Odd-Toed Ungulates | Perissodactyla

Odd-Toed Ungulates | Perissodactyla

Description
Description

Odd-toed ungulates, or Perissodactyla, comprise hoofed mammals with an uneven number of toes, primarily on their hind feet. This group includes horses, rhinoceroses, and tapirs. They inhabit diverse environments, from grasslands to forests, adapting to various climates globally. Evolving around 50-55 million years ago, they once dominated large herbivore niches. Their distinct digestive system efficiently processes fibrous plant material, and their limbs are well-suited for running. However, many perissodactyls are now endangered, primarily due to habitat destruction and poaching. Conservation efforts are crucial to protect these unique species and their roles in ecological balance.

Anatomy
Anatomy

Odd-toed ungulates, or Perissodactyla, are known for having an odd number of toes on their hind feet, usually one or three. Horses, for instance, have a single toe ending in a hoof, while rhinos and tapirs have three. Their legs are long and strong, evolved for efficient running and bearing weight. They lack a clavicle, allowing for a longer stride. Their teeth are adapted to grind vegetation, with some species having continuously growing molars. Their senses are well-developed, with a keen sense of hearing and smell, aiding in predator detection. They don't vocalize like us, but some can whinny or grunt.

Human Interaction
Human Interaction

Humans have a long history with odd-toed ungulates, especially horses, which have been domesticated for transportation, agriculture, and warfare. Rhinos and tapirs, while never domesticated, have been admired for their unique physiques and have appeared in various cultural folklore and art. In pop culture, horses are ubiquitous, starring in countless films, books, and TV shows.

Unfortunately, many odd-toed ungulates face threats from habitat loss and poaching. Rhinos are critically endangered due to demand for their horns. Conservation efforts include breeding programs, habitat preservation, and anti-poaching laws, aiming to ensure these remarkable animals continue to thrive alongside humans.

Common Questions
Common Questions
Which animals are odd-toed ungulates?

There are about 17 species of odd-toed ungulates. Animals that are odd-toed ungulates include the javan rhinoceros, mountain tapir, mountain zebra, onager, kiang, mule, donkey, and horse. Other animals include the Sumatran rhinoceros, African wild ass, and Malayan tapir.

What are the shared characteristics of odd-toed ungulates?

Shared characteristics of odd-toed ungulates include them being herbivores and each having 1 or 3 hoofed toes on each hindfoot. They also have a long upper jaw and a reduced ulna and fibula bones simplifying both the wrist and ankle joint. They don’t have a clavicle bone making running more efficient.

What are the differences between odd and even-toed ungulates?

The most notable difference between even and odd-toed ungulates is the number of toes they have. Odd-toed ungulates have an odd number of toes, while even-toed ungulates have an even number of toes (2 or 4). Odd-toed ungulates are able to digest plant matter in their intestines, while even-toed ungulates digest their meals in one or more stomach chambers.

