Can you eat wildebeest?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you eat wildebeest?” and discuss what it tastes like?

Can you eat wildebeest?

Yes, you can eat wildebeest. ‘Bitlong’, a stew of wildebeest flesh, is a popular dish in South Africa, where it is regularly consumed. Unlike elk, the animal’s meat has a mild flavor and is a little rough. Thus, a younger specimen is sought after at the dinner table as a result.

The number of wildebeest animals had declined over the years due to overexploitation and agricultural development, this almost brought the species to extinction; it is estimated that in the 1950’s there were less than 500 animals left. The animals were only protected on farms and reserved areas. Conservation by farmers has increased the number to more than 20 000 animals with 80% being found on privately owned land (1).

Is the flesh of wildebeest tasty?

You may eat as many of these animals as you want since the migration in Kenya shows that there are no shortages of them. The meat is succulent and bursting with flavor. It has a tinge of a gamey flavor, but not enough to deter me from eating it.

Black wildebeest (Connochaetes gnou) is one of two African wildebeest species and is also commonly known as the white-tailed gnu. Black wildebeest is known for its running outbursts during harvesting, and it thus prone to high levels of ante-mortem stress which result in the production of dark, firm and dry meat. Glycogen stores are harshly depleted at the time of death, thus less lactic acid accumulates in the muscle resulting in a high ultimate pH (above 6.0). This gives the meat a characteristic taste and color (1).

Is eating black wildebeest a good idea?

Sable, gemsbuck, and wildebeest (blue and black, respectively) are all delectable antelope meats. This is the meat that most closely resembles beef. As for buffalo blackstrap and oxtail stew, they’re both great. Game meat also contains a higher protein content and lower fat content than domestic red meat, thus it is a healthier red meat alternative which suits the modern health conscious consumer. In addition, game meat can be classified as an organic product since animals are wild and free-living and no growth promoters are used on the animals (1). 

Is a wildebeest a carnivore?

All Gnus are herbivores, which means that they solely consume plants and other plants. In the absence of grass, they’ll consume leaves if they’re available.

Is hippo meat safe to consume for humans?

Hippos are still eaten in West Africa, despite the fact that the population has been destroyed by poaching and violence. Hippos, on the other hand, maybe just as dangerous dead as they are when they are living. After consuming contaminated hippo meat in Zambia in 2011, 500 individuals were sick with anthrax and died. Anthrax is both a human and animal disease caused by the encapsulated, large-rod and spore-forming Bacillus anthracis that affects virtually all warm-blooded animals. The disease still exists in most countries in sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, southern Europe, the Americas and certain areas of Australia. The disease is rare in humans, and transmission is via contact with infected animals or with materials that have been contaminated with B. anthracis (2).

Are warthogs eaten by humans?

Omnivores aren’t only humans; they’re much more prevalent than you would think. Omnivores may be found everywhere, from insects to bears. Warthogs are tucked down in the center. Grass, fruit, and berries are the typical diets of warthogs. Warthogs, similar to the domestic pig, are prone to produce pale, soft and exudative meat when exposed to ante mortem stress. According to studies, the most abundant fatty acid found in warthog meat was the polyunsaturated linoleic (C18:2n-6) acid (3).

Facts about the Wildebeest

  • Wildebeest can run at speeds of up to 50mph.
  • Blue and black wildebeest are the two most common species.
  • Every year, two million wildebeests migrate.
  • They mate in groups of 150 wildebeest

The scientific name for a wildebeest

Connochaetes taurinus is the scientific name for the Blue Wildebeest, whereas the popular name is the Blue Wildebeest. Other names include Gnu (pronounced G-NEW). Mammalia is the class of mammals it belongs to, and the Bovidae family is its subfamily. 

Alcelaphinae is its subfamily name. Despite the fact that this animal has five subspecies, only two of its species are currently extant. Albojubatus, Cookson, Johnstone, Mearns, and Tauinus are the subspecies. The Blue Wildebeest, which is closely related to the Black Wildebeest, is the most frequent form of this mammal.

Wildebeest is the term given to the gnu in Africa, where it is known as a wildebeest. This is a wild animal in English. Naturalist William John Burchell described the Blue Wildebeest for the first time in 1823 in England. Using two Greek terms that define the wildebeest’s physical appearance, the scientific name was created.

Appearance and Behavior of Wildebeest

The Wildebeest’s proportions are off. The animal’s front end is hefty, while its back end and legs are thin. Wide shoulders and an oval-shaped face distinguish the wildebeest from other animals. To complement its massive forequarters, it has a massive nose that is as broad as its forearms.

It’s not just one wildebeest that has a different shade of brown. Light grey brushes are used for some and blue-gray brushes for others. Gray-brown wildebeests are the darkest. Stripes of dark brown span their bodies vertically on their shoulders. There is a thick and lengthy mane on a wildebeest. It might be black or light, but they have a long, thick beard on the back of their neck.

Wildebeests have horns that twist out from their heads, which they use to hunt. There are male and female wildebeest horns, which are each twice as large as those of a female. 

Male wildebeests have horns that measure 33 inches, while female wildebeests have horns that measure between 12 and 16 inches (or 30 times longer than an aspirin pill.) As they become older, the base of their horns will become more abrasive.

The average height of a blue wildebeest is 4 1/2 feet or three and a half times the height of a bowling pin. A polar bear’s weight is around half that of a grizzly bear. When migrating, they move in groups of at least 1,000.

Wildebeests are able to travel freely in their environment because of the close proximity of other animals. They have a fierce sense of self-preservation. For 270 of them, it’s not uncommon to live in a one-square-kilometer area.

There are certain herds that remain still, while others are always on the move. Wildebeest, on the other hand, sleeps throughout the day and at night. Morning and early afternoon are their busiest periods of the day.

A wildebeest spends around half of its life sleeping. Grazing accounts for 33% of their time while socializing with other wildebeest accounts for a little over 12%.

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In this article, we answered the question “Can you eat wildebeest?” and we discussed how it tastes like?


  1. Ndyoki, Fundeka Patience. Physichemical and microbiological attributes of black wildebeest (Connechaetes gnou) muscles. Diss. Stellenbosch: Stellenbosch University, 2018. 
  2. Hang’ombe, Mudenda B., et al. Human–animal anthrax outbreak in the Luangwa valley of Zambia in 2011. Tropic doctor, 2012, 42, 136-139.
  3. Hoffman, L. C., and J. Sales. Physical and chemical quality characteristics of warthog (Phacochoerus africanus) meat. Skin, 2007, 3602, 534.

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