Oreotragus oreotragus

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Quick Facts

Body Length: 2.5' - 3'; Tail Length: 2" - 5"
Height: 2'
Weight: 24 - 40 lbs; females are slightly larger than males
Cape of Angola, East Africa , Ethiopia, east Sudan, Namibia, South Africa
Arid, well-drained, rocky outcroppings, gorges, and mountains up to 13,000 ft.
Wild Diet:
Fruit and flowers make up 67% of their diet, the remainder is leaves.
Zoo Diet:
Alfalfa hay, grain, carrots and apples

Females are slightly larger than males. In south Africa only males have horns; in East Africa both sexes do. Their fur is yellow-olive, speckled with gray. They have round ears with black outer edges. Horns are ringed near the base, short, and nearly vertical. They have thick coats of lightweight, fairly long, coarse, hollow hair. Their legs have a black ring above the hooves. Their hooves have a rubbery center and a hard outer ring. They have large pre-orbital (in front of the eye) glands that produce black, tar-like secretions. They have a stocky body with short, large, powerful hindquarters which allow them to bound from rock to rock. Hooves are unique in that the last joint of the digit is rotated so that they walk on the tips of their hooves.

Status in the Wild

Relatively large populations live in inaccessible areas, which provides substantial security from humans.

Conservation Programs
  • Listed as of "least concern" on the IUCN Red List (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources). However, the western subspecies in Nigeria, Oreotragus oreotragus porteousi, is listed as "endangered" on the IUCN Red List. All subspecies are vulnerable to competition from grazing goats.
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