheeks white ; 
ears very broad and flattened, anteriorly with a few short white 
hairs and a longer tuft of the same colour along the inner margin ; 
neck thick and stout, with long dark brown hairs all round forming 
a kind of mane ; a fringe of long hairs runs from the chin, where 
it forms a dark brown beard-like tuft, (which, however, often 
becomes scanty in old animals), to the chest, the hairs of the fringe 
itself being brown at the base and tip and whitish in the inter- 
mediate region ; another fringe of long semi-erectile hairs extends 
from the occiput to the root of the tail, this as far as the shoulders 
is wholly dark brown, behind this, point partly brown and partly 
white ; from it radiate six or seven narrow transverse white lines 
surrounding the barrel and haunches ; fore-part of the belly and 
breast very dark brown ; limbs white inside, on the posterior side 
of the upper portion of the fore-legs and round the hoofs are some- 
what ill-defined dark patches, false hoofs small and rounded, space 
between them and the true hoofs hairy, the latter being short, 
black, wide, rounded and compact ; tail nearly reaching the hocks, 
not very bushy, brown above, white on the sides and below with 
a fairly-developed black terminal tuft. 

The female resembles the male but is hornless and rather 
smaller ; in the young animal the white spots and stripes are more 
numerous and more conspicuous. 

The horns, which are situated on the top of the frontal bones, 
are stout and somewhat compressed, the anterior ridge being very 
strong, while the posterior ridge is practically absent ; the horns 
vary considerably both in the size of the spiral and the distance of 




the tips from one another, this is very well shown in the illustra- 
tions and measurements given by Kirby, pp. 136, 137 ; here the 
measurements of two pairs of horns are given as follows : — 

Fig. 62, — Skull and horns of the Kudu {Strepsiceros capensis). 
{Proc. Zool. Soc.) 

a b 

Length in a straight line . . = 44 39 

Length along the anterior curve 58 60 

Width between tips 44 7| 


" a " is a head with a very close spiral and with very divergent tips, 
"b" a head with a very open spiral and almost parallel horns. 
In addition to this the horns vary in colour some being almost 
black, others being very pale ; almost all, however, have white or 
very pale tips. 

Females occasionally have been known to bear horns, one found 
dead by Mr. Selous, having been killed by wild dogs near Bamang- 
wato, is figured by Lydekker (1893), p. 257; in this as in other 
cases the horns are usually small and not symmetrical, one side 
being more twisted than the other. They are about an inch in 
diameter, smooth and round and without any keel. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; length of head and body 
8 ft. 2 ; tail 16'5 ; with terminal tuft 20 ; height at shoulder 4ft. 7 ; 
from ear opening to nose-tip 16 ; ear from notch to tip 9 ; breadth 
of ear 5 ; weight of an average male about 500 lbs. (Bryden). 

Skull length 16*25 ; breadth 6*87. Any horns over 40 measured 
in a straight line may be taken as a very good average ; the longest 
pair recorded by Ward measure 48^ straight and 63 along the 
curve, and were obtained near Macloutsie on the northern frontier 
of the Bechuanaland Protectorate ; Selous' best pair from the Umfuli 
Eiver in Mashonaland, though only 41 straight had a larger spiral 
and so measured 64 along the curve. 

Distribution. — The kudu is found throughout the greater part 
of southern and eastern Africa, extending from the Colony to 
Angola on the west and through Nyasaland, German and British 
East Africa to Somaliland and Abyssinia on the east. 

Within our limits it is probably the most abundant and wide- 
spread of the larger antelopes ; in the Colony it is to be met with 
in the southern districts from the Eiversdale and Prince Albert 
divisions away eastwards to Albany and Fort Beaufort, where 
it is abundant in the bush country along the Koonap and Great 
Fish Elvers. In Griqualand West and Prieska in the northern 
part of the Colony it is also fairly abundant ; in German South-west 
Africa, Bechuanaland, Ehodesia, the northern and eastern parts 
of the Transvaal, Portuguese territory and Zululand, it is also 
plentiful in suitable localities. 

The mounted male in the South African Museum is from 
Barberton in the Transvaal, the female from Koonap in the Albany 
division of the Colony. 

History. — The earliest mention of the kudu seems to be that of 
Kolben, who obviously refers to this antelope in his description of 


" another sort of goat " ; the next author who mentions the animal 
is Buffon, who first of all, in 1764, described a skull and a pair of 
horns which had reached him from the Cape under the name of 
the Condoma ; subsequently in his supplement in 1782, he repeats 
AUamand's description drawn up from a living specimen in Holland. 

In 1776 the Governor of the Cape, Joachim van Plettenberg, 
sent to the Prince of Orange a kudu, which lived for some time in 
the Hague, and was there described and painted by both Allamand 
and Vosmaer, to whom we owe the first complete description of 
the animal. Pallas' account was founded only on heads seen by 
him at Leyden, and it was he who first designated the animal with 
the Latin name Strepsiceros , which was subsequently adopted as 
the name of the genus. Under these circumstances the earliest 
specific name available is ^' capensis" of Smith, which antedates 
" hudu " of Gray by nine years. The best modern accounts of the 
kudu will be found in Millais' and Kirby's books referred to above. 

Habits. — The kudus, like their relatives the bushbuck and the 
inyala, are inhabitants of forest or dense bush, and are very seldom 
seen in the open ; they seem to be particularly fond of rocky and 
stony hills covered with thick thorny shrubs, but are also found 
along the densely wooded river banks ; as a rule they associate in 
small herds of from five to ten, or even twenty individuals, consist- 
ing of one or two males with several cows and calves of various 
ages, but under certain conditions or at certain times of the year, 
probably when the cows are in young, the males are found in small 
herds together, or even solitary ; when this is the case the males 
often wander far afield away from water, but the females are more 
sedentary and remain near their accustomed drinking places. 

The alarm cry is described by Millais as a loud roaring bark, 
something like that of a baboon but louder. Every one seems 
agreed that the pace of the males, at any rate in open country, is 
not very great or enduring, but they are very clever over rough 
ground and through thick thorn bush, making their way with great 
rapidity and unerring dexterity with the nose up and the horns 
lying back along the shoulders ; they are also endowed with wonder- 
ful jumping powers, clearing obstacles as much as 8ft. high at a 
single bound. 

The food of the kudu seems to consist chiefly of the leaves and 
shoots of astringent shrubs and bushes, and also of wild fruits. 
Although often found far from water, and probably able to abstain 
from it for considerable periods, as a rule it drinks daily, according 


to Millais, where undisturbed, about an hour before sunset. Only 
one young one is born at a time. 

The kudu is an exceedingly shy and timid animal, with very acute 
senses of smell and hearing, and great power of concealment, to 
which facts perhaps are due its survival in South Africa in such 
considerable numbers. Kirby states that they never use their horns 
against dogs or attempt to defend themselves, though Andersson and 
Smith both say that they do occasionally stand and charge. 

The kudu's hide, though thin, is tough, and much valued for 
reins and harness ; its flesh is generally reported to be good, and 
most sportsmen and naturalists mention the marrow bones as being 
particularly delicious. 


Oreas, Desmarest, Mamm. p. 471 (1822) [nee Montfort, 

1808] T. oryx. 

Taurotragus, Wagner, Schreher Sdugeth.,Y, p. 438 (1855) T. oryx. 
Doratoceros, Lydekker, Ann. Mag. N. H. (6), viii, p. 192 

(1891) T. oryx. 

Antelopes of very large size with the rhinarium extending down 
to the upper lip, but hardly above or below the nostrils ; antorbital 
gland small with a very small circular opening in front of the eye 
in a narrow bare triangular space ; a well developed dewlap present 
in both sexes. Females with an udder of four mammae. 

Horns present in both sexes, those of the male stouter and 
usually shorter than those of the female, nearly straight, running 
back in a line with the face and surrounded by a spiral ridge, with 
traces of annulation at the base. 

Skull not differing in any important respect from that of 

Only two well defined recent species are recognizable, T. oryx 
described below and T. derbianus from West Africa, distinguished 
by its larger size and horns. 

81. Taurotragus oryx. The Eland. 
(a) T. oryx typicus. 

Antilope oryx, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 9 (1766). 

Antilope oreas, Pallas, Sine. Zool. xii, pp. 5, 17 (1777) ; Thunherg, 
Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 314 (1811). 


Antelope (Oreas) canna, Desmarest, Mamvi. p. 471 (1822). 

Damalis (Boselaphus) oreas et canna, H. Smith, Grijf. Ann. Kingd. v, 

pp. 364-5 (1827) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. pp. 90, 91 (1832) A. 

Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 222 (1834). 
Boselaphus oreas. Gray, List Mamm. B.M. p. 155 (1843) ; A. Smith, 

lllustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pis. xl, xli (1843). 
Oreas canna, Gray, Knowsley Menagerie, p. 27, pi. xxvi, xxvii (1850) ; 

Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 78 (1861) ; BucMey, Proc. 

Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 284; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1881, p. 749; 

Barhley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1894, p. 131. 
Antilope triangularis, Gunther, Proc, Zool. Soc. 1889, p. 73 [with 

figure] . 
Doratoceros triangularis, LydeMer, Ann. Mag. N. H. (6) viii, p. 192 

(1891) ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1896, p. 506. _ 

(b) T. oryx liYingstonii. 

Oreas livingstonii, P. L. Sclater, Proc, Zool, Soc. 1864, p. 105 ; id. 
ibid. 1883, p. 32. 

Literature. — Kolben (1731) ii, p. 110 gives a rather absurd account of 
the Eland under the name of the "Elk," from the mountains near Cape 
Town ; Buffon (1764) xii, p. 357, pi. xlvi bis, figures the horn under the 
name of " Coudou," and further (1782) Suppl. vi, p. 116, pi. xii, figures the 
animal under the name of " Canna," with a good description from AUa- 
mand; Vosmaer (1783), describes and illustrates an individual sent alive to 
the menagerie of the Prince of Orange ; Sparrman, k. Vet. Akad. Handl. xl, 
p. 155 (1779), and also (1785) ii, pp. 75, 221, gives a good account of the 
structure and habits of the Eland as observed by him in the Alexandria and 
Somerset East divisions of the Colony; Paterson (1790), pp. 9, 54 and 81, 
records meeting with Elands near Hanglip in Caledon, in Vanrhjaisdorp 
and in Uitenhage in about 1777 ; Thunberg (1795) ii, p. 58, met with 
Elands in Uniondale ; Lichtenstein (1812) i, p. 97, ii, pp. 23, 39, in 
Calvinia in 1803, Aberdeen and Middelburg in 1804 ; Burchell (1822), i, pp. 
309, 417, ii, pp. 42, 81, met with Elands in Prieska, Herbert and Britstown, 
and found them numerous in Hanover in 1812 ; Steedman (1835), i, p. 209, 
details of distribution in the Colony ; Moodie (1835), ii, p. 144, notes its 
existence in Alexandria ; Harris (1838), pp. 75, 158 and 262, distribution in 
the Transvaal and Bechuanaland ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. vi ; Dela- 
gorgue (1847), i, p. 365, found Elands in plenty in Zululand; Methuen (1848), 
p. 118, habits in the Kalahari near the Molopo River; Livingstone (1857), 
p. 56, notes the Eland as a buck which can subsist without water ; Drum- 
mond (1875), pp. 138, 178, devotes a chapter to the hunting and habits of 
the Eland ; Theal (1888), i, p. 51, notes that according to van Eiebeck, Elands 
were found on Table Mountain in 1652 ; Bryden (1889), p. 291, extinction in 
Cape Colony; NicoUs and Eglington (1892) p. 54, pi. vi, fig. 21, description. 


distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 501, the present and past distri- 
bution; Selous (1893), p. 91, notes and measurements of a large specimen 
from Mashonaland ; Lydekker (1893), p. 258, description and figure of 
horns; Kirby (1896), p. 549, note on distribution and native names in the 
eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 211, horn measurements ; Bryden 
(1897), p. 213, general account ; Kirby (1899), p. 325, distribution in Portu- 
guese South Africa ; Selous (1899a), p. 421, habits and range. 

Vernacular Names. — Eland of Dutch and English, the word being the 
Dutch tei-m for the European Elk {Alces machlis), and originally wrongly 
applied to the present animal ; Canna or T'ganna of the Hottentots ; Impofu 
of Amaxosa (Stanford) ; of the Matabele (Selous) ; of the Zulus and Swazis 
(Kirby) ; Pofu of the Bechuanas (Selous) ; and Basutos (Kirby) ; Eepofu of 
Makalakas and Mofu of Mashonas (Selous). 

Description. — Of a male from Mashonaland which should 
be referred to T. oryx livingstonii. The largest and heaviest of all 
antelopes, general colour varying from a pale fawn to a bluish grey 
according to age, the latter colour due to the increasing thinness of 
the hairs which allow the blue-black skin to show through with 
advancing age ; on the forehead extending half way down to the 
nose, a kind of brush of reversed upstanding hairs of a very dark 
brown or black colour, the front and sides of the snout also black 
or nearly so ; ears rather small, acutely pointed, with a few long 
white hairs along their inner margins and slightly darker poste- 
riorly ; neck enormously thickened with ample deposits of fat, 
especially dorsally, over which part the hairs are somewhat longer 
and darker, and form an incipient mane ; below, the neck is pro- 
duced into a very prominent rounded dewlap which is ridged along 
its edge with long dark hairs. A dark line runs along the back from 
the occiput to the root of the tail, the anterior part as far as the 
shoulders being marked by longer hairs forming a dorsal mane ; 
from the dorsal line there run transversely ten to twelve white lines 
or stripes round the barrel. Limbs massive, a dark patch inside and 
iDehind above the knee on the forelimbs ; false hoofs large and 
pointed, true hoofs thick, ox-like and rounded with a ring of dark 
brown hairs above and around them ; tail long and slender, nearly 
reaching the hocks covered with short hairs like the body and 
ending in a bushy black tuft of long hairs. 

Female much smaller, horned, but without the face brush or 
swollen neck of the male ; udder with four mammae. 

Horns of the male short but massive, running back in a line 
with the face, straight, with a strong spiral ridge running round 
the lower half of them, traces of transverse rings at the base 




only ; horn of the female similar but much more slender and often 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male from Mashonaland ; head 
and body 10 ft. 2 ; tail 2 ft. 4, with terminal hairs 3 ft. 2 ; 
height at shoulders 5 ft. 7 ; ear to nose 20'0 ; ear from notch to 
tip 8-0. Selous measured the height of a large bull at the withers 
5 ft. 9. Barrow and Harris both mention 6 ft. 6, but this, 

Fig. 63. — Head of a male Eland {Tcmrotragiis oryx). 

I think, is doubtful ; the cow in the South African Museum 
measures 4 ft. 9 at the shoulders. 

The skull of a female measures 16-25 in length by 7'0 in extreme 

Horns of the male average about 24 inches in length, those of 
the female a little more ; the longest recorded by Ward measure 


4:0-0, but these are probably referable to the West African 
T. derhianus. 

Mr. Selous states that the longest pair of bull horns met with 
by him belonged to an animal shot in Mashonaland in 1887, by a 
Boer hunter ; these reached a length of 33 '0 ; the longest pair of 
cow horns measuring 34-0 were those of an animal shot by Mr. 
Selous himself in the Northern Kalahari. 

Distribution and Geographical Races. — The eland was for- 
merly found all over South Africa, including the Colony. In 1652, 
when the Dutch East India Company founded the settlement of 
the Cape of Good Hope, van Eiebeck, the first Governor, or, rather, 
Commander, records in his diary, recently published, that there 
were many elks or elands in the neighbourhood of Cape Town, arid 
even at the end of the last century Colonel Gordon (according to 
Buffon) stated that there were still some in the Hottentot's Holland, 
and Paterson relates that they existed near Cape Hanglip in what 
is now the Caledon divison. In the early part of the present 
century Burchell saw a good many in the northern Karoo districts, 
and in 1835 Steedman recounts meeting with them on the Bontebok 
flats in the Queenstown division. 

At the present time there are still a few left in the mountainous 
country along the Basutoland, Griqualand East, and Natal borders ; 
beyond the Colony there are a certain number in the North Kalahari, 
in Ovampoland, Ehodesia, and the country between Beira and 
Mozambique, and possibly in Zululand and the Transvaal Eastern 
frontier ; elsewhere they have been nearly exterminated. North of 
the Zambesi the eland's range extends to Angola on the west, 
and to Kilima-njaro, and, perhaps, the upper waters of the Nile on 
the east. 

The elands from the north of the Zambesi, and also those of 
Mashonaland and the Beira district, are as a rule distinguished 
from those of the Kalahari and the Colony by the presence of 
transverse white markings, and also by the dark mark on the foreleg; 
and it has been proposed to separate the striped form under a 
separate name, T. livingstonii ; most observers however, state that 
the white bands are of varying distinctness, and by no means 
always present even in those districts where Livingstone's eland 
should be found ; so that it will be best to separate the striped form 
as a sub-species only. 

The curious horns, which have been described under the name of 
Antilojje or Dorotoceras triangularis, are now generally considered to 


be abnormal products of the female eland ; these horns are almost 
straight, and not twisted at all, but triangular in section throughout 
the lower half and then gradually becoming circular towards the tips. 

The South African Museum, in addition to horns and skulls, 
possesses a mounted pair of Livingstone's elands obtained by Mr. 
Selous in Mashonaland in 1883. 

History. — The eland has been known since the earliest days of 
the Dutch Settlement ; it is frequently alluded to in the journal of 
van Eiebeck (translated into English by Mr. Liebbrandt, and pub- 
lished by the Cape Government in 1897-8), the first Commander of 
the Cape (1652-63) ; Kolben also alludes to the animal. BufTon, in 
his 'earlier volume, figured a horn under the name of " Coudou," 
stated to come from India, but subsequently reprinted Allamand's 
account, which was derived chiefly from Colonel Gordon, and was 
accompanied by a quite recognisable figure. In the meantime the 
Dutchman Vosmaer published a description from living specimens 
brought to Holland for the Menagerie of the Prince of Orange in 
1748, and again in 1780. The original Latin name bestowed on the 
eland by Pallas was founded on one of the skeletons of the animals 
imported in 1748 and preserved in the Leyden Museum, but the 
name oryx was given under a misapprehension and was sub- 
sequently transferred to the Gemsbok [Oryx gazella) ; while that of 
oreas was substituted for the present species. According to the 
strict laws of nomenclature, however, an author cannot alter a 
name once given even by himself, and the specific name, therefore, 
must remain " oryx." With regard to the generic name, Oreas, 
hitherto usually adopted, is inadmissible, as it had been previously 
used in Zoology ; we are forced, therefore, to fall back on the 
later name, and the eland should thus be designated Taurotragus 

Habits. — The eland is found both in the open desert country, 
such as the Kalahari, and also in mountainous districts such as 
exist on the frontiers of Natal and Basutoland ; apparently the 
favourite localities are forest-clad rolling sand belts with open 
spaces here and there ; the eland runs in troops of varying size — 
formerly as many as 200 have been seen together, now, however, 
10 to 15 form the usual number of which one or two are adult 
males ; sometimes a troop consists of young males alone ; when 
disturbed they usually retreat to the mountains. The pace of the 
young males and females is fair, but the old males are, as a rule, so 
overloaded with fat that they are quite easy to run to a standstill — 


SO much so that it is said that they sometimes drop down dead in 
their paces ; in the old days a skilful hunter would drive an 
individual right up to the waggons before dispatching it to save 
the carriage of the meat. Drummond recounts in his book how he 
ran a male eland down even on foot, V/hen disturbed elands 
invariably make off in single file the younger ones leading, the old 
males bringing up the rear, and, moreover, they always run up 

In Mashonaland during the early part of the year the elands are 
scattered about in twos and threes in the rugged hills covered with 
thick forest and coarse grass below the level of the high plateaus ; 
they are then in the best condition and very difficult to get near ; 
but in June the natives burn off the grass on the high plateaus, and 
the elands, collecting into larger herds, leave the shelter of the 
hills and forest and wander over the open downs in search of the 
sweet young grass which immediately springs up. They now fall 
off in condition very rapidly, and can be ridden down and shot. 

Where opportunity offers, they drink regularly during the night 
or at daybreak, but there is no doubt that in the Kalahari and other 
waterless districts they are able to manage without water, obtaining, 
doubtless, what liquid they need from the bulbs and watermelons, 
like the gemsbuck and the springbuck. 

Only one calf is produced at a birth, generally in the month of 
July or August, or in Mashonaland, even in June, and the females 
there have been said to breed only once in two years, though those 
in captivity in Europe have in many cases calved annually. 

Elands are very wary and difiicult to approach ; furthermore 
they are generally accompanied by rhinoceros birds (Buphaga), 
which by their flutterings and excitement warn them of the 
impending danger. They are absolutely timid and harmless, never 
attempting to defend themselves according to most observers, 
though Drummond states that females with calves will sometimes 
attack dogs with their horns. The flesh of the eland is always 
reported to be the best game meat in South Africa, that of the old 
males being loaded with fat; the hide, too, is miich valued for 
making leather. 

Subfamily BOVINAE. 

