Zoo Animals

Eland in the snow


Taurotragus oryx

At the Detroit Zoo
A pair of common elands – the largest African species of antelope – arrived in 2012 after a 29-year hiatus. Brad, the larger of the two, was born in 2008, and his half-sister Clover was born in 2007. They can be found basking in the sun or grazing on grass in their African Grasslands habitat across from the zebras.

The male eland is much larger than the female. The eland is a fawn color with white, vertical stripes on its body. It turns bluish-gray with age and some even turn completely black. Its horns turn in a corkscrew pattern.  Hanging from its throat and neck is a dewlap, which is believed to help keep the eland cool in the heat. The male has a small patch of black hair on its dewlap and on its forehead. The eland has a short, erect mane and a small tuft of hair on the tip of its tail that is usually black.

Fun Facts

  • The eland is both the largest and slowest antelope in the world.

  • The eland is able to jump 8 feet from a standstill.

  • The eland will use its long horns to bring food on branches and twigs within reach.