Interesting or Unusual Behaviour

Wed May 23, 2012 9:39 pm

The Nyala manoeuvred the fruit in it's mouth using his tongue and squashed the fruit to open it. We saw several bulls doing this during our stay, so it's obviously a common trait amongst these animals.

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Please share any interesting behaviour photos you have \O

Steenbok

Wed May 23, 2012 9:39 pm

A Steenbok ram scent marks it's territory by secreting it's own scent from it's pre-orbital gland onto a twig. This scent can be picked up by other rams to denote the boundaries of each territory.

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Re: Interesting or Unusual Behaviour

Wed May 23, 2012 9:40 pm

Impala have incisor teeth which are loose in their sockets to enable them to groom out ticks.

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Suni

Wed May 23, 2012 9:40 pm

A Ram Suni uses it's long tongue to clean it's pre-orbital gland.

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Southern Right Whale

Wed May 23, 2012 9:41 pm

A pair of Southern Right Whales copulating. Poor photos I know, but first time I'd seen this behaviour. Gordon's Bay, seen from the road between Rooi-Els and Somerset West.

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Samango Monkey

Wed May 23, 2012 9:42 pm

Samango Monkeys are more arboreal then Vervets and therefore tend to be more agile when moving from tree to tree. They use their tails for balance when making large leaps across wide openings in the forest.

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Re: Interesting or Unusual Behaviour

Wed May 23, 2012 9:42 pm

Nyala Rams have a ritualistic display to assess status. We saw this behaviour on several occasions, but I never managed to capture one in full pose. In this display, the mane is raised along the back, the tail is curled up over it's back to flash the white under-tail and the head is lowered with the horns pointing out. The Ram then walks slowly and with each step taken, the front leg is raised high off the ground.

This photo shows the end of the display with only the mane raised and tail fluffed up.

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Re: Interesting or Unusual Behaviour

Wed May 23, 2012 9:44 pm

A subordinate Cape Buffalo Bull checks if a Cow is coming into oestrus. A dominant Bull takes note and pushes the younger one out and checks out the female. In this instance, the Cow was not ready and moved off into thicker bush with her calf.

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Re: Interesting or Unusual Behaviour

Wed May 23, 2012 9:45 pm

Addo Buffalo Bull Flehmen

Flehmen is a German word, with no English equivalent, for the curling and wrinkling of the lips and nostrils which bring the Jacobsen's organ into play, often for testing chemical signals produced by sexually receptive females.
A few weeks ago when I visited the Park I witnessed a buffalo bull flehmen. I was the last vehicle in a convoy of cars traveling along slowly when up ahead I picked up what looked like the horn of a buffalo bull protruding from behind some bush. I had earlier noticed some fresh buffalo spoor next to the road. All the other cars kept moving and never stopped. When I arrived to where I saw the horn I stopped and waited for a while and then the buffalo made his full appearance from behind the bush into full view. It was a massive bull all on his own.
I got excited as I watched him sniffing the air and the vegetation and ground all around him. I felt that something exciting was about to unfold. I then watch him as he started to walk and continued sniffing the air and ground. I was able to follow him for a few hundred meters as he walked parallel to the road. He stopped suddenly at this one spot where he continued sniffing the ground and then started flehming. This must have been where a female buffalo had urinated and he was picking up her sexual condition in her urine. He then continued walking and paused briefly at the waterhole where he did some ground horning before continuing, this time with a real purpose and mission as he was going to find that female buffalo. I watched as he disappeared into the Addo bush and thinking how privileged I was to witness this.

The buffalo bull flehmen

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Standing at the waterhole

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Here is a short video (31 sec) of me following the buffalo bull and then him flehmen as he stops at the spot where the female had urinated. http://youtu.be/yk1TAYiKXFQ
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Enjoy the experience \O

Re: Interesting or Unusual Behaviour

Wed May 23, 2012 9:46 pm

Ronnie, Great photos of this behaviour \O From what you described, this guy was on a mission once he picked up the scent.