There is sexual dimorphism in the okapi as females are taller and slightly more red than males, have smaller home ranges, and lack the frontal horns that males possess.

There is sexual dimorphism in the okapi.

Physically, females may be slightly red in color and average 4.2 centimeters taller than males. They also lack the ossicones, or pair of supraorbital, hair-covered frontal horns, that males possess. Instead, females possess “bumps,” or hair whorls, where the horns of males are located. Sometimes, however, small rudimentary horns may be present in females. There are no other cranial features of the okapi that have been found to be significantly dimorphic.

When it comes to distribution, male okapi have home ranges that average 8-10 km² larger than those of females.

Sources: (Bodmer & Rabb, 1992; Mallon, et al., 2015; Palkovacs, 2000; San Diego Zoo Global, 2017)
Image: Don DeBold


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