After the Big Five
Not so Big, not so Glamorous
From armor-plated pangolin to dainty steenbok, nature always serves up surprises… There’s so much more than just the big glamorous animals. While international causes like the black rhino bring attention to the plight of wildlife in our modern world, the park is home to an uncountable variety of life.
The thrill of seeking the big five in their native habitat never really wears thin. But on those days when there are elephant around every corner, spotting an elusive little creature has a delight all of it’s own.
Small antelope species like the dik-dik, klipspringer, common grey duiker and steenbok are smaller and harder to spot although they’re common residents of the Kruger Park.
Those Impossibly Dainty Legs …
We surprised this little steenbok female but she wasn’t the least frightened by the car or the camera and just went on with her business. Here are some of the shots we were able to get while she ignored us with all the insouciance of a superstar.
Just Browsing Around
Steenbok are browsers on low vegetation, mainly herbaceous flowering plants, because they can’t reach very high – just less than a meter. They also scrape up roots and tubers and don’t need drinking water usually; getting all the moisture they need from their food. So don’t sit up in a hide waiting for a steenbok, you probably won’t see one.
She stood frozen, wide eyed for a moment as we came around the corner but an urgent itch required her whole attention and we were completely forgotten. See those darkish streaks below her enormous eyes? Those are scent-glands the steenbok use to mark territory by rubbing them against sticks, rocks or trees.