Updated: Sep 17, 2019

There are two types of camels: Dromedary and Bactrian. Dromedary or Arabian camels have one hump. Bactrian camels have two humps.

Camels' humps consist of stored fat, which they can metabolize when food and water is scarce. Camels are well adapted to life in hot, dry climates. Thanks to thick pads of skin on their chest and knees, they can comfortably sit in hot sand and their cushioned feet stop them from sinking into the desert sand. Camels have three sets of eyelids and two rows of long eyelashes to keep the sand out of their eyes. Their nostrils close shut during a dust storm. They have thick lips because they forage for thorny plants. These beautiful animals can travel long distances and go without food or water for weeks. They walk in a rocking motion know as ’pacing’. The front and back leg on the same side move forward at the same time.

Mother camels carry their calves up to 14 months before giving birth. Some calves are born completely white and turn brown as their adult coat comes in. Other wild members of the camel family are the guanaco and the vicuña who live in South America. Their domestic descendants are the llama and the alpaca.

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