Top Ten Horns/Antlers

Top Ten Horns/Antlers

HornsHorns1African Rhinoceros2OryxMarkhor2

  1. Triceratops
    TriceratopsTriceratops1Triceratops2
    Triceratops is a genus of herbivorous ceratopsid dinosaur that lived during the late Maastrichtian stage of the Late Cretaceous Period, around 68 to 65.5 million years ago (Mya) in what is now North America. It was one of the last non-avian dinosaur genera to appear before the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event. Bearing a large bony frill and three horns on its large four-legged body, and conjuring similarities with the modern rhinoceros, Triceratops is one of the most recognizable of all dinosaurs and the best known ceratopsid. It shared the landscape with and was preyed upon by the fearsome Tyrannosaurus. Specimens representing life stages from hatchling to adult have been found. The function of the frills and three distinctive facial horns has long inspired debate. Traditionally these have been viewed as defensive weapons against predators. More recent theories, noting the presence of blood vessels in the skull bones of ceratopsids, find it more probable that these features were primarily used in identification, courtship and dominance displays, much like the antlers and horns of modern reindeer, mountain goats, or rhinoceros beetles. The theory finds additional support if Torosaurus represents the mature form of Triceratops, as this would mean the frill also developed holes (fenestrae) as individuals reached maturity, rendering the structure more useful for display than defense.
    Links: Top Ten Dinosaurs, Top Ten Terrestrial Dinosaurs, Top Ten SkeletonsTop Ten Skulls, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triceratops,
  2. African Rhinoceros
    African RhinocerosAfrican Rhinoceros1African Rhinoceros2
    Rhinoceros is a group of five extant species of odd-toed ungulates in the family Rhinocerotidae. Two of these species are native to Africa and three to southern Asia. The rhinoceros family is characterized by its large size (one of the largest remaining megafauna), with all of the species able to reach one ton or more in weight; an herbivorous diet; a thick protective skin, 1.5–5 cm thick, formed from layers of collagen positioned in a lattice structure; relatively small brains for mammals this size (400–600 g); and a large horn. They generally eat leafy material, although their ability to ferment food in their hindgut allows them to subsist on more fibrous plant matter, if necessary. Unlike other perissodactyls, the African species of rhinoceros lack teeth at the front of their mouths, relying instead on their powerful premolar and molar teeth to grind up plant food. Rhinoceros are killed by humans for their horns, which are bought and sold on the black market, and which are used by some cultures for ornamental or medicinal purposes. The horns are made of keratin, the same type of protein that makes up hair and fingernails. Both African species and the Sumatran Rhinoceros have two horns, while the Indian and Javan Rhinoceros have a single horn.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhinoceros,
  3. Alaska Moose
    Alaska MooseAlaska Moose1Alaska Moose2
    The moose (North America) or Eurasian elk (Europe) (Alces alces) is the largest extant species in the deer family. Moose are distinguished by the palmate antlers of the males; other members of the family have antlers with a dendritic (“twig-like”) configuration. Moose typically inhabit boreal and mixed deciduous forests of the Northern Hemisphere in temperate to subarctic climates. Moose used to have a much wider range but hunting and other human activities greatly reduced it over the years. Moose have been re-introduced to some of their former habitats. Their diet consist of both terrestrial and aquatic vegetation. The most common moose predators are wolves, bears, and humans. Unlike most other deer species, moose are solitary animals and do not form herds. Although generally slow moving and sedentary, moose can become aggressive and move surprisingly fast if angered or startled. Their mating season in the autumn can lead to spectacular fights between males competing for the right to mate with a particular female.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moose,
  4. Narwhale
    NarwhaleNarwhale1Narwhale2Narwhale3
    The narwhal, Monodon monoceros, is a medium-sized toothed whale that lives year-round in the Arctic. One of two living species of whale in the Monodontidae family, along with the beluga whale, the narwhal males are distinguished by a characteristic long, straight, helical tusk extending from their upper left jaw. Found primarily in Canadian Arctic and Greenlandic waters, rarely south of 65°N latitude, the narwhal is a uniquely specialized Arctic predator. In the winter, it feeds on benthic prey, mostly flatfish, at depths of up to 1,500 m under dense pack ice. Narwhal have been harvested for over a thousand years by Inuit people in northern Canada and Greenland for meat and ivory, and a regulated subsistence hunt continues to this day. While populations appear stable, the narwhal has been deemed particularly vulnerable to climate change due to a narrow geographical range and specialized diet.
