…Where the Pronghorn Play!

A common confusion for the guests of Grand Teton National Park is calling a pronghorn an “antelope.” 

 

Pronghorn in Grand Teton National Park
Pronghorn in Grand Teton National Park

 The pronghorn has had to live with this mistake for quite awhile, so I thought I’d help clear this matter up!

Fun Fact One:  Family

Antelope are a member of the Bovidae family, which also includes cows, bison and sheep.

Pronghorn are the last surviving membe rof the Antilocapridae family.

Fun Fact Two:  Territory

Antelope are found in Africa, Asia and occasionally the middle east.  Their habitat range from grasslands to marshes.

Pronghorn are found in western North America, from Canada to northern Mexico.

Fun Fact Three:  Horns or Antlers

Antelope have a traditional horn which consists of a bony core with a Keratin coating.  (That’s the same stuff our nails are made of!)  Their horns do not branch in any form and they have one set for life.

Pronghorn have keratin growing on a bony core that is pronged in the male and is also shed annually. 

A true classification for ther term “horns” in animals is they are always unbranched and never shed (like the Antelope).  They are also covered with skin like the horns of a giraffe!

Fun Fact Four:  Speed vs. Height

Antelope come in such a variety that some like the Gazelles are very fast, while others like the Nilgai are very slow.  They are also, primarily, decent to great jumpers.

Pronghorn are the second fastest land mammal, second only to the Cheetah!  They have a very high endurance for racing but are very poor jumpers!

Fun Fact Five:  Young

Antelope typically have just one baby at a time.

Pronghorn are known to most commonly have twins!
Bonus Fun Fact: Pronghorns outnumber people in the state of Wyoming!

From Melissa’s Corner!

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4 Replies to “…Where the Pronghorn Play!”

  1. Fun! We just returned from two road trips to Canada and saw a lot of Pronghorn. I had to read up on them. Fascinating animal! I did read that they are actually the fastest land mammal in part b/c of their ability to sustain their speed for several miles. The cheetah cannot do this. Some pronghorn have been clocked at about 60 mpr and can sustain that or slightly lesser speeds for great distances. So, I guess the debate rages on, but my money is on the pronghorn! We went through the park a few times. Cannot say enough great things about how beautiful our national parks are.

  2. Hey Kori!
    You’re right that the Proghorn have the record for longest run at high speeds! It definately could outrun the cheetah as long as the cheetah’s initial burst of speed is over. But at actual maximum speed the cheetah is still numero uno with a whopping 70 mph! Either way I think both of these animals are impressive!

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