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A common Impala ( Aepyceros melampus ) in golden light in Kruger, South Africa. This is the most abundant antelope on the african continent and due to this abundance very little attention is paid to this beautiful animal. The name impala comes from the Zulu language meaning "gazelle". They are found in savannas and thick bushveld in Kenya, Tanzania, Swaziland, Mozambique, northern Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, southern Angola, northeastern South Africa and Uganda. The Masai Mara in Kenya is where the largest herds can be found. Females and young form herds of up to two hundred individuals. When food is plentiful, adult males will establish territories. Females pass through the territories that have the best food resources. Territorial males round up any female herds that enter their grounds, and will chase away bachelor males that follow. They will even chase away recently-weaned males. A male impala tries to prevent any female from leaving his territory. During the dry seasons, territories are abandoned, as herds must travel farther to find food. Large, mixed tranquil herds of females and males form. Young male impalas who have been made to leave their previous herd form bachelor herds of around thirty individuals. Males that are able to dominate their herd are contenders for assuming control of a territory. The breeding season of impalas, also called rutting, begins toward the end of the wet season in May. The entire affair typically lasts approximately three weeks.

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