    Links: Top Ten Whales, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narwhale,
  5. Markhor
    MarkhorMarkhor1Markhor2
    The Markhor (Capra falconeri) is a large species of wild goat that is found in northeastern Afghanistan, Pakistan (Gilgit-Baltistan, Hunza-Nagar Valley, northern and central Pakistan, and some parts of Jammu and Kashmir), India, southern Tajikistan and southern Uzbekistan. The species is classed by the IUCN as Endangered, as there are fewer than 2,500 mature individuals, though they continue to decline by an estimated 20% over 2 generations. The Markhor is the National Animal of Pakistan.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Markhor,
  6. Walia Ibex
    Walia IbexWalia Ibex1Walia Ibex2
    The walia ibex is a species of ibex that is endangered. It is sometimes considered a subspecies of the Alpine Ibex. Threats against the species include habitat loss, poaching, and restricted range. Only about 500 individuals survive in the mountains of Ethiopia, concentrated in the Semien Mountains, largely due to past poaching and habitat depletion. If the population were to increase, the surrounding mountain habitat would be sufficient enough to sustain only 2,000 ibex. The adult walia ibex’s only known wild predator is the hyena. However young ibex are often hunted by a variety of fox and cat species. The ibex are members of the goat family and the walia ibex is the southernmost of today’s ibexes. In the late 1990’s the walia ibex went from endangered to critically endangered due to the declining population. The walia ibex is also known as the abyssinian ibex.
    Links: Top Ten Ethiopian Attractions, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walia_Ibex,
  7. Texas Longhorn
    Texas LonghornTexas Longhorn1Texas Longhorn2
    The Texas Longhorn is a breed of cattle known for its characteristic horns, which can extend to 7 feet (2.1 m) tip to tip for steers and exceptional cows, and 36 to 80 inches (0.91 to 2.0 m) tip to tip for bulls. Horns can have a slight upward turn at their tips or even triple twist. Texas Longhorns are known for their diverse coloring. The Texas Longhorn Breeders Association of America and the International Texas Longhorn Association serve as the recognized registries for the breed. Texas Longhorns with elite genetics can often fetch $40,000 or more at auction with the record of $170,000 in recent history for a cow. Due to their innate gentle disposition and intelligence, Texas Longhorns are increasingly being trained as riding steers. The Cattlemen’s Texas Longhorn Registry (CTLR), is the recognized breed registry dedicated to preserving the purest Texas Longhorn bloodlines. Using visual inspection of cattle by the most knowledgeable Texas Longhorn breeders and the use of blood type analysis to further identify parentage, CTLR has the ideal of preserving fullblood Texas Longhorn cattle that are genetically and historically correct for posterity.
    Links: Top Ten Bulls, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas_longhorn_%28cattle%29,
  8. Water Buffalo
    Water Buffalo
    The water buffalo or domestic Asian water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) is a large bovine animal, frequently used as livestock in southern Asia, and also widely in South America, southern Europe, north Africa, and elsewhere. In 2000, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimated that there were approximately 158 million water buffalo in the world, and that 97% of them (approximately 153 million animals) were in Asia. There are established feral populations in northern Australia, but the dwindling true wild populations are thought to survive in India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan and Thailand. All the domestic varieties and breeds descend from one common ancestor, the wild water buffalo, which is now an endangered species. The domestic water buffalo, although derived from the wild water buffalo, is the product of thousands of years of selective breeding in either South Asia or Southeast Asia. Buffalo are used as draft, meat, and dairy animals. Their dung is used as a fertilizer and as a fuel when dried. In Chonburi, Thailand, Pakistan and in southwestern region of Karnataka, India, there are annual water buffalo races known as Kambala. A few have also found use as pack animals carrying loads even for special forces. American bison are known as buffalo in parts of North America, but not normally in other usages; bison are more closely related to cattle, gaur, banteng, and yaks than to Asian buffalo. The water buffalo genus includes water buffalo, tamaraw and anoas, all Asian species. The ancestry of the African buffalo is unclear, but it is not believed to be closely related to the water buffalo.