This subfamily contains the oxen and their allies and is dis- 
tinguished by the horns, which are present in both sexes, being 


rounded or angulate but never knotted or ringed ; suborbital gland 
absent, rhinarium very wide and well developed, the nostrils being 
lateral ; males generally with a dewlap. 

Genus BOS. 


1^0^, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat.. 12th ed. i, p. 98 (1766) B. taurus. 

Bubalus, H. Smith, Griffith's An. Kingcl. v, p. 371 (1827) 

[nee Bubalis, Guvier 1816] B. caffer. 

Animals of large size with massive bodies and stout limbs, 
rhinarium broad, so that the nostrils open almost laterally, no 
antorbital or inguinal glands, tail long and tufted ; female with four 

Horns present in both sexes, rounded or angulate [never 
annulated] and outwardly directed ; skull without any trace of 
the antorbital fossa usually present in the antelopes ; molars 
hj'psodont with a large inner accessory column. 

This genus is usually split up by modern authors into several ; 
but the distinctions are hardly of generic rank. Our only repre- 
sentative belongs to the Buhaline section which contains the true 
buffaloes confined to the Ethiopian and Oriental regions including 

The other living African species of the genus are B. aequinoc- 
tialis from Central and North-east Africa, rather smaller and less 
black than the Cape buffalo and doubtfully distinct except as a 
geographical race, and B, pumilus, the dwarf buffalo of West 
Africa still smaller again, of a bright yellow colour, extending as 
far south as Cape Lopez in French Congo. 

Almost the only described South African fossil representative of 
the whole class of mammals is a species of this genus, Bubalus 
baini, Seeley {Geol. Mag. (3) viii, p. 199, 1891) originally noticed 
by Mr. A. G. Bain as having been found 40 ft. below the surface 
on the banks of the Modder Eiver, in the Orange Free State. The 
original specimen is still preserved in the South African Museum, 
and is remarkable for the great length of the horn cores, each of 
which measures 5 ft. 2 in length; the species seems to be very 
closely allied to, if not identical with Bos antiquus, Duvernoy, from 
the Pleistocene beds of Algeria and not very distantly related to the 
South African living species. 


82. Bos caffer. The Cape Buffalo. 

Bos caffer, Sparrman, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. Stochholm xl, p. 79, pi. iii, 

fig. 2 (1779) ; Thunberg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 318 (1811) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Ca2]., p. 95 (1832) ; Grill, K. Vet. Akad. Handl. 

StocWiohn ii, 2, p. 19 (1858) [Knysna] ; LydekTier, Wild Oxen, p. 94, 

pi. vii & fig. 17 (1898). 
Bos (Bubalus) caffer, H. Smith, Griff. Anim. Eingd. v, p. 371 (1827) ; 

A. Smith, S. Afr. Qicart. Joitrn. ii, p. 234 (1834). 
Bubalus caffer. Gray, List Mamm. B. M., p. 153 (1843) ; Layard, 

Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 81 (1861) ; Blyth, Proc. Zool. Soc. 

1866, p. 371 ; Brooke, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1873, p. 480, fig. 4, ["woodcut of 

skull] , 1875, p. 457 ; Buckley, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 289, 1877, 

p. 455 [distribution] ; Pechuel-Loesche, Zool. Jahrb. iii, p. 705, pis. 

xviii, figs. 1, 2 (1888). 

Literature. — Kolben (1731) ii, p. 109, account of the Buffalo and of a 
hunt of one close to Cape Town in 1705 ; Buffon (1754) xi, p. 416, pi. xli, 
fig. 4, description and figure of horn ; Sparrman (1785) i, p. 298, ii, p. 65, 
pi. ii, fig. 2, account of the Buffalo as observed in Zitzikamnia and Alex- 
andria, with measurements, notes and description ; Paterson (1790), p. 9, 
met with Buffaloes near Hanglip in the Caledon division in 1777 ; Thun- 
berg (1795) ii, p. 84, note on shooting in Uitenhage ; Lichtenstein (1812) 
ii, p. 276, met with in Hay; Burchell (1822) ii, p. 249, note on the 
structure, met with in Hay ; Harris (1838), p. 87, met with in the Marico 
district of the Transvaal ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xiii ; Delagorgue 
(1847) i, pp. 365, 480, met with in large numbers in Zululand ; Methuen 
(1848), p. 161-3, description and measurements ; Gumming (1855) i, p. 243, 
met his first Buffalo at the head waters of the Marico Eiver in Bechuana- 
land ; Hall (1857), p. 10, distribution and habits ; Livmgstone (1857), p. 56, 
asserts that it is always found near water; Drmnmond (1875), p. 1, account 
of habits and hunting in Zululand ; Selous (1881), p. 277, account of habits 
and hunting in Mashonaland; Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 72, pi. iii, 
fig. 10, description, distribution and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 496, past and 
present distribution ; Lydekker (1893), p. 41, note on; Jackson, Badminton 
Big Game (1894), i, p. 214, account of habits and hunting ; Kirby (1896), 
p. 549, native names, habits and measurements in the eastern Transvaal; 
Ward (1896), p. 262, horn measurements ; Kirby (1899), p. 326, distribution 
in Portuguese East Africa; Selous (1899a), p. 102, habits and range in 
South Africa. 

Vernacular Names. — Buffalo of English, Buffel of Dutch Colonists ; 
Qu'araho of Hottentots (Smuts) ; Inyati of Zulus (Drummond) ; Swazis 
(Kirby) and Matabile (Selous) ; Nari of Basutos (Kirby) and of Bechuanas 

Description. — General appearance bulky and oxlike, with no 
marked ridge or hump at the shoulders ; body very thinly covered 




with black hairs, rather thicker on the face, neck, and along the 
middle of the back, the skin, which is a dark grey black, showing 
through almost everywhere ; head massive, facial line somewhat 
convex, rhinarium very large, extending well above, but not much 
below the nostrils, which are separated by a considerable space ; 
skin of the throat somewhat loose and flabby, forming an incipient 
dewlap ; ears drooping, of moderate size, rather broad, nearly 
naked within, hairy behind, generally much torn and slit; limbs 

Fig. 6i. — Skull and horns of a male Buffalo (Bos ca, 
{Proc. Zool, Soc.) 

massive, with broad and rounded hoofs and with' pointed well- 
developed false hoofs ; tail reaching the hocks, thinly clothed with 
short hairs ending in a considerable brush. 

Female smaller, and with a generally lighter and browner tinge 
to the hair, horns smaller, and udder with four mammae. 

Young, reddish, and much more thickly clothed with hair than 
the adult, becoming black at about 3 years. Very old animals quite 


Horns of the male very massive, the basal portions or palms 
which are very rugged with annulations and longitudinal striae, 
sometimes meeting in the middle line of the forehead ; the direction 
of the horns is outwards and downwards for the first two-thirds, 
the tips which are nearly smooth are turned up and directed back 
almost parallel to the basal portion, though as a rule inclined 
backwards to a certain extent ; the horns of the female are 
generally similar in shape and direction, but the basal portions 
do not form the large palms, nor do they encroach at all on the 
forehead as in the males. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male ; head and body 9 ft. 1 ; 
tail 28-0, with terminal hairs 37 ; height at the shoulders 59*0 ; 
from ear-opening to nose-tip 20 ; ear from notch 8'0 long, about 
5-0 broad. The height of a female at the shoulder is 54-0. 
The skull of a male measures 19*0 long by 9*50 broad. 
Horns of good males measure about 30-0 along the inside curve 
by 12 across the palm ; of females 26-0 by 7. The record male, 
according to Ward, is one obtained by Mr. P. Barber from the Sabi 
Eiver, which measures 43'3 by 12 ; Mr. Selous' largest female head 
from the Chobe Eiver measured 28'0 by 7"0. 

Distribution. — The buffalo was formerly found throughout the 
southern and eastern parts of the Colony, Natal, and in fact all 
over South Africa in suitable localities, i.e., where there is plenty 
of water. Kolben states that they were common close to Cape 
Town in his day, and Paterson at the end of the last century met 
with them in Caledon. At the present time there are still a 
considerable number in the Addo and Kowie bush, in the districts 
of Uitenhage, Alexandria, Bathurst and Albany ; also in Zululand, 
Damaraland, Ehodesia and the Beira Province. They appear to be 
exterminated in Bechuanaland and in the Transvaal, though a few 
years ago there were a good many along the Sabi river in the 
eastern Transvaal. Beyond our limits the Cape buffalo extends 
to Angola on the west, and through Nyasaland and East Africa 
as far as the Uganda Eoad and Mount Elgon ; owing, however, to 
the ravages of rinderpest it has become very rare throughout the 
greater part of East Africa. 

Drummond states that the buffaloes in a certain district 
(Umbeka) in North-east Zululand are smaller and more dangerous, 
and of a much more rufous colouration. The South African 
Museum possesses a mounted pair from Mashonaland, obtained 
by Mr. Selous in 1884, a mounted skeleton from the Addo bush 


obtained in 1896, and skulls and horns from Knysna where it 
appears to be now extinct. 

History. — Kolben gives the earliest account of the buffalo, and 
he is followed by Buffon who, however, only figures a horn brought 
from the Cape by the Abbe de la Caille. To Sparrman we owe our 
first connected account of the animal which he studied from fresh 
specimens killed in the Zitzikamma forest, and to which he affixed 
the scientific name it has since borne. Of modern accounts, those 
of Drummond, Selous and Jackson, the last in the " Big Game " 
volume of the "Badminton" series, are perhaps the best and 

Habits. — The buffalo is seldom found far from water, and 
prefers a thorn country with plenty of intervening open ground, 
where there is pasture and shelter, to thick bush country. Buffa- 
loes associate in herds of from 50 to 200 individuals, though old 
males are often found solitary, and sometimes a few males will be 
found together ; the large herds consist of a few males with many 
females and calves of various ages. These herds are constantly ac- 
companied by the rhinoceros bird {Buidliaga), and also by the white 
egret {Herodias garzetta), which perch on their backs and heads 
in search of grass-ticks and other insect parasites, and often by 
their cries warn them of impending danger. Associated with the 
buffalo too is the tsetse fly {Glossinia morsitans) ; but it is now 
generally believed that the Haematozoon, which causes the ngana 
or tsetse fly disease, is found naturally in the buffalo, the blood of 
which seems to have become immune to the parasite, and that the 
fly is merely an involuntary carrier of the infection from the immune 
blood of the wild buffalo to the highly susceptible blood of the 
domestic animal. However this may be, ngana or tsetse fly disease 
seldom occurs except in the close neighbourhood of buffalo and other 
large game. Bufl:aloes drink regularly usually about sunrise, they 
then retire to a sheltered spot and rest during the day ; in the 
evening they again drink and bathe, and then feed till midnight, 
when they rest and chew the cud till dawn. They are exceedingly 
fond of wallowing in the pools and plastering themselves with mud, 
possibly this assists them to get rid of the gad flies and other 
insect parasites with which they are afflicted ; considering their 
bulk their pace is fairly swift. 

During the breeding season the old males fight with con- 
siderable vigour as witnessed by Drummond ; the single young one 
is born a good deal later than in the case of the antelopes, as a rule 


in February or March, and for about ten days the mother hides the 
young one in long grass, remaining in the vicinity and visiting it 
at constant intervals ; soon after which the calf is able to run with 
the rest of the herd. 

The buffalo is generally reckoned the most dangerous of South 
African animals, at any rate there can be no doubt that more lives 
have been lost in buffalo shooting than in any other form of sport, 
but this perhaps may be accounted for by the fact that it has been 
more hunted than any other animal. A few instances are recorded 
of the animal charging without provocation, this probably is due 
to the memory of previous attacks, but as a rule they only charge 
when wounded, and even then only when not more than fifty yards 
away from their assailant, as the senses of sight and hearing, 
especially in the old males, seem to be rather deficient. When 
charging the buffalo does not lower his head but keeps his nose 
forward and his horns directed backwards over his back, and just 
before reaching his object suddenly twists his head round sideways 
and endeavours to impale his foe. There can be no doubt that 
most of the accidents that have occurred in buffalo shooting are 
due to want of care in approaching wounded animals lurking in 

Family aiRAFFIDAE. 

The characters of this family will be found detailed under the 
description of the genus, the only one among existing animals. 


Giraffa, Brisson, Beg. Anim. p. 60 (1762) G. camelopardalis. 

Animals of very remarkable proportions with greatly elongated 
necks, which, however, contain only the usual number of seven 
vertebrae ; with high withers and short bodies ; frontal appendages 
present in both sexes, consisting of a pair of short erect bony 
processes at the junction of the frontal and parietal bones ossified 
from distinct centres, though often afterwards united to the skull ; 
these are covered with a hairy skin, and though often known as 
the horns are hardly to be rightly so called ; in front at the junction 




of the nasal and parietal bones is a third median bony prominence 
also covered with skin and hair, more developed. in the northern 
than the southern form, this is ordinarily known as the third horn. 

There are no traces of the lateral digits or of the false hoofs on 
either the fore or hind limbs. 

Dentition. — i. §, c. ^, pm. f , m. | = 32 ; there are no upper 
canines or incisors, the lower canines resemble the incisors imme- 

FiG. 65. — Skull of the Southern Giraffe (Giraffa capensis). 
(From de Wmton, Proc. Zool. Soc.) 

diately preceding them and follow them without interval, the molars 
are brachyodont (i.e., short fanged) and the upper ones have no 
inner accessory column. 

Although the giraffe is so well known an animal, it is only 
recently that the differences separating the Northern or Ethiopian 
from the Southern African form have been generally recognised, 
though as far back as 1822 they were pointed out by the French 
naturalist, E. Geoffroy St. Hilaire. 

Mr. de Winton who has given a very clear account of the matter, 
shows that — 


In the Northern Form. In the Southern Form. 

(1) The dark body markings are (1) The body markmgs are more 

polygonal with very well de- blotchy, the middle being 

fined edges, and that the darker than the edges, and 

pale intervals get narrower these are never really well 

and more defined as age defined, 

(2) Legs below the knees and (2) Legs spotted to the hoofs. 

hocks white. 

(3) The third "horn" well de- (3) The third "horn" merely 

veloped from 3 to 5 inches consists of a shght lump or 

in height in the males. prominence in the males. 

(4) Skull of the ^ with a third (4) Skull of the ^ with only a 

horn, of the $ with no un- low prominence, of the ? 

ossified space in front of the with a marked unossitied 

orbit, of both sexes with the lachrymal space, of both 

posterior edge of the bony sexes with the posterior 

palate rounded. edge of the palate pointed. 

These differences seem sufficient to constitute specific separation, 

and this conclusion has been here adopted. 

In addition to the living species strictly confined to the 

Ethiopian region, fossil forms have been recorded from the Pliocene 

beds of Greece, Persia, India and China, showing the former wide 

extension of this very specialised family. 

83. Giraffa capensis. The Southern Giraffe. 

Giraffa camelopardalis, Zinimermann, Geogr. Geschiclite ii, p. 125 (1780) 

(in part) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mas. p. 67 (1861) ; Bryden, 

Proc. Zool Soc. 1891, p. 445 [distribution] ; TJiomas, Proc. Zool. 

Soc. 1894, p. 135 ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1895, p. 161 ; 

[nee Linnaeus] . 
Camelopardalis giraffa, Smicts, Emim. Mamm. Caj). p. 67 (1832) ; A. 

Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Joiirn. ii, p. 184 (1834). 
Camelopardalis capensis. Lesson, Nouv. Tdhl. Begn. Anim., p. 168 

Giraffa australis, BJioads, Proc. Acad. PJiilad., 1896, p. 518 (1897). 
Giraffa capensis, de Winton, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1897, p. 277, figs. 3 and 4 

[head and skull] . 

Literature. — Buffon, vol. xiii. (1765), p. 9, earliest mention of the 
girafi'e in South Africa ; id. Suppl. iii. (1776), p. 320, figure and accoimt of 
young speciuien sent by Governor Tulbagh to Holland and described by 


AUaniand; id. Suppl. vii. (1789), p. 345, another figure with account derived 
from Colonel Gordon ; Brink and Hop (1778), p. 26, account of the first 
discovery of the South African giraffe in 1761 ; Sparrman (1785), ii, p. 256, 
account also derived from Colonel Gordon with criticism on Buffon ; 
Vosmaer (1787), history and description with plates of animal and skeleton ; 
Paterson (1790), pp. 64, 126, account of two individuals shot north of the 
Orange River with descriptions and measurements, one of which was sent to 
John Hmiter for the Hunterian Museum ; le Vaillant (1796), ii, pp. 267, 280-1, 
account of hmiting north of the Orange Elver with notes on several pomts, 
a plate of the head, and an allusion to the individual sent by Governor 
Tulbagh to AUamand in Holland ; Lichtenstein (1812), ii, p. 277, met the 
giraffe in Griqualand West, and asserts that le Vaillant did not kill his 
specimen but purchased the skin in the Karee Mountains, south of the 
Orange River; Harris (1838), ]3p. 103, 143, and 158, met with and shot the 
giraffe in what are now the Marico and Rustenburg districts of the Transvaal, 
p. 227, chapter 24 is devoted to an account of hunting giraffe ; Harris (1840), 
figured on pi. xi; Methuen (1848), pp. 124, 168, habits and shootmg near 
the Molopo River in Bechuanaland ; Cunmaing (1855), i, p. 268, account of 
first giraffe shot near "Booby" in the South-eastern Kalahari, p. 306, 
another 18 ft. high shot in Bagmanwato forests ; Andersson (1856), p. 83, 
account of appearance and pace, p. 413, account of lions attack on ; Hall 
(1857), p. 166, note on distribution; Livingstone (1857), p. 56, asserts that 
giraffe are always near water; Baines (1864), p. 387, on the smell of the 
giraffe ; Selous (1881), p. 230, account of habits, distribution and hunting ; 
Theal (1888), ii, p. 165, account of Hop and Brink's Expedition to Great 
Namaqualand in 1761 and of the shooting of giraffes, the skin of one of 
which was sent by Governor Tulbagh to Holland [see Buffon above] ; 
Bryden (1889), p. 285, evidence in favour of the giraffe having once existed 
south of the Orange River; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 69, distribution 
and habits in Bechuanaland ; Bryden (1893), p. 304, chapter on hunting in 
Khama's countrj', pp. 322, 498, on its past and present distribution and 
habits; Oswell (1894), Badminton big game hunting, i, p. 48, gives measure- 
ments and notes on hunting in Livingstone's time ; Kirby (1896), p. 329, 
an account of the habits, p. 540, native names and distribution in the 
eastern Transvaal; Bryden (1897), p. 127, chapter on giraffes and how to 
captm-e them ; Gibbons (1897), pp. 395-6, distribution in Barotseland ; 
Bryden (1899), p. 496, account of giraffe in South Africa. 

Vernacular Names. — Kameel of the Dutch; Naip of the Hottentots 
(Harris) ; Tuthla of Basutos (Kirby) ; and Bechuanas (Bryden) ; Intutla of 
Matabele (Harris) ; Ihuhla of Swazis (Kirby) ; Indhlulamiti [i.e., he that 
surpasses trees] of Zulus (Kirby) ; Ng'habe of Masawas (Bryden). 

Description. — General colour varying from pale chestnut to 
very dark chocolate, the females and young males being as a rule 
the lightest in colour ; the markings consist of large, irregularly- 
shaped blotches darker in the middle than at the edges, separated 




by ill-defined pale tawny lanes ; the upper line of the face uniformly 
brown, the cheeks paler ; the spots extend down nearly to the hoof, 
but become smaller and fainter ; nostrils placed at the top of the 
snout, slit-like, with no bare rhinarium surrounding them, closable 
at the will of the animal ; tongue very long and slender and exten- 
sile ; eyes very large ; horns or frontal apppendages with a tuft of 
long black hairs at their tips, third " horn " little developed con- 
sisting only of a slight prominence between the eyes ; a short erect 
mane runs from the nape of the neck to the withers and is of a 
chestnut colour ; tail long and strong ending in a tuft of coarse 
black hairs ; feet large and heavy with no traces of lateral hoofs. 


Fig. 66. — Head of the Male Southern GirafEe {Oiraffa capensis) 
(From de Winton, Proc. Zool. Soc.) 

The female differs from the male in size and is usually lighter in 
colour, also the median prominence or third horn is almost entirely 

Dimensions. — Kirby carefully measured an old male from the 
crown of the bead to the hoof, 18 ft. 7; Bryden gives 18 ft. llg ; 
the height of females is from 15 ft. 6 to 16 ft. ; the length of the 


tail 4 ft. ; the skull of an old male in the South African Museum 
measures as follows, length from condyle to premaxillae, 26 ; 
greatest breadth, 12 ; length of upper cheek teeth 6 ; height of 
bony "horn" prominence, 7* 5. 