55.1”-65” | 140-165 cm
78.7”-92.5” | 200-235 cm
507-606 lb | 230-275 kg
25-40 years
African Wild Ass
165.000
235.000
275.000
40.00
4200
GUIDE
3D
African Wild Ass
14-16 hands (56”-64” | 142-163 cm)
900-1000 lb | 408-454 kg
20 years (Typical)
Akhal-Teke
163.000
454.000
20.00
6900
GUIDE
3D
Akhal-Teke
14.75-15.5 hands (59”-62” | 150-158 cm)
900-1200 lb | 408-544 kg
25 years (Typical)
Andalusian Horse
158.000
544.000
25.00
19000
GUIDE
3D
Andalusian Horse
14-16 hands (56”-64” | 142-163 cm)
950-1250 lb | 431-567 kg
30 years (Typical)
Appaloosa Horse
163.000
567.000
30.00
17000
GUIDE
3D
Appaloosa Horse
14.25-15.25 hands (57”-61” | 145-155 cm)
800-1000 lb | 363-454 kg
25-30 years (Typical)
Arabian Horse
155.000
454.000
30.00
39000
GUIDE
3D
Arabian Horse
39.4”-51.2” | 100-130 cm
16.5”-22.4” | 42-57 cm
70.9”-98.4” | 180-250 cm
331-661 lb | 150-300 kg
20-30 years
Baird's Tapir
130.000
57.000
250.000
300.000
30.00
750
GUIDE
3D
Baird's Tapir
4.9’-6.2’ | 1.5-1.9 m
3’-3.6’ | .9-1.1 m
9.8’-12.3’ | 3-3.75 m
1,764-3,086 lb | 800-1,400 kg
30-50 years
Black Rhinoceros
190.000
110.000
375.000
1400.000
50.00
66000
GUIDE
3D
Black Rhinoceros
39.4”-47.2” | 100-120 cm
15.75”-18.9” | 40-48 cm
70.9”-87” | 180-221 cm
397-705 lb | 180-320 kg
25-40 years
Brazilian Tapir
120.000
48.000
221.000
320.000
40.00
4700
GUIDE
3D
Brazilian Tapir
16-18 hands (64”-72” | 162-183 cm)
1800-2200 lb | 816-998 kg
20-25 years (Typical)
Clydesdale Horse
183.000
998.000
25.00
24000
GUIDE
3D
Clydesdale Horse
Donkey
119000
43”-57” | 109-145 cm
57”-76” | 145-193 cm
400-500 lb | 180-225 kg
25-40 years
Donkey
145.000
193.000
225.000
25.00
119000
GUIDE
3D
Donkey
14.5-17 hands (58”-68” | 147-173 cm)
1200-1400 lb | 544-635 kg
16 years (Typical)
Friesian Horse
173.000
635.000
16.00
38000
GUIDE
3D
Friesian Horse
13.5-15 hands (54”-60” | 137-152 cm)
800-1300 lb | 363-590 kg
25-30 years (Typical)
Haflinger Horse
152.000
590.000
30.00
5100
GUIDE
3D
Haflinger Horse
Hinny
36000
41.3”-57” | 105-145 cm
53.1”-72.8” | 135-185 cm
300-800 lb | 136-363 kg
30-40 years
Hinny
145.000
185.000
363.000
40.00
36000
GUIDE
3D
Hinny
5.6’-6.7’ | 1.7-2.05 m
3.6’-4.1’ | 1.1-1.25 m
10.8’-12.5’ | 3.3-3.8 m
3,527-4,850 lb | 1,600-2,200 kg
35-45 years
Indian Rhinoceros
205.000
125.000
380.000
2200.000
45.00
23300
GUIDE
3D
Indian Rhinoceros
45.3”-51.2” | 115-130 cm
55.1”-63.8” | 140-162 cm
441-573 lb | 200-260 kg
20-40 years
Indian Wild Ass
130.000
162.000
260.000
40.00
5080
GUIDE
3D
Indian Wild Ass
4.9’-5.6’ | 1.5-1.7 m
3’-3.3’ | .9-1 m
9.8’-11.2’ | 3-3.4 m
3,307-4,409 lb | 1,500-2,000 kg
30-45 years
Javan Rhinoceros
170.000
100.000
340.000
2000.000
45.00
29700
GUIDE
3D
Javan Rhinoceros
18.9”-29.1” | 48-74 cm
9.8”-15” | 25-38 cm
32.7”-51.2” | 83-130 cm
220-243 lb | 100-110 kg
25-35 years
Kabomani Tapir
74.000
38.000
130.000
110.000
35.00
280
GUIDE
3D
Kabomani Tapir
Kiang
11050
56.3”-61” | 143-155 cm
74.8”-86.6” | 190-220 cm
551-882 lb | 250-400 kg
20-30 years
Kiang
155.000
220.000
400.000
30.00
11050
GUIDE
3D
Kiang
40.2”-51.2” | 102-130 cm
19.3”-24.4” | 49-62 cm
72.8”-94.5” | 185-240 cm
551-882 lb | 250-400 kg
25-37 years
Malayan Tapir
130.000
62.000
240.000
400.000
37.00
13200
GUIDE
3D
Malayan Tapir
8.5-9.5 hands (34”-38” | 86-97 cm)
150-350 lb | 68-159 kg
25-35 years (Typical)
