Africa has several different types of habitats from jungles and forests to grasslands and deserts. The second-largest continent after Asia, it is home to many beautiful and dangerous animals of various sizes, both diurnal and nocturnal.

(1) KOB:

Lifespan: 17 years

speed: 45km/h

Weight: 94kg

Gestation period: 255 days

Description:

The Kob is a medium-sized antelope with a medium brown coat, medium length horns and large ears. Size: Male: 90 to 100 cm. The kob (Kobus kob) is an antelope found across Central Africa and parts of West Africa as well as  East Africa. Together with the closely related to reedbucks, waterbucks, lechwe, Nile lechwe, and puku, it forms the Reduncinae tribe. Found along the northern savanna, it is often seen in Murchison Falls National Park in Uganda and Queen Elizabeth National Park, Uganda; Garamba and Virunga National Park, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as well as grassy floodplains of South Sudan.Kobs are found in wet areas (such as floodplains), where they graze on grass. Kobs are diurnal, but inactive during the heat of the day. They live in groups of either females and calves or just males. These groups generally range from five to 40 animals. The Kob appears on the coat of arms of Uganda, and white-eared kobs (Kobus kob leucotis), found in South Sudan, southwest Ethiopia, and extreme northeast Uganda, participate in large-scale migrations.

Kob at Murchision falls National park Uganda Africa
Female Kob at Kidepo National Park Uganda Africa

(2)Spotted Hyena:

Lifespan: 12 Years

Speed:64km/h

Weight:44-64kg

Gestation period:110 days

(3)Wildebeest:

Life span:20years

Speed:80km/h

Weight:180-250kg

Gestation period:257 days

Description:

Kudu, two species of spiral-horned antelopes (tribe Tragelaphini, family Bovidae). The very large greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) is common in southern African wildlife reserves. The svelte lesser kudu (T. imberbis) is an elusive dweller in the arid lowland thornbush of northeast and East Africa. Both species have corkscrew horns (in males only), depend on cover for food and concealment, and form small herds.

Kudu, two species of spiral-horned antelopes (tribe Tragelaphini, family Bovidae). The very large greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) is common in southern African wildlife reserves. The svelte lesser kudu (T. imberbis) is an elusive dweller in the arid lowland thornbush of northeast and East Africa. Both species have corkscrew horns (in males only), depend on cover for food and concealment, and form small herds.

The wildebeest, also called the gnu, is an antelope in the genus Connochaetes native to Eastern and Southern Africa. It belongs to the family Bovidae, which includes antelopes, cattle, goats, sheep, and other even-toed horned ungulates.

Wildebeest at Masai Mara Game Reserve Kenya Africa

Africa’s animal-filled plains and forests live on. The vast wilderness areas are home to the earth’s biggest concentrations of large mammals, from elephants and giraffes to hippos and zebras, to lions, leopards and cheetahs. If you’re a wildlife or animal lover, going on a safari in Africa will be a dream come true. You’ve probably watched nature documentaries and the Lion King and wondered what it might be like to go to Africa and see these amazing creatures for yourself. Maybe you’re wondering what African animals you will actually see on safari? How close can you get to these wild animals.

wildebeest at Serengeti National Park Tanzania Africa

(4)African Oryx:

Life span: 15 years

Speed:60km/h

Weight:220-300kg

Gestation period:274 days

Description:

Oryx is a genus consisting of four large antelope species called oryxes. Their fur is pale with contrasting dark markings in the face and on the legs, and their long horns are almost straight.

A Gemsbok Oryx gazelle in Chobe national park Botswana Africa

(5)Hippopotamus:

Life span: 40-50 years

Speed:48km/h

Weight:1,500-1,800kg

Gestation period: 243 days

Introduction:

The hippopotamus, also called the hippo, common hippopotamus or river hippopotamus, is a large, mostly herbivorous, semiaquatic mammal and ungulate native to sub-Saharan Africa. It is one of only two extant species in the family Hippopotamidae, the other being the pygmy hippopotamus. Hippopotamuses love water, which is why the Greeks named them the “river horse.” Hippos spend up to 16 hours a day submerged in rivers and lakes to keep their massive bodies cool under the hot African sun. Hippos are graceful in water, good swimmers, and can hold their breath underwater for up to five minutes. However, they are often large enough to simply walk or stand on the lake floor, or lie in the shallows. Their eyes and nostrils are located high on their heads, which allows them to see and breathe while mostly submerged. Hippos are the third-largest living land mammal, after elephants and white rhinos. Despite their large and bulky appearance, they have adaptations to their semi-aquatic environments allowing them to move swiftly on both water and land. Their feet have four-webbed toes that splay out to distribute weight evenly and therefore adequately support them on land, and their short legs provide powerful propulsion through the water. 

