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  • Arruis en Zoo Aquarium de Madrid. Zoológico Madrid.
  • Arruis en Zoo Aquarium de Madrid. Zoológico Madrid.
  • Arrui o Muflón del Atlas | Zoo Aquarium de Madrid

Common name:

Barbary sheep

Scientific name:

Ammotragus lervia

Weight:

145 kg

Size:

110 cm
Mammals
Herbivore
Mountain plateau
Africa

Conservation

Vulnerable
Vulnerable

Who is it?

It belongs to the ovine genus, and it is the only wild representative of this species in the mountainous systems of the north of Africa, though it is extinct in the wild. The Barbary sheep is native to the Sahara and the Maghreb; it’s known as “mouflon of the Atlas” (its name comes from the Berber language, which is widely spoken in the area). Its deportment is elegant, especially because of the hanging mane which covers the lower part of its body and reaches its legs.

What are its habits?

An agile climber, it can reach the most inaccessible crags, leaping from stone to stone. Like sheep and goats (near relatives), they are very resistant to low temperatures and food scarcity. In spring, the females give birth to one or two lambs whose lactation period extends beyond even the first ingestion of solid food.

Did you know...?

The Barbary sheep is very gluttonous if the pastures with which it is surrounded are abundant, though in times of scarcity it makes do with leaves and dry twigs. 

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