The wild is the biggest attraction for tourists going to Africa. It is a greater spectacle rather than just visiting your local zoo and seeing uninterested and somewhat, dull species in captivity. One can expect adventure just by seeing these wild species simply grazing the field, flying above the Savanna or if you’re lucky, seeing the brilliance of “predator going after a prey” scene. These following animals are the top attractions why Africa is the top destination for seeing the wild and having a great African safari adventure.
10. Lesser Flamingo
The lesser flamingo has the scientific name Phoeniconaias minor. It actually stands between four to five feet in height but still considered as the smallest flamingo among the six species and found in Sub-Saharan Africa. It is also one of the two oldest flamingo species. The difference between those two species is that the greater flamingo has a pale pink bill with a black tip. As for the lesser flamingo, it has a dark crimson bill. The lesser flamingo’s diet consists of small fishes, shrimps and small insects
Bovids are largely seen in Africa and its family includes any of the 140 species of ruminant and cloven-hoofed mammals with unbranching horns which is covered with sheath of keratin that is permanent amongst the males. The bovid family includes different mammals such as the African and water buffalo, antelopes, bison, sheep, gazelles, domestic cattle, muskoxen and goats. Most of the bovids have these solid and stocky build because of their size and weight. Most of the animals in this family are herbivores and are mostly being preyed by the big cats such as lions, cheetahs and leopards as well as crocodiles.
Zebras, together with horses and wild asses, are equids and animals that are long-lived that usually move quickly because of their large size and they have teeth used for cropping and grinding grass. Zebras look more like a horse but have black and white stripes on their bodies, erect hair and tufted tails. Three species of zebra are still seen in Africa and two of its species are in East Africa. Zebras usually inhabit in areas where there are less trees, open lands and Savannas. Zebras are considered important prey for lions and tigers. When a zebra herd is attacked, herd will cluster together with the young ones in the middle as the stallion confronts the attackers.
7. Nile crocodile
The Nile crocodile is considered to be the largest crocodile specie that can be found in Africa because it can grow up to 20 feet long. It also has the reputation of being the vicious man-eater because of numerous occurrences of these crocodiles attacking man, which can also swallow a whole person. Nile crocodiles live in Sub-Saharan Africa; in rivers of Madagascar, the Nile Basin, in mangrove swamps and freshwater marshes. Nile crocodiles mostly eat fish but it will most likely to attack bigger animals like zebras, porcupines, small hippos, wildebeests, birds and even smaller crocodiles.
6. African elephant
The African elephant is considered as the largest animal living on earth. Their trunks are used for communicating and handling of objects. African elephants have two classifications which are the Savanna elephants and the forest elephants. Savanna elephants are much bigger than the forest elephants and they have tusks that are curved outwards. Savanna and forest elephants are different in the shape and size of their skull and its skeleton. Forest elephants are the most distinct subspecies of African elephant because they are adapted uniquely in the Congo Basin forest habitat.
5. Black rhinoceros
Black rhinoceros are found in both Central and Southern Africa. Black rhinos have two horns and in some cases, a third horn. Its anterior horn is longer than its posterior which measures an average of one-and-a-half foot long. These species are distinguished from the white rhinos by its prehensile upper lip which is commonly used to feed on twigs and legumes. Black rhinos mostly inhabit in grassland areas but many of them can be seen in deserts. Black rhinos usually sleeps in midday and feed during the early morning. They will drink every day if water is available within the area.
4. Cape buffalo
The Cape buffalo is considered to be one of the most dangerous animals in Africa and is included in the so called “Big 5”. The Cape buffalo has this reputation from hunters and other people because of their unpredictability. In Africa, there is only a single type of buffalo but it has two subspecies which are the large Savanna buffalo and the smaller forest buffalo. Forest subspecies can only be seen in both Central and West Africa. Savanna buffalos are quite large and heavy animals. They vary not only on their size but also to their horns and colors. Savanna and forest buffalos both live in areas that are close to water.
Among the large carnivorous animals, the African leopard is considered to be the most secretive and elusive. They are a threatened and protected species because of the constant loss of their habitat. The African leopard is also the strongest climber among the cat family because it can kill prey that is bigger than itself. A wide variety of coat colors are seen in leopards. In East Africa, leopards have spots that are circular while leopards in Southern Africa are square. African leopards are usually found in bushy and rocky surroundings. Leopards can adapt to both warm and cold weather which help them survive in numerous environments.
The Wildebeest is one of the attractions found in Africa due to its great migration. Its head is shaped like a box and is actually large. It has horns both male and female. Their body may look disproportionate because its front end built heavily. Its body has this gray color with dark vertical stripes. Wildebeest often found in plains in Eastern Africa. The Wildebeest also prefer eating grass and are heavily depended on water. They are the common prey of lions and hyenas. Their primary defense against attacks is through herding.
1. African Lion
Lions are known to be on top of the food chain because they are considered as the most vicious and furious animal that almost no predator can come after them. They usually live in forests and other open lands where they have a good view of their prey. Lions are carnivores meaning that they eat meat from other animals like buffalo, giraffe, antelope, zebra, wild hogs and wildebeests. Since lions are on top of the food chain, other animals are always on the lookout for them as they can become the lions’ next prey.