Distribution. — The Southern giraffe was formerly found through- 
out the country north of the Orange Eiver up to the Zambesi. Brink, 
le Vaillant, Colonel Gordon and Paterson, at the end of the last 
century, all found giraffes immediately after crossing the Orange 
Eiver into Great Namaqualand, and Lichtenstein a little later 
records it from Griqualand West. There does not seem to be any 
evidence of the occurrence of this animal south of the Orange Eiver ; 
Bryden, who discusses the matter, can find no better argument 
than the bushman pictures in some caves near Graaff Eeinet, but 
there is no doubt that bushmen illustrated animals seen during 
their devious wanderings over the country, and by no means con- 
fined themselves to those in the immediate neighbourhood. Harris 
and Gumming in the middle of the century found plenty of giraffes 
in what is now the eastern part of Bechuanaland and the western 

At the present time giraffes are still found in the northern 
Kalahari in the neighbourhood of Lake Ngami, and also further 
north to and beyond the Zambesi ; there may also be a few in the 
western part of Matabeleland. Up to a year or two ago there were 
plenty of giraffes in the Sabi Eiver district of the eastern Transvaal, 
whence came the living examples now in the Zoological Gardens. If 
any are still surviving there now, they are strictly preserved ; in 
Portuguese Bast Africa and further south in Zululand there are 
also said to be some. 

Immediately north of the Zambesi the giraffe has not hitherto 
been recorded either in Nyasaland or Mozambique, but north of the 
Eufiji Eiver it again appears, and is found fairly abundantly in 
German and British East Africa as far as the Tana Eiver, north of 
which it is replaced by the Nubian species {Giraffa ca-melopardalis). 

History. — The giraffe was known to the later classical writers 
and is noticed by Pliny, Oppian, and others, the best description 
being that of Heliodorus, Bishop of Tricca, in his " Ethiopica; " it 
was exhibited in Eome by Julius Caesar, and in the fifteenth century 
in Florence by Lorenzo di Medici. 

The existence of the giraffe in the southern part of Africa was 
first made known by the expedition sent by the Governor Tulbagh, 
under Brink and Hop, to Namaqualand in 1761 ; notice of a rude 
sketch made by them will be found in the 13th vol. of Buffon ; 



subsequently Tulbagh procured a specimen for the Leyden Museum, 
and another complete skin and skeleton, obtained by Colonel Gordon 
for the Prince of Orange, was described by Vosmaer ; le Vaillant and 
Paterson again obtained others. No living example of this form 
however, was imported into Europe till quite recently, i.e., in 1895, 
when the animal now living in the Zoological Gardens in London 
was safely landed. 

The name giraffe, derived according to Skeet from the Arabic 
Zaref or Zarefat, is practically unknown in South Africa where 
the term " kameel " is always used. 

Habits. — Many sportsmen have written on the habits of this 
most interesting animal, Kirby's account is on the whole the best 
and most detailed ; the following notes are drawn up from this 
and the other authors cited above. 

Giraffes are found in comparatively dry open country where there 
are frequent sandy ridges overgrown with "kameel dorn " {Acacia 
giraffae), "mopani" {Gopaifera mopane) and other desert shrubs 
and trees. They feed chiefly in early morning and late evening, 
resting during the heat of the day ; they are exceedingly difficult to 
distinguish, their long necks and heads almost exactly resembling 
dead and branchless tree-stumps, and this difficulty is further 
accentuated by the fact that they often remain perfectly still 
without any movement of their ears or tail which so often betrays 
the presence of other big game animals. 

They associate in herds or troops of from seven to sixteen 
individuals though occasionally even larger numbers are seen 
together ; these herds usually contain only one old male the others 
being young males and females ; the very oldest males called stink- 
bulls by the Boers are often found solitary ; the herds of giraffe 
are frequently found in association with zebra, wildebeest and 
ostrich, and in addition the red-billed weaver bird [Textor erythro- 
rhynchus) is a constant attendant on the giraffe, clinging to its 
withers and fluttering along by its side when galloping off. 

The giraffe is a very defenceless animal, the only weapon it ever 
uses appears to be its heels, with which however, it can give a very 
powerful kick ; besides man the lion appears to be its only enemy. 
Nicolls and Eglington state that it is chiefly the females in young 
who thus suffer as they seem to require water more frequently than 
the others, and the lions lie in wait for them in the thickets by the 
rivers and pools. Andersson relates that he once saw a giraffe with 
a lion on its back, and figures the incident. 

Their pace, though not appearing to be so, is very considerable, 
and even with a good horse it takes some time to ride them down. 


They always gallop moving the fore and hind legs of the same side 
at the same time, their long necks swinging stiffly to and fro like 
gigantic pendulums as they move ; their tails switch round and 
curve up over their backs so that the whole movement is a very 
remarkable one, and is compared by some observers with a ship 
rolling about in a heavy sea. As they move their hind legs are some- 
what straddled so that it is dangerous to come too near their heels. 

All observers seem agreed that the giraffe is mute, but their 
sense of both sight and smell is very acute ; the old males, as before 
indicated, have a very strong odour ; Gumming rather poetically 
compares it with that of a " hive of heather honey," Bryden 
with that of musk, but there can be no doubt that to horses it is 
exceedingly overpowering and disagreeable, and further, that when 
an old male is killed it is quite impossible to endure it. 

The food of this animal consists almost entirely of the leaves of 
an acacia {A. giraffae) commonly known as the kameel-dorn, the 
leaves of which are plucked off one by one by its long flexible tongue. 
There has been a good deal of controversy about the drinking of the 
giraffe, it seems on the whole that though in certain districts it 
does not drink during the greater part of the year, yet, that where 
water is available it does so freely. 

The female produces but one calf, though Kirby has twice ex- 
ceptionally observed twins; the period of gestation, as ascertained 
from animals in captivity, is about fourteen months, and the young 
are born, according to Kirby, usually between November and 

The giraffe is nearly always hunted and shot on horseback ; a 
stalk is almost an impossibihty owing to the great height of the 
animals which enables them to overlook trees or any other shelter. 
Most hunters record a bullet planted directly from behind about 
15 inches above the root of the tail as most effective ; owing to the 
pecuUar shape of the animal this will run right forward along the 
body and pierce the heart. 

Division SUINA. 

Artiodactyles with incisors generally present in the upper jaw ; 
with bunodont molars \_i.e., with conical cusps when unworn] ; 
with a comparatively simple stomach not arranged for ruminating ; 
with the third and fourth metacarpals and metatarsals distinct 
from one another, and the second and fifth toes usually complete 
though smaller than the two median ones. 




Animals of bulky form with smooth and nearly hairless skin 
and with a broad and somewhat square muzzle with no disc-like 
termination as in the pigs ; feet short and broad with four subequal 
toes, each provided with a short rounded hoof, all of which reach 
the ground when the animal is walking. 

Fig. 67. — Skull of Hixjpopotamus ampliihius {\ nat. size) 

Skull with facial portion much elongated, the orbits tubular 
and very prominent ; the mandible large and heavy with a rounded 
descending process at its outer angle. Dentition i. ^^ c. i, pm. |, 
m. f, incisors and canines not rooted and continually growing, 
the lower canines very long and heavy, the lower incisors more or 
less horizontally placed ; premolars somewhat pointed, molars when 
worn, flat and showing an infolded outHne of enamel. 



Hippopotamus, Linnaeus Syst. Nat., 12th ed. i, p. 

101 (1766) H. amphibius. 

The characters of this the only recent genus of the family will 
be found enumerated above. 

In addition to the well-known species described below there is 
a much smaller one, the Pigmy Hippopotamus (H. Uheriensis) from 
the rivers of West Africa. 

Both the existing forms are confined at the present time to 
Africa ; in the later geological eras, however, hippopotamuses were 
found all over the Old World, a species practically indistinguishable 
from the larger living form, having been met with even in the 
Pleistocene beds of England. 

84. Hippopotamus amphibius. The Hippopotamus. 

Hippopotamus amphibius, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed. i, p. 101 
(1766) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 58 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. 
Quart. Journ. ii, p. 177 (1834) ; id. Illustr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. 
pi, vi. (1838) ; Murray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1849, p. 163, pi. xiv ; Layard, 
Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 60 (1862) ; Bartlett, Proc. Zool. Soc. 
1871, p. 255, pi. XX, 1872, p. 819 [account of birth of young one] . 

Hippopotamus capensis, Desmoidins, Journal de Physique, \. p. 354 

Literature. — Tachard (1686), p. 104, noticed and figured as the " vache 
marine " ; Kolben (1731), ii, p. 129, described as the sea cow and figured 
in a woodcut, abundant near Cape Town at that time; Buffon (1776), 
Suppl. iii. p. 301, gives an account of two specimens brought from the Cape, 
one sent by Governor Plettenberg to the Prince of Orange, the other 
previously sent to the Leyden Museum; Brink and Hop (1778), p. 18, 
figures Hippo met with to the north of the Orange Eiver in 1761 ; Paterson 
(1789), pp. 84, 88, met with a few Hippos on the Sunday Eiver and many 
on the Fish Eiver ; Sparrman (1785), i, p. 370, on its occurrence in the 
Krom Eiver in Humansdorp division, ii, p. 300, hunting and general account 
on the Fish Eiver in the Albany and Somerset East Divisions ; Thunberg 
(1795), i, p. 207, Hippos on the Gamtoo Eiver in Humansdorp in 1772 ; 
Barrow (1801), i, p. 186, met with Hippos on the Great Fish Eiver ; Lichten- 
stem (1812), i, p. 49, notes that there were ten or twelve in the Berg Eiver 
in 1803, ii, p. 42, gives an account of hunting in the Orange Eiver near 
'Colesberg; Burchell (1822), i, p. 411, met with Hippos in 1811, in the Vaal 


Eiver, and gives an account of tbeir capture and cutting up ; Harris 
(1838), p. 84, met with Hippos on the Molopo Eiver in Bechuanaland, 
and again p. 208, on the Upper Limpopo in the Pretoria District of the 
Transvaal; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xii ; Delagorgue (1847), i, pp. 120, 
146, 304, 326, 455, gives a good account of the habits of the Hippo in 
Natal where he met with it on nearly all the rivers, from 1839 onwards; 
Methuen (1848), p. 230, met with on the Marico Eiver; Gordon Gumming 
(1855), ii, pp. 164, 181, shot Hippos on the Upper Limpopo river ; Andersson 
(1856), p. 510, description and account of habits; Hall (1857), p. 9 on 
distribution; Grout (1863), p. 295, notes as stiU found at the Umgeni 
Eiver mouth near Durban; Farini (1886), p. 463, saw Hippos in Orange 
Eiver ; Theal (1888), i, ]). 42, in his history notes that Hippos were killed 
in the marsh where Church Square Cape Town now is in 1652 ; 
Bryden (1889), p. 288, discusses the present distribution of the Hippo in 
South Africa ; Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 65, distribution and habits ; 
Bryden (1893), p. 495, on its past and present distribution; Selous (1893), 
p. 161, met with 4,000 ft. above the sea up the rivers in the dry season in 
Ehodesia; Jackson (1894), i. p. 269, chapter on methods of hunting ; Kirby 
(1896), p. 538, note on habits and occurrence in the eastern Transvaal; 
Ward (1896), p. 299, measurements of incisors ; Gibbons (1897), p. 8, 
measurements, p. 396, and distribution in Barotseland ; Kirby (1899), p. 
336, distribution in Mozambique; Selous (1899), p. 533, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. -^Zeekoe of the Dutch, Sea-cow of the European 
colonists ; T'gao of the Hottentots (Sparrman) ; Lxivubu of Amaxosa 
(Stanford) ; of Zulus (Delagorgue) ; Swazis (Kirby) ; and Matabele (Selous) ; 
Ikubu of Basutos (Kirby) ; and Bechuanas (Harris). 

Description. — Of large size covered with smooth and very thick 
skin, dirty or greyish black above, getting lighter below with a 
fleshy pink tinge here and there, especially in young animals ; the 
skin is quite hairless except for a few tufts on the lips at the sides 
of the head and neck, at the tips of the ears and the extremity of 
the tail. 

The head is very large and square, the nostrils which can be 
opened and closed at the will of the animal, being situated on the 
top of the snout ; the eyes which are comparatively small, are some- 
what protruding owing to the projecting bony orbits, and placed 
almost in a line between the nostrils and the ears ; these latter 
which can also be closed at the will of the animal, are exceedingly 
short as if cropped, and bear a row of hairs along their margms. 

The legs are short and only raise the ponderous abdomen a 
short distance off the ground ; the tail is short and somewhat 
compressed and naked, except for a few bristles at its extremity. 

The skull is very massive and provided with two pairs of incisors 


above and below, the central pair being considerably longer than 
the outer ones. 

The female resembles the male, but is always smaller. 

Dimensions. — The average measurements of the hippopotamus 
seem to be from 11 to 12 ft. in length ; Sir A. Smith gives the 
following — head and body 10 ft. 3, tail 13 in., height at shoulder 
4 ft. 8 ; a male which lived many years in the Zoological Gardens, 
in London, measured head and body 12 ft., tail 22 in., and weighed 
4 tons ; a very large one according to Gibbons measured 14 ft. 0*5 
in extreme length ; the lower canines are very large and heavy, 

Fig. 68. — The Hippopotamus [Hippopotamus amphibius). 

the record given by Ward is 37*5 from the Shire Eiver, Kirby 
records a pair from an individual shot by himself on the Zambesi 
31"25 and 31 ; a pair a little smaller weighed, according to Ward, 
15 lbs. 

A very large skull from St. Lucia Bay in Zululand, now in the 
South African Museum, measures, length 2 ft. 7 ; breadth, 1ft. 6'5 ; 
length of cheek teeth, 11, the portion of the lower canines pro- 
jecting from the lower jaw measures 14 and 13 respectively. 

Distribution. — The hippopotamus was formerly found through- 
out Africa, south of the Sahara, in suitable places, and also in the 


Nile down to its mouth, but owing to natural shyness and perse- 
cution it has now retreated from the more populous and frequented 
districts, and is only as a rule found in places of less easy access. 

In South Africa it was originally found everywhere along the 
coasts and rivers ; Theal, in his history records from van Eiebeck's 
Diary that in 1652, hippopotamuses disported themselves in the 
swamp now occupied by Church Square, in the centre of Cape 
Town ; even in the early part of the 18th century Kolben speaks of 
them as being not uncommon in the neighbourhood, but with the 
great expansion that took place in the middle of that century the 
hippopotamus retreated, and Paterson, Sparrman, and the other 
travellers had to go nearly as far as the Great Fish Eiver before 
meeting these monsters ; Burchell witnessed a sea-cow hunt close 
to where the Vaal and Orange Eivers meet, but Harris and 
Cumming, 1830-40, only came across them in the upper waters of 
the Limpopo and its tributaries. 

A few individuals lingered for many years near the mouth of 
the Berg Eiver almost 70 miles north of Cape Town ; and the 
head of one killed in 1856, is still preserved in the South African 
Museum, and the last is said to have disappeared about 1874. 

Nowadays, except for a few said to be still surviving in the lower 
reaches of the Orange Eiver, the hippopotamus may be regarded as 
extinct in the Colony ; in Natal there are a few strictly preserved 
in " Zeekoe lake " at the mouth of the Umgeni Eiver a few miles 
north of Durban ; north of this, especially in St. Lucia Bay, in the 
Komati and other rivers, in the eastern Transvaal and Portuguese 
territory up to the Zambesi, they are still found in reduced 
numbers in less frequented districts as also in the upper waters 
of that river, the Okovango and the Ngami swamps. 

History. — The hippopotamus is one of the oldest known animals, 
if Behemoth of the Book of Job is to be identified with it as seems 
very probable ; to the classical authors Herodotus, Aristotle and 
Phny, the "river horse" was well known, though the descrip- 
tions given are not very good, and many fabulous tales are mingled 
with them. 

Kolben was apparently the first author to identify the South 
African sea-cow with the classical " river horse," and his description 
though quaint is fairly accurate ; after his time nearly all authors 
dealing with South Africa have something to say on this subject ; 
on the whole Delagorgue (1847) and Harris (1840) give the best 
account of the history and habits of this animal. 


Habits. — Sea-cows are thoroughly aquatic in their habits, being 
seldom found far from water either of rivers, lakes, or even the 
sea, along the shores of which they frequently travel from one 
river mouth to another ; during the day where entirely unmolested 
they are often found asleep on mud or sand banks, but in more 
frequented places they sleep actually in the water, either floating 
with only the nostrils above water or even, according to some 
authors, lying on the river bed and rising to the surface only from 
time to time. Along many of the rivers of South Africa are to be 
found deep pools which retain their water even in the dry season, 
these which are known as " zeekoegats " are no doubt partially 
excavated by the animals themselves, and here they were often 
to be found in considerable numbers, pccasionally the sea-cows 
make a kind of narrow ditch up the river, along which they can 
travel from one "gat" to another; during the rainy season they 
go far up the rivers to near their sources, as is remarked by Mr. 
Selous, who came across one at an elevation of about 4,000 ft. 
above the sea in Rhodesia ; during the dry season they retreat 
back to the lower reaches and mouths of the rivers. 

In the evening the sea-cow leaves its gat, and travelling by narrow 
but well defined paths seeks its food, often going for this purpose 
considerable distances even as much as ten or twelve miles from 
the river bank ; it usually gets back to the river before morning. 

Notwithstanding its ungainly shape the pace of this animal 
on land is considerable ; Delagorgue asserts that on flat ground it 
is equal to that of an average active man ; it swims, of course, with 
great facility, and owing to its specific gravity being almost equal 
to that of water it is able to walk along the bottom of the rivers 
rising to breathe only at considerable intervals ; Kirby indeed 
states that he has observed one remain submerged for twelve 

The voice of the hippopotamus may be described grunting roar, 
and is compared by some with that of an elephant. Its food con- 
sists entirely of herbs, grasses, and young branches of shrubs — never 
of fruits or roots ; to fill its enormous bulk it requires a very large 
quantity of material, and in addition it spoils a good deal more 
than it eats ; in cultivated lands such as rice fields and sugar- 
cane plantations it does a terrible lot of damage, and its visits 
are consequently much dreaded by natives. 

During the breeding season the males become fierce and attack 
one another by biting, never by ripping with their lower canines 


as do the true pigs ; the period of gestation as observed on several 
occasions in the Zoological Gardens, varies, from 227 to 242 days, 
and only one young one is born at a time ; a graphic description of 
this event will be found in Mr. Bartlett's paper quoted above ; the 
mother carries the young one mounted on her back when in the 
water, this has been observed both in captivity and in the wild 

In disposition the hippopotamus seems to be peaceable and 
inoffensive, though when wounded or molested it has been known 
to charge ; it is also very dangerous to passing canoes and boats in 
some of the larger rivers, this is especially the case on the Shire 
and Zambesi, where several bad accidents have occurred owing to 
the upsetting of the boats of passing travellers. 

The hippopotamus is usually shot in the water from the river 
bank, but when killed the body sinks immediately, often not 
floating again for eight to ten hours. Andersson gives an account 
of harpooning from canoes, and also of killing by the drop of a 
loaded javelin suspended from a tree branch by the natives near 
Lake Ngami, 

All authors, from Kolben and Burchell onwards, are agreed 
that the flesh of the hippopotamus is excellent eating, closely 
resembling succulent pork or veal ; there is also a layer of fat 
between the muscles and the skin very much prized by natives and 
colonists alike; it is termed " zeekoe speck," and must be salted 
at once in order to preserve it. 

From the hide of the sea-cow are made the sjamboks or whips 
so much sought after, and from the teeth the hardest ivory is 
procured, formerly much used by dentists in their arts. 

Family SUIDAE. 

This family containing the pigs and their allies is distinguished 
by the possession of a snout, ending in a distinct, more or less round, 
naked disc within which the openings of the nostrils are placed ; 
the feet are narrow and slender, each bearing four hoofs, of which 
the two middle ones (those of the third and fourth toes) are rather 
larger and have their contiguous faces flattened so as to form a 
symmetrical pair, the outer smaller pair (those of the second and 
fifth toes) never under ordinary circumstances reach the ground. 

The incisors are always rooted ; the canines are large, those of 


the upper jaw usually curving round and directed upwards and 
outwards, and together with the lower ones forming what are 
termed the tushes. 

The molars which are oblong in shape are covered with a 
number of little rounded elevations of enamel, so that with wear 
the tooth surface shows a series of irregular enamel surfaces. 

The mandible is not provided with the descending hooked process 
present in the hippopotamus. 

Key of the South African Genera. 

A. No warts or lobes on the face, incisors present 

throughout life..; Potaniochoeriis, p. 27S 

B. Two pairs of warts or fleshy lobes on the face, 

incisors of both jaws very much reduced in the 

adult and nearly always absent in old animals PhacocJioerus, p. 276. 


Potamochoerus, G^-ay, Proc. Zool. Soc, 1852, 

p. 131 P. choeropotamus. 

Ghoiropotamus, Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (2) xi., 

p. 281 (1852) P. porcus. 

Pigs with sharply pointed ears more or less tufted with a pencil 
of hairs, and with in the old males a pair of hard callosities or 
swellings on the side of the face between the eyes and the snout, 
caused partly by the great development of the sheath of the upper 
canine, and partly by a mass of cartilaginous tissue situated over 

Dentition. — i. f , c. i, pm. ^, m. f ; the anterior premolar 
of the upper jaw and the two anterior ones of the lower are often 
absent ; the upper canines curve round and are directed outwards 
and upwards, and with those of the lower jaw form formidable 
weapons of defence. 

