of these articles describes the game animal Okapi; for the military vehicle from South Africa, see Okapi MPV.

Okapis (Okapia johnstoni)
Okapis (Okapia John tonuses)
Subclass: Higher mammals (Eutheria)
putting above: Laurasiatheria
order: Paarhufer (Artiodactyla)
subordination: Wiederkäuer (Ruminantia)
family: Giraffe-well-behaved (Giraffidae)
kind: Okapia
Kind: Okapi
scientific name
Okapia John tonuses
(P. L. Sclater, 1901)
Okapi in the zoo of Bristol in England

the Okapi (Okapia John tonuses) is a Paarhufer from the family of the giraffe-well-behaved. In the shape it resembles on the first view rathera horse as a giraffe, besides it has black-and-white strips at the back part like a Zebra. For the better elucidation of the Verwandtschaftsverhältnisse also the designation forest giraffe is common.

Table of contents


the Okapi carriesa including-like, schokoladenfarbenes skin, which gleams in a reddish or purpurfarbenen gloss. The Gesässseiten and the upper half of the legs touched black-and-white. The thighs are white or light brown, the face carry a black-and-white design. Neck and legs are clearly extended, although by farnot as extremely as with the relatives giraffe. Males carry two short horns, females are hornless. Okapis have a bluish tongue.

A Okapi weighs about 230 kg. Its head fuselage length amounts to 2 m, the tail is about 40 cm long, the Schulterhöhe lies with 1,60 M.Females are somewhat larger on average than males.


the only state, on whose territory Okapis occur, is the democratic Republic of the Congo. The Okapi inhabited close tropical rain forests in the north and the east of the country, e.g. in the protected areas Salonga, Maiko and Virunga.

Way of life

as the relatives giraffe lives the Okapi mainly on sheets, which it seizes with its mobile tongue. Besides it eats also from grass, ferns, mushrooms and fruits. It is day active and moves on firm changes by the forest. Attained full growth females maintain firm territories, duringMales each other overlapping districts have, whose borders are not firmly defined. Okapis are einzelgängerische animals. Sometimes they are found in small federations, but under which circumstances they together-find themselves in such a way, is to a large extent unexplored.

A young animal comes to a carrying time of approximately 450 days to the world.The birth is season independent. In shank Okapis can reach an age of thirty years.

Humans and Okapi

Okapi (Kölner Zoo)
Okapi (Cologne zoo)

the native Congolese rain forest knew the Okapi since more jeher. The Pygmäen hunted Okapis in drop pits. As it on the expedition of the Henry Morton Stanleymet and if their horses saw, they reported to it of wild animals resembled appearance in the forests. After long mystery rates were found only 1900 some pieces of skin by native ones and sent to the royal zoo-logical society in London. There the still to a large extent unknown animal the scientific becameName lose Equus John tonuses - it was thus assigned to the kind of the horses. Already in June 1901, when one complete skin and two heads were brought to Europe, one recognized however the mistake and noticed the similarity with ice-age short neck giraffes, their fossils from Europeadmits were. Only 1909 succeeded to catch it a white one, a living Okapi. Before some large game hunters had implemented a contest for many years around the doubtful honour, as the first a Okapi to shoot, - however without result, because this did not succeed of them. Today about 45 Okapis becomein zoos held.

Inventory numbers in the wilderness are pure speculation. Since Okapis live hidden and shy in the forests one of civil wars of wrecked country, hardly something is well-known over their free life. The forest destruction, which takes the habitat to the Okapi, causes an inventory decrease with security. Rough one Estimations of the population, which are to be enjoyed however with caution, speak of 10.000 to 20,000 wild Okapis.

The society for Kryptozoologie uses the Okapi as a symbol animal.

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Wiktionary: Okapi - word origin, synonyms and translations
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