Bovids are one of the largest existing families; there are currently more than 140 species alive and 300 extinct. Bovidae consist of cattle, antelopes, gazelles, goats, and sheep. The existence of the Bovidae family has been essential to human prosperity due to their widespread domestication and use as products, such as, milk, leather, meat and more. Usually both males and females of this family have horns, however, there is sexual dimorphism typically displayed with male Bovidae being larger than females. Members of the Bovidae family usually have multiple partners and will mate at least once, sometimes twice, a year.

Why do male bovids have horns?

In most species of bovid males, horns play an important role. Horns are used by males to engage in male-male competitions or to show-off and impress females. Bovid horns vary in shape and size – some are straight, curved or spiral. Horns are sharp and can be used as a defense mechanism against predators. Unfortunately, many bovids are hunted for their horns.

How many bovids are there?

There are about 143 species in the Bovidae family. The bovids are the largest family of hoofed mammals. Antelopes, sheep, goats, cattle, buffalo, and bison are all part of the Bovidae family. Other species of bovids include impala, gazelles, and muskoxen. There are 300 known extinct species.

How many toes do bovids have?

All bovids have 4 toes on each foot. They walk on the 2 central toes which are the hooves, and the 2 outer toes which are dewclaws are smaller and rarely touch the ground. Standing on their toes increases the bovids speed while running and jumping, and lets them hold their head higher to better look out for predators.

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Gazelle
Comparison with measurements illustrating the size of a Gazelle to a human woman

Gazelles are medium-sized antelopes known for their ringed horns and swift running speeds that can reach up to 40 mph (64 km/h). Living in large herds of several hundred, gazelles graze in wide-open plains in search of grasses, shoots, and leaves.

The average Gazelle has an overall height of 42.0”-49.0” (107-125 cm), withers height of 30.0”-37.0” (76-94 cm), and body length of 42.0”-49.0” (107-125 cm). A typical Gazelle weighs between 90-180 lb (41-82 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 10-12 years.

Drawings of Gazelles from the side, front, back and laying down
Gazelles are medium-sized antelopes known for their ringed horns and swift speeds up to 40 mph (64 km/h). Living in large herds, gazelles graze in open plains in search of grasses, shoots, and leaves.

The average Gazelle has an overall height of 42.0”-49.0” (107-125 cm), withers height of 30.0”-37.0” (76-94 cm), and body length of 42.0”-49.0” (107-125 cm). A typical Gazelle weighs between 90-180 lb (41-82 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 10-12 years.

Drawings of Gazelles from the side, front, back and laying down
Gazelle
Height:
42.0”-49.0” | 107-125 cm
Width:
Length:
42.0”-49.0” | 107-125 cm
Depth:
30.0”-37.0” | 76-94 cm
Weight:
90-180 lb | 41-82 kg
Area:
Gazella
10-12 years

Drawings include:
Gazelle side profile (standing), front, back, side (laying down)

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Dairy Cow
Drawing comparing an average Dairy Cow to a human with dimensions for length and height

Dairy cows are a type of cattle cow bred specifically for the production of greater quantities of milk used to make a range of common dairy products from cheeses, to yogurts, butters, ice cream, and sour cream. Increasingly specialized from beef cattle, dairy cows are raised in herds on dairy farms where they will spend between 2-4 years producing milk before being marketed for beef. Cattle are farmed for a variety of human products that include milk and beef, but also include leathers, fats, gelatins, and medicinal bi-products.

Knickers
Knickers is an oversized Holstein steer in Western Australia that gained internet fame for its impressive size. Standing at 6’4” (1.93 m) and weighing an estimated 2,800 pounds (1,270 kg), Knickers’ size is emphasized by his proximity to surrounding Wagyu cattle that average 4.5’ (1.37 m) tall.

The average Dairy Cow has an overall height of 62.0"-69.0" (1.6-1.8 m), withers height of 54.0"-60.0" (1.37-1.5 m), and body length of 92.0"-103.0" (2.3-2.6 m). A typical Dairy Cow weighs between 1,400-2,000 lb (635-907 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 4-5 years (farm); 20 (natural).

Multiple drawings of a dairy cow illustrated from the side standing, front, and laying down
Dairy cows are a type of cattle cow bred specifically for the production of greater quantities of milk used to make a range of common dairy products.

The average Dairy Cow has an overall height of 62.0"-69.0" (1.6-1.8 m), withers height of 54.0"-60.0" (1.37-1.5 m), and body length of 92.0"-103.0" (2.3-2.6 m). A typical Dairy Cow weighs between 1,400-2,000 lb (635-907 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 4-5 years (farm); 20 (natural).

