Bactrian camelĀ 

Name

Bactrian camel 

Scientific Name

Camelus bactrianus

Characteristics

Bactrian camels have two humps rather than the single hump of their Arabian relatives. These store fat that can be converted into water and energy when needed. As fat is depleted the humps become floppy and flabby.

Bactrian camels have many special adaptations to survive in the harsh environment in which they live. They have to cope with temperatures that can reach over 38°C in summer, yet drop to -29°C in winter. A thick shaggy coat protects them in the cold and this falls away as the seasons change and temperatures increase. Bushy eyebrows, a double row of eyelashes, ears lined with hair and the ability to close nostrils tightly protect from wind and sand.

Diet

Bactrian camels prefer to eat plants. They can eat thorny plants that are salty, bitter and prickly.

Size Fact

They are over 7 ft (2.1 m) tall at the hump

Food Fact

In extreme conditions they will eat bones, rope, sandals and tents!

Fun Fact

They can drink up to 30 gallons of water in 13 minutes!

IUCN Red list

Bactrian camels are classified as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. They are threatened due to hunting, habitat loss and competition with introduced livestock.

Where do I live?

Bactrian camels live in central and east Asia's rocky deserts. 

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