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Mouflon

Mouflon

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2023-07-18 Snargl 0 minute 0 second

What is the animal Mouflon known for?

The mouflon (Ovis gmelini) is a wild sheep that is known for being the ancestor of all modern domestic sheep breeds.

It is native to Cyprus, the Caspian region from eastern Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Iran.

It has brown fur with white underparts, and the males have large, curved horns.

The mouflon has been introduced to some parts of continental Europe for hunting purposes.

The mouflon lives in mountainous habitats, where it grazes on grass and browses on shrubs or trees.

The mating season is in late September and early October, and the females give birth to one or two lambs in March.

The mouflon is classified as near threatened by the IUCN due to habitat loss, hunting, and hybridization with domestic sheep.
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Where does the Mouflon live?

The mouflon is a wild sheep.

There are five mouflon subspecies:
  • Armenian mouflon ( O.g.gmelini ): native to northwestern Iran, Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan.
    It prefers open rough terrain at medium or high altitudes, such as rocky hill country, grass-covered slopes, and alpine meadows.
  • Esfahan mouflon ( O.g.isphahanica ): found in the Zagros Mountains of Iran.
    It inhabits rocky semi-deserts, lowland and highland shrubland, and temperate broadleaf and mixed forest.
  • Laristan mouflon ( O.g.laristanica ): a small subspecies, restricted to some desert reserves near Lar in southern Iran.
    It lives in desert and xeric shrublands, and may also occur in agricultural areas.
  • Cyprus mouflon ( O.g.ophion ): also called agrino; endemic to Cyprus, where it was nearly driven to extinction in the 20th century.
    It survives in the Paphos Mountains, where it occupies forests, woodlands, and scrub, and temperate grasslands.
  • European mouflon ( O.aries musimon ): not a true subspecies, but a feral descendant of the domestic sheep.
    It was originally found only on Corsica, Sardinia but has since been introduced into many other European countries.
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What does the Mouflon look like?

The mouflon is a wild sheep that lives in some parts of the Mediterranean region, especially Cyprus, Corsica and Sardinia.
It has a reddish to dark brown coat with a dark back stripe and a black ventral area.
It also has a light-colored saddle patch on its back.
The male mouflon has large, curved horns that can reach up to 85 cm in length.
Some females also have horns, but they are smaller and less common.
The mouflon is believed to be the ancestor of all modern domestic sheep breeds.

Some additional information about the mouflon are:
  • The IUCN Red List classifies it as endangered due to habitat loss, hunting and hybridization with domestic sheep.
  • Mouflon feeds mainly on grass, but also on shrubs and trees when grass is scarce.
  • It breeds in the autumn, and gives birth to one or two lambs in the spring.
  • Mouflon has been introduced to other parts of Europe and North America for hunting or conservation purposes.
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