Fun Facts About Camels

Happy Wednesday!  It's Wednesday-Hump-Day... the halfway point of the workweek.  The phrase 'Hump Day' became popular during the 1960s and since then the camel has been the unofficial Hump Day mascot.  How much do you know about camels?  Why is the camel the Hump Day mascot?  Keep reading to learn more about these fascinating animals!

Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

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There are two types of camels.

If a camel has one hump, it's a dromedary.  If it has two humps, it's a Bactrian camel.  The number of humps on a camel has nothing to do with whether or not the camel is male or female.  There are male and female dromedaries and male and female Bactrian camels.  

Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

Camels are in the Camelidae family.

Camels are in the same family as llamas, alpacas, guanacoes, and vicuñas.  Camelidae are large herbivorous animals with long legs and necks.  They also have three stomachs to digest their food!

Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

Camels live in deserts where the climate is hot and dry.

Camels can be found in the deserts of North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia. They have evolved to live in the desert. They have long eye leashes to keep the blowing sand out of their eyes, long necks to help them reach leaves high in the bushes, thick rubbery lips to eat prickly plants, and thick hairy skin to protect them during sandstorms.


Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

The earliest known camel was the protylopus.

The protylopus lived 40 to 50 million years ago in what is now South Dakota, USA. It was a small camel that lived in the woodlands and cooler climates, unlike the camels that live in the deserts today. Some sources say that the protylopus was as small as a rabbit; others as small as a 50-pound dog! The protylopus went extinct 12,000 years ago.

Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

Camels do NOT store water in their humps.

They store fat in their humps. The fat in their humps helps them survive the harsh conditions of the desert. When food and water are scarce, the camels' bodies will burn the fat for energy. As the fat is burned off, their humps get smaller.

Camels are the unofficial mascot of Wednesday-Hump-Day because of their humps.  Silly, eh?

Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

Camels were domesticated 5,000 years ago.

Humans use camels for transportation and to carry things. They are also used for their meat, milk, and wool. Some camels are even used for entertainment purposes... like camel racing!

Learn about camels, where they live, what they eat, and their amazing adaptations.  Dromedary, wild Bactrian, domesticated dromedary camels. #kellysclassroomonline

Wild Bactrian camels are critically endangered.

Scientists estimate 900 wild Bactrian camels are left in the wild. They can be found in remote places in China and Mongolia. Wolf predation, hunting, illegal mining, and cross-breeding with domestic camels are the largest threats to them... with humans being the largest threat of all.


To learn more about camels, you can watch this video by Animal Fact Files:




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