Dr. Forsyth Major, in a recent revision of this genus, has recog- 
nised in addition to the West African Eed Eiver hog (P. porcus) and 
the Madagascar animal (P. larvatus), two additional species from 
Nyasaland and Abyssinia respectively, as well as two less well 
defined subspecies of the present form from South Nyasaland and 


85. Potamochoerus choeropotamus. The Bosch-vaek 
OR Bush Pig. 

Sus africanus, Schreber, Sdugeth. v, pi. cccxxvii. (1791) \iiec Ginelin\ 
Sus koiropotanius, Desmoulins, Diet. Class. Hist. Nat. xvii, p. 139, 

pi. 146, fig. 2 (1831). 
Sus larvatus, apucl Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 59 (1832) ; A, Smith 

S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 178 (1834) [nee Cuvier] . 
Choiropotamus africanus, apucl Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mas. 

p. 61 (1861) [nee Gmel.] . 
Potamochoerus africanus, apud Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1868, p. 34. 
Potamochoerus choeropotamus, Forsyth Major, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1897, 

p. 363. 

Literature. — Moodie (1835), p. 265, on the habits of the bosch-vark; 
Grout (1863), p. 296, on the habits and native names of the bosch-vark 
in Natal ; Drummond (1875), p. 334, note on occurrence in Zululand ; 
Nicolls and Eglington (1892), p. 78, description and distribution; Kkby 
(1896), p. 538, on its habits and distribution in the eastern Transvaal; 
Kh-by (1899), p. 334, distribution in Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 526, 
range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — Bosch-vark of the Dutch Colonists ; Ingulube of 
Amaxosa (Cloete) of Ziilus and Swazis (Kirby). 

Description. — Body covered with coarse long bristles, thick 
enough to conceal the skin, the colour of v/hich varies in different 
individuals from black browa and reddish brown to grey ; head 
with the snout projecting some distance in front of the mouth 
covered with short white bristles somewhat sparsely disposed so 
that the bare skin shows in places ; usually a black spot on the 
cheek below the eye ; between the eye and the snout a pair of 
callosities or swellings formed by a cartilaginous thickening of the 
skin overlying a bony projection of the skull, this is present only in 
the males and possibly represents a commencing horn ; ears rather 
narrow and pointed with a small pencil of coarse black hairs at the 
tip ; limbs scantily covered with bristles ; the false hoofs well 
developed but pointed, and not ordinarily reaching the ground ; 
tail short and slender with a little brush of black bristles at the tip. 

The female has no facial callosities^ but the canines are fairly 
well developed ; the young are born with yellow longitudinal stripes. 

Skull of the male with a stout backwardly projecting process of 
the maxillary bone at the root of the canine ending in a roughened 
surface ; a similar roughened surface is placed at the angle between 
the roof and side of the skull, also on the maxillary bone ; on these 




fcwo roughened surfaces lies the cartilaginous nodule forming the 
callosity ; in the female the process is replaced by a narrow longi- 
tudinal sharp-edged ridge. 

Dimensions. — Of an old mounted male ; head and body 4 ft. 3-5 ; 
tail 12-5 ; height at shoulder 26-0 ; length of hind foot 9-0 ; skull 
extreme length 14-9 ; incisors to condyle 13'4 ; breadth 6-7 ; length 
of the upper molar series 4'5. The length of the lower tushes 
outside the jaw seldom exceeds 3 inches. 

Fig. 69. — The Bosch-vark [Potamoclioerus clioeropotamus). 

Distribution. — The bosch-vark is found chiefly in the eastern 
and south-eastern parts of Africa, and, according to Dr. Forsyth 
Major, does not extend north of the Zambesi, the bush pigs of 
those parts being distinguished by him as separate geographical 

In the Colony this animal is found along the southern coast in 
the better wooded districts from Swellendam, whence the South 
African Museum possesses an example ; eastwards through Knysna 
to the Transkei, Natal, Zululand, and the eastern Transvaal ; though 
probably occurring in Mashonaland, it does not seem to reach 
Matabeleland or Bechuanaland. A bosch-vark is said to be found 


in Damara and Ovampoland ; possibly this may be of a different 

History and Habits. — The history of this species is somewhat 
difficult to decipher owing to confusion with domestic pigs and the 
wart-hog ; the first mention however, seems to be that of Schreber, 
who in 1791 published a figure of the head without any text. This 
name, however, cannot hold good, as it is antedated by the same 
name given to the wart-hog by Gmelin in 1788 ; the earliest name 
therefore, is the one quoted above in the synonomy. 

Bosch-varks are found most abundantly in broken hilly country 
where there is dense shade and plenty of water ; they spend the 
daytime lying up in thick cover, and in the night they sally forth in 
bands of from 8 to 10 individuals in search of food, which consists 
chiefly of roots and wild fruits ; when opportunity offers, however, 
like most pigs they will eat flesh, as is instanced by Kirby in the 
case of a bushbuck ram wounded and lost by him, which was almost 
devoured by bosch-varks when again found. 

They do great damage to the crops, and are especially fond of 
green mealies or Indian corn. 

They are said never to go to earth, and to always travel with 
the tail depressed in contra-distinction to the wart-hog. A Jitter 
consists of from six to eight, and is produced in December or 
January. Kirby states that the flesh is coarse, and never fat, but 
Grout says they make excellent pork. 

This is an animal about which little has been written, as it 
appears to be seldom seen owing chiefly to its nocturnal habits. 
Like other wild pigs it is exceedingly plucky, and will come to bay 
and charge, " dying fighting against all odds, grim and silent to the 



Phacochoerus, G. Cuvier, Beg. Anim. 1st ed., i, p. 236 

(1817) P. aethiopicus. 

Head provided with two pairs of cutaneous lobes, or warts, 
situated on either side of the face. 

Dentition much reduced ; in the young animal the formula is 
i. i, c. 1, pm. f , m. f = 36. As the animal grows older a gradual 
reduction takes place, until in some of the oldest animals all the 




Fig. 70. —Skull of Phacochoerus aethiopicus (| nat. size). 

Fig. 71. — Right upper molar of Phacochoerus aethiopicus. 


teeth are lost except the canines and the posterior molars. The 
upper canines, which are only coated with enamel at their tips, are 
placed laterally in their sockets and curve outwards and upwards, 
attaining frequently a length of 10 inches ; the lower canines lie 
directly underneath the upper ones, and though never so long, 
preserve a sharp edge by attrition, and a,re alone used as weapons ; 
molars of very remarkable conformation, especially the posterior 
one, which is very large in old animals, and consists of numerous 
little columns, or cylinders, each composed of the usual enamel cover- 
ing, dentine and pulp all joined together into a solid mass by cement. 
This modification has been brought about by the gradual elongation 
of the tubercles which cover the surface of the molars of the 
ordinary pig. 

Two species are doubtfully distinguished, the one below described 
in which the tooth reduction has been most complete, the other 
P. africanus, from Africa generally, in which the incisors of the 
upper jaw are constantly retained, and which is said to be further 
distinguished by its longer naked ears and whiskers. 

Of four skulls in the South African Museum two from the 
eastern Transvaal — one an old male, the other young — certainly 
retain the upper incisors ; the other two — one from Damaraland, 
the other, unfortunately, with no history, have both entirely 
lost them. 

As the material at my disposal does not allow me to make any 
definite pronouncement on this point, I have included all the South 
African wart-hogs under the oldest name P. aethiopicus. 

86. Phacochoerus aethiopicus. The Wart-hog. 

Aper aethiopicus, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 16, pi. ii (1766). 
Sus aethiopicus, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat., 12th ed., iii, p. 223 (1768). 
Phacochoerus aethiopicus, F. Cuvier Mem. Mus. Paris viii, j). 450, 
pi. xxii (1822); Smids, Enuni. Mamm. Cap. -p. 60 (1832); P. L. 
Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1850, p. 78, pi. xvii [juv.] ; Layard, Cat. 
Mamm. 8. Afr. Mus. p. 61 (1861) ; Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1868, p. 46 ; 
P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1869, p. 276 ; id. ibid. 1871, p. 237. 
Phascochaerus typicus, A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart Journ. ii, p. 178 (1834). 
Phacochoerus pallassii, van der Hoeven, Nov. Act. Acad. Leop. Carol. 
xix, pt. 1, p. 171 pi. xviii. (1839). 
Literature. — Vosmaer (1766) figured and described from a hving 
specimen; Buffon (1776), Suppl. iii, p. 86, description from Allamand of 
the same individual as that described by Pallas ; Sparrman (1785), ii. 


p. 25, account under the name of " Boschvark "of a wart-hog met with m 
Uitenhage, and of its habits ; le Vaillant (1796), iii, p. 242, figured and 
described ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxvii, fig. 1 ; Gumming (1855), 
i, p. 184, met this animal near where Kimberley now stands; Grout (1863), 
p. 296, description and habits with Zulu name ; Nicolls and Eglington 
(1892), p. 77, pi. ix, fig. 32, on its habits and occurrence with a figure of 
the head; Selous (1893), p. 79, account of the hunting of the individual 
now preserved in the South African Museum; Bryden (1893), p. 511, on its 
distribution in South Africa; Millais (1895), pp. 83, 88, note on habits, with 
a sketch; Kirby (1896), p. 539, habits and native names in the eastern 
Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 304, measurements of tushes ; Kirby (1899), 
p. 385, distribution in Mozambique ; Kirby (1899a), p. 517, range and 
habits. /^ 

Vernacular Names. — Vlackte-vark of the Dutc^r^ Kaunaba of the 
Hottentots (Sparrman) ; Inhlovudawana {i.e. little substitute for the 
elephant) of Zulus (Grout) ; Indaigazana of Swazis and Inkulubee of 
Basutos (Kirby) ; Kolobe of the Bechuanas (Khby). 

Description. — Body black covered vs^ith a few scanty coarse 
bristles only, except along the middle of the back from between 
the ears w^here the bristles are thick and upwards of 12 inches 
long, their colour varying from a black to a pale brown ; head 
almost naked, except on the top between the ears where there are 
a number of bristles diverging like the rays of a circle, broad, with 
a not very projecting oval, not round snout ; below the eye is the 
horizontal longitudinal opening of the suborbital gland below which 
again is the largest of the two pairs of warts, this pair being fleshy 
and lobular, while the other pair which is situated between the 
eyes and the tushes is smaller, harder, and more horny ; ears 
shorter, broader, and more rounded than in the bush-pig, with a 
few hairs along the margins and in the interiors ; limbs somewhat 
slender, with small false hoofs ; tail short, quite naked except for 
the terminal tuft of black bristles. 

The female is smaller in every respect and the warts are not 
nearly so well developed ; the teats are four in number. The 
young one is uniformly coloured, usually reddish-brown and not 
striped as most young pigs. 

Skull differing considerably from that of the bush-pig, being 
wide and concave between the orbits ; the zygomatic arches are 
very much thickened chiefly by the formation of a large air sinus 
in the interior ; between the tips of the nasals and the premaxillae, 
are two nodules of bone continuous with the nasal septum which 
is ossified in the older animals ; the palatal view of the skull is 


largely modified by the expansion formed by the enlarged sockets 
of the canines and by the great reduction of the premaxillae. 

The dentition is noticed above. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male from Mashonaland in the 
South African Museum ; head and body 4 ft. 6 ; tail without 
bristles 17-0, with 20-5 ; hind foot 10-0 ; height at shoulder 2 ft. 6 
skull, length condyle to incisors 12-75 ; greatest length 17*0 
breadth 10-0 ; length of posterior molar, the only cheek tooth, 2-15 
the longest canine in the South African Museum measures 13-0, 
of which 10 inches protrude beyond the socket ; Ward gives 
the record at 26*0 in the case of a specimen from Abyssinia and 
for South Africa 15-0. 

Distribution. — The wart-hog, if both so-called species be in- 
cluded, is spread all over Africa from Cape Verd, Abyssinia and 
Somaliland in the north, southwards ; at the beginning of the 
century it was met with in the eastern half of the Colony by 
Sparrman, Barrow and Pringle, and in Namaqualand by le Vaillant, 
but I have been unable to find any record of its occurrence 
south of the Orange Eiver in modern times. It is not uncommon 
in Lydenburg, in the western Transvaal, in Mashonaland and 
Damaraland, whence the South African Museum has received 
examples, and it is still to be found in Bechuanaland, Matabeleland, 
Zululand, and the Portuguese territorities. 

Habits and History. — This animal was first made known in 
Europe by the Governor Tulbagh, who sent in 1765, a live example 
to the menagerie of the Prince of Orange near the Hague, where 
it was seen and described by Vosmaer, Pallas and Allamand. 
Sparrman and le Vaillant also met with the animal in its native 
haunts, and gave adequate accounts of its appearance and habits. 

The wart-hog is usually found in fairly open country and never 
very far from water ; it may be observed in the early morning or 
in the evening in "sounders " rooting like other wild pigs in the plains ; 
during the heat of the day it retires to dense thickets or other 
cover ; when pursued it usually takes to earth, but whether it 
makes its own earths or adapts those of other animals to its use is 
uncertain ; it has been noted both by Cumming and Kirby, that 
when taking to its earth it enters stern first so as to be ready to 
rush out facing the enemy ; it is not as a rule seen in large troops 
but in small family parties, often accompanying herds of zebra 
and wildebeest. 

When pursued it makes off at a good pace holding its tail 


perfectly erect, but with the bushy tip gracefully hangiag over like 
an ear of barley as represented by Millais. When grazing or 
digging for roots with its long tushes it generally rests on its knees, 
but it is with the lower tushes which are provided with sharp 
edges that it defends itself when attacked, and rips up dogs and even 

It seems probable that not more than four young ones are 
produced at a birth, though Kirby has seen sows accompanied by 
six or eight youngsters ; Sparrman states that when molested the 
parents will carry off the young in their mouths to a place of 

The wart-hog has never been hunted with the spear in South 
Africa, the reason given being that it so quickly takes to earth ; 
all however, are agreed that it is not nearly so plucky or sporting 
an animal as the Indian wild boar or even as the bush-pig. 

Opinions vary considerably regarding the palatability of the 
wart-hog, some considering its flesh to be dry and tasteless, others 
comparing it with very excellent pork. 


This suborder contains at the present time three very distinct 
families, the Tapirs, the Ehinoceroses and the Horses, of which only 
the last two are represented within our boundaries. Palaeontology 
teaches us that these are but the poor surviving remnants of a vast 
host of animals which flourished on the earth throughout the 
Tertiary epoch and which if completely reconstructed, would fill 
up the gaps now so obvious between such externally unlike animals 
as the swift one-toed horse, the bulky rhinoceros and the timid, 
harmless tapir. 

The following are the chief characteristics of the suborder — middle 
toe or third digit of both limbs larger than the others and sym- 
metrical in itself ; this may be the only functional toe, or the second 
and fourth may form a pair subequally developed on either side ; 
skull with nasal bones expanded posteriorly and with an alisphenoid 
canal ; dorso-lumbar vertebrae usually twenty-three, sometimes 
twenty- two ; femur provided with a third trochanter ; astragalus 
with a pulley -like surface for articulation with the tibia and its 
distal surface flattened and united to a greater extent wuth the 
navicular than with the cuboid. 

Premolars and molars in a continuous series, all with massive 




quadrate, transversely ridged or complex crowns, that of the last 
lower molar very commonly bilobed. 

Stomach simple, caecum large, placenta diffuse, no gall-bladder, 
mammae inguinal. 


A B 

Fig. 72. — Skeleton of the right fore-feet of, A, Bhinoceros siinus ; B, Eqims 
hurchelli, to show the modifications of the Perissodactyle limb. 

Family EQUIDAE. 

Genus EQUUS. 

Equus, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat., 12th ed. i. p. 100 

(1766) E. caballus. 

Asinus, Gray, Zool. Journ., i. p. 244 (1825) E. hemionus. 

Hippotigris, H. Smith, Jardine's Nat. Libr., xii. p. 

320(1841) E. zebra. 

The characters of the family which may for convenience be 
included in those of the only living genus are as follows : — 

Animals of graceful form with limbs adapted for speed ; head 
elongate; a crest or maue of long hairs along ihe dorsal ridge of the 




neck and long hairs on the tail ; inside the forelegs are a pair of 
rough callosities, the chestnuts, these are also present on the inside 
of the tarsus of the hind limbs in the case of the horse ; mammae, 
two in number, inguinal in position. 

Bach foot consists of a single digit consisting of a metacarpal or 
metatarsal bone and three phalanges, the last of which is enclosed 

Pig. 73. — Skull of Equus burchelli {^^ nat. size). 

in a 'horny box, the hoof ; this single digit is the third and the 
rudimentary metacarpals and metatarsals of the second and fourth 
digits form the splint bones on either side. 

Dentition i. f, c. i, pm. |, m. 

40, the canines are often 

absent in the females ; the incisors have flat crowns with in early 
life a deep central hollow (the " mark " of horses) which by gradual 
wear disappears with age; molars and premolars hypsodont {i.e., 


with long crowns and short roots) flattened at the top with very 
comphcated enamel folds. An extra premolar in front of the others 
is often present and is always a well-developed tooth in extinct 
allied genera. 

This genus contains the horses, wild asses and zebras now 
confined to central and southern Asia and Africa, but formerly 
more widely spread over Europe and the whole of America. 
Within our area only animals belonging to the hippotigrine or zebra 
section occur ; these are distinguished by their beautiful and 
remarkable stripe-markings. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Stripes covering the greater part of the body, 

ground colour ochre yellow to pure white. 

a. Hairs along the hainiches and withers reversed ; 

a gridiron pattern of transverse bars on the 

haunches ; no forelock on the forehead E, siebra, -p. 284^. 

b. Hairs along the haunches and withers not re- 

versed; haunches covered with longitudinal 
bars, the bent continuations of the body 
stripes; a forelock present E. bitrchelU, ^i. 287. 

B. Stripes only on the anterior half of the body, 

ground colour rufous yellow to chestnut, legs and 

belly pale, almost white E. quagga, p. 294. 

87. Eqnus zebra. The Mountain Zbbea. 

Equus zebra, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat., 12th ed., i, p. 101 (1766) ; F. 

Cuvier, Hist. Nat. Mamni. livr. 56 (1826) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. 

Cap. p. 64 (1832); A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 181 

(1834) ; Matschie, Zool. Gart. xxxv, p. 36 (1894) ; PococJc, Ann. Mag. 

N. H. (6), XX, p. 36 (1897). 
Equus montanus, Burchell, Travels, i, p. 139 (1822) ; Buchley, Proc. 

Zool. Sac. 1876, p. 282 ; 1877, p. 453 [distribution] . 
Asinus zebra, Gray, Zool. Journ. i, p. 248 (1825) ; id., Enoivsley 

Menagerie, p. 72, pi. Ivi (1850) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. 

p. 62 (1861). 
Hippotigris zebra, H. Smith, Jardine's Nat. Libr. sii, p. 324, pi. xxi 

Equus hartmannae, Matschie, S. B. Ges. nat. Fr., p. 174 (1898) 

[German South-west Africa] . 


Literature. — Tachard (1686), p. 90, account of the zebra with plate; 
Kolben (1731), ii, p. 112, described as the wild ass ; Edwards, Gleanings 
(1758), V, pi. ccxxii, figured as male zebra ; Buffon (1764), xii, p. 1, pis. i, ii, 
description of this species under the name of zebra ; Sparrman (1785), i, 
p. 137, occurrence in the Caledon division ; Barrow (1801), i, p. 93, note on 
the distribution; Burchell (1822), i, p. 139, ii, p. 273, notes on the dis- 
tinguishing points of the mountain zebra and record of its occurrence in 
Bechuanaland ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xxiv, fig. i; Chapman (1868), 
ii, pp. 318, 333, notes the existence of mountain zebras in Damaraland, 
inland from Walfisch Bay; Bryden (1889), p. 99, devotes a chapter to the 
habits and distribution of the zebra in Cape Colony, illustrated with a 
photograph of a recently captured individual ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), 
p. 74, pi. X, fig. 36, description and distribution ; Schonland, Nature, xlvi 
(1892), p. 7, note on existence in Cradock mountains and of its mvisibility 
in its natural haunts : Bryden (1899a), p. 92, range and habits. 

Vernacular Names. — The name zebra now in general use appears to 
have first been generally made known by Buffon and was adopted by him 
from its vernacular name in the Congo region as stated by some of the 
older travellers, such as Drack ("Voyage de Fr. Brack," Paris, 1641, p. 
106), and de Galline et de Charby (" Eelation d'un voyage de Congo," 
Lyons 1680, p. 76) ; Wildepaard of Dutch Colonists (Sparrman) ; Dauw of 
the Hottentots (Burchell). 

