Last updated


Ovis vignei bochariensis.jpg
Bukhara urial (Ovis vignei bochariensis) at Nordens Ark, Sweden
CITES Appendix I (CITES) [1]
Scientific classification OOjs UI icon edit-ltr.svg
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Artiodactyla
Family: Bovidae
Subfamily: Caprinae
Tribe: Caprini
Genus: Ovis
O. vignei
Binomial name
Ovis vignei
(Blyth, 1841) [2]
The range of Urial

Ovis orientalis vignei

The urial ( /ˈʊəriəl/ OOR-ee-əl; Ovis vignei), also known as arkars, shapo, or shapu, is a wild sheep native to Central and South Asia. It is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. [1]


Ovis vignei was the scientific name proposed by Edward Blyth in 1841 for wild sheep in the Sulaiman Mountains. [2] The specific name honours Godfrey Vigne (1801–1863). [3]

The vignei subspecies group consists of six individual subspecies:


Transcaspian arkals (O. v. arkal) at Pretoria Zoo Ovis ammon vignei arkal Pretoria 3bis.jpg
Transcaspian arkals (O. v. arkal) at Pretoria Zoo

Urial males have large horns, curling outwards from the top of the head turning in to end somewhere behind the head; females have shorter, compressed horns. The horns of the males are up to 100 cm (39 in) long. The shoulder height of an adult male urial is between 80 and 90 cm (31 and 35 in).[ citation needed ]

Distribution and habitat

The urial is native to montane areas in the Pamir Mountains, Hindu Kush and Himalayas up to an elevation of 4,500 m (14,800 ft). It is distributed from northeastern Iran, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and southwestern Kazakhstan to northern Pakistan and Ladakh in northwestern India. It prefers grassland, open woodland and gentle slopes, but also inhabits cold arid zones with little vegetation. [1]

Behaviour and ecology

The mating season begins in September. Rams select four or five ewes, which give birth to a lamb after a gestation of five months.[ citation needed ]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mouflon</span> Species group of the wild sheep

The mouflon is a wild sheep native to Caspian region, including eastern Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Iran. It is also found in Europe. It is thought to be the ancestor of all modern domestic sheep breeds.

<i>Ablepharus</i> Genus of lizards

Ablepharus is a genus of skinks that contains the common snake-eyed skinks. Both their scientific and common names refer to the fact that their eyelids have fused to a translucent capsule; as in snakes, they thus are physically incapable of blinking. They are small lizards and prefer to live in the leaf litter of dry fields and hills. Their scales give them a very shiny, bronze appearance with a characteristically dark stripe down the sides of their bodies. They prey on small insects and other small mollusks.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Goitered gazelle</span> Species of mammal

The goitered gazelle or black-tailed gazelle is a gazelle native to Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Iran, parts of Iraq and Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and in northwestern China and Mongolia. The specific name, meaning "full below the throat", refers to the male having an enlargement of the neck and throat during the mating season.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Markhor</span> Species of mammal

The markhor is a large wild Capra (goat) species native to South Asia and Central Asia, mainly within Pakistan, India, the Karakoram range, parts of Afghanistan, and the Himalayas. It is listed on the IUCN Red List as Near Threatened since 2015.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wild goat</span> Species of mammal

The wild goat is a wild goat species, inhabiting forests, shrublands and rocky areas ranging from Turkey and the Caucasus in the west to Turkmenistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan in the east. It has been listed as near threatened on the IUCN Red List and is threatened by destruction and degradation of habitat.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bharal</span> Species of wild sheep native to the Himalayas

The bharal, also called the blue sheep, is a caprine native to the high Himalayas. It is the only member of the genus Pseudois. It occurs in India, Bhutan, China, Myanmar, Nepal, and Pakistan. The Helan Mountains of Ningxia have the highest concentration of bharal in the world, with 15 bharals per km2 and 30,000 in total.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Argali</span> Species of sheep

The argali, also known as the mountain sheep, is a wild sheep that roams the highlands of western East Asia, the Himalayas, Tibet, and the Altai Mountains.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Chinkara</span> Species of mammal

The chinkara, also known as the Indian gazelle, is a gazelle species native to India, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">UTC+05:00</span> Identifier for a time offset from UTC of +5:00

UTC+05:00 is an identifier for a time offset from UTC of +05:00. This time is used in:

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Marco Polo sheep</span> Subspecies of argali sheep

The Marco Polo sheep is a subspecies of argali sheep, named after Marco Polo. Their habitat are the mountainous regions of Central Asia. Marco Polo sheep are distinguishable mostly by their large size and spiraling horns. Their conservation status is "near threatened" and efforts have been made to protect their numbers and keep them from being hunted. It has also been suggested that crossing them with domestic sheep could have agricultural benefits.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Asiatic wildcat</span> Small wild cat

The Asiatic wildcat, also known as the Asian steppe wildcat and the Indian desert cat, is an African wildcat subspecies that occurs from the eastern Caspian Sea north to Kazakhstan, into western India, western China and southern Mongolia. There is no information on current status or population numbers across the Asiatic wildcat's range as a whole, but populations are thought to be declining.

