(Neotragus moschatus zuluensis) Thomas, 1898
RED DATA SPECIES.
Leopard Walk Lodge is situated within the Suni-Ridge Sand Forest Park, Wildlife Reserve, where you may enjoy opportunities to view this tiny antelope.
Conservation measures at Suni-Ridge
Our reserve is named after the diminutive suni antelope which occurs here. The reserve was established to protect the sand forest ecology which is a habitat for suni.
Classified as a venerable red data species.
Just 2 steps away from extinction. Without protection, the suni could move into the “endangered” category, which will indicate that they are deemed to be in danger of extinction.
Suni are limited to habitats which have high woody stem density and sparse ground cover. In Kwa Zulu Natal they are found mainly in sandveld thicket and forest. They are shy animals and often they are seen as they dart into the thicket with a high pitched “sneeze snort”. Suni occur singly, in pairs or in family parties of a pair and their offspring. They are predominantly foragers, feeding mainly on fallen leaves on the forest floor. They do not need much water as they obtain this from their food sources. A single young is born at any time during the year.
Ressons for decline:
Great reductions have occurred due to land clearance for agriculture. In protected areas such as reserves, over populations of browsers (particularly nyala) opens up the understorey and reduces cover for suni. Poaching, hunting using dogs and snares have also caused extinctions of suni populations in unprotected areas. Suni-Ridge therefore provides both important habitat and protection for the suni antelope.