Description. — General shape somewhat ass-like; body, head, 
and limbs closely covered with black or almost black stripes 
broader than their white interspaces ; on the face the dark mark- 
ings below the eyes become reddish passing into large nostril 
patches of the same colour, but the muzzle itself is black ; no trace 
of a forelock on the forehead ; ears long and rather narrow, pos- 
teriorly the basal two-thirds striped, the terminal third black, the 
extreme point white ; mane from between the ears to the shoulders 
not very well developed, coloured black and white in accord with 
the body stripes ; longitudinal dorsal stripe only noticeable over the 
haunches, transverse stripes of the barrel extending back over the 
haunches to the base of the tail forming here the so-called gridiron 
pattern ; no shadow stripes ; hairs along the back to the shoulders 
reversed ; belly white, except for a longitudinal dark band running 
along its anterior portion which is never reached by the transverse 
body stripes ; limbs transversely marked down to the hoofs, the 
black predominating and the lower portion, i.e., the pasterns, being 
quite black, chestnuts large measuring about 3 by 2 in. ; hoof 
rather narrow, compact and solid ; tail reaching the hocks with a 
median black line and traces of transverse bars at the base ; the 
distal quarter with a tuft of long black hairs. 


Dimensions. — From a mounted male ; head and body 7 ft. 4, 
tail 14-0, with terminal hairs 23; height at the shoulders 48-0 {i.e., 
12 hands) ; from ear opening to nose-tip 20*5, ear from notch 7"5 ; a 
large female skull measures 20' 75 in length from incisors to con- 
dyle, and 8-0 in breadth. 

Distribution. — The mountain zebra though reduced in numbers 
is still to be found throughout the greater part of the Colony where 
suitable mountain ranges are found; it is stated to exist in the 
Cedarberg in Piquetberg, the Eoggeveld in Sutherland, the Swart- 
berg between Prince Albert and Oudtshoorn, the Sneeuwberg in 
GraalT Eeinet, the Winterhoek in Uitenhage, and the mountain 
ranges of the Cradock and Cathcart divisions ; the South African 
Museum possesses a mounted pair acquired in 1897 from Cradock. 

Beyond the Colony the mountain zebra has often been stated to 
occur in German South-west Africa and recently Herr Matschie 
has described this Damaraland form as a new species under the 
name of Equus hartmannae from specimens sent to him from the 
extreme northern part of the German territory known as Kaoko- 

Herr Matschie distinguishes his new species by the following 
points : — 

1. The Kaokoland zebra has 15 longitudinal stripes on the 
forehead against 20 in the true zebra. 

2. The second pale band across the thigh is as wide as its two 
adjoining dark bands in the Kaokoland form, while much narrower 
in the true zebra. 

3. In the Kaokoland zebra the dark stripes are dark chocolate, 
not black, and the hght stripes are ochre-yellow, not white. 

An examination of the mounted specimens in the South African 
Museum from Cradock shows that the number of longitudinal stripes 
on the forehead is 13 on the male, 15 on the female individual, that the 
pale band on the thigh is certainly a little narrower than the neigh- 
bouring dark bands, and that the pale ground colour is by no means 
white, that it is quite ochre tinted along the sides, becoming nearly 
dead white on the belly, and that the dark stripes can hardly be 
described as black, being a very dark chocola^te brown. 

Thus two out of the three differences between the Kaokoland 
and the mountain zebra break down, while the third is hardly 
worth consideration. 

Under these circumstances we may conclude that^. hartmannae 
is identical with E. zebra, and extend the range of the species to 
the northern part of German South-west Africa. 


History. — Pere Tachard, the Jesuit, who visited the Colony in 
1685, saw and described a zebra and gave a very poor figure of it, 
though the animal was first known from the Congo region, where a 
different species occurs ; Kolben described it as a wild ass 
and also very incompletely ; Buffon's description was drawn up 
from a living specimen in the Menagerie at Versailles, in 1761. 
Burchell, although he clearly distinguished the three species of 
zebra which he met with, considered that Linnaeus' name was 
more rightly applicable to the species subsequently named after 
himself, and so gave to the present species the name " montanus." 
In modern times, little has been added to our knowledge of this 
interesting form, perhaps Bryden's account sums up best most of 
what is known. 

Habits. — As before remarked, the zebra is entirely confined to the 
most inaccessible portions of the mountains, where it runs in herds of 
from seven to ten individuals, one of whom is usually posted as a 
sentinel and gives the alarm with a shrill neigh ; it is generally 
considered to be untamable, though formerly many were said to be 
exported to Mauritius for draught purposes. Both Bryden and 
Barrow give instances of the ferocity of the zebra, which apparently 
attacks with its teeth anyone approaching sufficiently near. 

88. Equus burchelli. Buechell's Zebra. 

This species is a wide-spread one reaching from north of the 
Orange River to Masailand in British East Africa ; throughout its 
range it varies in a very remarkable manner both in colour and in 
the arrangement of the markings. 

Even in the same herd a good deal of variation has been 
noticed by people who have had an opportunity of examining a 
considerable number of these animals together. 

Of recent years Pocock and Matschie have shewn that Burchell's 
zebra may be split up into a number of geographical races, separated 
from one another by the amount of leg striping, the presence or 
absence of shadow stripes between the dark bands, and by other 

The following key will shew the most salient points of difference 
between the South African races, but it must always be remembered 
that the characters given for geographical races or sub-species 
only apply to very typical numbers of the group and that many 
intermediate forms are likely to be met with. Following a descrip- 


tion of the sub-species will be given a general account of the habits 
of the species. The characters distinguishing Burchell's zebra in 
its widest sense from the other species of the genus are as follows : — 
Hairs along the back not reversed ; ears short ; hoofs broad ; 
no gridiron pattern on the haunches, which are crossed by the 
backward continuation of the barrel stripes bent at an angle, and 
so becoming almost longitudinal ; the ground colour varies from 
white to pale ochre and the stripes cover the whole of the head and 
body as far as the haunches at least. 

Key of the Sub-species. 

A. Barrel stripes not reaching the ventral 

longitudinal stripe. 
a. Legs white and unstriped from their 

junction witli body E. h. typicus, p. 288. 

h. Legs slightly striped as far as the knees 

and liocks E. b. antiquorum, p. 289. 

B. Barrel stripes meeting the ventral longi- 

tudinal stripe. 
a. Shadow stripes extending to neck, where 

they are very plain, lower portion of 

legs but slightly marked E. b. transvaalensis, p. 290. 

h. Shadow stripes only on quarters, very 

strong and distinct, fetlocks and 

pasterns unstriped and unspotted E. b. wahlbergi, p. 290. 

c. Shadow stripes on quarters faint and 

" a'. Stripes on the lower part of the leg 
showing a tendency to become ob- 
literated, pasterns not continuously 

black E. b. cliajjmanni, p. 291. 

&'. Legs strongly striped to the hoofs ; 
fetlocks and pasterns continuously 
black E. b. selousi, p. 291. 

d. No shadow stripes E. b. craiushaiji, p. 292. 

8a. Equus burchelli typicus. Burchell's Zebra, Typical 

Equus zebra, ainul Burchell, Travels i, pp. 139, 420, 451-2 (1822) 

[nee Linnaeus] . 
Asmus burchelli, Gray, Zool. Journ. i, p. 247, pi. ix, figs. 1, 2 [animal 

and hoof] (1825) ; id. Knowsley Menagerie, p. 72, pi. Iv. (1850) ; 

Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mies. p. 62 (1861). 


Equus burchelli, Smuts, Erium. Mamm. Cap. p. 65 (1832) ; A. Smith, 
8. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 181 (1834) ; BucMeij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 
1876, p. 282, [in part] ; MatscJde, Zool. Gart. xxxv, p. 65, with wood- 
cut (1894) ; Pococh, Ann. Mag. N.H. (6), xx, p. 39 [with woodcut], 

Equus montanus, a2nid F. Cuvier, Mammiferes livr. 55 (1826) 
[wee BurchelT\ . 

Equus zebroides, Lesson, Man. Mamm. p. 346 (1827). 

Hippotigris burcheUi, H. Smith, Jardine's Nat. Lib. xii, p. 329, pi. xxiii 

General ground colour white, stripes black, shadow stripes 
brown, these in Gray's typical figure extend forwards from the 
quarters to the neck, while in other specimens they do not go 
so far forward ; none of the barrel stripes reach the longitudinal 
ventral stripe which is but little marked ; nose patches black, 
limbs quite white, unspotted and unstriped from their junction 
with the body ; tail with a dorsal dark band but no cross-stripes, 
tuft white. 

The type-locality for this species described and figured by 
Gray appears to have been Grootfontein about halfway between 
Griquatown and the junction of the Vaal and Modder Eivers, 
in what is now Griqualand West, at which place Burchell 
describes the shooting and preparing of a specimen for mounting. 
This sub-species was apparently found in former days all over the 
Orange Free State and Griqualand West, and is probably now 
extinct. There is a young specimen in bad condition preserved 
in the South African Museum, presented some years ago by Sir 
George Grey from the Free State ; according to Matschie there are 
examples of this sub-species in the Berlin and Leyden Museums, 
and, according to Pocock, in the Bristol, Dublin, and Tring 
Museums, the one in the former being figured by him. 

88b, Equus burchelli antiquorum. The Damaealand Zebka. 

Hippotigris antiquorum, H. Smith, Jardine's Nat. Libr. xii, p. 327, 

pi. xxii (1841). 
Equus antiquorum, Matschie Zool, Garten xxxv, p. 68 [fig.] (1894) ; 

id. S. B. nat. Fr. p. 172 (1898). 
Equus burchelli antiquorum, PococJi, Ann. Mag. N. H. (6) xx, p. 42 


This sub-species differs from the typical Burchell' s zebra in that 
the stripes extend over the quarters and down to the hocks on the 


hind, and knees of the fore feet ; furthermore, the tail shows traces 
of lateral bands and the nose patches are reddish. 

The type locality of this sub-species is unknown ; Hamilton 
Smith identified the specimen which he described and figured with 
the Congoland zebra mentioned by some of the older writers, but 
there is nothing to show that his specimen came from thence. 
Matschie, on the other hand, identified a living Damaraland zebra 
with Hamilton Smith's description and figure, and gives Damara- 
land and Great Namaqualand as the range of the animal ; there is 
no example of this sub-species in the South African Museum ; it 
appears to be very closely allied to the typical sub-species. 

88c. Equus burchelli transYaalensis. The Transvaal Zebra. 

Equus burchelli transvaalensis, Eivart, Veterinarian, Ixx, p. 622 fig. 4 

The essential character of this variety is that the shadow- 
stripes extend forward to the neck and are very distinct through- 
out ; the legs have very narrow black stripes, which seem to almost 
disappear below the knees and hocks, in fact, except for the 
shadow-stripes on the neck this race resembles the following Equus 
burchelli wahlbergi. 

The type of the sub-species is apparently a living female zebra 
obtained in the Transvaal, and now in the possession of Professor 
Cossar Ewart ; a photograph, fig. 4, on p. 617 [not fig. 5 as stated 
on p. 622 of Professor Ewart's paper] shows the shadow-stripes 
most distinctly. 

88d. Equus burchelli wahlbergi. Wahlberg's Zebra. 

Equus burchelli wahlbergi, Pococh, Ann, Mag. N. H. (6) xx, p. 44 

The essential character of this sub-species is the great develop- 
ment and distinctness of the shadow-stripes which on the quarters 
are as wide as the principal stripes ; on the lower half of the 
quarters and shoulders the stripes begin to get fainter and further 
apart as far as the knees and hocks, where they again become 
strong, ceasing altogether about half-way between the knees and 
the hocks and fetlocks, below which point there are no dark mark- 
ings ; the barrel stripes meet the ventral stripe ; the tail is laterally 


spotted and the tuft is white with a few black hairs ; the nose 
patches are dull tan. 

This sub-species is founded on a mounted specimen in the British 
Museum obtained in Zululand by Wahlberg, and there is another 
from the same locality in the Tring Museum. It is not represented 
in the South African Museum. 

88e. Equus burchelli chapmanni. Chapman's Zebea. 

Equus chapmanni, Layard, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1865, p. 417 ; P. L, Sclater, 
ProG. Zool. Soc. 1865, p. 422, pi. xxii ; Matschie, Zool. Gart. xxxv, 
p. 66 (1894). 

Equus bohmi, Matschie, Zool. Gart. xxxv, p. 69 [fig.] (1894). 

Equus burchelli chapmanni, Pococh, Ann. Mag. N. H. (6) xx, p. 43 

In this sub-species the shadow-stripes are faint, and the legs 
like those of Wahlberg's zebra are weakly and faintly striped, 
usually down below the knees, but the pasterns and fetlocks are not 
continuously black. The barrel stripes reach the ventral longi- 
tudinal stripe ; the nose patches seem to be black and the tail tuft 
of mixed black and white hairs. 

This sub-species is described in a very vague fashion by Layard 
from information derived from Messrs. Chapman and Baines, and 
the type does not appear to have been preserved ; the type-locality 
seems to have been in Bechuanaland about half way between 
Mafeking and the Botletli Kiver in western Bechuanaland ; probably 
tbe northern Kalahari, Ngamiland, western Matabeleland and the 
Transvaal will be found to limit the range of this sub-species. 

Though not represented in the collections of the South African 
Museum, I have examined several skins from the Transvaal belong- 
ing to the State Museum at Pretoria, which seem to me identical 
with this sub-species. 

88f. Equus burchelli selousi. Selous' Zebea. 

Equus chapmanni, Lorenz, Ann. kJc, Hofmus. Wien ix. notia. p. 64 

(1894) ; id. ibid xi, p. 6 (1896) \nec Layard] . 
Equus burchelli selousii, PococJc, Ann. Mag. N.H. (6) xx, p. 45 (1897). 
Equus burchelli zambesiensis, Trouessart, Bull. Mus. d'Hist. Nat., 
iv, p. 64 [with fig.] (1898). 

The most marked characteristic of this sub-species is the strong 
striping of the legs throughout, the lower part of the fetlock joint 


being black all round above the hoof ; inside the legs are striped on 
the knees and hocks and below, but above these points the insides 
of the upper part of both fore and hind legs are vs^hite ; the barrel 
stripes reach the ventral stripe ; the shadow stripes are faint on the 
quarters ; the nose patches are chestnut, and the tail tuft is black 
with a few scanty white hairs. The type of this species, a mounted 
specimen in the British Museum, was shot by Mr. Selous on the 
Hanyani Eiver in Mashonaland ; other specimens also obtained by 
the same collector are in the Tring and South African Museums. 

Some zebras brought back by Dr. Holub from Mashupia, the 
Barotse province between the Chobe and Zambesi Eivers, appear 
to me to resemble in every respect this sub-species, except for the 
fact that the upper part of the inside of the leg is said by Dr. 
Trouessart to be striped in his specimens ; until further com- 
parisons are made his sub-species ^' zambesiensis" may be con- 
sidered identical with Selous' zebra. 

88g. Equus burchelli crawshayi. Cbawshay's Zebba. 

Equus'burclielli crawshaii, de Winton, Ann. Mag. N.H. (6) xvii, p. 319 
(1896) ; PococJc, ibid. (6) xx, p. 46 (1897). 

This sub-species together with Grant's zebra from British East 
Africa is specially characterised by the total absence of shadow 
stripes, in other respects it appears to be closely allied to Selous' 
zebra ; the legs are strongly striped to the hoofs, both outside and 
inside, and the pasterns above the hoofs are black ; the nose 
patches are bright tan, the tail is strongly spotted and has a black 

The type locality is the high country to the west of Lake Nyassa, 
and other examples have been obtained in different parts of British 
Central Africa ; several flat and necessarily imperfect skins of 
zebras shot in the Beira district by Mr. L. Maclean, examined by 
me prove to be entirely without shadow stripes, and seem to be 
referable to the Nyasaland subspecies, which must therefore be 
included in our catalogue. 

Literature, Vernacular names, and habits of Burchell's zebra 
sensu latissimo. 

Literature. — Barrow (1806), p. 410, the differences between the Colonial 
and Bechuanaland zebras or quaggas, as noticed by Messrs. Truter and 
Somerville; Burchell (1822), i, pp. 139, 420, 451-2, ii, p. 315, points out 


the distinctive features and wrongfully identifies this species with E. 
zehra of Linnaeus and gives the native names ; Harris (1838), pp. 61, 68, 
met with this species on the Meritsane Eiver near where Mafeking now is ; 
Harris (1840), figured on pi. v, ; Delagorgue (1847), i, p. 365, plentiful in 
Zululand ; Methuen (1848), p. 145, note on; Gumming (1855), i, p. 144, met 
with Burchell's zebra in Hay ; Livingstone (1857), p. 56, notes that it is 
always near water; Holub (1882), p. 267, found great herds of zebras near 
Mafekmg in 1873 ; Bryden (1889), p. 289, discusses the evidence of the 
existence at any time of this species south of the Orange River ; Nicolls and 
Eglington (1892), p. 74, pi. x, fig. 34, description, distribution and habits ; 
Bryden (1893), p. 500, present and past distribution ; Millais (1895), 
pp. 131, 171, notes on its habits and the methods of catching; Kirby (1896), 
p. 549, habits and native names in the eastern Transvaal; Bryden (1897), 
p. 151, chapter on zebras in general; Gibbons (1898), p. 396, distribution in 
Barotseland ; Kirby (1899), p. 838, distribution in Mozambique ; Selous 
(1899a), p. 79, account of habits and range. 

Veenaculae Names. — Striped or Bonte Quagga, often Quagga alone of 
the Dutch ; Iqwara of the Amaxosa (Stanford) ; Idube of Zulus and Swazis 
(Kirby) ; Makwa of Basutos (Kirby), Peetsee of Bechuanas (Burchell). 

Dimensions. — A male mounted example of Selous' zebra 
measures as follows : head and body 8 ft. 5 ; tail IT'O, with hairs 
27 ; height at shoulder 4 ft. 3-5; from ear to nose 21-5, ear from 
notch to tip 6'5. A skull measures 18-75 in length by 7"30 in 

Habits. — Burchell's zebra is essentially an inhabitant of the 
open plains, where it is commonly found in small herds of ten 
to twenty individuals, though far larger numbers may be seen 
together; with it, living in a kind of commensalism, are generally 
found the blue wildebeest and the ostrich, and more rarely the harte- 
beest and sassaby. The voice of the zebra is described as a sort 
of hoarse bark, Millais compares it to something between the 
bellow of a jackass and the bark of an aged collie. The speed of 
this animal does not seem to be excessive, it can generally be 
ridden down, and when a troop is hunted it runs in single file, 
an old male usually leading. It often loses its life in consequence 
of its great curiosity, turning round and staring at the pursuer and 
thus offering an easy shot. It drinks once if not twice daily, and is 
never found very far from water ; Millais states that it approaches 
the water before daylight with infinite caution owing to its fear of 
lions to which it often falls a victim, and which frequently lie in 
ambush by the waterside ; after slaking its thirst the troop gallops 
off with a great clatter as if glad to escape from so dangerous a 


locality. There is no reason why Burchell's zebra should not be 
domesticated, in fact where it has been attempted it has succeeded 
very well. In the Field newspaper of March 11th, 1893, there 
will be found an account of the breaking in and driving of zebras 
in one of the coaches between Pretoria and Pietersburg ; further- 
more the Hon. Walter Eothschild had a team in England which he 
was in the habit of driving. 

The Boers of the low veld of the Transvaal capture zebras alive 
by riding them down, and when alongside of them slipping a noose 
at the end of a stick over their heads ; when thus secured they are 
soon tamed and follow the waggons of their captors in a most docile 

The flesh is generally loaded with a yellow fat, and is very 
unpalatable to the European, but by the African natives it is 
regarded as a great delicacy. 

89. Equus quagga. The Quagga. 

Equus quagga, Gmelin, Syst. Nat. i, p. 213 (1788) ; F. Cuvier, Hist. 
Nat. Mainm. livr. xxx (1821) ; Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 65 
(1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 181 (1834) ; Buckley, 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 281, 1877, p. 453 [distribution! ; MatscMe, 
Zool. Gart. xxxv, p. 38 (1894) ; Pococl', Ann. May. N.H. (6) xx, p. 37 
(1897) ; Benshaw, Zoologist (4) ii, p. 213 (1898). 

Asinus quagga. Gray, Zool. Journ. i, p. 246 (1825) ; id. Knoivsley 
Menagerie p. 72, pi. liv (1850) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. 
p. 62 (1861). 

Hippotigris quacha et isabellinus, H. Smith, Jardine's Nat. Libr. xii, 
pp. 330, 332, pis. xxiv, xxv (1841). 

