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Okapi Facts

Guest Author - Jeanne Egbosiuba Ukwendu

Name: Okapi

Nickname: African Unicorn, Rainforest Zebra

African Names: Atti, O'api (Lese)

Scientific Name: Okapia johnstoni

OkapiHeight: 5 feet at the shoulder

Average Adult Weight: 460 to 550 pounds.

Life Span: About 30 years in captivity, in the wild their lifespan is still unknown.

Description: Okapis have a sleek deep brown coat that is almost purple. The sides of its face are a dull red. There are horizontal black and white rings on its buttocks, thighs, and tops of forelegs.

Habitat: Okapis are found mostly in the Ituri Rainforest of The Democratic Republic of the Congo

Countries found in: The Democratic Republic of the Congo

Babies: Live birth, Gestation period is 14 to 15 months

OkapiFood: Leaves, fruits, seeds, fungi, and a certain clay that give them their mineral content.

Habits: Mostly solitary animal that only comes together to mate. Okapi are only active during the day.

Endangered: Near Threatened

Interesting Facts: Discovered in 1901, it main enemies are leopard and humans.
The Okapi is the only mammal that can clean its ears with its tongue.
The Okapi is the only relative of the giraffe.
Male okapis have 6 inch hairy horns on their heads. Female okapis do not have these horns.
The name "Okapi" a combination of the Lese language words "Oka" meaning "to cut" and "kpi" referring to decorative stripes on arrows. The Okapi is said to decorate itself with stripes.


The Okapi: Mysterious Animal of Congo-ZaireFor more about the Okapi, try reading The Okapi: Mysterious Animal of Congo-Zaire
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Content copyright © 2013 by Jeanne Egbosiuba Ukwendu. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Jeanne Egbosiuba Ukwendu. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Dawn Denton for details.

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