Life-sized sculptures of dromedaries found in Saudi Arabia

At a remarkable site in northwest Saudi Arabia, a CNRS archaeologist and colleagues from the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) have discovered camelid sculptures unlike any others in the region. They ...

Camels test positive for respiratory virus in Kenya

A new study has found that nearly half of camels in parts of Kenya have been infected by the virus that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and calls for further research into the role they might play in the transmission ...

Study takes close look at formidable camel spider jaws

For the first time, researchers have created a visual atlas and dictionary of terms for the many strange features on the fearsome-looking jaws of a little known group of arachnids. Called camel spiders, baardskeerders [beard-cutters], ...

Complete camel skeleton unearthed in Austria

Archaeologists working on a rescue excavation uncovered a complete camel skeleton in Tulln, Lower Austria. The camel, which was dated to the time of the Second Ottoman War in the 17th century, most likely died in the city ...

Ice age people hunted horse and camel 13,300 years ago

New research shows that prehistoric Ice-Age people hunted horse and camel 13,300 years ago in North America, much earlier than previously believed, according to a team of researchers led by a Texas A&M University anthropologist.

Camels betray their best mates in 'Judas' trials

Murdoch University researchers have successfully trialled an approach to control feral camel numbers in Australia's outback whereby a single animal is used to betray the whereabouts of its companions.

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Camel

A camel is an even-toed ungulate within the genus Camelus, bearing distinctive fatty deposits known as humps on its back. There are two species of camels: the dromedary or Arabian camel has a single hump, and the bactrian has two humps. Dromedaries are native to the dry desert areas of West Asia, and Bactrian camels are native to Central and East Asia. Both species are domesticated; they provide milk and meat, and are working animals.

The term camel (from the Arabic جمل, ǧml, derived from the triconsonantal root signifying "beauty") is also used more broadly to describe any of the six camel-like creatures in the family camelidae: the two true camels, and the four South American camelids: the llama, alpaca, guanaco, and vicuña.

The average life expectancy of a camel is 40 to 50 years. A fully grown adult camel stands 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in) at the shoulder and 2.15 m (7 ft 1 in)[clarification needed] at the hump. The hump rises about 30 in (76.20 cm) out of its body. Camels can run at up to 65 km/h (40 mph) in short bursts and sustain speeds of up to 40 km/h (25 mph).

Fossil evidence indicates that the ancestors of modern camels evolved in North America during the Palaeogene period (see also Camelops), and later spread to most parts of Asia. The people of ancient Somalia or the Kingdom of Punt first domesticated camels well before 2000 BC.

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