Factors Influencing Antelope Population

Topics: Fences

Waterbuck

Waterbuck have always naturally occurred in the northern parts of South Africa and can be found in private game reserves and natural parks and have also been reintroduced to many game parks and reserves. They prefer openanopen  dry country with grassland, bushveld, and even hilly areas as long as it is found close to large bodies of water. Herds of waterbuck are often found in reed beds but never far from permanent water. They are herbivores and primarily grazers and live in herds of up to 20 or more where many cows walk with one dominant bull and after one-year young bulls are kicked out of the herd, therefore herds of many males walking together can be found.

Waterbuck are diurnal and males can be distinguished from females as they are larger than females as well as have large curved horns where females do not have horns. Normally cows only birth one calf between summers and will re-join the herd after about 4 weeks.

Their diets consist of grazing on grass and occasional fruit and seeds. They will never move too far from permanent water as they have to drink large amounts of water multiple times a day.

This article is reliable as it is published by a website that does extensive research on the animals and is backed by many other websites which have published articles on waterbuck as well which contain similar facts. This information is essential to my research as it will determine if the factors found on the farm are suitable for population growth within the herds of waterbuck.

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The waterbuck described in this article are studied under perfect conditions but waterbuck in different areas may evolve and adapt to their environment to survive and therefore may differ in diet and habitat when compared to the specific organisms that are described in this article.

Kudu

Kudus live in a wide range of habitats including hilly areas, slopes of mountains with trees, woodlands, bush thickets, riverine areas, bushveld, and savannah areas. Mainly gather in small groups of cows with young whereas older bulls will only join the herds during the mating season after fighting for the right to mate. Bulls are much larger than cows and have long spiral horns. They are predominantly browsers but may nibble on new grass sprouts. Usually, a single calf is born between November and January.

GIS

Geographical information systems and other remote sensing techniques can be used to analyze factors that influence wildlife in a habitat and can also be used to view preferred habitats, travel routes, and other factors that help in the conservation of the farm’s wildlife. This research will specifically be using GIS to illustrate common paths of the antelope, the factors that influence the population of the antelope in the area of study, and even prediction of suitable habitats for the antelope based on the factors that would benefit the specific species of antelope positively.

The ways of using GIS for conservation that have been mentioned in the article would benefit researching greatly to be able to interpret the factors of the population on the farm and how they affect both the population of the antelope as well as the preferred habitat of each species. The authors of this article found the software used in GIS to be confusing and difficult to use but there are apps such as “SW Maps”, which are easier to use to record attribute data. With other programs, the task of recording attribute data is more difficult and unable to master without training. Another limitation would be the large amount of recording time needed to gather information which will not always be possible but will result in more accurate results when recorded over a large period.

Food sources

The food sources of grazers which in most of the species in this study, are greatly affected by the conditions it experiences every season and some grass species may even decrease in the amount due to drought in the area or other factors like overgrazing or even the incorrect topography for the grass to grow. In this sense, I think it is very beneficial that this article talks of all these factors that influence the grasses growing on the farm as it may be applied to see why certain grass is growing in a certain area and it even talks of three of the main species of grass that are found to be on the farm which is the Themeda Trianda, Heteropogon Contortis, and Panicum maximum. Woody plants for browsing animals, mostly Kudu and Bushbuck, have a large number of trees and shrubs to choose from but this is limited by natural deterrents secreted or released by the woody plants andContortionsthis will decrease the amount of food available to these species.

From personal knowledge I know that these species of antelope are also occasional grazers if needed, therefore the recording or listing of their possible food sources will be too large even when certain woody plants start to release deterrents. one limitation is that not all species of grass and woody plants are found in all regions and antelope species may adapt to eat other species of grass if needed.

Water sources

The abstract of this article talks about the pronghorn antelope in North America and how their migrations are controlled by water sources, always having to follow rains for water and greener pastures. This is relevant to my research as antelope on the farm may prefer areas with water sources and this will also control the species of grass they would consume in those areas.

The article is reliable as it is posted on a trusted article publishing page where authors must have their research projects moderated extensively before being able to publish it. The limitations are that the article refers to North American rainfall which may largely differ from amounts to seasons when compared to the field of study. The article also only refers to pronghorn antelope and when they are compared to other antelope, migration patterns may differ when it is controlled by rainfall and water.

Fences

The same article that talks of the movement of the antelope being affected by water points also talks of the effects that fences have on the travel and migration patterns of the antelope and that they cannot migrate at all if there is a shortage of food and water on the farm when migration patterns are obstructed by physical barriers such as fences. Other known factors that are influenced by physical factors such as fences are things like reproduction as the species are forced to interbreed due to the lack of available genetic variation found in other antelope of the same species from different gene pools and this can become a source for the mutation if the genetic variation is not introduced by the farm owner. A large limitation is that this article only refers to the pronghorn antelope and conditions may differ when other antelope are also exposed to the same conditions such as antelope crawling under fences or jumping over them. Fences are also one of the only defenses against poachers which will also be a factor in the population growth of antelope. Fences play a large role in keeping the population constant for recording but are not a perfect closed system and therefore it is difficult to record populations of species that have moved through or over farm borders marked by the fences. This article is very reliable as it is published on a website where extensive moderation must take place before the article can be published.