Hippopotamus Grazing at Murchison falls National Park Uganda Africa

Hippopotamus at Kazinga channel Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda Africa
Mother and baby hippo at Murchison falls National Park Uganda Africa

(6) Mountain Gorilla:

Life span:40-50 years

Speed:40km/h

Weight: 90-210kg

Gestation period: 8.5 months

Introduction:

The mountain gorilla (Gorilla beringei beringei) is one of the two subspecies of the eastern gorilla. Mountain gorillas are found in two separate locations: the Virunga range of extinct volcanic mountains on the borders of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Rwanda and Uganda, in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda.

Sliver back male mountain gorilla in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Uganda Africa
Sliver back Mountain gorilla in Bwindi Impenetrable National park Uganda Africa

(7)Chimpanzee:

Lifespan:25years

Speed:40km/h(25mph)

Weight:34-60kg

Gestation period:240 days

Introduction:

The chimpanzee, simply chimp, is a species of great ape native to the forest and savannah of tropical Africa. It has four confirmed subspecies and a fifth proposed subspecies. The chimpanzee and the closely related bonobo are classified in the genus Pan.

Alpha male chimpanzee at kibale National Park Uganda Africa
Chimpanzee at kibale National park Uganda Africa

(8) Jackson’s hartebeest :

Lifespan:11-20 years

Speed: 48km/h

Weight:100-200kg

Gestation period: 214-242 days

Introduction:

The hartebeest, also known as kongoni, is an African antelope. Eight subspecies have been described, including two sometimes considered to be independent species. A large antelope, the hartebeest stands just over 1 m at the shoulder, and has a typical head-and-body length of 200 to 250 cm.

Jackson’s hartebeest at Murchison falls National park Uganda Africa
Jackson’s hartebeest at Murchison falls National Park Uganda Africa

(9)Topi:

Lifespan:15 years

Speed: 70km/h

Weight:110kg

Gestation period: 238 days

Introduction:

A relative of tsessebe, topi are highly social and very fast. But while they share a tsessebes’ speed and genetic characteristics, they look more like hartebeest. Topi occupy arid savannah areas across Sub-Saharan Africa but are classified as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. Topi beat the speed gun at 70 km/h.

Topi at lake Mburo national park Uganda Africa

(10)Cheetah:

Lifespan:

Speed:80-130km/h

Weight:21-72kg

Gestation period: 90-98 days

Introduction:

The cheetah is a large cat native to Africa and central Iran. It is the fastest land animal, estimated to be capable of running at 80 to 128 km/h with the fastest reliably recorded speeds being 93 and 98 km/h, and as such has several adaptations for speed, including a light build, long thin legs and a long tail.

Cheetah at Masai Mara game reserve Kenya Africa

(11)African wild Dog:

Lifespan: 10 years

Speed: 70km/h(44mph)

Weight: 22kg

Gestation period: 71 days

Introduction:

The African wild dog is a canine which is a native species to sub-Saharan Africa. It is the largest wild canine in Africa, and the only extant member of the genus Lycaon, which is distinguished from Canis by dentition highly specialised for a hypercarnivorous diet, and a lack of dewclaws.

The wild dog is one of the world’s most endangered mammals. The largest populations remain in southern Africa and the southern part of East Africa (especially Tanzania and northern Mozambique).

Wild dogs are social and gather in packs of around ten individuals, but some packs number more than 40. They are opportunistic predators that hunt medium-sized ruminants, such as gazelles. In a sprint, African wild dogs can reach speeds of more than 44 miles per hour.

  • African wild dog Serengeti National park Tanzania Africa
  • Diet:

African Wild Dogs hunt in packs and can bring down some large mammals. They will eat most any mammal that they can catch and kill including antelopes, impala, wildebeest calves, gazelles, and even large birds like ostriches. African wild dogs live in an organized pack similar to wolves.

African wild dogs at Kruger National Park South Africa

Unlike cats, dogs aren’t obligate carnivores. They can and do eat vegetable matter. Wild dogs will search for rotten fruit and will eat the semi-digested contents of their prey’s stomach. Some will dig up vegetables and eat grasses and herbs.

The East African Great Migration:

Introduction:

A better representation of the circle of life probably cannot be found anywhere else in the world. The journey starts in Southern Serengeti when wildebeest calves are being born. Predators like lions and hyenas are constantly hunting for babies, and thousands and thousands of calves are born within a couple weeks of each other – a feast for the eyes of true wildlife enthusiasts.

