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Gemsbok (Oryx gazella)

Posted on Sep 12, 2009 by in Ungulates | 3 comments

Oryx gazella

Number 0285

At long last, an update for the Daily Mammal. For those who hadn’t heard, about a month ago my husband and I adopted two kids, a 13-year-old and a 10-year-old. It’s going wonderfully—we love them so much—but becoming a mother to two half-grown humans all of the sudden has definitely changed my world, and it’s taking some time for me to get it all reorganized. I’ve actually finished 7 mammal drawings, but I haven’t done the research or writing on them. I’m going to start posting them now, trying, as always, for daily posting, and, also as always, probably falling short.

The gemsbok is a large antelope in the oryx genus. It lives in southern Africa and, I’m sure you’ll be glad to know, is not really in any danger of extinction. In fact, its numbers are increasing in some places. While there was a time when the gemsbok’s range was constricted by human encroachment and development, the animal’s value as a trophy for hunters means it’s not likely to die out on private land anytime soon. Plenty of gemsboks are thriving in protected areas, too.

Here’s a video of a mother gemsbok defending her calf from a pair of hungry cheetahs.


  1. Thanks for the post. I love the picture.

  2. I have been enthralled with Gemsbok from childhood, after seeing them at the American Museum of Natural History…such gorgeous markings and horns. Wonderful illustration! Thank you for your dedication to keeping us informed, educated and providing visual delights. Congratulations on your adoption! :-)

    • Thank you, Lady Darkbunny! I became enthralled by the saiga antelope after seeing it in a museum—but more recently. The gemsbok is beautiful. And oh my goodness, how I LOVE your dolls!

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