Oryx gazella gazella or Oryx or Gemsbok (Linnaeus, 1758)


Class: Mammalia

Order: Cetartiodactyla

Family: Bovidae


Oryx form herds that may consist of 10 to 40 individuals. Usually, a breeding male is dominating other group members. On average, oryx males weigh 240 kg while females are slightly lighter with an average of 200 kg. Both gender measure about 1.4 meters at the shoulder. Life expectancy of wild animals remains unclear whereas in captivity Oryx may live up to 19 years.


Adapted to dry environments, Oryx are able ot survive in semi-arid, arid and hyper-arid environments of Southern Africa that are unsuitable for most other larger mammals. Oryx do not depend strongly on surface water since they can survive on the preformed water in their diet. Oryx migrate over long distances to visit springs and salt licks when ressource become scarce seasonally.

Although they are predominantly grazers, they occasionally include a greater proportion of browse, ephemerals and Acacia pods.


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