Wildebeest crossing Mara river during the great migration2014

The 800 kilometer trek of the immense wildebeest herd is the largest mammal migration on earth. The timing of the migration coincides with greening of nutritious grasses on the short-grass plains during the wet season. These areas are safer because predators can be easily spotted making it an ideal place for calving. However, the plains dry and the wildebeest are forced to move in search of greener pastures in the western corridor. The northern extension of the ecosystem has the highest rainfall, but the grasses are least nutritious. This is the dry season retreat for the wildebeest, at least until the south becomes green again. The result is a clockwise movement from the south, west, north, and back to the south.

Zebras and wildebeest during the great migration at Serengeti National Park Tanzania

Oribi:

Oribi:


(12) Oribi:

Lifespan:8-12 Years

Speed: 50 km/h

Weight: 12-17kgs

Gestationperiod: 10-14 Months

The oribi is a small antelope found in eastern, southern and western Africa. The sole member of its genus, it was first described by the German zoologist Eberhard August Wilhelm von Zimmermann in 1783. Eight subspecies are identifiedThe oribi is a small, slender antelope; it reaches nearly 50–67 centimetres (20–26 in) at the shoulder and weighs 12–17 kilograms (26–49 lb). … This antelope features a slightly raised back, and long neck and limbs. The glossy, yellowish to rufous brown coat contrasts with the white chin, throat, underparts and rump.

Oribi at Murchison falls National Park Uganda Africa

Oribis sitting at Murchison falls national park Uganda Africa

(13) Klipspringer:

Lifespan: 15 Years

Speed: 45km/h

Weight: 8-18 kg

Gestation Period:6-7 months

The klipspringer (/ˈklɪpˌsprɪŋər/; Oreotragus oreotragus) is a small antelope found in eastern and southern Africa. The sole member of its genus, the klipspringer was first described by German zoologist Eberhard August Wilhelm von Zimmermann in 1783.Klipspringer are around 1.5m (5′) tall and can jump 10 times their own body height! They are the highest jumping mammals in relation to their body size.

Klipspringer at Kruger National Park South Africa
Klispringer at Hwange National park Zimbabwe Africa

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Africa’s big five animals:

Africa Big 5 animals is a term coined back in the 1800s by trophy hunters, referring to what they considered the most challenging and dangerous animals to hunt on foot. These include the African Elephant, Lion, Leopard, African Buffalo, and Rhinoceros. Today the term is primarily famous with Africa safari travelers who now shoot the big five with a camera rather than a lethal weapon of choice. The Africa big 5 animals are all present in Uganda and can easily be seen in all savanna parks.

The phrase today is commonly used to market safaris. However, back in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, everyone from European royalty to American presidents wanted to bag an African hunting trophy—the larger and more unpredictable the beast, the better – how the Big Five became famous.

(1) Lion:

Gestation period:110 days

Speed: 80 km/h

Lifespan: 10-15 years

The lion is a large felid of the genus Panthera native mainly to Africa. It has a muscular, deep-chested body, short, rounded head, round ears, and a hairy tuft at the end of its tail. It is sexually dimorphic; adult male lions have a prominent mane.

Male lion on the move at Murchison falls national park Uganda

(2)Leopard:

Life span:12 – 17 years

Speed: 58km/h

Gestation period:90 – 105 days

The leopard is one of the five extant species in the genus Panthera, a member of the cat family, Felidae. It occurs in a wide range in sub-Saharan Africa, in some parts of Western and Central Asia, Southern Russia, and on the Indian subcontinent to Southeast and East Asia

Male Leopard at Kruger national park

(3) African buffalo:

Life span: 20-25 years

weight:300-900kg

Speed: 56km/h (35mph)

Gestation period: 11 months

The African is a large sub-Saharan African bovine. Syncerus caffer caffer, found in East African countries and southern African countries. African Buffalo do not have very good eyesight but their hearing and especially their smell is exceptional. … They are often found eating insects off the buffalo and will also warn the buffalo of approaching danger. The old saying that an Elephant never forgets, well a Buffalo never forgives! a buffalo has a massive head and boss (horns), a broad chest and sturdy legs. It’s said to be four times stronger than an ox. Buffaloes are herbivores, and so eat only vegetation. Their favorite foods are grass and herbs, but water buffalo will also eat aquatic plants. Both African and Asian buffalo will eat shrubs and trees when they can’t find grass or herbs to eat.

male buffalo at queen Elizabeth national Park Uganda

(4) Rhinoceros:

Life span:40-50 years

Weight:800-1400kg

Speed:55km/h

Gestation period:15-16 months

A rhinoceros, commonly abbreviated to rhino, is a member of any of the five extant species of odd-toed ungulates in the family Rhinocerotidae, as well as any of the numerous extinct species therein. Two of the extant species are native to Africa. Black rhinos are browsers that get most of their sustenance from eating trees and bushes. They use their lips to pluck leaves and fruit from the branches. White rhinos graze on grasses, walking with their enormous heads and squared lips lowered to the ground. Rhinos’ eyesight isn’t great – they’re unable to see a motionless person at a distance of 30m – they mainly rely on their strong sense of smell.

