The African buffalo or Cape buffalo (Syncerus caffer) is a large African bovine. It is not closely related to the slightly larger wild water buffalo of Asia and its ancestry remains unclear. Syncerus caffer, the Cape buffalo, is the typical subspecies, and the largest one, found in South and East Africa.
S. c. nanus (African forest buffalo) is the smallest subspecies, common in forest areas of Central and West Africa, while S. c. brachyceros is in West Africa and S. c. aequinoctialis is in the savannas of East Africa. The adult buffalo's horns are its characteristic feature; they have fused bases, forming a continuous bone shield across the top of the head referred to as a "boss". They are widely regarded as very dangerous animals, as they gore and kill over 200 people every year.