Friday, January 3, 2014

Creature Feature #77: Camel

Camels are sometimes considered the "ships of the desert" and noted for their ability to travel for lengthy periods of time with neither food nor water. In almost every way, her body is adapted to withstand high temperatures and retain moisture, enabling her to live in extremely arid conditions*.  The one-humped dromedary camel is now almost entirely domesticated, although feral and free-ranging herds exist. She roams in nomadic herds of up to twenty females, led by a dominant male. Herds may merge during natural calamities. When rutting season comes around, the male inflates the inner palate of his mouth,  producing a deep pink sac called a "doula" which he uses to attract the females. Her close cousin, the two-humped bactrian camel, is critically endangered. The two species are able to interbreed and produce viable offspring.

* There is a really long and complicated list of adptations - if you wish to know more, visit wikipedia!

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