This comparatively erect Ficus abutilifolia on its notably rocky hillock in the Kruger National Park has almost certainly been up to its usual rock-splitting activities here; no telltale signs of white roots over rocks are present though.
Visiting animals may also have done some of their habitual tree-pruning, although fig leaves are rarely significant in herbivore diets. Antelopes eat fallen fruit, monkeys and baboons tend to pick them fresher from the branches.
The papery bark peels. The white stem is characteristic, clearly doing well in this typical setting for the species. Restricted to the hot northeast of South Africa and some tropical neighbouring countries, this tree is not tough against frost, but more than capable against drought and heat.
A semi-deciduous tree, it may lose leaves towards the end of winter, when the twisted trunk will continue to give clues as to its identity. These trees grow from two to ten metres tall, the thick tips of young branches tend more to retain their leaves, while scars of dropped off ones are clear to see lower down (Pooley, 1993; Codd, 1951).