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Royal Antelope

(Neotragus pygmaeus)


Category: Mammals



Despite its larger than life name, the royal antelope (Neotragus pygmaeus) is the smallest of all antelopes. Growing up to only 10″ tall and weighing about 6 pounds, they are about as big as a rabbit. Living in the dense, moist undergrowth of forests in West Africa, they are nocturnal, highly alert, and extremely shy – which can make observations of its behavior difficult. Their main strategy for avoiding predators is blending in, hiding, and failing that, zipping away through the underbrush!


Data & Facts

Scientific Classification
Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Chordata
Class - Mammalia
Order - Artiodactyla
Family - Bovidae
Genus - Neotragus
Species - N. pygmaeus

Did you know?
Interesting Animal Facts

Wake me in 9 months…

There may be times when you are so tired you feel as if you could sleep for several days - but of course that is not possible without dying from dehydration. However, some mammals have such fine control over their metabolisms, they are capable of nodding off for days or even months, in a state called hibernation. This helps an animal survive during cold periods when food is scarce. A prime example is the alpine marmot who can hibernate for up to 9 months of the year: gathering food and adding about 50% more body weight (primarily fat) as summer ends, the alpine marmot seals itself in a deep burrow, heart rate slowing to five beats per minute, breathing as little as once per minute - emerging (far lighter!) in May, when food is once again available!

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