blue duiker
Philantomba monticola
Status: Least Concern
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Bovidae
Genus: Philantomba
Description: The blue duiker is characterized by a flat forehead, large eyes, small ears with a line of white, large nostrils, a broad mouth and agile lips. The dark tail measures slightly above 10 cm. A remarkable feature of the tail is the row of white crinkly hairs on either flank that reflect light efficiently, so that when the animal moves its tail up and down, it looks like a luminous signal in the dark habitat. The duiker has short 5 cm long spiky horns hidden in hair tufts.

General Information

The blue duiker is the smallest duiker in Zambia. It is a small antelope that is both secretive and cautious. Blue duikers are known for their ability to dive into dense underbrush to escape predators. This is why they are called "duikers," which is a Dutch word meaning "diver." It is named for its blue-gray coat color.
Shoulder height: 32 – 41 cm
Length:
Tail Length:
Weight: 3.5 – 9 kg
Age:

Fun Facts !

The blue duiker is the smallest antelope species in Africa. They are monogamous and pair for life.

Ecology and Behaviour

The blue duiker is secretive and cautious. It confines itself to the forest fringes and it is more active during the daylight hours. The diet consists of fallen fruits, foliage, flowers and pieces of bark and animal matter such as ants (which are licked from the ground). The blue duiker can sustain itself on dead foliage (fallen fruits and leaves) better than other duiker species.

Conservation

It is categorized as "Least concern" on the International Union for Conservation of Nature red list.

Distribution and Habitat

This species can survive in a variety of forests, including old-growth, secondary and gallery forests. This duiker can be found in several countries in the western, southern and eastern parts of Africa: Angola, Cameroon, Central African Republic, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Interaction with humans

The blue duiker is threatened by extensive bush-meat hunting across its range. However, it can survive despite human interference in its habitat.

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