Reproduction

The gestation period of antelope is between 4 and 9 months depending on the species. Males compete for mating rights and females give birth to one or occasionally 2 young antelopes, what is not mentioned is that antelope can extend gestation periods if conditions for giving birth are not adequate such as in a time of drought. If the conditions do not change, the antelope can even self-abort its own young in response to the constraints. After the antelope has given birth, most species join a herd of females with their young but some species such as the Blesbuck are known for the female moving into solitude until the calf is a few months old.

This will not largely affect the population of the antelope as the recording period of the population only overlaps a single gestation period. The limitations of this article are that is generalized largely and certain species of antelope may differ largely from the description given in the article. But still, the article is reliable as it provides facts that are posted by many other websites who postedwho that on the same topic of the description of antelope.

Natural death of antelope

The average life span of an antelope is 10 to 25 years based on the species as well as the genes of the specific organism and its living conditions. Antelope rarely die from natural death as there are so many other factors that cause them to die such as predators, starvation, drought, competition for mating and territory as well as disease and hunting. Older individuals will be caught by predators if they cannot evade them anymore or will be put down by owners isseemare seen to be suffering. The only limitation of the factor of natural death is that most antelope will be hunted by predators or hunted before reaching a natural death. This factor will play a major part in the population change of the antelope but may not play a part during the short population recording time of the present study.

Effects of predators on antelope

Predators are a factor that limits the antelope population from becoming too large. Even though the farm is not an area that contains lions or many large predators, it is home to a leopard and this predator is enough to control the population of the smaller antelope but not the larger species such as the Kudu or Waterbuck unless a calf is caught. Many other small cats have been seen on the farm but not any big enough to hunt these large antelope, the only other possible predators that could catch a small antelope are the jackal or caracal if in the area but these two species have not been seen on the farm. It will be easy to identify whether a predator caught the antelope or whether it dies of other causes but may prove to be a problem if the predator drags its kill across a farm border out of the field of study.

Waterbuck have always naturally occurred in the northern parts of South Africa and can be found in private game reserves and natural parks and have also been reintroduced to many game parks and reserves. They prefer an open dry country with grassland, bushveld, and even hilly areas as long as it is found close to large bodies of water. Herds of waterbuck are often found in reed beds but never far from permanent water. They are herbivores and primarily grazers and live in herds of up to 20 or more where many cows walk with one dominant bull and after one-year young bulls are kicked out of the herd, therefore herds of many males walking together can be found. Waterbuck are diurnal and males can be distinguished from females as they are larger than females as well as have large curved horns where females do not have horns. Normally cows only birth one calf between summers and will re-join the herd after about 4 weeks. Their diets consist of grazing on grass and occasional fruit and seeds. They will never move too far from permanent water as they have to drink large amounts of water multiple times a day.

This article is reliable as it is published by a website that does extensive research on the animals and is backed by many other websites which have published articles on waterbuck as well which contain similar facts. This information is essential to my research as it will determine if the factors found on the farm are suitable for population growth within the herds of waterbuck. The waterbuck described in this article are studied under perfect conditions but waterbuck in different areas may evolve and adapt to their environment to survive and therefore may differ in diet and habitat when compared to the specific organisms that are described in this article.

Kudu

Kudus live in a wide range of habitats including hilly areas, slopes of mountains with trees, woodlands, bush thickets, riverine areas, bushveld, and savannah areas. Mainly gather in small groups of cows with young whereas older bulls will only join the herds during the mating season after fighting for the right to mate. Bulls are much larger than cows and have long spiral horns. They are predominantly browsers but may nibble on new grass sprouts. Usually, a single calf is born between November and January.

This article is reliable as it is from a trusted website that does extensive research on the species in question and is backed by other similar articles that publish similar facts about kudus. The information about habitat and diet in this article will help me determine the population factors that will influence the population growth or decrease of the kudu on the farm. The limitation of this article is that kudus are difficult to contain within a farm using fences and therefore even if all conditions described in the article that will favor the population growth are present, they may still leave the field of study as they are uncontrollable and therefore conditions are not always as clear as described in the article.

GIS

Geographical information systems and other remote sensing techniques can be used to analyze factors that influence wildlife in a farm habitat and can also be used to view preferred habitats, travel routes and other factors that help in the conservation of the farms wildlife. This research will specifically be using GIS to illustrate common paths of the antelope, the factors that influence the population of the antelope in the area of study and even prediction of suitable habitats for the antelope based on the factors that would benefit the specific species of antelope positively.

