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Pronghorn Antelopes in Yellowstone National Park

 

"Although sometimes called antelope, pronghorn are not closely related to the animals of African plains. In fact they are so different from other hoofed animals that they are the only members of the family Antelocapridae. Their head ornaments set them apart from deer and elk whose branched, solid antlers are shed each year, and from goats and cattle whose hollow horns are made from hair and are not shed. Pronghorn have branched, hollow, hairlike horns that are shed annually. They are the only animal with this combination." source USFW

female Pronghorn Antelope Yellowstone National Park © Shawn Coggins

Proghorn Antelope are frequently found in the field outside the Gardner, Montana entrance to Yellowstone National Park.
© Shawn Coggins. Proghorn Antelope have very large eyes, with a 320 degree field of vision.

"True Americans, pronghorn are found only on the plains and grasslands of North America. Like bison, seemingly endless numbers once covered the west, stretching from Saskatchewan to just north of Mexico City. And like bison, they nearly became extinct. Populations declined from an estimated 30-60 million in the early 1800s to less than 15,000 by 1915." source USFW



Pronghorn Antelope  Yellowstone National Park © Shawn Coggins

Pronghorn Antelope buck near the Gardner, Montana entrance to Yellowstone National Park.


Male Pronghorn Antelope . . ."fight viciously and sometimes fatally". Pronghorn Antelope eat "Forbs in spring and summer; browse, especially sagebrush, in winter; small amounts of young grasses in spring and after fall rains (FWP). Presence of browse, particularly big sagebrush, is important limiting factor on N[orthen] ranges. Forbs im- portant in summer, grasses usually minor all year (Wentland 1968, Bayless 1967)."



Reference:
Pronghorn — Antilocapra americana. Montana Field Guide.
Pronghorn - Vital Statistics US Fish and Wildlife Service.

coyote Yellowstone Park © Shawn Coggins   coyote