Black Duiker, Cephalophus niger

The black duiker (Cephalophus niger) is a species of antelope that can be found in southern areas of Sierra Leone, Ghana, Nigeria, Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, and Liberia. It is known as tuba in the Dyula language. It prefers to love in forests and is thought to be diurnal, although this information comes from captive individuals.

As its name suggests, the black duiker has black fur, although its head is reddish orange in color. It reaches an average height of twenty inches at the shoulder, with a weight between thirty-three and forty-four pounds.  Males grow horns that reach an average length of up to 6.7 inches, while females grow much smaller horns that reach a length of only 1.2 inches.

The black duiker is typically solitary and territorial. It feeds on flowers, fruits, and fallen leaves. It is estimated that 100,000 individuals remain in its range, and it is threatened by hunting. Although its populations are declining, the black duiker appears on the IUCN Red List with a conservation status of “Least Concern”.

Image Caption: Cephalophus niger. Credit: ucumari/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 2.0)