Topis are animal species hosted in Akagera national park which is one of largest the national parks of Rwanda visited when undertaking a gorilla safari to Rwanda. Akagera Park is characterized by impressive undulating hills of acacia woodland, scattered grassland and fringed lakes creating Remarkable Rwanda scenic views. The topis (Damaliscus lunatus topi) are a notably cordial and swift subspecies of the antelope. They belong to the genus Damaliscus and subspecies of the tsessebe and can be found in savanna of sub Saharan Africa.
The Topi is a medium-sized antelope with a dominant reddish-brown to purplish-red coat on their upper legs. Topis are tall ranging from 1 to 1.3 m at shoulder level. Their strung out heads, have a definite hump at the base of the neck, clear cut black patches on the face, the hips and thighs, and on upper forelegs.
These creatures are however not quite as large as its relative the hartebeest (kongoni) though they have a similar body shape. The female Topis are lighter in color than the males. Topis have thick, ringed, lyre-shaped horns about 21 inches long. They have good sight and hearing and can run quite flashy with a body mass of a scope from 68kg to 160kg.
Topis can be found in the Akagera National Park in Rwanda, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Tanzania, and Uganda. so for guests on Uganda Safaris, Congo Gorilla Safari Tours or even on Combined East Africa Safaris, a chance to see the topi is very high. They are selective and prefer green pastures of medium height. When looking for food they tend to take small bites at fast rate and hardly drink when green grass is in plenty. During seasons with dry grass, they tend to look for water to supplement. Topi herds are also known to migrate between pastures like in the Serengeti where they join wildebeests, zebras and gazelles.
Using dung piles, topis mark their territories and usually are in separate territories as males and females respectively. They are social and mingle with other species outside their territory. Topis calve once a year especially in October and December when food supplies are in plenty. They go through a gestation period of 8 months and females can suspend the labour process when they detect harm.
With over 300,000 members globally and 5 species, topis are near threatened as per the International Union for Conservation of Nature are classified as near threatened on the list. Topis are amazing creatures and can be viewed on a wildlife safari to Remarkable Rwanda.