The Forest Sitatunga (Tragelaphus spekii gratus) is a medium-sized ungulate (hoofed) antelope mammal. It is also known as the Congo Sitatunga or Marshbuck. It is similar to the Waterbuck.
The Forest Sitatunga has orange-brown or rufous-red, shaggy fur with white spots. It has white facial markings. Its fur darkens with age, becoming grey to dark-brown. Only the male has horns. Its horns are spiral with one or two twists. The male also has a V-shaped stripe between its eyes. It has pointed, hoofed toes.
It grows to 104-177 centimetres (41-70 inches) long and 72-116 centimetres (28-46 inches) at shoulder height. Its tail is 14–37 centimetres (6–15 inches) long. The male’s horns are 45-92 centimetres (18-36 inches) long.
It is native to central Africa and eastern Africa, in countries such as Cameroon, South Sudan, Ghana, Botswana, Zambia, Gabon, Tanzania, Uganda, and Kenya.
It prefers swamplands, mangroves, and marshlands with tall, dense vegetation.
The Forest Sitatunga is diurnal, active during the day. It is a good swimmer.
It eats grass and leaves. It is a browser. Its predators include lions, wild dogs, crocodiles, and leopards.
The Forest Sitatunga is mainly seen alone or in pairs. The female is pregnant for about 240 days, before giving birth to one live young, called a calf. The mother hides her calf in tall grass.
The Forest Sitatunga lives, on average, for about 22 years.
[Location of photographs: Berlin Zoo, Germany]
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM