OKAPI is including among the captive as well as solitary animals. During the day, they are known to be active.It is thought that once okapi were known as nocturnal animals.Okapi like to feed mostlyon the leaves, grasses, fruits and fungi. It also eats charcoal from burned forest trees.In home ranges, male and female okapi lives. Their home ranges never overlap and they are not territorial. Ranges are marked by males with the help of urine by crossing their front legs. Against tree trunks, both female and male rub their necks.
There are some interesting facts about Okapi. That is:
- They’re a Pixar protagonist in the making.
- Okapi are great at Hide-and-Seek.
- They have infrasonic superpowers.
- Okapi have stinky feet.
- They can lick their own ears.
- Body length: 2.5 m
- Height at shoulder: 1.65 m
- 180 – 317 kg
OKAPI CLASSIFICATION AND EVOLUTION:
In central Africa, okapi is found in tropical mountain forest and they are known as herbivores. They are basically ancestors of the tallest animal on Earth, Giraffe. But okapi has the horizontal stripes on his back that gives it Zebra-like appearance. The okapi is very secretive and shy specie. Okapi is not including in an endangered species.In their remote habitats, they are common.
OKAPI ANATOMY & APPEARANCE:
Like his ancestors, Okapi is also having long neck which helps them to defend both itself and its territory. They are having coat of red-brown fur. At the tops of their hind legs, horizontal white strips are present. In the dense jungle, these horizontal white strips provide the Okapi with exceptional camouflage.Above each hoof, there are dark spots as well as having white ankles. Its thick skin protects them from injury. Dark muzzle is present at its long head. They are having large set-back ears which help them to protect from predators. It has long tongue which helps to grab hold of leaves.
OKAPI DISTRIBUTION & HABITAT:
In the dense tropical rainforests of north-eastern, Okapi is found. They are spread between 500 and 1,000 meters. Above the sea level about 800 meters, individuals with majority are thought to inhabit areas. Around them they have very thick foliage to protect them from predators. In the areas of slow-moving fresh water source, okapi is also found. They are living in limited range by natural barriers. Particularly from deforestation, Okapi is having threat by its habitat loss.
REPRODUCTION & LIFE CYCLE:
They have gestation period about 16 months. Female gives birth to single calf in dense vegetation. Within half an hourthe Okapi calf is usually able to stand. The Okapi calf remained under nest for two months which helps them to grow rapidly as well as they protected from hungry predators.For more than a year, their babies suckle from their mothers.
OKAPI PREDATORS & THREATS:
The main threats include:
- Loss of its habitat due to the agriculture and human settlements.
The predators include:
- The Leopard
- Human hunters