Multiple drawings of a dairy cow illustrated from the side standing, front, and laying down
Dairy Cow
Height:
62.0"-69.0" | 1.6-1.8 m
Width:
Length:
92.0"-103.0" | 2.3-2.6 m
Depth:
Withers Height
54.0"-60.0" | 1.37-1.5 m
Weight:
1,400-2,000 lb | 635-907 kg
Area:

Uses: Milk, meat (beef), leather, gelatin, medical products

Bos taurus
Lifespan
4-5 years (farm); 20 (natural)

Drawings include:
Diary Cow standing side elevation, side (male farmer), front, side (laying down)

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Bison | Buffalo
Scale comparison of a Bison | Buffalo and a human with dimensions of height and length

Bison, also commonly known as buffalo, are nomadic grazing herbivores and the largest surviving terrestrial mammals in North America and Europe. Once a symbol for the American Great Plains, vast herds of bison provided food, clothing and tools for the native people of the prairies. After being hunted to near extinction by settlers, the majority of bison today are raised in captivity as livestock.

The typical Bison | Buffalo has an overall height of 60.0"-78.0" (1.52-1.98 m) and body length of 79.0"-138.0" (2-3.5 m). An average Bison | Buffalo weighs between 660-2,200 lb (300-1000 kg) and has a typical lifespan of 15 years (wild), 25 years (captivity).

Collection of drawings of Bison | Buffalo seen from the side, front, back, and laying down
Bison, also commonly known as buffalo, are nomadic grazing herbivores and the largest surviving terrestrial mammals in North America and Europe. Once a symbol for the American Great Plains, vast herds of bison provided food, clothing and tools for the native people of the prairies.

The typical Bison | Buffalo has an overall height of 60.0"-78.0" (1.52-1.98 m) and body length of 79.0"-138.0" (2-3.5 m). An average Bison | Buffalo weighs between 660-2,200 lb (300-1000 kg) and has a typical lifespan of 15 years (wild), 25 years (captivity).

Collection of drawings of Bison | Buffalo seen from the side, front, back, and laying down
Bison | Buffalo
Height:
60.0"-78.0" (5’-6’6”) | 1.52-1.98 m
Width:
Length:
79.0"-138.0" (6’7”-11’6”) | 2-3.5 m
Depth:
Withers Height
Weight:
660-2,200 lb | 300-1000 kg
Area:

Uses: Meat, hide, wool, dairy

Bison bison
Lifespan
15 years (wild), 25 years (captivity)

Drawings include:
Bison | Buffalo side elevation (standing), front, back, side (laying down)

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Sheep
Dimensioned drawing comparing an average sheep to a human

Sheep are stocky ruminant mammals of the Ovis genus. Sheep are known for their undercoats of fine wool which has led to them being domesticated for their fleeces. Sheep are seen as fundamental farming animals throughout the world and have a core livestock for many civilizations. A male sheep is referred to as a ram while a female is known as an ewe.

The average Sheep has an overall height of 46.0" (117 cm), withers height of 36.0" (91 cm), and body length of 50.0" (127 cm). A typical Sheep weighs between 80-400 lb (35-180 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 10-12 years.

Illustrations of a sheep from the side, front, and laying down
Sheep are stocky ruminant mammals of the Ovis genus. Sheep are known for their undercoats of fine wool which has led to them being domesticated for their fleeces. Sheep are seen as fundamental farming animals throughout the world and have a core livestock for many civilizations.

The average Sheep has an overall height of 46.0" (117 cm), withers height of 36.0" (91 cm), and body length of 50.0" (127 cm). A typical Sheep weighs between 80-400 lb (35-180 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 10-12 years.

Illustrations of a sheep from the side, front, and laying down
Sheep
Height:
46.0" | 117 cm
Width:
Length:
50.0" | 127 cm
Depth:
36.0" (3’) | 91 cm
Weight:
80-400 lbs | 35-180 kg
Area:

Uses: Wool fleece, meat, milk

Ovis aries
Lifespan
10-12 years

Drawings include:
Sheep side elevation (standing), front, side (laying down)

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Goat
Comparison of a goat to a human with dimensions for height and length

Goats are horned mammals belonging to the Capra genus and are often used for farming purposes. Domestic goats are primarily kept for milk production, but have also been used for meat, fur, and skins across much of the world. Goats are one of the oldest animal species domesticated by man.

The average Goat has an overall height of 30.0" (76 cm), withers height of 24.0" (61 cm), and body length of 39.0" (99 cm). A typical Goat weighs between 44-310 lb (19-140 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 15-18 years.

Assortment of drawings of a goat from the side, front, and laying down
Goats are horned mammals belonging to the Capra genus and are often used for farming purposes. Domestic goats are primarily kept for milk production, but have also been used for meat, fur, and skins across much of the world. Goats are one of the oldest animal species domesticated by man.

The average Goat has an overall height of 30.0" (76 cm), withers height of 24.0" (61 cm), and body length of 39.0" (99 cm). A typical Goat weighs between 44-310 lb (19-140 kg) and has a lifespan of roughly 15-18 years.

Assortment of drawings of a goat from the side, front, and laying down
Goat
Height:
30.0" | 76 cm
Width:
Length:
39.0" | 99 cm
Depth:
24.0" (2’) | 61 cm
Weight:
44-310 lbs | 19-140 kg
Area:

Uses: Milk, cheese, meat, fur, skins

Capra aegagrus hircus
Lifespan
15-18 years

Drawings include:
Goats side elevation (standing), front, side (laying down)

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