Bates's pygmy antelope
|Bates’s pygmy antelope|
de Winton, 1903
Bates's pygmy antelope (Neotragus batesi)—also known as the dwarf antelope, pygmy antelope or Bates' dwarf antelope—is a very small antelope live in the moist forest and brush of Central and West Africa. It is in the same genus as the suni and the royal antelope.
Adult antelope weigh about 2 to 3 kg (4.4 to 6.6 lb), and are 50 to 57 cm (20 to 22 in) long, with a tail length of 4.5 to 5.0 cm (1.8 to 2.0 in). Only males have horns, about 3.8 to 5.0 cm (1.5 to 2.0 in) long. Their coat is shiny dark chestnut on the back and lighter toward the flanks. Male antelope are generously bigger than females.
Bates's pygmy antelope eat leaves, buds, shoots, fungus, grass, and herbs. They also eat crops, which made them unpopular to farmers. They are often caught in snares near agricultural fields. They have a typical territory of 2 to 4 hectares (4.9 to 9.9 acres). Males are territorial, marking their territory with scent produces in the preorbital glands. Females are friendlier with each other and sometimes live in small groups. They bark when fleeing. Most pygmy antelope mate at late dry and early wet seasons. Gestation period is 180 days. One young is born per pregnancy. The fawn weighs between 1.6 and 2.4 kg (3.5 and 5.3 lb).
Bates's pygmy antelope are not endangered althought they are facing habitat loss; the expansion of human population has a very negative effect on the future population. They are not hunted for meat, but farmers sometimes kill and eat limited numbers.
- IUCN SSC Antelope Specialist Group (2008). Neotragus batesi. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 13 November 2008.Database entry includes justification for why this species is listed as Least Concern.
- The New Encyclopaedia of Mammals D MacDonald 2002 Oxford ISBN 0-19-850823-9
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