<i>Hyles hippophaes</i> Species of moth

Hyles hippophaes, the seathorn hawk-moth, is a species of moth in the family Sphingidae. The species was first described by Eugenius Johann Christoph Esper in 1789.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wildlife of Pakistan</span>

The wildlife of Pakistan comprises a diverse flora and fauna in a wide range of habitats from sea level to high elevation areas in the mountains, including 195 mammal, 668 bird species and more than 5000 species of Invertebrates. This diverse composition of the country's fauna is associated with its location in the transitional zone between two major zoogeographical regions, the Palearctic, and the Oriental. The northern regions of Pakistan, which include Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit Baltistan include portions of two biodiversity hotspot, Mountains of Central Asia and Himalayas.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Godfrey Vigne</span> English cricketer and traveler

Godfrey Thomas Vigne was an English amateur cricketer and traveller.

The Ustyurt mountain sheep, often referred to as the Turkmenian mountain sheep, is a subspecies of the urial that inhabits the mountain plateau regions of parts of Central Asia, especially the Ustyurt plateau from which it takes its name. It is particularly common in northern and eastern Turkmenistan and western Kazakhstan.

<i>Galeodes</i> Genus of camel spiders

Galeodes is a genus of solifuges or sun spiders. The nearly 200 species in this genus are found in northern Africa, southeastern Europe and Asia. Like other solifuges, they are mainly nocturnal and found in arid habitats. They often have long hairy appendages and are not as stout bodied or dark and contrastingly coloured as some other solifuges. Some Galeodes species are able to produce sounds by stridulation. These are usually raspy or hiss-like and may be imitations of the sounds of vipers, to serve a defensive function. As in other solifuges, mating involves the male depositing a spermatogonia that is manipulated into the female genital opening using their chelicera. The male strokes the female using the palps allowing her to be approached. Females will often feed on males before or after mating. The female then deposits the eggs in a burrow in soil and in some species guards them.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Wildlife of Turkmenistan</span> Fauna and flora

The wildlife of Turkmenistan is the flora and fauna of Turkmenistan, and the natural habitats in which they live. Turkmenistan is a country in Central Asia to the east of the Caspian Sea. Two thirds of the country is hot dry plains and desert, and the rest is more mountainous. Very little rain falls in summer and the chief precipitation occurs in the southern part of the country in the winter and spring. The Caspian coast has milder winters.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Turkestan lynx</span> Subspecies of carnivore

The Turkestan lynx is a subspecies of Eurasian lynx native to Central Asia. It is also known as Central Asian lynx, Tibetan lynx or Himalayan lynx. It is widespread from Central Asia, continental South Asia to China and Mongolia. About 27,000 mature individuals have been estimated to occur in China as of 2013.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ziarat Juniper Forest</span> Forest in Ziarat, Pakistan

The Ziarat Juniper Forest is a juniper forest in Ziarat, Balochistan, Pakistan.

<i>Juniperus seravschanica</i> Species of conifer

Juniperus seravschanica is a species of juniper. Common names include Pashtun juniper.


  1. 1 2 3 4 Michel, S & Ghoddousi, A. (2021) [errata version of 2020 assessment]. "Ovis vignei". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species . 2020: e.T54940655A195296049. doi: 10.2305/IUCN.UK.2020-2.RLTS.T54940655A195296049.en . Retrieved 16 January 2022.
  2. 1 2 Blyth, E. (1841). "An Amended List of the Species of the Genus Ovis". The Annals and Magazine of Natural History; Zoology, Botany, and Geology. 7 (44): 248–261.
  3. Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (November 18, 2009). The Eponym Dictionary of Mammals. JHU Press. ISBN   9780801895333 via Google Books.
  4. "Green Pioneers - Chapter 13". Archived from the original on 2008-07-03. Retrieved 2009-03-15.
  5. Kobilinsky, Dana (2023-07-26). "JWM: Connectivity could aid Pakistan's struggling wild sheep". The Wildlife Society. Retrieved 2023-07-31.