The Camel Family

  • Jessica H. Lewis

Abstract

The second group of animals of the order Artiodactyla studied is the family Camelidae, which originated in North America in the early Eocene Age (40–50 mya). About 2 mya, groups migrated over land bridges to Eurasia and South America. Just 5000 years ago, at the end of the glacial period, Camelidae became extinct in North America. The group in Eurasia developed into suborder Camelus and those in South America into suborder Lama. There are several species. Camelus dromedarius is an entirely domesticated species of large, one-humped animals bred for riding or carrying loads and traveling long distances in desert areas without food or water. They are taller than horses and have long, slender legs with padded, flexible hooves that keep them from sinking in the sand. They walk like a boat on waves, swaying from side to side. Their bushy eyebrows, long eyelashes, and nostrils that can be closed keep out the desert sands. The hump stores fat that when metabolized produces water and CO2; this metabolic water can replace water from external sources to maintain life. For centuries, the one-humped dromedary was used to transport materials across arid areas, particularly in Africa. The two-humped Bactrian camel has long hair and lives in the colder regions of Asia. Camels are said to be “unpleasant, smelly, dull, and stubborn.” Even so, the females provide milk, the animals provide skins for tents and covers, and, in emergencies, their meat can sustain human life.

Keywords

Alpha Granule Careful Husbandry Comparative Hematology Lama Guanicoe Human Range 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Gulliver, G., 1875. Observations on the size and shape of the red corpuscles, Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1875: 474.Google Scholar
  2. Jain, N. C., and Keeton, K. S., 1974, Morphology of camel and llama erythrocytes as viewed with the scanning electron microscope, Br. Vet. J. 130: 288.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Lewis, J. H., 1976, Comparative hematology—studies on Camelidae, Comp. Biochem. Phvsiol. A55: 367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Ponder, E., Yeager, J. F., and Charipper, H. A., 1928, Haematology of the Camelidae, Zool. Sci. (N. Y Zool. Soc.), 11: 1.Google Scholar

Suggested Readings

  1. Banerjee, S., Bhattacharjee, R. C., and Singh, T. I., 1962, Haematological studies in the normal adult Indian camel (Camelus dromedarius), Am. J. Phvsiol. 203: 1185.Google Scholar
  2. Bokori, J., 1974, Contribution to the haemograms of the buffalo and of the camel, Acta Vet. Hung. 24: 73.Google Scholar
  3. Cornelius, C. E., and Kaneko, J. J., 1962, Erythrocyte life span in the guanaco, Science 137: 673.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Elamin, F. M., and Saha, N., 1980, Blood protein polymorphism in the one-humped camel (Camelus dromedarius) in the Sudan, Anim. Blood Groups Biochem. Genet. 11: 39.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Kohli, R. N., 1963, Cellular micrometry of camel’s blood, Indian Vet. J. 40: 134.Google Scholar
  6. Kraft, H.; 1957, Untersuchungen über das Blutbild der Camelen, Tierarztl. Wochenschr. 70: 371.Google Scholar
  7. Kushner, H. F., 1938, Composition of the blood of camels in relation to working ability of these mammals, C. R. (Dokl.) Acad. Sci. USSR N.S. 18: 681.Google Scholar
  8. Little, A., McKenzie, A. J., Morris, R. J. H., Roberts, J., and Evans, J. V., 1970, Blood electrolytes in the Australian camel, Aust. J. Exp. Biol. Med. Sci. 48: 17.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Perk, K., 1963, The camel’s erythrocyte, Nature (London) 200: 272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Ponder, E., Yeager, J. F., and Charipper, H. A., 1929, Studies in comparative hematology I. Camelidae, Q. J. Exp. Physiol. 19: 115.Google Scholar
  11. Soliman, M. K., and Shaker, M., 1967, Cytological and biochemical studies on the blood of adult she camels, Indian Vet. J. 44: 989.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Soni, B. K., and Aggarwala, A. C., 1958, Studies on the physiology of the camel (Camelus dromedarius). I. Cellular blood constituents, Indian Vet. J. 35: 209.Google Scholar
  13. Yagil, R., Sod-Moriah, U. A., and Meyerstein, N., 1974, Dehydration and camel blood. I. Red blood cell survival in the one-humped camel Camelus dromedarius, Am. J. Physiol. 226: 298.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Yagil, R., Sod-Moriah, U. A., and Meyerstein, N., 1974, Dehydration and camel blood. II. Shape, size, and concentration of red blood cells, Am. J. Physiol. 226: 301.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jessica H. Lewis
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Central Blood BankPittsburghUSA

Personalised recommendations