Kenya: Tsavo West NP – Kirk’s Dik Dik Antelopes
Tsavo West had a total overload of dik dik antelopes. In other parts of Africa, we were lucky to spot maybe one or two running away, but here were probably saw several dozen during the game drives. Dik dik is one of the smallest antelopes in the world, weighing only 3-6kg) 7-14 pounds and looking adorable on their tiny fragile legs with huge eyes and cute faces (like Japanese anime dolls). Dik diks are common in the arid savanna and semi desert of eastern Kenya and Somalia, as they are quite adapted to hot and dry environment – they don’t need to drink and their nostril are equipped with panting mechanism that helps them cool their blood. Unlike most other antelopes, dik diks are monogamous, forming lifelong unions (you actually often see them in pairs or in threes, with a baby). Small and skittish, dik diks know how to hide in the bush from predators, how to run away zigzagging, and can even reach speeds of 42kmh.