species of mammal

The impala (Aepyceros melampus) is a medium-sized African antelope. The name "impala" comes from the Zulu language.

Trotting impala ram, crop.jpg
Impalas (Aepyceros melampus) female and young (11421993164).jpg
A territorial impala ram (top), and ewe with calf (below)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Bovidae
Subfamily: Aepycerotinae
Gray, 1872
Genus: Aepyceros
Sundevall, 1847
A. melampus
Binomial name
Aepyceros melampus
(Lichtenstein, 1812)
  • A. m. melampus Lichtenstein, 1812
  • A. m. petersi Bocage, 1879
Aepyceros melampus.svg
  Black-faced impala
  Common impala
  • A. holubi Lorenz, 1894
  • A. johnstoni Thomas, 1893
  • A. katangae Lönnberg, 1914
  • A. pallah (Gervais, 1841)
  • A. rendilis Lönnberg, 1912
  • A. typicus Thomas, 1893
Female Black-faced Impala at water hole
Male impala lock horns in mating-season fight


The impala is reddish-brown with white hair inside the ears, over each eye and on the chin, upper throat, underparts and buttocks. A narrow black line runs along the middle of the lower back to the tail, and a vertical black stripe appears on the back of each thigh. Impalas have unique brushlike tufts of black hair that cover a scent gland located just above the heel on each hind leg.

The impala can jump more than 10 meters distance and 3 meters high, and can reach running speeds of about 80 to 90 km/h, to escape from predators.


Impalas are found at grassland and woodland edges, usually very close by water.


  1. IUCN SSC Antelope Specialist Group (2016). "Aepyceros melampus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2016: e.T550A50180828. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-2.RLTS.T550A50180828.en. Archived from the original on 3 May 2019. Retrieved 4 January 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link) CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)