An Ibex at Masada

Back in 2015 after digging at Lachish we stayed in Israel for a short tour of the country.

Ein Gedi, Waterfall, Wildlife preserve, Pools of Ein GediAfter washing off the last bit of dirt from Lachish under a waterfall at Ein Gedi, we visited Masada. The water was a bit cold, but it felt so refreshing.

We were a bit disappointed that we didn’t see any wildlife during out hike to the pools.North end of Masada, Herod, King HerodWe then headed to Masada where we had lunch and toured the site.Nubian Ibex, Ibex, Capra nubiana, wild goat, masadaJust as we were leaving we spotted an ibex on the way to the parking area.

This is a Nubian Ibex (Capra nubiana).Nubian Ibex, Ibex, Capra nubiana, wild goat, masadaThe Nubian Ibex is a wild goat. There are several ways that they differ from the sheep family.

The first is the presence of a beard on the males.Ibex scent glandsWild goats also have scent glands under the eye. You can see here that they have beautiful eyes.Nubian Ibex, Ibex, Capra nubiana, wild goat, masadaThe wild goats also have a hairless callus on the knee.Nubian Ibex, Ibex, Capra nubiana, wild goat, masadaBecause of the beard we could tell that this ibex was male, but there are other ways to tell also. Here are two of them: The male has a dark brown stripe down the back and has long sweeping horns that can be a meter in length. The female also has horns, but they are only about a foot long.

After the disappointment of not seeing an Ibex at Ein Gedi, it was a surprise to see on up close at Masada.

Steven

 

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