Beisa Oryx (Oryx Beisa)

Beisa Oryx (oryx beisa), downloaded 10/10/09

Natural Habitat
Location of Beisa Oryx, downloaded 10/10/09

Beisa Oryx are found in the grasslands of North East Africa. They usually live in dry plains,scrubland,semi-deserts, and brush savannas. Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya,Djibouti, Somalia, and Tanzania are some of the countries where they are located now.In the past, Beisa Oryx have lived in Uganda and Eritrea,but their status is uncertain in those countries today.

Niche Characteristics


Beisa Oryx eat grasses and drink water regularly. If necessary, they can survive off water storing foods such as melons, roots, bulbs, and tubers.


Reaching 3 or 4 feet at the shoulder, this animal can grow to weigh between 330 and 440 pounds. They usually reach a body length of 5.3 to 6.3 feet and their horns, on average, reach a height of 2 feet and 5 inches.

Housing and Climate Requirements

Beisa Oryx perfer dry plains with hot climates. Their bodies have adapted well for dry heat; their capacity to take on heat helps water conservation.

Relationships with Other Species

Competitive: Beisa Oryx are herbivores, meaning they only eat plants (see above for diet). Some of their predators include lions, hyenas, leopards,and
cape hunting dogs.
Symbiotic: They engage in Predator-Prey relationships with the predators listed above.


Beisa Oryx reach sexual maturity at different ages, according to gender. Males reach sexual maturity at 18 months, while females reach that point at 24 months. Breeding occurs throughout the year and there is usually only one offspring per birth. Gestation period lengths are between 8.5 to 9 months (similar to that of humans').

Activity and Living Habits

While active all year for reproducing, this animal chooses to have morning and late afternoon meals. Beisa Oryx live in mixed groups of 6 to 40 animals. If confronted by a predator it will try to run away, but if cornered it will fight or defend itself using its massive horns. While grazing or resting, this animal takes great care not to hurt others with their horns. (They keep a reasonable distance from other Beisa Oryx)

Herd of Beisa Oryx, downloaded 10/3/09

Population Expansion

Many of the animals who live in its habitat are also endangered, such as the Gevy's Zebra. The Besia Oryx could replace the Grevy's Zebra, because they both live in the same area and are both on the same trophic level. Both could be endangered becasue of hunting and the changing environment. Some of the environmental changes could be; seasonal rains are coming less often or at different times of the year due to possible effects of global warming or pollution. This would mean that plants are not growing as rapidly and there is less of a food supply for herbivores.The Beisa Oryx could fill the Grevy's Zebra's niche.The Besia Oryx is an endangered species that has successfully adapted to harsh conditions of dispersed food, intense heat, and little water. The Beisa Oryx's sense of smell enables them to sense when rain is falling in the area and they will travel towards the rian to feed on the new growth of vegetation. Herds move as seasons change to different areas.

Species in Competition

Both the Grevy's Zebra and the Besia Oryx are primary consumers, meaning they eat the grasses , the shrubs and also fruit. Both can also be found in parts of Kenya and Ethiopia.The Grevy's Zebra and the Besia Oryx's dependance on water and shared habitat make it possible that both species could drink form the same watering hole and graze in the same areas. Both the Grevy Zebra and the Besia Oryx adapt well to heat, little to no food and little water. Both breed through out the year but, the Besia Oryx's gestational period is about half of the Grevy's Zebra's gestational period. Both are food sources for secondary consumers and both are hunted by humans. The Grevy's Zebra's skins are highly priced and the horns of the Besia Oryx are sought after as charms by many cultures.

Worked Cited

Beisa Oryx.(n.d.).Retrieved October3, 2009, from

The IUCN Red List of Threatend Species(n.d.).Retrieved October 3,2009, from

Mungall, E.C., & Sugg, I. C. (n.d.). Exotic Animal Feild Guide:Nonnative Hoofed Animals in the United States(p.165)

Oryx Beisa. (n.d.). Retrieved October 3, 2009, from

Picture of Beisa Oryx.(n.d.).Retrieved October3,2009, from