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royal antelope

royal antelope

royal antelope: see antelope.

The Royal Antelope (Neotragus pygmaeus) is a West African antelope, only 25–30 cm (10–12 inches) tall and weighing only 3.2–3.6 kg (9–10lb)—it is the smallest of all antelopes. The calves of them are small enough to fit into the average person's open hand. It is light brown in colour, with a paler underbelly and slightly darker heads and flanks. The male has small, spike-like horns, about 2.5 cm (1 inch) long.

Royal Antelopes live in dense forests in West Africa, feeding on leaves and fruit in the undergrowth. They are mostly nocturnal and are very shy, reputedly able to leap 2.5 metres in one bound if disturbed. They are not gregarious, living on their own or occasionally in pairs.

This shy and poorly known antelope is listed as near threatened.

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