Scimitar-Horned Oryx


The Scimitar-horned Oryxa member of the antelope family, gets its name from the shape of its horns; they look like long, curved Arabian swords called “scimitars.” These animals can go weeks or even months without water in extreme heat. They are able to cool the blood flowing to their brains through capillaries in their noses as they breathe.

The Scimitar-Horned Oryx (Oryx dammah) once ranged across North Africa but are now believed to be extinct in the wild and currently live only in zoos. However, there have been several successful breeding herds in zoos, so perhaps one day they can be reintroduced into the wild. This Scimitar-Horned Oryx was photographed at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.


3 thoughts on “Scimitar-Horned Oryx

  1. Teepee12

    These used to live wild near Ein-Gedi in Israel. I think they have a few there still, but I’m not sure they are really what we would term “wild.” It’s not a zoo … but it’s very protected and it’s a national park, very enclosed. The local mountains lions (aren’t many of them, either) like to eat them, so they are endangered, even if not by humans. The habitat is so limited, it can’t support more than a few dozen of them at most under the best possible conditions. There’s no hunting allowed anywhere in Israel and never has been since 1948, but that doesn’t — as we know — stop everyone. It never has.


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