Threatened Grassland Species Programme

Oribi Conservation Project

Oribi are a type of small antelope that occur in temperate grasslands, they are recognised as Endangered in South Africa and their numbers are declining. Oribi are found on their own, in pairs, or in small groups of one male with two or more females. Resting during the heat of the day, oribi are most active in the morning, late afternoon and evening. When alarmed, they produce a shrill whistle. Often, they do not attempt to flee until an intruder is within a few meters, remaining motionless in the grass, relying on camouflage.

Oribi populations in many areas are threatened by human activities, such as:

  • Habitat destruction - Grasslands are lost to expanding settlement, commercial forestry, intensive commercial farming, grassland degradation due to overstocking, poor use of fire, erosion and mining.
  • Illegal hunting - Trapping with snares and hunting with dogs are serious threats, and has led to the demise of many oribi populations in South Africa.
  • Inappropriate management - In many areas where oribi are present, farm management practices (impenetrable fences, poor burning practices, poor veld management, domestic dogs) do not allow oribi to coexist. Sport hunting of oribi at unsustainable levels also threaten their survival.

Oribi Working Group

The Annual Spring Oribi survey helps the Oribi Working Group make informed decisions about the continued conservation of the species. Please fill in this user friendly survey during September & October 2015. Earlier counts are not ideal but will still be gratefully accepted. September is the recommended month for the count as this is when the grass is flushing after recent burns and thus Oribi are easier to see and count. However, if for any reason you are unable to count in October and have either already conducted a count at an earlier time or plan to do one at a later date, please still complete and return the attached Oribi survey form to us with these details.

Oribi Survey Report 2016 - click here

Oribi Survey Report 2017 / 2018 - click here

Oribi Working Group Newsletter - April 2018