Archive for August 8th, 2014

08
Aug
14

Pronghorns

I’ve been wanting to get photos of pronghorns since this trip began.  Pronghorns are mistakenly referred to as antelope.  They are not.  They are not a deer or a sheep.  Pronghorns are a unique species and unique to North America.  Before humans there were about twelve kinds of pronghorns.  When humans arrived in North America there were five types remaining.  Now, due to habitat loss and hunting the pronghorns pictured here are the only kind remaining.

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Above is a male pronghorn.  Both male and female pronghorns grow their horns and shed them annually.  Males have the distinctive prong pointing toward the front about one third of the way up the horn.  Female horns tend to be smaller, sometimes barely visible and their horns do not have the prong.

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Pronghorns are the fastest animal in North America.  Some people argue that because pronghorns can sustain their speed for greater distances that they are the fastest animal in the world.  It is believed pronghorns developed such speed because in ancient times they would have had to flee from fast predators like the now extinct American Cheetah.

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