The fastest animals in Africa

Africa’s Top 10 Fastest Animals!

1. Cheetah

Catch me if you can…

The cheetah is the world’s fastest land animal and can reach speeds of up to 113 km/h (70 mph). That’s around 0-30 mph in as little as 3 seconds (as good as most Ferraris), and it can retain its cruise speed for several hundred meters (+/- 400 m). The long legs have non-retractable claws which enable extra grip on the ground, and the cat uses its tail for proper balance and change of direction.

2. Lion

It reminds me of a “Lion King” scene with Simba, don’t you think?!

Over 250 kg of pure and powerful muscle, which can run as fast as 81 km/h (50.3 mph)! Not bad for the “king of the jungle”, huh? 🙂

3. Wildebeest

Blue wildebeest are swift runners!

Preyed upon by lions and occasionally cheetah, wildebeest’d better run fast if they want to keep up with their assailants! They may have poor eyesight, but their pace is rather impressive: up to 80 km/h (50 mph)!

4. Ostrich

Male ostrich on the run!

The ostrich is by far the best bird runner out there, and also the fastest two-legged animal in the world. Although it cannot fly, it sure can run: 72 km/h (45 mph)!

5. Thomson’s Gazelle

Not only a good runner, but also a long jump champion (© GFDL)!

In the Serengeti plains, these little guys are a cheetah’s favourite meal! Easy prey you might say, but Thomson’s gazelles have great stamina and legs that propel them to speeds in excess of 65 km/h (40 mph)! Nine times out of ten, they will outrun any predator over longer distances, and can produce sharp turns with ease.

Who else made the Top 10? Find out in Part Two here!


8 Responses to The fastest animals in Africa

  1. akash July 17, 2011 at 1:11 pm #

    good work

  2. Angelo January 2, 2010 at 1:45 pm #

    It is likely that you’re right but I like to find out what animal speeds are.
    From what I’ve read the gazelle is much faster than the lion and the wildebeest, as well as the ostrich.
    Not saying that the ostrich’s speed is wrong (between 70 and 80 km per hour), but for me the gazelle is the second fastest animal. It can run at 90 km/h.

    Then you’re right. I apologize, but I am a fan of theese things. Good day. 😀

  3. Angelo December 29, 2009 at 7:42 pm #

    Lion 81 km/h??? The ostrich is faster than the lion!!!Ostriches can run at 80 km/h..lion at 60 km/h!

    • africafreak December 30, 2009 at 6:26 pm #

      Hi Angelo, thanks for your input!

      Did you read this, or do you know it for sure?

      It may be possible for an ostrich to run at 80 km/h, although 72 kmph is the most accurate finding I got. In fact, the average speed of an ostrich is merely 50 km/h (30 mph).

      In terms of the lion speed though, 60 km/h is a little low in my opinion… 🙂

      Anyone else with a different answer on the matter ??? 😉

      Thanks! 🙂

  4. Anil November 21, 2009 at 4:48 pm #

    That .3 mph must do the lions good 😉 I like that you mentioned Usain Bolt – our species is relatively very slow compared to most other animals. I guess it's the advantage of having 4 legs (though not sure how the ostrich does it!)

  5. Rick November 20, 2009 at 1:34 pm #

    Nice work on the fastest African Animals! It really helped me with my project about hippos!

    • africafreak November 20, 2009 at 4:31 pm #

      Hi Rick! 🙂

      What's your project about, sounds intriguing?! Thanks, glad you enjoyed it.

      Have a fab weekend,


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