July 20, 2016
Nyala: An Elegant Antelope
- as seen by -Monika Stroeber
Normally shy and elusive antelope, the nyala at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo are far from it. They can be seen roaming and grazing throughout the day at our African Plains exhibit.
Since 1941, 275 nyala calves have been born at the Bronx Zoo. In the summer months, it’s a joy to watch the “mini-me” versions of their moms with their larger-than-life ears, fluffy tails, and pale chestnut coats covered in vibrant white stripes. As they grow, the male calves transition into similar images of their dads with charcoal coats, black fringe from throat to rump, and curved horns that reach a length of 30 inches.
Very little startles these elegant animals, but occasionally, a warning call goes out that continues to amaze me. It’s a deep-throated roaring bark that can be heard for a distance. Thankfully, our herd has few worries, and it continues doing what it does best – being a group of the most beautiful animals in the world.
EDITOR’S NOTE: National Zoo Keeper Week is July 16-24. Wild View is featuring posts by our Wildlife Conservation Society zoo keepers. For more on activities at our wildlife parks during keeper week, visit the Bronx Zoo’s #Keeperweek Challenge, Prospect Park Zoo’s National Zoo Keeper Week, and check for keeper chats at the Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, New York Aquarium, Prospect Park Zoo, and Queens Zoo.