Blue Wildebeest.
Blue Wildebeest.

Blue Wildebeest

The blue wildebeest is one of the two species of the large African antelopes known as gnu.

Blue Wildebeest.

Blue wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus), Toronto Zoo. Wildebeest have only recently become residents of the Toronto Zoo, and they are on display as part of the African Savanna exhibit.

The name wildebeest comes from the Afrikaans word for “wild cattle”. These animals are also known as gnu because that is what the native people of South Africa called them. Wildebeest seem to be doing well in the wild and in their range has even been expanding. Humans interfere with wildebeest, and vice versa, as wildebeest compete with domestic cattle for pastures, but fortunately so far wildebeest have not been permanently harmed by the increasing number of humans in their natural habitat.

Wildebeest play an important role in the savanna ecosystem. Among other things wildebeest are one of the favorite prey of large predators such as lions.

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Last updated: August 2, 2015

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