Literature. — Edwards Gleanings (1758), v, pi. ccxxiii, figured as the 
female of the mountain zebra ; Masson (1776), p. 297, noted as the 
" opeaagha " from near Algoa Bay between the Zwartkops and Sunday 
Elvers ; Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 85, gives the first authentic account of 
this animal from Allamand under the name of kwagga or couagga; Sparr- 
man (1785), ii, p. 12, met with them in Uitenhage ; Barrow (1801), p. 93, 
met with them in Prince Albert, and gives a short account ; Daniell (1805), 
figured on pi. 15 ; Lichtenstein (1812), ii, p. 23, found them plentiful in 
Aberdeen in 1804; Burchell (1822), i, pp. 139, 280, ii, p. 81, points out the 
distinctive characters, finding them in considerable numbers in Fraserburg 
and Hanover in 1812 ; Steedman (1835), i, p. 138, gives an anecdote illus- 
trating their ferocity ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. ii. ; Gumming (1855), 
i. p. 93, notes the quagga in Colesberg and Hanover ; Grout (1863), p. 303, 
gives the Zulu name and notes the quagga on the Free State-Natal border ; 


Bryden (1889), pp. 289, 393, account of their past distribution and history 
of their extinction ; NicoUs and Egiington (1892), p. 76, description and 
note on extinction; Bryden (1897), p. 178, general account of habits and 
extinction; Bryden (1899a), p. 72, habits and extinction. 

Vernacular Names. — Khoua khoua from the bark of the Hottentots, 
whence Quagga of the Dutch and of general usage. 

Description. — Perhaps smaller than the zebra, general colour 
light brown or pale chestnut on the head, neck and back, becoming 
somewhat lighter on the rump and quite white on the belly and 
legs ; stripes on the head, neck and anterior part of the body very 



Fig. 74. — The Quagga {Eqims quagga). 
(Flower and Lydekker). 

broad and few in number, separated by very narrow pale yellow 
interspaces, becoming obsolete beyond the middle of the body, and 
of a very dark brown colour ; dorsal line well marked to the tail ; 
ventral longitudinal stripe also present ; limbs pure white with a 
brown spot just above the hoof ; tail and tuft white. 

A very young foal preserved in the South African Museum is a 
good deal darker throughout than the descriptions and coloured 
plates, and shows no trace of the longitudinal dorsal and ventral 
lines, this, perhaps, is due to its youth. 

Dimensions. — Cuvier gives the height at the shoulder as 3ft. 9 


French (i.e., about 4ft. 1 English), while Harris gives Mt. 6, but 
Harris's dimensions are generally exaggerated. 

Distribution. — The quagga, now without doubt extinct, formerly- 
ranged over the plains of the Orange Free State and the northern 
and central parts of the Colony ; apparently it never extended north 
of the Vaal Eiver or east of the Kei ; it was very numerous still in . 
the days of Harris and Gordon Gumming, and apparently soon after 
that became rare in the Colony, where it probably was finally ex- 
terminated about 1860 ; Bryden states that the last survivors in 
the Colony of which he has definite information, were shot at or 
near Tygerberg in the Aberdeen district in 1858. There is no doubt 
that they survived a good many years later in the Orange Free State 
(probably till 1878 at least), but it is difficult to obtain any accurate 
information on the subject, as in so many cases this and Burchell's 
zebra are confused together, especially as they were both known 
under the name of quagga. 

The last living quagga in the Zoological Gardens in London was 
pne presented by Sir George Grey in 1858 ; it survived for six years, 
dying in June 1861, and it is now mounted for exhibition in the 
British Museum ; a very young foal, preserved in the South African 
Museum, came from Beaufort West, and was presented by Mr. 
A. Dale before 1862, when Mr. Layard's catalogue was published. 
Other specimens of this now extinct form can be seen in the Edin- 
burgh and Tring Museums, in England, and in the Paris, Berlin, 
Frankfort, Mainz, Basle and Berne Museums on the continent. 

History and Habits. — As in so many other cases our earliest 
authentic knowledge of this animal is due to Colonel Gordon's 
sketches and descriptions transmitted to AUamand, and subsequently 
reprinted by Buffon. 

Before that, however, a living specimen belonging to the Prince 
of Wales was figured by Edwards in 1751 as the female of the 
mountain zebra, and the species is also noted by Masson, the 
botanist, who travelled through the country in 1772 ; Gmelin's 
name was founded on Edwards' figure. Among modern authors the 
best account of this interesting species is to be found in Bryden's 

Like Burchell's zebra the quagga was essentially an animal of 
the plains, associatiug in herds of twenty to thirty individuals, and 
almost always accompanied by black wildebeest and ostrich, though 
in the Free State, where both it and Burchell's zebra were found, 
they were never known to mix. 




Cuvier states that one observed by him m captivity was not 
fierce but somewhat "mechant" and obstinate, and that on occasions 
it would use its heels and teeth. A Mr. Sheriff Parkins drove a 
pair of quaggas at one time early in the century in a phaeton, and 
was often seen in Hyde Park. 




Rhinoceros, iw7me?^s, Syst. Nat. 12th ed.i, 104 (1766). ..E. unicornis. 
Atelodus, Poviel, Cat. Vert. Foss. bassin superieur de 

la Loire, p. 78 (1853) R. elatus. 

Rhinaster, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1867, p. 1,024 E. bicornis. 

Ceratotherium, Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1867, p. 1,027... E. simus. 

Fig. 75. — Skull of Rhinoceros simus (^ nat. size) 

This genus contains all the still surviving representatives of the 
family, and the following are the distinguishing characters. 

Animals of large size and of very clumsy build with naked 
bodies, hairs being found only on the ears and tail ; eyes very 


small; horns composed of a solid mass of epidermic cells, some- 
what resembling hairs, but growing from a cluster of free dermic 
papillae instead of as in true hairs from a sunken follicle ; the horns 
are not in any way attached to the underlying skull, nor does any 
bony matter take part in their composition; they are one or two 
in number, and of a more or less conical shape springing from the 
median line of the skull. 

Fig. 76. — Left posterior upper premolar of Rhinoceros shmis (| nat. size). 

Limbs stout and of moderate length with three well developed 
toes, each provided with a broad rounded hoof. Skull of large 
size, elevated posteriorly into a transverse occipital crest ; temporal 
and orbital fossae confluent with no post-orbital process or bar 
separating them ; nasal bones large and stout, co-ossified together 
and separated from the premaxillae by a wide fissure. 

Dentition i. |^, c. ^^ P™^- i^ J^^- I = 28 to 38 ; incisors and 
canines variable in number, often absent, premolars and molars in 
a continuous series, and resembling one another in general plan, 
except that the anterior one is considerably smaller and often 
deciduous ; upper molars with a straight outer edge and a doubly 
incurved inner edge, so as to form two transverse ridges with a deep 
valley between ; ridges of the lower molars crescentic in shape. 

The existing species of the genus are confined to Southern Asia 
and Africa, and fall naturally into three groups, often considered 
by zoologists to be worthy of generic separation. These are — 

(1) Ehinocerotine group, containing the two one-horned 
rhinoceroses found in southern India, Burma and the larger 
Malayan Islands. 

(2) Ceratorhine group, comprising the two double-horned species 
from Assam, Burma, and the Malayan countries. 


(3) Atelodine group, containing the two-horned rhinoceroses, 
found only in Africa, distinguished by their comparatively smooth 
skin, by their thick rounded and truncated nasal bones, and by 
the absence of incisors and canine teeth in the adults. 

In the middle and later portions of the Tertiary epochs 
rhinoceroses were spread over the rest of the Old World, even 
within the arctic and subarctic regions, where roamed the woolly 
rhinoceros [B. antiquitatis) , considered to be closely allied to the 
white rhinoceros ; hitherto no fossil species have been found in 
South Africa. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Larger; with a straight upper lip B. simus, p. 299. 

B. Smaller; the upper lips provided with a median pro- 
longation or proboscis B. hicornis, p, 303. 

90. Rhinoceros simus. The White or Square-lipped Ehinocbros. 

Rhinoceros simus, Burchell, Bull. 8oc. Pliilom. Paris, p. 96 (1817) ; 

A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 179 (1834) ; id. Illustr. Zool. 

S. Afr. Mamni. pi. xix (1839) ; Drmnviond, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, 

p. 109 ; BucUeij, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 280 ; Selotts, Proc. Zool. 

Soc. 1881, p. 725 [distribution] ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1886, 

p. 143, pi. xvi. fig. 1 [comparison of two species] ; Millais, Proc. 

Zool. Soc. 1893, p. 614; Corijndon, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1894, p. 329, 

pi. xviii. 
Rhinoceros oswellii. Gray, Proc. Zool, Soc. 1853, p. 46 [fig. of horns] . 
Ceratotherium simum. Gray, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1867, p. 1027. 

Literature. — Parsons, Phil. Trans. (1743) pi. iii, fig. 6, horn figured ; 
Barrow (1801), i, p. 395, supposed occurrence in Namaqualand; Campbell 
(1822) p. 294, figures head of one shot at "Mashow" in Bechuanaland ; 
Burchell (1822), ii, p. 75, allusion to discovery; Harris (1838) pp. 148, 163, 
211, notes on habits and shooting on the Marico and Limpopo Rivers ; 
Harris (1840), figured on pi. xix; Delagorgue (1847), i, p. 366, plentiful in 
Zululand ; Cummuag (1855), i, pp. 248, 338, account of habits and shooting 
m 1844, with plate of female and young; Andersson (1856), p. 387, recog- 
nises and distinguishes the two species, and gives account of habits and 
distribution; Livingstone (1857), p. 71, notes the straight-horned variety 
near Lake Ngami ; Baldwin (1863), pp. 128, 189, in Amatongaland and 
Marico m 1856 and 1857 ; Grout (1863), p. 295, Zulu name ; Barnes (1864), 
p. 394, gives a description and measurements of an example killed near Lake 
Ngami; Selous (1881), p. 81, note on its activity in hill country; Selous 
(1893), p. 158 account of shooting specimen the head of which is now in 


the South African Museum; NicoUs and Eghngton (1892), p. 64, pi. ix, fig. 
33, note on approachmg extinction ; Bi'yden (1893), p. 490, on past and 
present distribution; Lydekker (1893), p. 389, description and notes; 
Oswell in Badminton Big Game, (1894) i. p. 43, notes on the varieties 
of the white rhinoceros ; Ward (1896), p. 288, horn measurements ; Bryden 
(1897), p. 181, chapter on the natui-al history ; Selous (1899a), p. 52, range, 
habits and history. 

Vernacular Names. — Witte Ehenoster of Dutch hunters ; Umkombe 
of ZuhTS (Grout) ; Umhofo of Matabele (Selous) ; Mahohu (Smith) ; Chukuru 
(Selous) of Becliuanas ; Kuabaoba of Bechuanas (Bryden) applied to the 
variety with the anterior straight horn. 

Description. — Larger than the other species, in fact the largest 
of all land-animals after the elephant, hairless, except for a fringe 
along the edge of the ear and for the tail bristles ; colour not per- 
ceptibly lighter than the other species, being a slaty grey black ; 
head very long and massive ; upper lip straight all round with no 
trace of a proboscis ; nostril an elongated slit parallel to the mouth ; 
ears longer and more pointed than in the other species, springing 
from a closed cylinder about three inches long ; tail much as in 
B. hicornis, but with only the last quarter provided with wiry 

Femsjle rather smaller than the male, and with two mammae. 

The anterior horn is situated on the nasal bones, it is usually 
longer and more slender than in the other species and curved 
gently backwards, the upper part of the front being usually 
partially flattened by friction against the ground ; the posterior 
horn is as a rule short, straight, conical and somewhat laterally 
flattened ; both horns, however, vary a good deal in length and 
direction, and examples with the anterior horn straight and directed 
forwards were formerly separated as a distinct species. The skull 
(see fig. 75, p. 297), is altogether larger than in the other species, 
and the portion behind the orbit is drawn out, so that the angle 
formed at the occipital crest between the parietal and occipital 
regions is a very acute one ; the front portion, too, of the mandible 
is much more depressed and spatulated. 

Dimensions. — Of a mounted male ; head and body 13 ft. 1 ; tail 
26-0; height at shoulder 6 ft. 1-5; Selous gives 6 ft. 6 for an 
individual measured by him ; ear from notch 9'0 ; ear to nose-tip 
350; a skull of a male measures 30-5 in extreme length from the 
occipital crest to the tips of the nasals, 27'0 from the condyle to 
the premaxillae, and 13-4 in the greatest width. 


The horns of the mounted example measure 35-0 and 7'0 
respectively, the largest single horn recorded, 62-5, was obtained 
by the late Eoualeyn Gordon Gumming, and is now in the posses- 
sion of Golonel W. Gordon Gumming ; a pair belonging to Mr. 
Selous measures 37-4 and 17'8 respectively. 

History and Variation. — The square-lipped rhinoceros was 
met with first of all by Burchell, during his stay in Bechuanaland, 
though only incidentally alluded to in his account of his journey. 
In his paper in the Journal of the Philomathic Society of Paris, 
he speaks of meeting with it first at about the 26th degree of south 
latitude, but gives no exact details. 

Gampbell, one of the early Bechuanaland missionaries, also 
figures the head of an example brought to him when at Kuruman ; 
the figure is an exceedingly grotesque one, though obviously 
intended for this species. 

Subsequently Harris, Gumming, Andersson and Baldwin, shot 
very large numbers, until about ten years ago it became exceedingly 
rare. We owe the greater part of our knowledge of the habits of 
this now nearly extinct species to Selous, to whom, too, the credit 
belongs, of having shown, without doubt, that there are only two 
distinct species of rhinoceros in South Africa. A curious variety 
considered by Gray to be a distinct species, and named by him 
Bhinoceros osivellii, is distinguished by possessing a straight 
anterior horn projecting forward at an acute angle, but this is now 
acknowledged to be merely an accidental variation. 

Distribution. — The square-lipped rhinoceros has never been 
found south of the Orange Eiver or north of the Zambesi ; it 
was first discovered by Burchell in Bechuanaland, but even in 
Smith's time (1835), it was driven northwards from the Kuruman 
neighbourhood, and during the seventies and early eighties, it was 
practically exterminated in Ngamiland, Matabeleland and Mashona- 
land, where it had formerly been exceedingly common. The male 
head preserved in the South African Museum was obtained by Mr. 
Selous in 1882, between" the Bembesi and Sebakwi Elvers, halfway 
between Bulawayo and Salisbury ; Goryndon states that fifteen 
were shot in Matabeleland in 1886, and he himself shot an old 
female in 1892, and two males in 1893, the two latter being now in 
the British and Tring Museums ; finally in 1895, Mr. Arthur Eyre 
shot a fine male north of the Ayrshire mine near Mazoe, in north- 
east Mashonaland ; this specimen was purchased by Mr. Ehodes and 
presented by him to the South African Museum, where the mounted 
skin and skeleton are now exhibited. 


There are still said to be a few surviving in Zululand, where 
they are very strictly preserved, and where, perhaps, they may 
have a chance of increasing if proper precautions are observed, 
but even of these, six are said to have been killed in 1894, one of 
which is now exhibited in the Pretoria Museum. 

An imperfect skull is preserved in the South African Museum, 
which was dug out of the black peaty soil at a depth of eight feet, 
about twelve miles from the Vaal Eiver in the Kimberley district, 
in 1893 ; this is the southernmost locality yet recorded. 

It is quite possible that this species, or one closely allied to it, 
may eventually be discovered in Somaliland, but hitherto no 
authentic accounts or specimens have reached Europe. 

Habits. — The square-mouthed rhinoceros is found in open 
country, and is particularly fond of the wide grassy valleys so 
frequently met with on the high veld of Matabele and Mashona- 
land ; as a rule they are solitary, or found associating in small 
parties of two or three individuals, though there may have been a 
good many in the neighbourhood ; Harris, for instance, speaks of 
seeing eighty in one day. They feed at night, or in the cooler part 
of the morning and evening, spending the day in sleep as often as 
not in the open veld under the shade of some solitary tree, but 
sometimes concealed in thick bush ; when thus found asleep they 
are awakened with great difficulty and can be approached near 
enough to be photographed ; they are very fond of wallowing in 
pools and plastering themselves all over with clay and mud ; like 
many of the other large thin-haired animals they are constantly 
accompanied by rhinoceros birds (Buphaga), which feed on the 
ticks and other parasites lodged on the skin of their host, and give 
timely warning of any approaching danger ; when the rhinoceros 
is disturbed, and makes off, the birds fly overhead calling and 
scolding all the time. The pace of the rhinoceros is fairly good 
considering its bulk ; its swift trot will easily surpass man's power 
but it is, of course, no match for a horse ; when it moves, the head 
is carried very low so that the horn is almost parallel to the ground, 
and should a mother have a young calf it always precedes her, 
being guided by the tip of her horn gently pressing on its rump ; 
the food of this species, in contradistinction to the other, consists 
entirely of grass of which it consumes enormous quantities. It 
drinks very regularly about midnight, and is never a great distance 
from water. It has a curious habit of always depositing its excre- 
ment at the same place where it accumulates in enormous masses ; 


■when these have reached an mconvenient height it sometimes 
demohshes the mass with its horn, moreover, owing to the nature 
of the food, the animal can always be identified by the composition 
of the excrement. 

Little is known about the breeding habits of this species, the 
males are said to fight with one another very fiercely at certain 
times of the year, and only one young one is produced at a birth, 
the mother, too, exhibits great affection towards her offspring. 

The square-mouthed rhinoceros is always spoken of as a most 
mild and inoffensive creature, very sluggish and unsuspicious ; its 
sight is very bad, though scent and hearing seem to be acute ; this 
no doubt is so, and accounts to a great extent for its almost total 
extermination, but at the same time it has been known to charge ; 
Oswell, Livingstone's companion had his horse transfixed under 
him by an enraged individual, though Oswell himself escaped with 
only a severe shaking. 

Selous states that between August and March this animal is in 
a very good condition, and that the meat is then excellent. 

91. Rhinoceros bicornis. The Common or Black Ehinoceeos. 

Ehinoceros unicornis var. bicornis, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th eel. i, 

p. 104 (1766). 
Rhinoceros bicornis, Gmelin, Syst. Nat. i, p. 57 (1788) ; Thunherg, 

Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 320 (1811) ; A. Smith, Illustr. Zool. S. 

Afr. Mamm. pi. ii (1838) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mtis. p. 61 

(1861) ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1868, p. 529, pi. xli ; Drum- 

mond, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 109 ; Floiver, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, 

p. 455 [revision] ; P. L. Sclater, Trans. Zool. Soc. ix, p. 655, pi. 

xcix, also fig. 7, 8, 9 [heads of 3 vars] (1876) ; Selous, Proc. Zool. Soc. 

1881, p. 725, pi. Ixii [horns] ; P. L. Sclater, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1886, 
• p. 143, pi. xvi, fig. 2 ; Floiver, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1889, p. 448 [woodcut 

of 3 horned specimen] . 
Rhinoceros africanus, G. Cuvier, Begne Anim. 1st ed. p. 240 (1817) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 61 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. 

Journ. ii, p. 179 (1834). 
Rhinoceros keitloa, A. Smith, A^pi^. Report Exped. Explor. S. Afr. 

p. 44 (1836) ; id. Ilhistr. Zool. S. Afr. Mamm. pi. i (1838) ; BucMey, 

Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 280 [distribution] . 
Rhinaster bicornis et keitloa. Gray, Proc, Zool. Soc. 1867, pp. 1024-5. 

Literature. — Tachard (1686) p. 90, account of, with illustration ; 
Kolben (1731), ii, p. 101, a recognisable description of the black rhinoceros ; 


Camper, Act. Petrop. for 1777, pt. 2 (1780), p. 193, pis. v-viii, description 
of skull sent to author by Governor Baron van Plettenberg ; Sparrman in 
Swedisli Academy Transactions (1778), p. 307, gives a description of indi- 
viduals met with by him ; Buffon (1782), Suppl. vi, p. 78, pi. vi, account 
copied from AUamand ; Sparrman (1795), ii, pp. 97, 104, pi. iii, accomit of 
specimen obtained by him at Commadagga in Somerset East ; Lichtenstein 
(1812), i, pp. 98, 344, met with rhinoceros in Calvinia and on the little Fish 
River in 1803-4 ; Bm-chell (1824), ii, p. 72, met two in Britstown and gives 
notes on their habits ; Steedman (1835), i, p 69, mentions the occurrence 
of a specimen on the Great Fish River about 1826; Harris (1838), pp. 84, 
103, 158, 278, 376, killed many in Bechuanaland, western Transvaal and 
Orange Free State; Harris (1840), figured on pi. xvi ; Methuen (1848), 
p. 138, 163, account of the two species and their habits ; Gumming -(1855), 
i, p. 249, met his first rhmoceros at the head waters of the Marico river 
in western Transvaal ; Andersson (1856), p. 385, account of two species 
with distribution and habits ; Livmgstone (1857), p. 56, notes that they are 
always found near water ; Hall (1857), p. 7, on habits, distribution and dis- 
tinction; Grout (1863), p. 295, gives the Zulu name; Drummond (1875), p. 
72, devotes a chapter to the shooting and natural history ; Theal (1888), i, p. 
65, records the presence of rhmoceroses close to Cape Town in van Riebeck's 
time [1653], p. 291, gives an account of the upsetting of Simon van der Stel's 
coach near Piquetberg m 1685, by an individual ; Bryden (1889), p. 286, 
discusses their extinction in Cape Colony ; NicoUs and Eglington (1892), 
p. 62, pi. X, fig. 35, description and habits ; Bryden (1893), p. 489, past and 
present distribution ; Lydekker (1893), p. 386, description and figure ; 
Selous (1893), j). 455, measm-ements of an individual shot near the Chobe 
River ; Oswell and Jackson (1894), pp. 43 and 251 in " Badmmton Big Game 
Shooting " reminiscences of shooting ; Kirby (1896), p. 550, native names and 
distribution in Eastern Transvaal ; Ward (1896), p. 284, horn measurements ; 
Kirby (1899), p. 337, distribution in the Beha-Zambesi district and notes on 
habits ; Kirby (1899a), p. 35, range and habits in South Africa. 