The ways of using GIS for conservation that have been mentioned in the article would benefit researching greatly as to be able to interpret the factors of the population on the farm and how they affect both the population of the antelope as well as the preferred habitat of each species. The authors of this article found the software used in GIS to be confusing and difficult to use but there are apps such as “SW Maps”, which are easier to use to record attribute data. With other programs, the task of recording attribute data is more difficult and unable to master without training. Another limitation would be the large amount of recording time needed to gather information which will not always be possible but will result in more accurate results when recorded over a large period of period time.

Food sources

The food sources of grazers which in most of the species in this study, are greatly affected by the conditions it experiences every season and some grass species may even decrease the overgrazing amount due to drought in the area or other factors like over grazing or even the incorrect topography for the grass to grow. In this sense, I think it is very beneficial that this article talks of all these factors that influence the grasses growing on the farm as it may be applied to see why certain grass is growing in a certain area and it even talks of three of the main species of grass that are found to be on the farm which is the Themeda Trianda, Heteropogon Contortis, number, and Panicum maximum. Woody plants for browsing animals, mostly Kudu and Bushbuck, have a large amount of trees and shrubs to choose from but this is limited by natural deterrents secreted or released by the woody plants and this will decrease the amount of food available to these species.

From personal knowledge, I know that these species of antelope are also occasional grazers if needed, therefore the recording or listing of their possible food sources will be too large even when certain woody plants start to release deterrents. North American limitation is that not all species of grass and woody plants are found in all regions and antelope species may adapt to eat other species of grass if needed.

Water sources

The abstract of this article talks about the pronghorn antelope in North-America and how their migrations are controlled by water sources, always having to follow rains for water and greener pastures. This is relevant to my research as antelope on the farm may prefer areas with water sources and this will also control the species of grass they would consume in those areas.

The article is reliable as it is posted on a trusted article publishing page where authors must have their research projects moderated extensively before being able to publish it. The limitations are that the article refers to North American rainfall which may largely differ from amounts to seasons when compared to the field of study. The article also only refers to pronghorn antelope and when they are compared to other antelope, migration patterns may differ when it is controlled by rainfall and water.

Fences

The same article that talks of the movement of the antelope being affected by water points also talks of the effects that fences have on the travel and migration patterns of the antelope and that they cannot migrate at all if there is a shortage of food and water on the farm when migration patterns are obstructed by physical barriers such as fences. Other known factors that are influenced by physical factors such as fences are things like reproduction as the species are forced to interbreed due to the lack of available genetic variation found in other antelope of the same species from different gene pools and this can become a source of the for the mutation if genetic variation is not introduced by the farm owner. A large limitation is that this article only refers to the pronghorn antelope and conditions may differ when other antelope are also exposed to the same conditions such as antelope crawling under fences or jumping another item. Fences are also one of the only defences against poachers which will also be a factor to the population growth of antelope. Fences play a large role in keeping the population constant for recording but are not a perfect closed system and therefore it is difficult to record populations of species that have moved through or over farm borders marked by the fences. This article is very reliable as it is published on a website where extensive moderation must take place before the article can be published.

Reproduction

The gestation period of antelope is between 4 and 9 months depending on the species. Males compete for mating rights and females give birth to one or occasionally 2 young antelopes, what is not mentioned is that antelope can extend gestation periods if conditions for giving birth are not adequate such as in a time of drought. If the conditions do not change, the antelope can even self-abort its own young in response to the constraints. After the antelope has given birth, most species join a herd of females with their young but some species such as the Blesbuck isare known for the female moving into solitude until the calf is a few months old.

This will not largely affect the population of the antelope as the recording period of the limitationspopulation only overlaps a single gestation period. The limitations of this article is that is generalized and generalizes largely and certain species of antelope may differ largely from the description given in the article. But still, the article is reliable as it provides facts that are posted by many other websites that posted on the same topic of the description of antelope.

Natural death of antelope

The average life span of an antelope is 10 to 25 years based on the species as well as the genes of the specific organism and its living conditions. Antelope rarely die from natural death as there are so many other factors that cause them to die such as predators, starvation, drought, competition for mating and territory as well as disease and hunting. Older individuals will be caught by predators if they cannot evade them anymore or will be put down by owners if seen to be suffering. The only limitation of the factor of natural death is that most antelope will be hunted by predators or hunted before reaching a natural death. This factor will play a major part in the population change of the antelope but may not play a part during the short population recording time of the present study.

Effects of predators on antelope

Predators are a factor that limits the antelope population from becoming too large. Even though the farm is not an area that contains lions or many large predators, it is home to a leopard and this predator is enough to control the population of the smaller antelope but notare the larger species such as the Kudu or Waterbuck unless a calf is caught. Many other small cats have been seen on the farm but not any big enough to hunt these large antelope, the only other possible predators that could catch a small antelope is the jackal or caracal if in the area but these two species have not been seen on the farm. It will be easy to identify whether a predator caught the antelope or whether it dies of other causes but may prove to be a problem if the predator drags its kill across a farm border out of the field of study.

Cite this page

Factors Influencing Antelope Population. (2022, May 08). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/factors-influencing-antelope-population-3/

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