No, were not talking about the drums - were talking about the masked antelope that roams Africas forests. On this Wildlife Wednesday, we learn about the bongo.
No, we’re not talking about the drums—we’re talking about the two subspecies of unusual, masked ungulates that roam through Africa’s forests. On this Wildlife Wednesday, we learn about the bongo.
The smaller lowland bongo (or western bongo) makes its home from Sierra Leone to Benin and from Cameroon to southern Sudan. Its larger counterpart, the mountain or eastern bongo, can be found in four isolated pockets in Kenya.
Why are they threatened?
In the past, these horned herd members were safe from hunters because of a superstition that anyone who touched or ate a bongo would suffer from uncontrollable spasms. Unfortunately, superstition can only do so much.
Both bongo species face population decline due to hunting and habitat loss. The situation of the mountain bongo is especially dire, since these particular plant eaters are considered critically endangered by the IUCN; recent estimates suggest that there are no more than 140 animals in the wild.