Vernacular Names. — Rhenoster or Zwart Rhenoster of the Dutch 
hunters ; Upejani of the Zulus (Grout) and Swazis (Kirby) ; Umpeygan of 
the Matabele (Selous) ; Upelepe of the Basutos (Kirby) ; Borele of the 
Bechuanas (Smith). The variety in which the posterior horn is as long or 
longer than the anterior horn is called Keitloa by the Bechuanas (Smith) 
and Shangainea by the Matabele (Selous). 

Description. — Hairless, except for a fringe along the margins of 
the ears and on either side of the extremity of the tail ; skin almost 
smooth and very thick ; general colour slaty grey, not noticeably 
darker than the other species ; head comparatively short ; upper 
lip with a very distinct median prolongation forming a kind of 
rudimentary proboscis ; nostrils somewhat oval, not elongated ; eye 
very small ; ears somewhat funnel-shaped with rounded tips, the 


margins clothed with a fringe of black hair ; limbs solid and massive, 
each with three broad nail-like hoofs ; tail reaching about three 
quarters of the way to the hocks with a double line of bristles on 
the posterior two-thirds. 

Anterior horn rising from the nasal bones, rounded at the base, 
where it is often rough and frayed out, so to speak, above becoming 
laterally flattened and greatly curved backwards, usually exceeding 
the posterior horn in length ; this latter is situated on the frontal 
bones just above the eye and is usually straight and conical and 
much inferior in development to the anterior one ; but both 
the horns vary very considerably in shape and size. The skull 
is much shorter than that of B. simus and the angle formed by the 
parietal and occipital surfaces at the crest is much more nearly a 
right angle ; the front part of the mandible too, is not nearly so 
depressed and spatulated as in B. simus. 

As in the other species there are no incisors or canines in either 
jaw, though indistinct marks of the sockets can be seen ; moreover, 
the premaxillae are much reduced, and consist only of two small 
nodules of bone at the tips of the maxillae. 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 10 ft. 
2 ; tail 28-0 ; height at shoulder 5 ft. 0-5 ; length of ears 7"5 ; from 
ear opening to nose-tip 25'0 ; length of a skull from the tip of the 
nasals to the occipital crest 22-5 ; from premaxillae to occipital 
condyle 22*5 ; extreme breadth 12-5. Average horns measure, the 
anterior from 18 to ^20 in. and the posterior from 7 to 8 in. re- 
spectively. Ward notices a head from Zululand, of which the 
anterior horn reached 41 '5, while the posterior was only 10 ; while 
in another case the anterior was 32-5, and the posterior 19'0, these 
are the longest recorded anterior and posterior horns. 

History and Variations. — This species became known at the 
time of the first settlement at the Cape in 1653 ; it is frequently 
mentioned in van Eiebeck's diary, and apparently at that time, was 
common enough on the slopes of Table Mountain and on the Cape 
Elats ; a further incident corroborating this is, that the coach in 
which Simon van der Stel, the Governor, was proceeding north- 
wards, on a journey to Namaqualand in 1685, was upset in the 
neighbourhood of Piquetberg, by the charge of a rhinoceros, and 
the Governor himself had a narrow escape. Tachard, who spent 
some few weeks at the Cape at the same time (1685), and Kolben 
who wrote about fifty years later, both caricature the rhinoceros 
shamefully in their representations, but the latter gives a very 


amusing description of the animal, in which many fables are 
mingled with truth ; finally, the rhinoceros emerges from myth 
through the observations of Colonel Gordon transmitted to 
Allamand, and of Sparrman whose researches were made on a 
freshly killed individual in what is now the Somerset East division 
of the Colony. 

A variety which appears to be only an accidental one, in which 
the posterior horn is equal to, or exceeds the anterior one, was long 
considered a distinct species under the name of B. heitloa; that 
every gradation between the relative size of the two horns is found 
in nature, and that the distinction is not of specific value, was first 
proved by Selous in his paper above quoted. 

Occasionally, a curious triple-horned variety has been found, 
one such is described by Flower (op.c.) from near Mount Kilima-njaro 
in Bast Africa, in which the third horn forms an unsymmetrical 
triangular elevation about 5| inches high in the median line of the 
lower part of the forehead. 

Distribution. — The common rhinoceros was formerly wide- 
spread throughout the whole of South Africa, though now it has 
been driven out of all the more accessible districts. At the end of 
the last century it was still common along the south coast of the 
Colony, Colonel Gordon shot one on the Gamka Eiver, in what 
is now Oudtshoorn and Sparrman obtained his specimen near the 
junction of the Fish rivers in Somerset East ; according to Hall 
the last one in the Colony, an old male, was shot in 1853, on the 
Coega Eiver, close to Port Elizabeth, while in the Orange Free 
State the last recorded was killed in 1842, at Ehenoster Kop, just 
south of the Vaal Eiver in the Kroonstad district. 

In Harris and Cumming's time (1838-45), rhinoceroses were still 
quite common in Bechuanaland, but now they are extinct both there 
and probably also in Ehodesia. In fact at the present time Zulu- 
land, the Lydenburg district (where a few are preserved) the Beira- 
Zambesi country and perhaps Ovampoland, seem to be their last 
haunts south of the Zambesi ; beyond our limits the common 
rhinoceros extends through Nyasaland and East Africa, where in 
some parts it is extremely abundant to the Upper Nile basin and to 

The South African Museum possesses a mounted head and skull 
obtained in Mashonaland in 1884 by Mr. Selous, and a complete 
mounted specimen and skeleton obtained ten years later, also in 
Mashonaland by Mr. W. Harvey Brown, 


Habits. — The common rhinoceros frequents bush covered 
country more than the open grass-lands, and is often found in rocky- 
stony districts ; it is generally solitary, being of a morose and un- 
sociable disposition, though of course occasionally associating in 
small family parties ; the rhinoceros birds {Buphaga and Textor) are 
usually in attendance. Like the other species it is nocturnal in its 
habits, eating and drinking during the night and spending the day 
in sleep, sometimes in dense thorny thickets, sometimes under the 
shade of a solitary tree or a large rock in the open plains, generally 
resting with its stern up wind ; in dull cloudy weather, it may 
occasionally be seen feeding during the daytime, but this is not of 
common occurrence. The only sounds to which it gives vent 
appear to be grunts and snorts of rage ; when disturbed it makes 
off in any direction, usually down wind, but after a short way 
gradually wheels round up wind, its pace being fairly good, better 
than that of the square-mouthed species ; when moving along it 
holds its head high up, and if a calf is present it follows its mother 
instead of preceding it. 

Its food consists entirely of the leaves, twigs, and sometimes 
the roots of certain bushes and shrubs, never of grass, and their 
excrement which they scatter about with their horns and never 
allow to accumulate, is dark coloured and full of twigs and chips ; 
they drink in the evening and at dawn, often wallowing at the 
latter time. 

During certain seasons the males fight with one another, but 
little is kQown about details of their breeding habits ; probably 
only one calf is born at a time. 

The scent and hearing of the rhinoceros is very keen but its 
eyesight is exceedingly poor ; in disposition it is morose and solitary 
with coarse and uncouth manner, great irascibility, unbounded 
curiosity and singular nervous excitability ; it is subject to 
paroxysms of fury when it tears up the ground in great furrows 
with its horns, and behaves generally in a most whimsical manner. 

Much has been written by the earlier writers about the danger 
of meddling with rhinoceroses, and it is generally stated that they 
will charge without provocation ; Mr. Selous, however, does not 
consider them to be nearly so dangeroui^ as usually represented, and 
states that only on one occasion was he ever charged without any 
reason, and further, he believes that many of the stories are due to 
the fact that the eyesight of the animal being very poor, it makes 
mad rushes in one particular direction with the object of escaping, 


not of charging ; there can be no doubt, however, that many fatal 
accidents have occurred through charges of the black rhinoceros, 
whether pre-meditated or accidental, and that great care should 
be exercised in approaching either an untouched or wounded 


This suborder contains a single family of somewhat obscure 
affinities, and is confined to Africa and the south western corner 
of Asia, Owing to the fact that the members of this group show 
considerable external resemblance to the rodents, they were by the 
earlier naturalists placed in that order ; the first author who care- 
fully examined their internal structure and dental characters was 
Baron George Cuvier, who believed that they were really most 
closely allied to the Perrisodactyle Ungulates, and should be placed 
near Bhinoceros. Subsequent further investigations by Milne Edwards 
and Huxley, went to disprove this very close relationship, and 
demonstrated that they really occupied a very isolated position with 
a general affinity only to the Ungulates. Nor has palaeontology 
hitherto thrown much light on the origin of this interesting group, 
though recently a number of fossil forms from the cretaceous beds 
of the Argentine have been described by Ameghino,* which may be 
expected later on to clear up the mystery of the relationships of 
this suborder to the other Ungulates. 

The following are the more important characters of the Suborder 
and Family. 

Small or moderate-sized animals with practically no tail, with 
the three middle toes of the fore foot about equally developed, the 
outer or fifth much smaller, and the inner or hallux a mere rudi- 
ment ; the hind foot with three well developed toes, the fifth being 
quite rudimentary and the first absent altogether ; all the toes end 
in broad, flat, short nails, except the second digit of the hind foot, 
the last ungual phalanx of which is deeply cleft at the tip and bears 
a long curved claw ; the dorsal vertebrae are numerous, twenty- 
eight to thirty, of which twenty-one to twenty-two bear ribs ; as 
in other Ungulates there are no clavicles. 

Dentition i. i, e. g, pm. f , m. f == 34 ; upper incisors long and 

* Ameghino Bol. Inst. Geogr. Argent. XVIII. (1897). 




curved growing from persistent pulps like those of rodents, not 
flattened and chisel-shaped but prismatic in section and pointed, 
with no enamel coating on their hinder surfaces, lower incisors 
straight and somewhat procumbent, awl or gouge-shaped ; a con- 
siderable space separates the incisors from the cheek teeth ; these, 
both premolars and molars are all contiguous, the anterior tooth 
being small and generally single-rooted and dropping out in adult 
skulls ; the molar pattern resembles that of the horses and 

Fig. 77.— Skull, side view, and left half of palate of Procavia capensis. 

rhinoceroses ; in the upper jaw each tooth has an outer longitudinal 
and two transverse ridges with a valley between, and in the lower 
jaw each tooth has a double crescent. 

Other special anatomical characters are as follows : — Stomach 
horse-like ; on the intestine some way below the ordinary sacculated 
caecum usually present in mammals, a pair of large conical-pointed 
caeca are found quite unique in the mammalian class ; no gall 
bladder to the liver ; brain ungulate-like ; testes abdominal ; 
placenta zonary. 




ProcaYia, Storr, Prodr. Syst. Mavim. p. 39 (1780) P. capensis. 

Hyrax, Hermann, Tab. Aff. Anim. p. 115 (1783) P. capensis. 

Dendrohyrax, Gra^/, Ann. Mag.N.H. (4)i. p. 48 (1868) P. arborea. 

The characters of the genus are those of the suborder and 
family ; some twenty different species have been described from 
various parts of Africa, Syria and Arabia, of which three only have 
hitherto been definitely recorded from South Africa ; it is quite 
possible, however, that P. loelwitschi and P. bocagii both described 
from Angola may eventually be found to extend southwards across 
the Cunene Eiver. 

All the animals comprised in the suborder and family resemble 
one another fairly closely, so that although some writers have 
formed special genera for the reception of some of the more 
aberrant species, it seems best to keep them all together under one 

It is unfortunate that the old and well-established name Hyrax 
is antedated by three years by Procavia, but if the rules of priority 
are to be apphed at all they must be so in this case, and the more 
familiar name should be relegated to synonymy. 

Key of the South African Species. 

A. Interval between tlie upper incisors less than the 

width of the tooth, hairs surrounding the 

dorsal spot black P. capensis, p. 310. 

B. Interval between the upper incisors at least twice 

the width of the tooth 

a. Hairs surrounding the dorsal spot white P. arborea, p. 314. 

b. Hairs surrounding the dorsal spot yeUow P. brucii, p. 315. 

92. Procavia capensis. The Dassib. 

Cavia capensis, Pallas, Miscell. Zool. p. 30, pis. iii, iv (1766). 

Hyrax capensis, Hermann, Tab. Aff. Anim. p. 115 (1783) ; Thiinberg, 

Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 807 (1811) ; A. Smith, Descr. Cat. 

MaiTvm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 27 (1826) ; Bmuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 


63 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. Journ. ii, p. 180 (1834) ; Bead, 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1835, p. 13 [habits] ; Grill, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. 
Stockholm, ii, 2, p. 20 (1858) ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Miis. p. 61 
(1861) ; Zelehor, Novara Beise Sdugeth. p. 35 (1864). 
Procavia capensis, Thomas, Proc, Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 60. 

Anatomy. — In addition to these references the following are entirely 
concerned with the anatomy of this animal. G. Cuvier, Ann. du Museum, 
iii, p. 171 (1804) ; Kaulla, Monographia Hyracis, Tubingen (1830) ; OAven, 
Proc. Zool. Soc. 1832, p. 202 ; Martin, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1835, p. 14 ; Murie 
and Mivart, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1865, p. 329 ; Brandt, Mem. Acad, Petersb. (7), 
xiv. no. 2 (1869) ; Dobson, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 526, pi. Iv, fig. 9, and 
figs. A, B ; Lataste, Ann. Mus. Genova (2), iv, p. 5 (1886) ; Woodward, Proc. 
Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 38, pi. ii. 

Literature. — Kolben (1719), p. 144 of German edition, account of, 
under the name " Daxe " ; Vosmaer (1767), description with plate ; Buffon 
(1776), Suppl. iii, p. 177, pi. xxix, described as " Marmotte du Cap"; 
(1782) Suppl. vi, p. 277, pi. xliii and (1789) Suppl. vii, p. 368, pi. Ixxxiv, as 
" Daman du Cap " ; Livingstone (1857), p. 22, on its habits ; Holub (1882), 
i, p. 305, note on its habits m Bechuanaland ; Moseley (1892), p. 124, on 
habits and occurrence near Simonstown ; Kirby (1896), p. 550, native names 
and habits in the Eastern Transvaal. 

Vernacular Names. — Eock Eabbit of English Colonists, Das, Dassie, 
Dasje or Klip-dass of Dutch ; Imbila of Amaxosa (Cloete) Swazi and Zulus 
(Kirby) ; Ipila of Basuto (Kirby). 

Description. — General appearance plump and rabbit-like except 
for the short ears ; colour greyish-brown, the hairs being of medium 
length, soft and fine, pale to dark sepia in colour for the greater 
part of their length with dirty white tips, becoming almost white 
below ; head somewhat pointed, the nostril surrounded by a naked 
rhinarium which is connected with the upper lip by a narrow naked 
line ; ears very short and rounded, posteriorly covered with a thick 
patch of whitish fur ; eyes small, black and very prominent ; in the 
middle of the back is a patch of dark brown or black hairs sur- 
rounding a gland with its opening ; limbs short and stumpy, the 
soles naked and black, all the toes ending in broad rounded black 
nails except the inner one (2nd digit) of the hind foot which bears 
a curved and twisted claw ; no visible external tail ; mammae 
1-2 = 6, i.e., one pair axillary and two pairs inguinal. 

Skull with the orbits usually open behind. Upper incisors 
separated by a space narrower than the width of the tooth, those 
of the male triangular in section with a sharp ridge in front, those 




of the female much more rounded ; lower incisors procumbent, 
gouge-shaped and in contact in the middle line, diastema short 
about -25 in. ; molars large and hypsodont {i.e., long crowned) ; as a 
rule the anterior premolar, which is much smaller than the others 
and single-rooted, is lost early in life so that only six teeth are 
present at the same time in both upper and lower jaws. 



Fig. 78. — The Dassie {Procavia capensis). 

Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 18 ; 
hind foot 2-4:0 ; ear opening to nose tip 3-40 ; height of ear about 
1-0; skull length 3-20; breadth 2-10; upper cheek teeth 1-60. 

Distribution. — This dassie is found apparently throughout the 
Colony and Natal and probably extends northwards as far as 
Ehodesia, but until more examples from different parts of South 
Africa are collected it is impossible to give its exact limits ; the 
South African Museum possesses examples from the immediate 


neighbourhood of Cape Town, the Paarl, and from near Pretoria. 
It is quite common on Table Mountain and on the continuation of 
that range as far as Cape Point. 

History. — The earliest allusion to the dassie is doubtless that 
contained in the Bible (Psalm civ., v. 18) where " the rocks are 
described as a refuge for the conies," the allusion obviously being 
to the Syrian species {Procavia syriaca). In South Africa it is first 
mentioned by Kolben under the name of "daxe"' in the original 
German edition, but the paragraph is not to be found in the English 
translation. At the end of the last century Pallas, Vosmaer, 
Allamand, and Buffon all founded descriptions on one or two 
examples sent ahve to Holland by the Governor Tulbagh, and since 
that time a number of additional species have been described, all 
of which were carefully revised in 1892 by Mr. Thomas whose 
arrangement is here followed. 

Habits.— The dassie or rfore correctly dasje (this name is 
really only the Dutch diminutive for badger, with which of course 
the present animal has no relationship at all), is found in the rocky 
chffs and stony hills which abound all over South Africa ; here it 
lives in small family parties in the crannies and cracks in the rocks 
but not in burrows excavated by itself. It is very active and 
has wonderful powers of climbing and clinging to almost perpen- 
dicular surfaces ; this it is enabled to do by a special arrangement 
first described by Dobson. The soles, which are naked, are covered 
by a very thick epithelium which is kept constantly moist by the 
secretion of the sudorific glands there present in extraordinary 
abundance ; furthermore, a special arrangement of muscles enables 
the sole to be contracted so as to form a hollow air-tight cup which, 
when in contact with the rock, gives the animal great clinging 
power, so much so that even when shot dead it remains attached to 
almost perpendicular surfaces as if fixed there. The dassie reposes 
in its lair during the night, feeds mostly in the early morning and 
evening and spends the middle of the day basking in the sun, at 
which time, however, it may frequently be seen sitting up on its 
hind quarters and looking around with a good deal of inquisitive- 
ness; if alarmed it gives vent to a shrill, prolonged cry several 
times repeated, which somewhat resembles the whistle of a marmot, 
though described by Moseley as more of a short hissing noise. 

Its food consists entirely of vegetable matter, chiefly the young 
shoots of shrubs. One of the most remarkable habits of this 


little animal is that it deposits its excrement in one particular 
place, where it may be found collected in large quantities ; the 
renal portion of the deposit generally becomes hardened and forms 
a black, pitchy mass which is much prized by the natives of South 
Africa as a drug and, according to Livingstone, is used as an anti- 
spasmodic. Little seems to have been observed about the breeding 
habits of this animal, though Moseley observes that three young ones 
are the usual number. In captivity they are very clean in their 
habits and become exceedingly tame and friendly, though always 
restless and inquisitive ; if closely confined they become bad-tempered 
and savage, frequently biting when they get the chance. Their flesh 
though dry is edible and somewhat like that of a young rabbit in 

93. Procavia arborea. The Teee Dassie. 

Hyrax arboreus, A. Smith, Trans. Linn. Soc. xv, p. 468 (1827) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Ca]). p. 63 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. 

Journ. ii, p. 180 (1834). 
Dendrohyrax arboreus, Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (4), i, p. 49 (1868). 
Procavia arborea, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 74 [revision]. 

Literature. — Moodie (1835), ii, p. 192, habits of this species. 

Vernacular Name. — Boom or Bosch Dassie of the Colonists. 

Description. — General colour dark grey, the hairs dark drab- 
brown at the bases with lighter tips gradually paling to a dirty 
white below ; head less pointed than in the other species, rhinarium 
separated from the upper lip by a very narrow band of hair which is 
broken in the middle by a bare line ; ears margined around the edge 
of the conch by conspicuous white hairs ; dorsal gland in the middle 
of the back surrounded by long white hairs forming a conspicuous 
white spot ; soles naked and yellowish, no external tail, mammae 
0-1 = 2, i.e., one pair only, inguinal in position. 

Skull with the orbits usually closed behind. Upper incisors 
more slender and separated by a space more than double the 
breadth of the tooth ; lower incisors less procumbent and distinctly 
separated in the middle line and with tricuspid crowns; molars 
brachyodont {i.e., short crowned) separated from the incisors by a 
considerable diastema of over '60 inch ; as in the other species the 
small anterior premolar is usually lost before maturity. 


Dimensions. — From a mounted specimen ; head and body 17 '0, 
hind foot 2-15 ; ear opening to nose-tip 3-1 ; ear about -9 ; skull 
length 3-20 [imperfect] ; breadth 1-90 ; upper cheek teeth 1*05. 