Miniature Horse
97.000
159.000
35.00
16000
GUIDE
3D
Miniature Horse
41.3”-55.1” | 105-140 cm
55.1”-70.9” | 140-180 cm
441-573 lb | 200-260 kg
15-40 years
Mongolian Wild Ass
140.000
180.000
260.000
40.00
3180
GUIDE
3D
Mongolian Wild Ass
14-15.25 hands (56”-61” | 142-155 cm)
900-1100 lb | 408-499 kg
30 years (Typical)
Morgan Horse
155.000
499.000
30.00
15000
GUIDE
3D
Morgan Horse
35.4”-44.5” | 90-113 cm
18.9”-21.7” | 48-55 cm
70.9”-78.7” | 180-200 cm
300-551 lb | 136-250 kg
28-30 years
Mountain Tapir
113.000
55.000
200.000
250.000
30.00
2900
GUIDE
3D
Mountain Tapir
Mule
309000
63”-78.7” | 160-200 cm
70.9”-86.6” | 180-220 cm
820-1,000 lb | 372-454 kg
30-40 years
Mule
200.000
220.000
454.000
40.00
309000
GUIDE
3D
Mule
14.5-16 hands (58”-64” | 147-163 cm)
1000-1200 lb | 454-544 kg
31 years (Typical)
Paint Horse
163.000
544.000
31.00
16000
GUIDE
3D
Paint Horse
56.3”-63” | 143-160 cm
66.9”-75.6” | 170-192 cm
441-573 lb | 200-260 kg
20-40 years
Persian Onager
160.000
192.000
260.000
40.00
1000
GUIDE
3D
Persian Onager
51"-75" | 130-191 cm
64"-96" | 163-244 cm
440-990 lb | 200-450 kg
20-30 years
Plains Zebra
191.000
244.000
450.000
30.00
128000
GUIDE
3D
Plains Zebra
51.2”-61” | 130-155 cm
63”-74.8” | 160-190 cm
551-794 lb | 250-360 kg
20-25 years
Przewalski's Horse
155.000
190.000
360.000
25.00
310
GUIDE
3D
Przewalski's Horse
Quagga
102300
53.1”-57” | 135-145 cm
65”-70.9” | 165-180 cm
551-661 lb | 250-300 kg
20-40 years
Quagga
145.000
180.000
300.000
40.00
102300
GUIDE
3D
Quagga
14-16 hands (56”-64” | 142-163 cm)
900-1250 lb | 408-567 kg
25-35 years (Typical)
Quarter Horse
163.000
567.000
35.00
26000
GUIDE
3D
Quarter Horse
7-11 hands (28”-44” | 71-112 cm)
400-450 lb | 181-204 kg
30 years (Typical)
Shetland Pony
112.000
204.000
30.00
21000
GUIDE
3D
Shetland Pony
16-19 hands (64”-76” | 163-193 cm)
1975-2425 lb | 900–1100 kg
24-28 years (Typical)
Shire Horse
193.000
1100.000
28.00
26000
GUIDE
3D
Shire Horse
4.4’-5.4’ | 1.35-1.65 m
2.5’-3.1’ | .75-.95 m
7.9’-9.8’ | 2.4-3 m
1,102-2,094 lb | 500-950 kg
30-35 years
Sumatran Rhinoceros
165.000
95.000
300.000
950.000
35.00
18300
GUIDE
3D
Sumatran Rhinoceros
Tarpan
27100
54.3”-59.8” | 138-152 cm
70.9”-78.7” | 180-200 cm
661-882 lb | 300-400 kg
25-30 years
Tarpan
152.000
200.000
400.000
30.00
27100
GUIDE
3D
Tarpan
15-17 hands (60”-68” | 152-173 cm)
900-1150 lb | 408-522 kg
25-30 years (Typical)
Thoroughbred
173.000
522.000
30.00
7500
GUIDE
3D
Thoroughbred
5.7’-7.1’ | 1.75-2.15 m
3.4’-4.3’ | 1.05-1.32 m
11.2’-13.8’ | 3.4-4.2 m
3,968-5,512 lb | 1,800-2,500 kg
35-50 years
White Rhinoceros
215.000
132.000
420.000
2500.000
50.00
133500
GUIDE
3D
White Rhinoceros
Zonkey
40000
45.3”-65” | 115-165 cm
53.1”-76.8” | 135-195 cm
500-700 lb | 227-318 kg
15-25 years
Zonkey
165.000
195.000
318.000
25.00
40000
GUIDE
3D
Zonkey
Zony
15000
46.5”-53.1” | 118-135 cm
55.1”-66.9” | 140-170 cm
500-700 lb | 227-318 kg
15-25 years
Zony
135.000
170.000
318.000
25.00
15000
GUIDE
3D
Zony
Zorse
39000
57”-72.8” | 145-185 cm
76.8”-98.4” | 195-250 cm
507-1,000 lb | 230-454 kg
15-30 years
Zorse
185.000
250.000
454.000
30.00
39000
GUIDE
3D
Zorse
American Paint Horse
Scale illustration of an average American Paint Horse with dimensions for height and length compared to a human

