(Oryx gazella gazella, Spiessbock)
Oryx antelopes can be found in nearly all African desert- and savannah areas.
The subspecies that lives in Namibia - also known as »Gemsbok« - is, with a
shoulder height of 1.2m the largest and most common. It carries a broad black
stripe on its side that reaches all across its back legs.
Oryx are able to resist extremely high temperatures without loosing too much
water. To minimise the loss of water caused through sweating, their brain is
covered with a net of closely arranged veins and arteries - the so called »rete
mirabile«. That way the arteries are cooled by the blood of the veins that comes
from the nasal cavities. In addition the animals mainly graze at night, when
the desert plans collect moisture and contain up to 40% more water.
Oryx antelopes are extremely cautious, sharp-eyed and be very dangerous when
provoked or in defence. With their long, sable-like horns they even engage lions,
often wounding them deadly. They live in small herds of 6 to 30 animals.
Population on Vogelstrausskluft:
Plateau, Canyon Plains, Ancient Valley
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