Many kinds of animals, particularly males, have horns and antlers. It aids in attracting females as well as defending against predators and competition. In reality, horns and antlers are not the same things. Horns are a permanent, unbranched extension of an animal’s skull, whereas antlers are a branching portion of the skull composed of dead bones.
Now onto the horns! Oh, man, these are good horns
The markhor is a big wild goat species. Shakhawat is another name for it. The Persian term for snake is said to have been used to name the markhor, either because of its enormous coiled horns or because of its capacity to kill snakes.
Markhor males and females have corkscrew-like horns that are tightly coiled at the head but expand upwards near the points. Males’ horns may grow up to 160 cm in length, while females’ horns can grow up to 25 cm. It’s extremely endangered, with an estimated 2,500 left in the wild in part due to hunting for its absurdly spectacular corkscrewed horns, which can grow to more than five feet long.
Its fleshy, shotgun-like nose filters out dust in its environment and, we believe, warms chilly winter air before it reaches the animal’s lungs. It has spiraling horns that are pale, dusky pink with a jade-like sheen. It’s also critically endangered; learn more about the noble, floppy-nosed saiga’s predicament here.
#3 Nubian Ibex
The massive, backward-curling horns of the Nubian ibex are more stunning when you know that the ibex uses them to smash into male competitors while perched atop dangerous slopes in North Africa and Arabia. There are several distinct varieties of ibex, and no one knows if they’re all the same species, so alpine ibex enthusiasts, don’t be disappointed if the Nubian version is up here instead.
Due to a bluish tinge to its fur, the bharal is also known as the Himalayan blue sheep, according to reliable sources. We spent a long time looking at photos of bharals online in the spirit of reporting and are disappointed to report that this sheep is not truly blue. But! It does have excellent horns. Sheep horns tend to be wider and smoother than narrow, knobbly goat horns, and the bharal is in possession of some excellently wide and smooth horns.
The addax is also known as the screw horn antelope and the white antelope. These are the lifestyles of people who live in the Sahara desert. The horns of the addax are long and twisted, measuring between 55 and 80 cm in females and 70 to 85 cm in males. Two to three twists can be observed on the horns of both males and females. A series of 30 to 35 ring-shaped ridges run along the lower and middle regions of the horns.
The mouflon is considered to be the progenitor of the domestic sheep we know today. The mouflon lost its incredibly magnificent horns, huge strong curving loops that make you question why “sheep” could possibly have meek connotations, at some point during the domestication process.
The blackbuck is native to the Indian subcontinent. The Antilope genus has only one surviving species, the blackbuck. Horns are only found in males. Diverging, cylindrical, spiraling, and ringed throughout, these horns. Near the cranium, the rings are closer together. It was a favored hunting target for the wealthy due to its superb horns and interesting reverse-raccoon patterning until someone realized there were virtually none remaining.
#8 Scimitar-Horned Oryx
The scimitar-horned oryx is North Africa’s buffalo: formerly common and roamed the savannah in large herds, it was killed (for its horns, not for its meat, though it was eaten) and extinct. More intriguingly, the oryx is no longer found in the wild, only in zoos. Although it is not a large animal, its horns can grow to be four feet long.
The moose is the largest extant species in the deer family. Moose are distinguished by the palmate antlers of the males. The size and growth rate of antlers are determined by diet and age. The male’s antlers grow as cylindrical beams projecting on each side of the head.
Moose antlers are broad and flat with points along the outer edge. The antlers are spread greater than 200 cm with a weight of around 36 kg. After the mating season males drop their antlers to conserve energy for the winter. A new set of antlers will then regrow in the spring.
Caribou has been referred to as reindeer or wild reindeer, specifically in Alaska. Caribou and reindeer are the same species. They are the only deer whose males and females both have antlers.
The caribou’s antlers grow forward and are used to scrape through snow for food in the winter. Large males’ antlers can reach 100 cm in breadth and 135 cm in beam length. Among extant deer species, they have the biggest antlers in proportion to their body size.