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Markhor

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Markhor
Markhor main.jpg
Scientific Classification
Subspecies
  • C. f. falconeri
  • C. f. heptneri
  • C. f. megaceros

The Markhor is a species of wild goat known by the scientific name Capra falconeri. There are 3 subspecies that can be found in Afghanistan, Northern and Central Pakistan, Northern India, Southern Tajikistan, Southern Uzbekistan and in the Himalayas. They have been put on the endangered species list because of the lack of population thanks to the acts of mankind. It is most known for its long spiral horns. It is also the national animal of Pakistan.

Body Design

a picture of the Markhor's horns

The markhor is a pretty big animal. It can weigh from 70 pounds to 240 pounds. The thing that catches most people's eyes are their long, tight, corkscrew horns. They are present in both sexes, but they vary in size depending on the gender. The male commonly has longer horns than the female. The male markhor can have horns up to 64 inches long, and the female can have horns up to 10 inches.[2]

The markhor has a short coatime of fur The colors of their fur can vary from a light tan to a dark brown and sometimes even black. Both sexes have a fringed beard, but they are thicker on males. [3]

Life Cycle

The markhor reproduces sexually. They mate during their mating season, which is during fall and winter. That is the time of year that the males can join the female herds. They breed annually. When they reproduce, the males fight for the female. They lock their horns and twist and push until one of them falls. [4]


The time of the pregnancy can range from 130 days to 170 days. The number of offspring can range from 1 to 2. The baby markhors are usually born in the summer time and stay with their mothers for 5 to 6 months because they provide protection and milk. After 5 to 6 months, they go off to live independently. They can live up to an average lifespan of is 11 to 13 years. The male does not help raise the newborn. [5]


Ecology

where markhors can be found

Markhors are an endangered species of goat that live in western and central Asia. They live in high elevation places. [6] They like to be in wooded mountain areas. They try to avoid snow because their body is not meant for that type of weather. [4]

They are mainly active in the morning and late afternoon. During the summer, they just graze around. But during winter, they have to browse around for their food.[7] Markhors are herbivorous animals. They eat grass, leaves, and other vegetation. Like other animals, the markhor stands on its hind legs to reach the the leaves. They search for food for 8 to 12 hours a day. The rest of the day is used for sleeping and chewing their food. [4]To find their food, they go risk their lives. They scale mountains and sometimes even climb trees to get their food.[8]

Threats

The Markhor is an endangered creature. They are a prized trophy among hunters.[9] They are hunted in mainly Afghanistan. Although there are laws against hunting the Markhor, they are still hunted because they are a prized trophy. Because people hunt them, the population is slowly going down. In India, there are less than 50 markhors left. The population is also going down because during winter, their food source is gone.[10] Another main threat to the markhor is habitat loss. Humans are taking over the land of the markhor. Therefore, the markhor is running out of land to graze in.[11]

There are many ways we can help the markhor from disappearing for good. A way we could help them would be by stop expanding our land. The Save Our Species and WCS Pakistan are becoming more involved on the local village level about the importance of keeping the species alive in Pakistan, one of the animal’s essential natural habitats.[11]

Video

References

  1. Capra Falconeri WikiSpecies. Web.January 9, 2018. Author Unknown
  2. Capra Falconeri Ultimate Ungulate. Web. accessed April 30,2018. Author Unknown
  3. Morphology EOL WEB. acessed April 30, 2018. author unknown
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Markhor Goat Animal Corner. Web. accessed April 30, 2018. author unknown
  5. Nothran, Coran. reproduction EOL. Web. Accessed April 30, 2018
  6. Markhor A-Z Animals. Web. Last updated April 17, 2018. author unknown
  7. Markhor Ultimate Ungulate. Web. Last accessed May 13, 2018. author unknown
  8. Markhor WCW Pakistan. Web. Last accessed May 13, 2018. author unknown
  9. Capra Falconeri ADW. Web. accessed April 30, 2018. author unknown
  10. Capra Falconeri IUCN Redlist. Web.Accessed April 30, 2018. author unknown
  11. 11.0 11.1 ENDANGERED SPECIES SPOTLIGHT: MARKHOR Green Global Travel.. Web. accessed April 30,2018. Author unknown