Oreotragus oreotragus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Cetartiodactyla Bovidae

Scientific Name: Oreotragus oreotragus (Zimmermann, 1783)
Infra-specific Taxa Assessed:
Common Name(s):
English Klipspringer
French Oréotrague
Antilope oreotragus Zimmermann, 1783
Taxonomic Notes: Eleven subspecies have been recognized (Ansell 1972, Roberts 2013) based on pelage and/or horn morphology, but the geographical boundaries between all except one of these forms have not been accurately delineated and no genetic analyses are available.
Females of O. o. schillingsii often have horns, unlike in all others forms.
Only the very isolated Western Klipspringer (O. o. porteousi) of Nigeria and Central African Republic is assessed separately here.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-01-07
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Antelope Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Hoffmann, M. & Mallon, D.
The total population has been estimated at more than 40,000 individuals (likely an underestimate), ca. 25% of which are in protected areas. Populations in many protected areas and on private land are considered stable, and substantial numbers occur in unprotected but inaccessible habitat. It is not consider to be close to meeting thresholds for any threatened category and it is confirmed Least Concern. This species’ conservation status should not change and its future should be secure as long as it continues to receive active protection in national parks and equivalent reserves, hunting concessions and private farmland. It should also continue to survive in substantial numbers in extensive, inaccessible areas of unprotected habitat.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:The Klipspringer has a wide distribution from north-eastern Sudan, Eritrea, northern Somalia and the Ethiopian Highlands, southwards through East and southern Africa, including  south-eastern DR Congo, to north-east South Africa, then again from southern South Africa and along the west coast into Namibia and Angola. Isolated populations occur in  (East 1999, Roberts 2013).

There are isolated populations of O. o. porteousi in Nigeria, on around the Jos Plateau (East 1999), and in in Gashaka-Gumti N.P. (Nicholas 2004) and in Central African Republic the Central African Republic (two separate areas in the northern and western uplands). The only country in which they formerly occurred, but are now probably extinct, is Burundi (East 1999).

Occurrence is confined to rocky and mountainous areas, both contiguous areas of habitat, such as the Rift Valley, Zambezi Valley and southern escarpments, and also isolated outcrops (Roberts 2013).
Countries occurrence:
Angola; Botswana; Central African Republic; Congo, The Democratic Republic of the; Djibouti; Eritrea; Ethiopia; Kenya; Malawi; Mozambique; Namibia; Nigeria; Rwanda; Somalia; South Africa; South Sudan; Swaziland; Tanzania, United Republic of; Uganda; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Possibly extinct:
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):4380
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The Klipspringer can reach relatively high population densities within continuous areas of favourable habitat, e.g., 10.0-14.0/km² in a 9.6 km² area of escarpment, ridge top and gorge in Simien Mountains National Park (Ethiopia). More typically, the Klipspringer’s habitat is discontinuous within a given area and its abundance is closely related to the extent of suitable rocky terrain. Its overall population density is frequently in the range 0.01-0.1/km² in protected areas within which it is common in restricted areas of suitable habitat. Higher densities occur in areas with more extensive Klipspringer habitat, e.g., 0.15-0.30/km² in Lengwe (Malawi) and Karoo, Mountain Zebra and Royal Natal National Parks and Giant’s Castle Game Reserve (South Africa) (various authors in East 1999).

East (1999) produced a total population estimate of about 42,000 animals, which he acknowledged was probably conservative. Population trend is stable in many protected areas and on private land, but tending to decrease in areas where small, isolated populations are subjected to uncontrolled hunting and competition with livestock. Occurs in substantial numbers on private farmland in Namibia (Roberts 2013).

