‘Cross-Species’ Animal Friendships in Africa

A couple of additions, at the bottom of the blog, thanks to National Geographic.

While ‘cross-species’ animal friendships are not usual, here are a few, mainly here in Africa, that are pretty unique:

Goats are very friendly animals, whom I have found to befriend a number of other breeds.  Here are a few:

Rhadigonde the buck and Spock the dog were great friends, and loved to play-butt

When Rhadigonde grew into a full-sized buck, he was just too much for Spock to take on. He joined our breeding herd.

Sheep will also take on babies of another breed - this is in South Africa

This foal has a Boer goat as a mother substitute - actually, as the foal grew, he had several Boer-moms. South Africa

Ana the donkey loved 'her' goats and was a great goat-guard. Her best friend was an elderly Alpine doe who - when she died - drove Ana into a long period of grief, calling for her every morning.

Ana had her own little flock of birds - called in Egypt 'Sadiq al-Falahiin' (the farmers' friends) these birds are bug-chasers around cattle, oxen, horses, etc.

This is the dog of an e-friend, who adopted an orphan kitten. This was several years ago, and I have lost her contact info!

Carrying went on quite a bit. Can't remember what happened at feeding time :)

I put this picture in a former blog last year; it’s worth another look. Source: Princeton Environmental Institute

Perhaps the most unusual - a hippo orphan adopted by a 100-year-old tortoise in Kenya

Nap - time

I wish that hippos were this peaceful when they grew up!

Cat and Iguana as friends. Seems highly unlikely, but.... Source: National Geographic

A leopard befriends a cow. Next lunch, or... Source> National Geographic


Book just out> Christine Dell'Amore of National Geographic News August 18, 2011This looks more like an opportunist arrangement!Who is benefitting?

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About dianabuja

A recent group photo at a training course for veterinarians and vet technicians here in Burundi. I discuss in French with some Kirundi and have also a Kirundi translator to help with technical aspects ... Blog entries throughout this site are about Africa, as well as about the Middle East and life in general - reflecting over 35 years of work and research in Africa and the Middle East – Come and join me!
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4 Responses to ‘Cross-Species’ Animal Friendships in Africa

  1. hussain says:

    this collection is classic, I like it, thanks for sharing.


  2. Oh my goodness, that last picture is too much! So sweet.


    • dianabuja says:

      Rachel – I’m trying to find out what has been happening to the happy pair – the hippo was orphaned during the tsumani a few years ago, being washed down a river to the Indian Ocean (in Kenya).


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