Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Wildlife Wednesday - Topi

I first met the Topi on safari in 2006. Before that, I don’t know if I knew they existed. Of course, I should admit I don’t think that I knew half the animals of East Africa existed until then and I’m pretty sure I thought that there was only one type of antelope. No, I take that back, I knew there was an impala, and that’s just coz Mom owned a Chevrolet impala when I was a kid (it was a white boat of a car and was replaced in the mid-1970s by an AMC matador – now that car brings back memories, but I digress).

The topi is a medium­-sized antelope with a deep red-brown coat and distinct black patches on the face, the upper forelegs, and on the hips and thighs. His tan legs make it look like he is wearing stockings. He is a beautiful creature. 
 Although not quite as large as his relative the hartebeest, the topi has a similar body shape. The female topi is usually lighter in color than the male. Both sexes have thick, heavily ringed horns that are about 21 inches long.

The topi is a picky eater, eating only grass. If they have access to plenty of green grass, they can go without water for long periods of time. 
 They are extroverted and even mingle outside of their species, such as with wildebeest and zebras, which we witnessed a lot. Sometimes it was hard to tell if the topis knew just what herd they belonged to. 
 God gave the mother-to-be topi a wonderful gift. The females can actually delay giving birth if they sense immediate danger. Of course, when us human mothers are close to going into labor it is only our male partners who are in danger – and that would be from incurring our wrath when the cool rag they put on our forehead is not the right temperature or they are not applying the right amount of pressure on our aching lower back or they tell us we are doing fine when we are trying to push what feels like a fully-inflated basketball out of our bottom. 

1 comment:

Denise said...

They are beautiful. I wish I could pet them all. I think if I had a magic lamp my 1st wish would be to hug all the wild animals expecially Polar Bears although "our Simba" ranks darn close.