The thicker the male buffalo's horns, the more likely they are to be at the top of the herd hierarchy. African Buffalo will often kneel down and rub their necks and heads on the ground in a display of aggression to establish dominance.
Elephant calves often suck on their trunks for comfort, similar to a human baby sucking on a pacifier or thumb. The trunk has more than 40,000 different muscles used to breathe, smell, touch, drink, eat, communicate, and even function as a built in snorkel. Elephants have incredible memories - in times of drought, the matriarch can lead her herd to places where she thinks there might be food or water because she was there once decades ago.
Swifts are creatures of the air, meaning they typically do not land between one breeding season and the next. Because they are totally dependent on airborne prey they are very susceptible to bad weather during the breeding season, when a lack of food often results in chicks starving to death.
The bat-eared fox diet consists mainly of insects such as ants and termites in the rainy season and mice in the dry season. In addition to raising their young in dens, bat-eared foxes use self-dug dens for shelter from extreme temperatures and winds. They also lie under acacia trees in South Africa to seek shade during the day.
Black-backed jackals are highly vocal. Best known for their high wailing calls – often given in the early evening, when one individual answers another until an unearthly chorus builds up – they also utter a repeated yapping when tailing a predator; a call that sometimes betrays an irritated lion or leopard.
Unlike other weavers who build their nests in the breeding season, Social Weavers use and maintain the nests throughout the year. They nest in colonies as small as 10 individuals and up to 400-500 birds. Their nests are instantly recognizable, massive and resembling huge apartment blocks.
Wildebeest's main defense from predators is living in a group. Nowhere is this more evident than during the Great Migration - the largest herd movement of animals on the planet. Over 1.2 million wildebeest move in a constant cycle through the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem in search of nutritious grass and water.
The mound you see the dwarf mongooses in is a termite mound. Termite mounds are the termite version of an ant hill, with a notable difference - they can be up to twelve feet tall! They are made of dirt, termite saliva and dung. The termites create their own environment that is best suited to them. After they become abandoned, other species like the dwarf mongooses take over and turn it into their own dens.
Giraffes only sleep for 30 minutes per night - the shortest sleep in the entire animal kingdom. The average length of a giraffe’s tongue is 20 inches. It is blue in color and has an extremely leathery texture. This design helps the giraffe to pluck leaves off the thorniest bushes without causing themselves harm. When they give birth, the baby drops 6 feet to the ground, but they are able to stand up and walk away unscathed.
Helmeted Guineafowl are perfectly capable of flying, but most choose not to. They actually prefer to walk everywhere. It is possible for them to walk up to six miles a day. Guineafowl ‘egg dump’, which means they sometimes lay eggs in other guineafowl nests, therefore giving them the job of incubation…sneaky! And a bit lazy.
The hippopotamus is the world’s largest deadliest land mammal. They have a 98% kill rate when rushing a human. They are remarkably fast on land and tend to leave the water at dusk to graze. Although hippos can hold their breath for approximately seven minutes, most adult hippos resurface every three to five minutes to breathe. This is an automatic process – even sleeping hippos surface to breathe without waking.
The lappet-faced vulture is one of the most aggressive African birds. It possesses one of the strongest beaks, usually arriving last to the carcass due to its ability to tear off skin, tendons, and ligaments that are too tough for smaller scavengers. In fact, they are able to strip a small antelope carcass to the bone within 20 minutes.
The bright pink color of flamingos comes from beta carotene, a red-orange pigment that's found in high numbers within the shrimp that flamingos eat. Flamingos have a unique way of hunting - they will use their feet to stir up mud and then scoop up a beak full of the mud along with water. The beaks are highly specialized as they will filter out the muddy water after straining out the algae and shrimp in the mud.
Olive Baboons have cheek pouches where they can store food as they forage. The baboons meticulously groom each other’s fur, picking out insects and preventing hair from getting into wounds. This is not only hygienic, it’s also used to create bonds between the animals, and they find it relaxing.
Saddled-Billed Cattle Egrets eat insects and often ride on cattle like the buffalo, eating ticks off of their backs. It is a symbiotic relationship: the larger animals draw a lot of bugs and they can’t get rid of them, and it provides a great food source to the birds, so it’s a win win.
Secretary birds peck at their prey to kill it or stomp on it with their feet. These birds can hunt and kill snakes – even poisonous ones. Secretary birds have thick scales on their legs to protect them from snake bites. They also puff their feathers out when killing a snake to confuse the animal. The snake might try to bite the feathers instead of the bird.
While the white rhino is substantially larger than the black rhino, the black rhino is much more likely to charge you. The white rhinos have a square wider lip while the black rhinos have the hooked lip. This aids in their different habitats. White Rhinos feed on the grasses while black rhinos feed on leaves, branches and other brush.
Though the White-Headed Vulture feeds frequently on carrion, it is known to equally often hunt live prey to supplement its diet. This bird, with its strong talons unusual to members of the vulture family, is capable of tackling prey as large as flamingos, though it will also feed on small animals such as lizards.
Once the Sandgrouse's eggs hatch, the chicks are jointly cared for by the parents. The female usually brings them water through her soaked belly feathers. Chicks can feed themselves soon but may need several months to learn foraging techniques from their parents. They will be under parental care until they become independent.