The Musk Ox can be found in various locations Diet
throughout northern Canada, Greenland, Alaska, Norway,
Sweden and Russia. At one point they were eradicated
in Alaska, Norway, Sweden and Russia, but have since
been successfully re-introduced to some areas in those
Musk Oxen are vegetarian and will eat much of the
vegetation that is available in the tundra. This includes
willow shoots, lichens, grasses and shrubs.
Musk Oxen are roaming animals that live in herds. A
herd will often remain in a certain range where it will have
access to food and water, and will roam within that range
throughout the seasons to locate those resources.
Size and Description
Musk Oxen will reach lengths between 6 and 7.5 feet and
have a shoulder height between 4 and 5 feet. Their
weight can vary from 400 to 900 pounds. Musk Oxen
have an outer coat made of long, brown hairs and an
inner coat called qiviut which consists of wool. This is a
special adaptation that helps the musk ox survive the
freezing temperatures of the tundra. Males and females
have horns that meet near the center of the skull. Males
will grow an additional "boss" across the horns. Musk
Oxen have glands that produce a strong, musky odor
that gives the Ox its name.
The rut or mating season for Musk Oxen begins in late
summer and early fall. Males will compete for
dominance over a harem of females, and a single male
will mate with several females. The gestation or
pregnancy period will then last approximately 8 months
and the female will give birth to one calf in the spring.