White crests are symbols of different stripes among antelopes



Nyala angasii photo © Kjersti Holmang


Nyala angasii photo © Papphase


The nyala and springboks are southern African bovids both possessing white, erectile dorsal crests. However, the functions of these crests could hardly differ more. In the nyala, the crest is restricted to the male and crowns the display of male rivalry. By contrast, in springboks the crest is never erected to show masculinity but is the main feature displayed in a different type of competition: display of fitness to predators. Accordingly, the crest is raised mainly by mature males of the nyala compared to juveniles of springboks.


Robin and the Honey Badger, 22 March 2016


Antidorcas marsupiali photo © Hans Stieglitz



Nyala angasii erectile dorsal crest

Nyala angasii erectile dorsal crest


Juvenile Antidorcas marsupiali erectile dorsal crest 

Antidorcas marsupiali erectile dorsal crest exposed by hunter

Antidorcas marsupiali erectile dorsal crest exposed by hunter