Cape buffalo

SPECIES PROFILE

Name: the Cape or African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) is a large sub-Saharan buffalo and one of the ‘big five’ African species alongside lions, leopards, rhinos, and African elephants.

Appearance: Cape buffalos living on the savannah typically have black or dark brown coats while those living in forests are a reddish-brown colour. They are easily recognised by their large horns which fuse together forming a continuous bone shield across the tops of their heads. In some large males, the horns reach over a metre long.

Size: Cape buffalos stand up to 1.7 metres tall and 3.4 metres long. They can weigh up to a tonne.

Diet: they are grazers – spending most of their time eating grasses and herbs.

Did you know: Cape buffalos are known for their wild and fierce temperaments. Unlike other buffalos, such as the water buffalo found in Asia, they have never been domesticated. They are even regarded as one of the most dangerous animals in Africa as they kill over 200 people a year – giving them the names ‘black death’ and ‘widowmakers’. It’s not just humans who have to watch out – Cape buffalo have been found chasing lions up trees and even trampling and killing them!

Location: they can be found across sub-Saharan Africa in swamps, floodplains, savannahs, and woodlands.

Where TO SEE cape buffalos

According to reports submitted to WildSide, you can see Cape buffalos at the following places:

Place Chance to see User rating No. reports
Maasai Mara
Kenya
100%
very high
5.0
very good
5
reports
Amboseli
Kenya
100%
very high
5.0
very good
2
reports
Kruger
South Africa
100%
very high
5.0
very good
1
report
Hell’s Gate
Kenya
50%
average
4.5
very good
2
reports
Lake Naivasha
Kenya
25%
low
4.3
very good
4
reports

Photo credit: mkarnis under a Creative Commons licence from Pixabay 

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