Photo courtesy of Derek Hilton (MxCat Graphix)
|Name: Nubian ibex|
|Scientific name: Capra ibex nubiana|
|Range: Northern Africa|
|Habitat: Alpine regions of the desert|
|Status: Limited and endangered in Israel|
|Diet in the wild: Herbivorous|
|Diet in the zoo: herbivore diet|
|Location in the zoo: Upper Walkway Overlooking the African Hoof Stock Exhibit|
Females and young live in herds of up to 20 individuals, while males spend much of the year in bachelor groups. Males frequently fight amongst themselves for hierarchy.
Photo by Amanda Ortega
|Special anatomical, physiological
or behavioral adaptations:
Both the male and female have very strong hind legs often used for defense. If they feel as if they are in danger, then they will rise up on their hind legs and point their horns towards their predator.
| Interesting Facts:
1) The Nubian ibex has special grooming habits that include grackles. Flocks of grackles peck at the hides of the ibex. They peck for parasites and any other critters that may be harmful to the ibex. There is only one grackle per ibex and the grackles often compete for each ibex.
2) The two main predators of the Nubian ibex are leopards and Arabian hunters.
3) The gestation period for the Nubian ibex is 5 months and they can live up to 20 years.
|Comments about the Nubian
ibex of the Fort Worth Zoo:
The Nubian ibex is a wild goat found in the Nubian Desert of northeastern Sudan, Africa. In this area it dwells in dry desert mountainous terrain at elevations up to 8500 feet.Cliff Dwellers:
The Nubian ibex is very agile when it comes to maneuvering steep cliffs. It spends much of its day moving up and down precipitous terrain. It may come down to graze during the day and then return to the cliffs in the evening. It is most active in the morning and late afternoon, but during the midday heat the ibex tends to lay in the shade. In the summer it moves further up the mountain to avoid the heat. The nubian ibex will come down to lower elevation in the winter. It comes down the lowest in spring to reach new grass.
While at the zoo I saw two male ibexes interact. At first, they appeared as if they were going to fight but to my surprise, they were being playful towards one another. It seemed like they were putting on a show for the visitors. Each ibex started out on opposite sides of their housing but eventually moved closer towards the other. As they got closer they tilted their horns towards each other and circled one another. I thought for sure they were going to fight but they pulled away and did not do harm to one another.
|Source Materials and Related
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Mammals at the Fort Worth Zoo
WhoZoo Animal Index