Black rhino at Kruger National Park South Africa

(5) Elephant:

Life span:

Weight:6,000-8,000 kg

Speed:40km/h

Gestation period: 18-22 months

Elephants are the largest existing land animals. Three species are currently recognised: the African bush elephant, the African forest elephant, and the Asian elephant. Elephantidae is the only surviving family of the order Proboscidea; extinct members include the mastodons.

Memory:

Elephants do have incredible memories. Researchers who studied African elephants in the wild learned that older, female elephants (called “matriarchs”) often lead herds. These matriarchs build up a strong memory over time that allows them to remember friends and enemies.

Hearing:

Elephants have some of the best hearing around. They can hear at frequencies 20 times lower than humans. It isn’t just their ears that perceive sound; these majestic beasts also have receptors in their trunks and feet that are excellent at picking up low-frequency vibrations.

Smell:

Elephants have a keen nose. They have more smell receptors than any mammal – including dogs – and can sniff out food that is several miles away. A new study tests their ability to distinguish between similar smelling plants. … And for sense of smell, the biggest is one of the best.

African Elephants at Chobe National Park Botswana

Reptiles of Africa:

Nile crocodile:

Life span: 50-60 years

Weight:

Speed:30-35km/h in water(17km/h on dry land)

Gestation period: A single female typically lays a clutch of between 30 and 60 eggs that incubate for 80 and 90 days. Temperatures of the nest during a period of incubation determine the sex of the hatchling crocodiles.

The Nile crocodile is a large crocodilian native to freshwater habitats in Africa, where it is present in 26 countries. Due to its widespread occurrence and stable population trend, It is often said that you can outwit a crocodile by running in a zig-zag fashion away from it. This isn’t true! Humans can out run crocodiles on land, and a straight line is the fastest way of putting distance between yourself and the crocodile.

The Diety :

The diet of the Nile crocodile is mainly fish, but it will attack almost anything unfortunate enough to cross its path, including zebras, small hippos, porcupines, birds, and other crocodiles. It will also scavenge carrion, and can eat up to half its body weight at a feeding.Overall, 

Vision:

crocodile vision appears to be less precise than ours, achieving a clarity some six or seven times lower than the human eye. But their “foveal streak” is a striking adaptation that suits their lifestyle perfectly. The fovea is a dent in the retina, containing a huge concentration of receptor cells

sense of smell:

Crocodiles are both hunters and scavengers, so an excellent sense of smell is vital. Theirs is so finely attuned they can detect a rotting carcass from four miles away.

Nile crocodile at the shores of kazinga channel Queen Elizabeth National Park Uganda

Zebra:

Lifespan:25 years

Weight:350kg-450kg

Speed: 65 km/h

Gestation period: 13 Months

Zebras are African equines with distinctive black-and-white striped coats. There are three extant species: the Grévy’s zebra, plains zebra, and the mountain zebra. Zebras share the genus Equus with horses and asses, the three groups being the only living members of the family Equidae.

A family of Zebras at Lake Mburo National Park Uganda Africa
Zebra at Uganda Wild life education center Entebbe Uganda Africa

Giraffe:

Lifespan:26 Years

Speed: 60km/h

Weight: 800kg

Gestation period: 15 Months

The giraffe is an African artiodactyl mammal, the tallest living terrestrial animal and the largest ruminant. It is traditionally considered to be one species, Giraffa camelopardalis, with nine subspecies.Giraffes have slightly elongated forelegs, about 10% longer than their hind legs. The pace of the giraffe is an amble, though when pursued it can run extremely fast, up to 55 km/h. It cannot sustain a lengthy chase. Its leg length compels an unusual gait with the left legs moving together followed by right (similar to pacing) at low speed, and the back legs crossing outside the front at high speed. When hunting adult giraffes, lions try to knock the lanky animal off its feet and pull it down. Giraffes are difficult and dangerous prey. The giraffe defends itself with a powerful kick. A single well-placed kick from an adult giraffe can shatter a lion’s skull or break its spine. Lions are the only predators which pose a serious threat to an adult giraffe.

roth child giraffe at Murchison falls National park Uganda Africa