oa African Zoology - Disproportionate mortality of males in a population of springbok (Artiodactyla: Bovidae)

Volume 12, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



The hypothesis that an imbalanced sex ratio, favouring females, in populations of springbok (Antidorcas marsupialis) is the result of disproportionate mortality of males is tested by comparing the sex ratio in a sample of 50 carcasses with that in a population of live springbok from the same geographical area. The results are consistent with this hypothesis. A suggested refinement of the hypothesis is that the disproportionate male mortality falls most heavily on young adult males which are in close association with springbok territories. Possible causes of this age- and sex-linked mortality are discussed.

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