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Springbok

South Africa Holiday: National Animal, Fish & Tree

The Springbok is the National Animal of South Africa.

The Galjoen is the National Fish of South Africa.

The Real Yellowwood is the National Tree of South Africa.

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National Animal

Typical of this species is the pronk (jumping display), which led to its common name, springbok.
Both sexes have horns but those of the ram are thicker and rougher. This species has adapted to the dry, barren areas and open grass plains and is thus found especially in the and in the Karoo up to the west coast.
Springbok pronkSpringbok are herd animals and move in small herds during winter, but often crowd together in bigger herds in summer.
Springbok eat both grass and leaves and can go without drinking-water, because they get enough moisture from the succulent leaves. Where drinking-water is available they will use it.

National Fish

The galjoen is found only along the South African coast. It keeps to mostly shallow water, is often found in rough surf and sometimes right next to the shore and is known to every angler.
GaljoenNear rocks, the colour of the galjoen is almost completely black, while in sandy areas the colour is silver-bronze. It is also known in KwaZulu-Natal as blackfish or black bream. The record size is over 55 cm and 7 kg, however the average is much smaller. The galjoen is a game fighter.
The diet of the galjoen consists mainly of red bait (ascidians), small mussels and barnacles. The scales are very firmly attached. The fins are well-developed with prominent spines.

Related pages

National anthem
National bird
National coat of arms
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National flower
National holidays

National Tree

Real YellowwoodThe yellowwood family is primeval and has been present in this part of Africa for more than 100 million years. The species is widespread and is found from Table Mountain, along the southern and eastern Cape coast, in the ravines of the Drakensberg up to the Soutpansberg and the Blouberg in Limpopo.
In forests, they can grow up to 40 metres in height with the base of the trunk sometimes up to 3 metres in diameter. In contrast, trees that grow in unsheltered places like mountain-slopes, are often short, bushy and gnarled.
Real YellowwoodThe bark of the Real Yellowwood is khaki-coloured to grey when it is old, deeply split and peels off in strips. The crown is relatively small in relation to its height and is often covered with grey lichen. Male and female cones resemble pine cones and are white, light green or pink. The female cone has a fleshy podocarpium on which the seed, which takes on the shape and colour of a cherry, develops.
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