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bovid family
bovid family
other herbivores
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in this section
Blue Duiker
Dik-Dik
Gazelle tribe
Thomson's gazelle
Grant's gazelle
Gerenuk
Kob antelope
Waterbuck
Sable antelope
Oryx or Gemsbok
Hartebeest
Topi or Tsessebe
Common Wildebeest
Impala
Bushbuck
Sitatunga
Greater Kudu
Bongo
Common eland
African or Cape buffalo
Giraffe
Thomson's Gazelle: Gazella thomsoni

The common gazelle of the East African plains.

Characteristics

Weight and Height
Males: wt 37-64 lb (17-29 kg), ht 23-28 in (58-70 cm)
Females: wt 29-53 lb (13-24 kg), ht 23-35 in (58-64 cm)

Horns
Parallel, robust, large ridges in males. Generally 10 to 17 in (25-43 cm). In females, the horns are not as sturdy and are only 3 to 6.2 in (8-15 cm) long. Horns are typically deformed, broken or absent in females.


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Color
Redish-brown; white rump, black side stripe and facial markings; black tail.

General Locations
Typically found in Somali-Masai arid regions and parts of northern savanna from northern Tanzania to northern Kenya. Small populations are also found in Sudan. Thomson's Gazelle can generally be seen in the following national parks: Masai Mara NP, Amboseli, Nairobi, and Nakuru NP, Kenya; Serengeti and Tarangire NP, Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania.

Habitat
Thomson's Gazelles left the sub-saharan wastelands in order to seek an area with abundant food in the savanna biome. Tommies (as Thomson's Gazelles are affectionately called) along with zebra and wildebeest make up a dominant migratory group in the East African grasslands. The main population of Tommies feeds and reproduces on the short-grass plains during the rainy season and in the dry season on the taller grasslands where water and food are abundant.

For the most part, Tommies are water-dependent -- drinking water every day or every two days but can become water-independent if/when necessary.


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Activity
Tommies are both nocturnal and diurnal, but they are usually most active early and late in the day.

Social System
Depending on the location and type of herd, some Tommies can be territorial and aggregating in large numbers. Most females and young live together in herds ranging from 2-20 members. In highly concentrated areas, it is common to see multiple herds interacting with each other. Territories can be as large as 495 acres (200 ha) and as small as 6 acres (2.5 ha), but are typically 25 to 75 acres (10-30 ha).

Reproduction
The gestation period is 5.5 to 6 months. A healthy female generally reproduces twice a year depending on where she lives. Most tommies are able to conceive 3 weeks after calving, which means that there are main birth peaks in December/January (after short rains) and again in June/July (after long rains).

Predators
Jackal, hyena, lion, cheetah, and wild dog.



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