    Links: Top Ten Deadly Animals, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_buffalo,
  9. Oryx
    OryxOryx1Oryx2
    Oryx is one of four large antelope species of the genus Oryx. Three of the species are native to arid parts of Africa, with a fourth native to the Arabian Peninsula. Their pelage is pale with contrasting dark markings in the face and on the legs, and their long horns are almost straight. The exception is the Scimitar Oryx, which lacks dark markings on the legs, only has faint dark markings on the head, has an ochre neck, and horns that are clearly decurved. The Arabian Oryx was only saved from extinction through a captive breeding program and reintroduction to the wild. The Scimitar Oryx, which is now listed as Extinct in the Wild, also relies on a captive breeding program for its survival. Small populations of several Oryx species, such as the Scimitar Oryx, exist in Texas and New Mexico (USA) in wild game ranches.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oryx,
  10. Red Deer
    Red DeerRed Deer1
    The Red Deer (Cervus elaphus) is one of the largest deer species. Depending on taxonomy, the Red Deer inhabits most of Europe, the Caucasus Mountains region, Asia Minor, parts of western Asia, and central Asia. It also inhabits the Atlas Mountains region between Morocco and Tunisia in northwestern Africa, being the only species of deer to inhabit Africa. Red Deer have been introduced to other areas including Australia, New Zealand and Argentina. In many parts of the world the meat (venison) from Red Deer is used as a food source. Red Deer are ruminants, characterized by an even number of toes, and a four-chambered stomach. Genetic evidence indicates that the Red Deer (Cervus elaphus) as traditionally defined is a species group rather than a single species, although it remains disputed exactly how many species the group includes (see Taxonomy). The ancestor of all Red Deer probably originated in Central Asia and probably resembled Sika Deer. Although at one time Red Deer were rare in some areas, they were never close to extinction. Reintroduction and conservation efforts, especially in the UK, have resulted in an increase of Red Deer populations, while other areas, such as North Africa, have continued to show a population decline.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Deer,
  11. Impala
    ImpalaImpala1Impala2
    An impala is a medium-sized African antelope. The name impala comes from the Zulu language meaning “gazelle.” They are found in savannas and thick bushveld in Kenya, Tanzania, Swaziland, Mozambique, northern Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, southern Angola, northeastern South Africa and Uganda. Impalas can be found in numbers of up to 2 million in Africa.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impala,
  12. Horned Lizard/Frog
    Horned LizardFrogHorned LizardFrog1Horned LizardFrog2
    Horned lizards (Phrynosoma) are a type of lizards that are a genus of the Phrynosomatidae family of lizards. The horned lizard is popularly called a “horned toad,” “horny toad,” or “horned frog,” but it is neither a toad nor a frog. The popular names come from the lizard’s rounded body and blunt snout, which make it resemble a toad or frog. The spines on its back and sides are made from modified scales, whereas the horns on the heads are true horns (i.e. they have a bony core). There are 14 species of horned lizards in North America, eight of which are native to the U.S. The largest-bodied and most widely distributed of the U.S. species is the Texas horned lizard (P. cornutum).
    Links: Top Ten Frogs/Toads, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horned_toad,
  13. Bonus: Unicorn
    UnicornUnicorn1Unicorn2Unicorn3
    The unicorn is a legendary animal commonly portrayed as a white horse with a goat’s beard and a large, pointed, spiraling horn projecting from its forehead. First mentioned by the ancient Greeks, it became the most important imaginary animal of the middle ages and Renaissance when it was commonly described as an extremely wild woodland creature, a symbol of purity and grace, which could only be captured by a virgin. In the encyclopedias its horn was said to have the power to render poisoned water potable and to heal sickness. Until the 19th century, belief in unicorns was widespread among historians, alchemists, writers, poets, naturalists, physicians and theologians.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unicorn,
  14. Bonus: Elasmotherium
    ElasmotheriumElasmotherium1Elasmotherium2
    Elasmotherium (“Thin Plate Beast”), more informally sometimes called the Steppe Rhinoceros, is an extinct genus of giant rhinoceros endemic to Eurasia during the Late Pliocene through the Pleistocene, documented from 2.6 million years ago to as late as 50,000 years ago, possibly later, in the Late Pleistocene, an approximate span of slightly less than 2.6 million years. Three species are recognized. The best known, E. sibiricum was the size of a mammoth and is thought to have borne a large, thick horn on its forehead, which it undoubtedly used for the same purposes as all the other horned savanna giants then and now: defense, attracting mates, driving away competitors, sweeping snow from the grass in winter and digging for water and plant roots. Like all rhinoceroses, elasmotheres were herbivorous. Unlike any others, its high-crowned molars were ever-growing. Its legs were longer than those of other rhinos and were designed for galloping, giving it a horse-like gait. The Russian paleontologists of the 19th century who discovered and named the initial fossils were influenced by ancient legends of a huge unicorn roaming the steppes of Siberia.
    Links:
  15. Links: Animals,