The numbers of the Western Klipspringer are unknown but are unlikely to exceed a few thousand at most, in view of its very restricted distribution. This subspecies’ population is probably decreasing, at least in Nigeria.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Klipspringers are dependent on rocky and mountainous terrain (Klipspringer means 'cliff-jumper' in Afrikaans), occurring up to 4,380 m in the Ethiopian Highlands (Yalden et al. 1996). The Rift Valleys and the Southern African escarpments provide extensive suitable habitat and are central to its distribution. They frequently use flatter areas of bush adjacent to cliffs and rocky outcrops (Robetrts 2013). Klipspringers are primarily browsers.
Generation Length (years):5.4

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species is hunted for meat and sport.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no obvious major threats to Klipspringers in most parts of their range. Their habitat is of little value to humans and it persists outside protected areas in regions where subsistence hunting pressure is not intense. The Klipspringer’s adaptation to the inaccessible hillsides and cliffs in these areas enables it to avoid most competition from domestic herds. Small, isolated populations within relatively small areas of rocky habitat are more vulnerable to hunting and competition from goats, and many of these populations have been eliminated in settled regions.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: About one-quarter of the population occurs in protected areas, including: Simien and Bale Mountains (Ethiopia), Tsavo (Kenya), North and South Luangwa (Zambia), Nyika (Malawi), Namib-Naukluft (Namibia) and Matobo (Zimbabwe) and it occurs in lesser numbers in a large number of other protected areas throughout its range which contain smaller areas of suitable habitat (Roberts 2013). Very large numbers survive on private farmland in Namibia.
Western Klipspringer is known to occur in Lame Game Reserve and in Gashaka-Gumti National Park, which is thought to represent a stronghold for this isolated subspecies (East 1999, Nicholas 2004)

Classifications [top]

2. Savanna -> 2.1. Savanna - Dry
3. Shrubland -> 3.5. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
3. Shrubland -> 3.6. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Moist
3. Shrubland -> 3.7. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical High Altitude
3. Shrubland -> 3.8. Shrubland - Mediterranean-type Shrubby Vegetation
0. Root -> 6. Rocky areas (eg. inland cliffs, mountain peaks)
8. Desert -> 8.1. Desert - Hot
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
  Action Recovery plan:No
  Systematic monitoring scheme:No
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Yes, over entire range
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
  Percentage of population protected by PAs (0-100):21-30
  Area based regional management plan:No
  Invasive species control or prevention:Not Applicable
In-Place Species Management
  Harvest management plan:No
  Successfully reintroduced or introduced beningly:No
  Subject to ex-situ conservation:No
In-Place Education
  Subject to recent education and awareness programmes:No
  Included in international legislation:No
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:No
5. Biological resource use -> 5.1. Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals -> 5.1.1. Intentional use (species is the target)
♦ timing:Ongoing ♦ scope:Minority (<50%) ♦ severity:Negligible declines ⇒ Impact score:Low Impact: 4 
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

1. Research -> 1.1. Taxonomy
1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends

Bibliography [top]

Ansell, W.F.H. 1972. Part 2, 15 Family Artiodactyla. In: J. Meester and H.W. Setzer (eds), The Mammals of Africa: An Identification Manual, pp. 1-84. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC, USA.

East, R. (compiler). 1999. African Antelope Database 1998. IUCN, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK.

IUCN. 2016. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2016-1. Available at: www.iucnredlist.org. (Accessed: 30 June 2016).

Nicholas, A. 2004. An update on the status of important large mammal species in Gashaka Gumti National Park, Nigeria. Antelope Survey Update 9: 40-42.

Roberts, S. C. 2013. Oreotragus oreotragus. In: J. S. Kingdon and M. Hoffmann (eds), The Mammals of Africa, pp. 470-476. Bloomsbury, London, UK.

Yalden, D.W., Largen, M.J., Kock, D. and Hillman, J.C. 1996. Catalogue of the Mammals of Ethiopia and Eritrea. 7. Revised checklist, zoogeography and conservation. Tropical Zoology 9(1): 73-164.

Citation: IUCN SSC Antelope Specialist Group. 2016. Oreotragus oreotragus. In: . The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T15485A50191264. . Downloaded on 25 September 2018.
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