Distribution and History. — The species was first described by- 
Sir A. Smith from the eastern portion of the Colony ; from here it 
extends through Natal probably as far as the Zambesi, but as is the 
case with the other species, until more material has been collected its 
exact range cannot be stated ; the South African Museum possesses 
examples from Albany and Pondoland in the Colony. 

Habits. — The only notice of the habits of this species which I 
have met with is given by Moodie ; he states that the boom dassie 
inhabits hollow trees and runs along the branches with great 
celerity, and that it gives vent to a clucking noise ending in a pro- 
longed squall often heard in the woods in the early morning. 

94. Procavia brucii. Beuce's Dassie. 

Hyrax brucei, Gra^j, Ann. Mag. N. H. (4), i, p. 44 (1868). 
Dendrohyrax blainvillii, Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (4), i, p. 50 (1868). 
Hyrax irroratus, Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (4), iii, p. 242 (1869). 
Hyrax mossambicus, Peters, S. B. nat. Fr. Berlin, p. 25 (1869). 
Dendrohyrax bakeri, Gray, Ann. Mag. N. H. (4), xiv, p. 132 (1874). 
Procavia brucei, Thomas, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1892, p. 70 [revis.] ; id. 
ibid. p. 144 (1894) [Nyasaland]. 

Description. — General colour, grizzled ashy grey, lighter than 
the Colony dassie ; the hairs which are soft and short are slaty at 
the base, then nearly white, then yellow, then a subterminal band 
of black, and finally white, the subterminal and terminal bands 
forming the grizzle ; below including the inside of the limbs pure 
white, sharply distinct from the general colour. Head much the 
same colour as the back ; ears a little paler but not white. Dorsal 
spot elongate about an inch in length, the hairs round it yellow, a 
little paler at their bases. Hairs on the toes a little paler than the 
body but not white ; skin of the soles quite black. (Mammae 1-2 = 
6, according to Thomas.) 

Skull with fused parietals, and orbits open behind in the only 
specimen examined. Upper incisors separated by a space about 
twice the width of the tooth, lower incisors like those of P. arhorea 
with tricuspid crowns and shghtly separated in the middle line ; 
diastema of the upper jaw about '60 ; molars brachyodont, and in 


the specimen examined, an adult with the posterior molar well up, 
the anterior premolar is still present and is double rooted. 

Dimensions. — From a somewhat stretched skin, hind foot 2-75, 
ear opening to nose-tip 4-0 ; ear 1-12 ; skull length 3"55 ; breadth 
2-10 ; cheek teeth 1-25. 

Distribution. — This species is found throughout East Africa 
from Abyssinia to Nyasaland and Mozambique. Two skins with 
skulls recently obtained in the Mazoe district near Salisbury, in 
Mashonaland, and presented to the South African Museum by Mr. 
G. A. K. Marshall, have been compared with specimens in the 
British Museum, and are doubtless referable to this species, which 
is thus brought within our limits. 


This suborder, of which there are only two surviving forms, the 
Indian and the African Elephant, presents certain very anomalous 
characteristics distinguishing it very strongly from the rest of the 
ungulates and showing some points of resemblance to the rodents 
and to other orders. If, however, the extinct types of the group 
are studied, we are led back in the earlier Eocene times to a much 
more generalised form which appears to link the suborder to the rest 
of the group, and in consequence of this the Proboscidea are here 
considered as a suborder of the Ungulata rather than as a separate 
order standing by themselves. 

The most noticeable characteristics of these animals are as 
follows : — Nostrils at the end of a long and flexible proboscis, which 
has the power of grasping and acts as a hand ; limbs strong, feet 
short, broad and massive, each with five toes encased in common 
integument with distinct broad short hoofs [not always correspond- 
ing in number with the toes] ; teeth composed of incisors [i. e., the 
tusks] , of which there are never more than a single pair in either 
jaw, and transversely ridged molars, the canines being absent. 
Other characters are : no clavicles, radius and ulna permanently 
crossed ; tibia and fibula complete and distinct, astragalus flat both 
above and below ; hind legs pillar-like, the femur being vertical 
when standing ; two anterior venae cavae return the blood from the 


fore-part of the body to the heart ; stomach simple, liver small and 
simple without gall bladder ; caecum large ; testes permanently 
abdominal ; uterus bicornuate, placenta zonary and non-deciduate ; 
two mammae, pectoral in position ; brain somewhat lowly and 
primitive, the cerebral hemispheres, although convoluted, not ex- 
tending over or covering the cerebellum. 

Fig, 79. — Right fore-foot of an African Elephant (Elephas africanus), to 
show the modifications of the Proboscidean limb. 


Elephas, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed., i, p. 48, 

(1766) E. indicus. 

Euelephas, Falconer, Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc. xiii, 

p. 318 (1857) B. planifrons. 

Loxodon, Falconer, ibid E. hysudricus. 

Animals of large size with the characters of the suborder given 




Dentition i. i, c. g, dm. f , m. f = 26 ; incisors only present in 
the upper jaw where they reach a very large size, especially in the 
male ; they are directed outwards and downwards in a curve and 
are composed entirely of dentine, enamel being absent except in 
the young tooth. The molars consist of milk molars and permanent 
molars only, as the former are not succeeded by premolars as is 
usual in most mammals ; the six teeth (three milk molars and three 
permanent molars) in each jaw succeed one another from before 
backwards, the whole series being gradually forced forward along 
the jaws, beiag worn away in front as development proceeds behind. 
As the teeth are very large, only one or perhaps portions of two 
are to be found in use at the same time, and the whole succession 
lasts out the lifetime of the animal. 

Fig. 80. — Grinding surface of a partially worn right upper molar of the 
African Elephant [Eleplias africaniis), to show lozenge-shaped species between 
the successive enamel plates, d, dentine ; e, enamel ; c, cement. 

Each molar consists of numerous flattened enamel covered 
plates of dentine, all surrounded and united by cement right across 
the crown ; the number of plates to each molar is approximately 
constant but varies with the species. 

Skull of the adult very high and globular, all the bones forming 
the brain case being thickened by the great development of air cells 
throughout their mass, the brain and brain case being comparatively 
small ; zygomatic arch with the jugal bone forming the median por- 
tion only ; nasals extremely short ; mandible ending in front in a 
kind of deflected spout. 

In addition to the two well-known recent species a large number 
of extinct elephants have been described from the later Tertiary beds 
of Europe, Asia and North America. 

Owing to the very considerable differences between the living 


Asiatic and African species many writers have considered that they 
should be placed in separate genera ; should this be done, Loxoclon 
would be the correct generic name for the African species. 

95. Elephas africanus. The African Elephant. 

Elephas maximus, Linnaeus, Syst. Nat. 12th ed. i, p. 48 (1766) 

[in part] . 
Elephas africanus, Bhimenbach, Handb, Naturges. 6th ed. p. 121, pi. 

xix, fig. c (1779) ; Thunherg, Mem. Acad. Petersb. iii, p. 320 (1811) ; 

Smuts, Enum. Mamm. Cap. p. 58 (1832) ; A. Smith, S. Afr. Quart. 

Journ. ii, p. 176 (1834) ; Grill, K. Vet. Ahad. Handl. StocMiolm. ii, 2, 

p. 20 (1858) [Knysna] ; Layard, Cat. Mamm. S. Afr. Mus. p. 60 (1861) ; 

BucUey, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1876, p. 279, 1877, p. 453 ; Loder, Proc. 

Zool. Soc. 1888, p. 87 [large tusks]; Blanc, Bull. Soc. Zool. Fr. xxi. 

p. 130 (1896) [domestication in classical times] ; Macl-enzie, Proc, 

Zool. Soc. 1899, p. 985 [large tusks] . 
Elephas capensis, G. Cuvier, Tabl. Elem. p. 149 (1798), 

Anatomy. — Perrault, Mem. Acad. Eoy. des Sciences Paris, iii, 3rd part, 
pp. 101-156, pis. 19-24 (1734) ; G. Cuvier, Ann. du Mus. viii, p. 120 (1806) 
[osteology and teeth] ; Mojsisovics Arch. Naturges. Iv, pt. 1, pp. 56-92, 
pis. v-vii (1879) ; Forbes, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1879, pp. 420-435 [viscera] ; 
Beddard, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1893, pp. 311-315, pi. xxii, xxiii [brain] . 

Literature. — Tachard (1686), p. 90, notice of occurrence near the 
Cape ; Kolben (1731), ii, p. 98, a quaint account ; la Caille (1763) p. 158, 
an account of elephant hunting on the Berg Eiver in 1750 ; Brink and 
Hop (1778), p. 12, met with elephants just north of the Oliphants Eiver; 
Sparrman (1785), i, p. 337, relates experiences of elejDhant hunting in 
Knysna and discusses their habits ; Paterson (1790), p. 62, shot elephants 
on the south bank of the Orange Eiver; le Vaillant (1796), ii, p. 36, note on 
a variety without tusks ; Steedman (1835), i, p. 62, note on distribution of 
elephants in the east of the Colony in 1826 ; Harris (1838), pp. 170, 192, 
description of shooting in western Transvaal ; Harris (1840), figured on pi. 
xxii; Delagorgue (1847), i, pp. 366, 454 and 548, account of habits in Zulu-' 
land; Methuen (1848), pp. 236, 345, dimensions and domestication; Cum- 
ming (1855), i, p. 309, accomit of habits and shooting m Bechuanaland ; 
Livingstone (1857), p. 71, account of large numbers near Lake Ngami in 1849, 
and further notes and measurements ; Hall (1857), p. 5, habits and distribu- 
tion ; Grout (1863), p. 294, survival in Natal ; Chapman (1868), p. 25, met 
with on the Upper Limpopo ; Andersson (1873), pp. 239-386, account of 
hunting and habits ; Drummond (1875), pp. 179-221, account of habits and 
hunting m Zululand ; Selous (1881), pp. 43, 48, 433, various notes on habits, 
huntmg and dimensions; Theal (1888), i, p. 65, ii, p. 7, distribution in the 
17th and 18th centuries ; Bryden (1889), p. 286, distribution in Cape Colony ; 
NicoUs and Eglington (1892), p. 59, distribution and habits ; Selous (1893), 


pp. 189, 476, various notes on habits and shooting ; Bryden (1893), p. 488, 
distribution past and present ; Oswell and Jackson " Badminton Big 
Game" (1894) i, pp. 75, 204, shooting remmiscences ; liirby (1896), p. 9, sur- 
vival in Lebombo range ; Ward (1896), p. 294, tusk measurements ; Kirby 
(1899), p. 339, distribution in the Beira district ; Selous (1899a), p. 2, range, 
habits and shootmg in South Africa. 

Vernacular Names. — 01ij)hant of Dutch Colonists ; Indhlovu of 
Amaxosa (Stanford) ; of Zulus (Drummond) ; Incubu of Matabele (Nicolls 
and Eglington) ; Thloo of Bechuanas (Selous). 

Description. — The bulkiest of land animals ; body slate-coloured, 
skin rough, covered with sparse black bristles which, however, are 
nowhere nearly thick enough to conceal the skin. Proboscis 
slightly split at the tip so as to form two grasping fingers of nearly 
equal extent. Forehead evenly rounded and convex not concave; 
ears very large and flattened against the shoulders, reaching back 
to the scapula and down to the top of the foreleg ; fore feet with 
four hoofs only, hind feet with three hoofs, those of the first and 
fifth digits being absent. 

Limbs pillar-like, the upper segments, i.e., the humerus and 
femur, being much longer than usual, so that the joints corres- 
ponding to the "knee" and the "hock" of the horse are close to 
the ground. 

The female is much smaller than the male, has much shorter 
and slighter tusks, and is provided with two pectoral mammae. 

The incisors (tusks) are developed in both sexes, though indi- 
viduals, more commonly females, are found without any traces of 

Molars composed of comparatively fewer and larger plates than 
in the Indian species, the ridge formula of the six successive teeth 
from before backwards being 3, 6, 7, 7, 8, 10, as compared with 
4, 8, 12, 12, 16, 24 in the case of the Indian species ; as the molars 
wear down the ridges are not quite flattened but are thicker in the 
middle than at the edges, so that the pattern of the tooth shows a 
series of lozenges (see fig. 80, p. 318). 

Dimensions. — A young female mounted specimen measures as 
follows ; total length from the base of the proboscis to the root of 
the tail 12 ft. ; proboscis 5 ft. 3 ; tail 2 ft. 4 ; height at shoulders 
7 ft. 9 ; from ear opening to base of proboscis 2 ft. 5 ; length of ear 
3 ft. 5 ; breadth 2 ft. 1 ; the skeleton of a male is 8 ft. 2 in 

Harris gives 12 ft. for the height of a male and 9 ft. for that of 


a female ; Oswell states that the largest he met with measured 
12. fb. 2 ; on the other hand, males shot by Mr. Selous and his 
companions never seem to have exceeded 10 ft. 4, while Jumbo, 
the celebrated African elephant so long exhibited in the Zoo- 
logical Gardens in London was 11 ft. in height and weighed 
6|- tons. 

The skull of an average male from the Knysna measures from 
the condyle to the premaxillae 2 ft. 6 and in breadth 2 ft. 3, while 
that portion of the tusks which protrudes beyond the bony sockets 
just reaches 2 ft. 11. 

The largest well-authenticated tusks are a pair recently sold 
at Zanzibar and stated to have been obtained in the Kilimanjaro 
district ; they measured on the outside curve 10 ft. 4 in. in 
length and weighed respectively 235 lbs. and 225 lbs. There 
are two good tusks in the South African Museum, one said to 
be from Stanley Falls in the Congo Free State weighing 158| 
lbs. and measuring 7 ft. 1, another from the Camaroons weighing 
137 lbs. and measuring 7 ft. 3. The tusks of the female are 
much smaller and never reach a length of more than 3 or 
4 ft. 

In South Africa elephants never appear to have had such large 
tusks as in Equatorial Africa ; Selous states that the average males' 
tusks weigh about 50 lbs., and females about 10 to 14 lbs. 

Distribution. — The African elephant is found throughout Africa 
from Sierra Leone on the west and Abyssinia on the east, south- 
wards to the Colony, but has of course been long driven away from 
the settled districts, and is now found only in the more inaccessible 

Fossilised remains of the species have been found in Spain, 
Sicily and northern Africa, in which latter locality it probably existed 
within historical times, if the writings of Aelian, Pliny, Appian and 
Plutarch are to be trusted, and if the elephant alluded to by these 
writers was identical with that of Africa south of the Sahara, a fact 
on which some doubt has been cast by Blanc. 

In South Africa the elephant is now almost exterminate! ; 
within the Colony, however, there are a considerable number in the 
Knysna and Addo Bush in the divisions of Knysna, Uitenhage 
and Alexandria. In Zululand, there are a few near St. Lucia Bay ; 
further north in Maputaland, in Zoutspansberg and Gazaland, 
and in the territory between Beira and the Zambesi they are still 
to be found in some numbers ; there are also said to be some in 


Ovampoland and along the upper reaches of the Okovango and 
*" Chobe rivers. 

In the early days of van Eiebeck (1653) elephants were 
plentiful everywhere up to the Cape peninsula, in fact, according to 
Theal, the last elephant was shot just beyond Cape Flats in 1702 ; 
the expedition of Captain Hop, in 1761, found plenty just north 
of the Oliphant Eiver in what is now the district of Clanwilliam, 
while in the eastern half of the Colony elephant hunting was 
regularly pursued till about 1830, and a good many yet remain, as 
above noticed. In Natal a few survived till 1860 ; in the north the 
hunters of the early part of the century made large bags near 
Kuruman ; Harris in 1836 shot chiefly in the Magaliesberg of the 
western Transvaal ; Gordon Cumming in 1846 in Sechele's country 
in northern Bechuanaland, and Livingstone and Baldwin, in 1849 
and 1858, found elephants innumerable on the Botletli Eiver and 
near Lake Ngami, and finally Selous' hunting ground in the 
seventies and early eighties were in what is now Matabeleland 
and Mashonaland. 

The South African Museum possesses a female mounted speci- 
men and a skeleton of a male, both recently obtained in the Addo 
Bush not far from Port Elizabeth, and a skull of an older indi- 
vidual obtained some years ago in Knysna. 

History. — The African elephant was well known in the classical 
times ; the inscription of Adulis near Massowah, on the Eed Sea, now 
destroyed, but of which a copy has been preserved, related how 
Ptolemy Euergetes (246-221 B.C.) captured Ethiopian elephants and 
used them for military purposes in his expeditions into Asia beyond 
the Euphrates as far as Persia, and there can be little doubt that the 
Carthaginians employed the African Elephant or possibly an allied 
species from Morocco, against the Eomans in the Punic wars. 
During mediaeval times all accurate knowledge of the African 
elephant seems to have died out, so much so that Linnaeus believed 
the African and Indian species to be one. The earliest importation 
of a living example in modern times appears to have been one 
which was sent to the King of France by the King of Portugal from 
the Congo region ; it reached France in 1668, and lived there several 
years, and on its death was dissected by Perrault. Even 
now-a-days African elephants are by no means common in Europe. 

The best accounts of the habits of the African elephant are to be 
found in the works of Gordon Cumming, Andersson and Selous, 
as noted above. 


Habits. — The African elephant is not so strictly a forest animal 
as the Indian species ; it is found often in comparatively open 
tracts and broken country, and often in bush which can hardly 
cover it when standing up, as for instance in the Addo, which is 
as a rule only 6 to 8 feet in height. The males, at any rate in the 
dry season, go about singly or in small bands of six to twenty 
individuals, while the females with calves and younger males are 
usually met with in larger bodies up to perhaps in some eases as 
many as 300 ; in the rainy season, which is the breeding time, the 
males and females are found associating with one another. In 
hot weather elephants usually sleep during the middle of the day, 
generally in a standing position under the shade of a tree, all the 
while flapping their large ears, probably with the object of driving 
away insect pests. Gordon Gumming asserts that in out-of-the-way 
districts they sleep lying on their sides, as was proved to his 
satisfaction by the impression of the tusks in the ground, this 
however, is not confirmed by Selous and other later writers. The 
pace of the elephant is fair, it is never more than a sort of shuffle 
trot, but a man would have a good deal of difficulty in keeping 
away from one. Their tread is very soft and inaudible. They travel 
chiefly at night, and cover incredible distances especially when 
disturbed. When pressed by the hunter they soon become tired 
and exhausted, and endeavour to revive themselves by drawing 
water with their trunks from their stomachs and squirting it over 
their heads. They ascend and descend steep places with wonderful 
facility, climbing up with great deliberation but descending very 
quickly, slipping down with their hind legs bent under them. 
They also swim very well with their trunks held high above the 
water and very little of their bodies showing. 

The food of the African elephant consists of leaves and twigs, 
wild fruits, bark and roots, seldom apparently of grass ; the older 
writers state that they plough up the ground in every direction in 
search of roots with their tusks, but Selous states that the particular 
root having been located by the trunk, the ground is removed by 
scraping it away with the forefoot, and that when the root is laid 
bare it is prized up with the tusks and well chewed for the sake of 
the sap, the woody portion being rejected. 

They feed chiefly during the night and early morning, and 
when doing so spread out over a considerable tract of country. 

Most observers agree that in hot weather elephants drink every 
night, while in the cooler weather every two or three nights is 


sufficient to satisfy them ; they march off at sundown, reaching the 
water between 9 and 12 o'clock ; after drinking and generally 
wallowing and spouting water all over themselves with their 
trunks, they return to their feeding grounds. 

Very little is known about the breeding habits of the African 
species, the period of gestation is probably much the same as that 
of the Indian, i.e., about nineteen months ; only one young one is 
produced at a birth. The calf sucks with the mouth not with 
the trunk, which is at first very short and not very flexible ; 
the weaning period generally lasts for two years, and the milk tusks 
are shed at five or six months. Generally speaking, the maternal 
instinct is not strong, and at a panic the young one is soon deserted, 
though instances to the contrary have been adduced. 

Far the keenest of the elephants' senses is that of smell, which 
is extraordinarily acute ; their hearing is not very good and their 
sight is distinctly poor. Selous states that at fifty yards an 
elephant will not distinguish a man from a tree stump. Elephants 
are naturally exceedingly timid, and have a horror of man, so that 
" the scent of the smallest baby if conveyed to the olfactory nerves 
of one of a herd of elephants would put a whole troop to flight." 
When attacked, the elephant naturally becomes savage and often 
charges ; most hunters' experience, however, is that a single bullet 
is sufficient to turn one. All are agreed that the most dangerous 
aud irascible individuals are the tuskless females which are not 

The African elephant, though much less common in captivity 
than his Indian cousin, is just as docile and amenable to discipline, 
although subject from time to time to periodical fits of rage, 
probably of a sexual nature, as was the case with the celebrated 
Jumbo so long in the London Zoological Gardens. 

The flesh of the elephant appears to be coarse except certain 
tit-bits such as the heart, the thick part of the trunk, and the fat 
meat in the hollow just above the eye, all of which were considered 
as special delicacies by the old-time hunters of South Africa. 

End op Vol. I. 


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