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The word klipspringer literally means "rock jumper" in Afrikaans. The klipspringer is also known colloquially as a mvundla(from the Xhosa umvundla, meaning "rabbit").

The klipspringer lives from the Cape of Good Hope, where it is found in mountain fynbos, through the rest of Southern Africa, where it is found in rocky koppies in woodland and savanna, north to East Africa and into the highly mountainous highlands of Ethiopia.

Reaching approximately 22 inches (58 cm) at the shoulder, klipspringers are smaller than most other antelopes. They stand on the tips of their hooves and can fit all four hooves on a piece of cliff the size of a Canadian dollar coin (Loonie), roughly 30 mm in diameter. Male klipspringer horns are usually about 4 - 6 inches (10 -15 cm) long. Female klipspringers in eastern African populations also have horns.

With a thick and dense, speckled "salt and pepper" patterned coat of an almost olive shade, klipspringers blend in well with the rock outcrops on which they can usually be found. However, their agility on rocks and crags is so extreme that their most dangerous enemies are eagles and humans.