Gazelle - the animal of the steppes and deserts
The poets of the East since ancient times have used the name of this animal, singing girl beauty. Gazelle - an animal beautiful, slim and elegant, so it is not surprising that it is often mentioned in the literature.
But the gazelle is of interest not only among fans of the artistic word, but also among nature lovers. Our article will tell how these amazing animals live in the wild.
A man has achieved some success in the study of space, the ocean and the atom; there are practically no white spots left on the world map. But science is not omnipotent. Antelope classification raises many questions and controversies. Some species and subspecies of gazelles are practically not studied.
Gazelles belong to the subfamily of true antelopes, which, in turn, belongs to the bovid family. Currently, researchers have identified 7 genera gazelles. The number of species presumably reaches 19, but biologists have reason to believe that some of them are actually subspecies.
Presumably, these animals appeared in Front Asia as early as the Miocene. Currently, ghazals are common in Africa, but this continent is not their homeland, they migrated there no earlier than the Pleistocene.
Representatives of related genera are similar. They are characterized by a graceful slim body, which is clearly seen in the photo of animals. Gazelles are thin-legged and fast, they are excellent runners and jumpers. With a body length of about 1 m, an adult can jump up to 7 m, and fleeing from danger, this animal can reach speeds of up to 80 km / h.
Horns - one of the characteristic features. They are not contrasted, but rejected. Some species have shtoped curly horns. Note that males always have horns, and females of some species do not have this feature.
A description of the animals will help to get a better idea. Gazelles of different kinds are painted in those colors that best match the shades of the terrain. An animal sitting in the grass is hard to see. The whole body of the gazelle is covered with wool of brownish or reddish hue, and only the belly is much lighter. On the sides, as a rule, there are dark stripes.
Gazelle - an animal that is common in deserts, savannas, low, well-lit forests and steppes of Asia and Africa.
Gazelle ordinary found in Saudi Arabia, Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen. The animal prefers deserts and semi-deserts.
Africa boasts a rather large variety of these antelopes. It is noteworthy that the local population calls these animals mountain horses, although they live in deserts, not in the mountains.
These are herd animals. Gazelles form groups whose number can reach 1000 heads. Males guard livestock, sometimes engaging in clashes with fellow animals from other herds.
These are very sensitive animals with excellent hearing and unique vision. The gazelle has a wide viewing angle, and the grazing animal also sees what is happening behind it. Sensing danger, the animals instantly take off and rush away, developing incredible speed.
The run line of the gazelle is broken. Even if predators hunt together, light thin-legged antelopes can escape from pursuit, making sudden jumps to the side, wagging, jumping in zigzags and in every way confusing the enemy.But predator can also smile good luck. Departing from the chase, the gazelles sometimes suddenly stop, listening for the threat. Often this mistake becomes fatal, because not many can catch up with the rushing gazelle.
From whom does this animal come in handy? Lions, cheetahs, leopards, hyenas, wolves and tigers hunt gazelles. Young animals or representatives of not very large species - desirable prey for large birds: vultures, eagles, golden eagles.
Common types of gazelles
Jayran - a small slender animal weighing up to 30 kg. The horns have annular thickenings, the ends are slightly bent forward. This animal lives in the steppes of Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan. It is also found in Mongolia and northern China. In the middle of the last century, the gazelle was on the verge of extinction, the number did not exceed several dozen. Currently livestock has 2000 heads. Hunting these animals is prohibited.
Gazelle Grant lives in East Africa. These animals are similar to gazelles, but somewhat larger (weight can reach 80 kg). There are also horns from both sexes, the lateral band is not very dark.This genus is one of the most numerous.
Thompson's gazelle (or simply Tommy) shares the area with the previous view. Some mistakenly believe that animals are identical, they are difficult to distinguish. In fact, this is not the case; you only need to know what the animals look like. Grant's gazelle is much larger than Tommy, whose weight rarely exceeds 35 kg. Horns and genus Thompson stronger and shorter, the ends are directed back. Body color is brighter, and on the sides there are black stripes.
Gazelle - an animal that needs protection. In the old days, the numbers were affected by hunting (mainly falcon and hawk), which were often carried out for sporting interest, and not for meat. Cheetahs and tigers inflicted considerable damage on the population of some genera, but today many of these predators themselves are on the verge of extinction, their numbers have decreased to a minimum.
Some types of gazelles are listed in the Red Book.