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The Famous Big Five animals of Africa

Africa is an environment with a diverse fauna and flora, that captures the hearts and minds of all who visit this beautiful content. A few animals, however, has been awarded a very special award, the Big Five. The famous Big Five refers to five of Africa's greatest wild animals - the Lion, Leopard, Elephant, Rhino, and Buffalo.

The term "Big Five" was originally coined by hunters, and referred to the five most difficult animals to hunt on foot in Africa. The Big Five wasn't chosen for their size, but rather for the difficulty in hunting them, and the degree of danger involved.

The term is still used today in most tourist and wildlife guides, and are usually high on the priority list and a real treat for many a visitor to African game reserves.

African Elephant

big five animals elephant

The African Elephant is a very large herbivore with thick, almost hairless skin. The upper incisors of the elephant forms long curved tusks of ivory.

The African Elephant is difficult to spot because despite its large size, they are able to hide in tall grass, and more likely to charge than other species.


big five animals lion

The Lion is a large carnivorous feline, with a short tawny coat and a tufted tail. Males have magnificent heavy manes around their necks and shoulders.

Considered by many the best of the Big Five, lions are very dangerous animals, and would attack if given a chance.

Cape Buffalo

big five animals buffalo

The African Buffalo is a large horned bovid. Buffalos are considered the most dangerous of the Big Five, reportedly having caused many hunter deaths. Buffalos are known as the "Black Death" in Africa, with wounded animals reportedly ambushing and attacking its pursuers.


big five animals rhino

Rhinoceros (also called Rhino for short) are large, thick-skinned herbivores with one or two upright horns on the nasal bridge. Rhinos are able to reach one tonne or more in weight.

Rhinos are listed as "critically endangered" by the IUCN Red List, as they are killed by humans for their valuable horns, which are made of keratin, and wrongly believed by some to act as an aphrodisiac, amongst other things.

Please don't kill our Rhinos!!!


big five animals leopard

The Leopard is a large, carnivorous feline with either tawny fur with dark rosetto-like markings, or black fur. Leopards are very difficult to spot as they have nocturnal feeding habits and secretive nature. Leopards are also extremely wary of humans, and will take flight in the face of danger.