Gemsbuck – Common
(Latin = Oryx gazella , Afrikaans = Gemsbok, Tswana = Kukama)
- Numbers: Fairly high
- Weight: 180 – 240 kg (396 – 528 lb.)
- Shoulder height: 120 cm (48 in.)
- Record Horn Length:
- SCI: 47 and six-eighths in.
- Rowland Ward: 49 and a half in.
- Females horns? Yes, longer than the male’s horns
The Gemsbuck is a large antelope that is native to the Kalahari Desert of Southern Africa. Gemsbuck are light brown/grey colour with lighter patches to the bottom rear of their rump, and sandy grey flanks. A dark stripe extends from their chin and travels down to the bottom of their neck, over their shoulder joints and leg along their lower flanks and on each side of their rear legs. All four legs are black on their top half, with white below the knees and black patches on the shins. Both male and female gemsbok has long, sharp, pointed horns.
They are herbivores and grazers and mostly feed on nutritious leaves, grasses and herbs. During the dry season, they feed on flowers and will also browse for food. To supplement water requirements gemsbok dig for succulents and extensively eat tsama melons.
Gemsboks do not have a specific breeding season. A single calf can be born at any time of the year after a gestation period of 9 months.
Preferred habitat is arid open grasslands, but they will also utilize a diversity of habitats like western Namib rocky areas, sand dunes of the Namib Desert and the Kalahari semi-desert plains.
They are always alert with excellent eyesight, hearing, and smell. Your approach will have to be carefully planned. This is one of the tough antelope. The .270 caliber should be considered the minimum. The 7mm and 30 caliber Magnums are an even better choice.