Impala and oxpecker

Impala and oxpecker

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Caption: Impala (Aepyceros melampus) with a red-billed oxpecker (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) on its back. The oxpecker and impala have a symbiotic relationship. The bird gains food by eating ticks from the impala's skin, while the impala gets cleaned of parasites. Only the male impala has the impressive curved horns, which it uses in displays and fights with rivals. Impala inhabit the plains and forest edges of eastern Africa, gathering in herds of up to 200 individuals. Herds comprise a dominant male with females and offspring. Impala are renowned for leaping into the air when startled or attacked. Photographed in Kruger National Park, South Africa.

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Keywords: aepyceros melampus, african, animal, antelope, avian, bird, buphagus erythrorhynchus, horn, horned, horns, impala, kruger national park, male, mammal, nature, oxpecker, red-beaked, red-billed, relationship, south africa, symbiosis, symbiotic, walking, wildlife, zoology

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