The main difference between markhor and ibex is that markhor has tightly curled, corkscrew-like horns that close together at the head, but spread upwards toward the tips, whereas male ibex has large recurved horns, which are transversely ridged in front.
Markhor and ibex are two species of the genus Capra. Generally, Markhor is native to Central Asia, the Karakoram, and the Himalayas while ibex is native to Eurasia, North Africa, and East Africa.
Key Areas Covered
- Facts, Features, Behavior
- Facts, Features, Behavior
- Similarities Between Markhor and Ibex
- Outline of Common Features
- Difference Between Markhor and Ibex
- Comparison of Key Differences
Capra, Ibex, Markhor
Markhor – Facts, Features, Behavior
Markhor, (Capra falconeri), is a large wild goat of the family Bovidae. Markhor lives throughout the mountains from Kashmir and Turkistan to Afghanistan. The height of an average markhor is 95 – 102 cm at the shoulder. Moreover, their horns are in corkscrew shape and are long up to 160 cm. In addition, the coat of a markhor is reddish brown in summer and long, gray, and silky in winter. The male also has a long, heavy fringe on his throat and chest.
Furthermore, there are three subspecies of markhor: flare-horned markhors (C. f. falconeri) that live in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India, the straight-horned markhors (C. f. megaceros) that live in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Bukharan markhors (C. f. heptneri) that inhabit Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. In addition, all subspecies of markhor are endangered to critically endangered. This is due to habitat loss, overhunting for meat and trophies, and competition from livestock.
Ibex – Facts, Features, Behavior
Ibex is any of several sure-footed, sturdy wild goats of the genus Capra in the family Bovidae that are found in the mountains of Europe, Asia, and northeastern Africa. The height of the male ibex is 90 cm at the shoulder, and the weight of the adult male is around 100 kg. The fur color of the ibex is brownish to gray, which is darker on the underparts. Moreover, the male ibex has a beard. More importantly, their horns are semicircular with broad, transversely ridged front surfaces.
Further, there are two subspecies of ibex; the European ibex and C. ibex ibex. The European ibex lives at altitudes close to the snow line and moves to lower altitudes in winter. Although very older males are solitary, ibex live in male or female herds. However, the C. ibex ibex is common throughout the western and central Alps. The number of C. ibex ibex is reduced greatly. Therefore, they are protected locally in the Italian Alps and have been reintroduced to France, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia.
Similarities Between Markhor and Ibex
- Markhor and ibex are two species of the genus Capra.
- They live in central Asia.
- Moreover, fur color, horns, beard, etc. are their main characteristic features.
Difference Between Markhor and Ibex
Markhor refers to a large wild goat with very long twisted horns, native to central Asia, while ibex refers to a wild mountain goat with long, thick ridged horns and a beard, found in parts of central Asia and in Ethiopia.
Markhor has tightly curled, corkscrew-like horns that close together at the head, but spread upwards toward the tips, while ibex male has large recurved horns that are transversely ridged in front.
Markhor does not have a beard while the ibex has a beard.
The fur of markhor is reddish brown in summer and long, gray, and silky in winter, while the fur color of ibex is brownish to gray, which is darker on the underparts.
The three subspecies of markhor are flare-horned markhor, straight-horned markhor, and Bukharan markhor while the two subspecies of ibex are European ibex and C. ibex ibex.
In brief, markhor and ibex are two species of the genus Capra. The two main characteristic features of the markhor and ibex are their horns and beard. Markhor has corkscrew-like horns whereas ibex has large, recurved horns. In addition, only ibex has a beard. Therefore, the main difference between markhor and ibex is their horns and beard.
- Encyclopædia Britannica, inc. (n.d.). Markhor. Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved August 26, 2022.
- Encyclopædia Britannica, inc. (n.d.). IBEX. Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved August 26, 2022.
- “File:Markhor Schraubenziege Capra falconeri Zoo Augsburg-02” By Rufus46 – Own Work (CC BY SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
- “Capra ibex ibex” By T.Voekler – Own Work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia