a proud and majestic kudu bull

On many occasions, antelope  participate in a display called 'mud-packing', a practice in which males throw mud with their horns to intimidate their rivals. This mud is not acquired by wallowing, but by "horning" the ground.  The mud on their horns makes the antelope look quite formidable, and may have the added effect of deterring predators. It is the kudu equivelant of wearing aftershave, and can make them shall we say more interesting during the rutting season. Normally found in South Africa, however a few have been bred in New Mexico, and this one I photographed in Texas where a few are allowed to roam free, in order to supply low fat venison for the table - although they are very skittish and alert I took this shot with a standard lens. They can take flight at incredible speed, but I kept well hidden.

painted using coarse watercolour, and slight grainy water for effect - paper texture last