Addax (Addax nasomaculatus)
Addax are now only found in isolated pockets of the Sahara Desert in Africa. They inhabit desert san dunes and hard-packed desert terrain with little water and scant vegetation.
The Addax is a large, white/sand coloured antelope with long thin spiral horns that slant back and upward. The spiralled horns are found in both sexes, growing to about 60-109cm in length. The addax stands about 105cm at the shoulder and has large splayed hooves which, along with the well-developed dewclaws, prevent it from sinking in sand. Its coat is short and glossy; there is a white 'X'-shaped blaze on the face, and a mat of dense, dark hair on the forehead. Long hairs on the throat form a scraggly beard. An adult addax can weigh approx 135kgs.
- Addax are considered one of the slowest runners of the antelopes, perhaps re/lecting its adaptation to sandy terrain.
- Addax rest during the day in deep depressions dug out in the sand often located near large boulders to shield them against the wind and hot sun.
- These antelope are one of the few species where male and females have horns of the same size.
- Addax differ from other species of antelope as they have large, square shaped teeth (like cows) and they lack the typical facial glands.
- Group Structure: Between 2-20 individuals in mixed groups, led by an older dominant male.
- Diet: Desert grasses, seeds, young shoots of shrubs etc and succulents. It gets most of its water from the plants it eats.
- Reproduction: Gestation period - 8.5 months after which usually a single calf is born.
- Main predators are lions, hyenas, but more recently by humans for hunting.
- Lifespan: 19 years in the wild and up to 25 years in captivity.