The American Paint Horse is a horse breeding that combines the confirmative characteristics of a western stocking horse with a pinto pattern of colors of brown and white. Spots can have any shape or scale-like the Appaloosa Horse and can be found on part of the Paint Horse.

Thanks to its bright coloring, pleasant disposition, and flexibility, the paint horse is very popular. In fact, in some 40 countries around the world, the American Paint Horse Association has around 100,000 members. The Paint Horse is ideal for riders with all levels of experience. They compete as training horses and strong competition horses in different equestrian activities.

American Paint Horses have a shoulder height of 14.5-16 hands (58”-64” | 147-163 cm), an overall weight in the range of 1000-1200 lb (454-544 kg) and a typical lifespan of 31 years. American Paint Horses have a range of coat colors and patterns including blanket, few spot, flecked, leopard, mottled, overo, pintaloosa, sabino overo, tobiano, tovero, and varnish.

Collection of scaled drawings of the American Paint Horse in various poses
The American Paint Horse is a horse breeding that combines the confirmative characteristics of a western stocking horse with a pinto pattern of colors of brown and white. Spots can have any shape or scale-like the Appaloosa Horse and can be found on part of the Paint Horse.

American Paint Horses have a shoulder height of 14.5-16 hands (58”-64” | 147-163 cm), an overall weight in the range of 1000-1200 lb (454-544 kg) and a typical lifespan of 31 years. American Paint Horses have a range of coat colors and patterns including blanket, few spot, flecked, leopard, mottled, overo, pintaloosa, sabino overo, tobiano, tovero, and varnish.

Collection of scaled drawings of the American Paint Horse in various poses
American Paint Horse
Height:
14.5-16 hands (58”-64” | 147-163 cm)
Width:
Length:
Depth:
Weight:
1000-1200 lb | 454-544 kg
Area:
Coat Colors
Blanket, few spot, flecked, leopard, mottled, overo, pintaloosa, sabino overo, tobiano, tovero, varnish
Scientific Name
Lifespan
31 years (Typical)

Drawings include:

American Paint Horse side elevation (standing), front (standing), side (running)

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Tarpan (Equus ferus ferus)
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Tarpan compared to an average person

The Tarpan (Equus ferus ferus) also known as Eurasian wild horse was a subspecies of the wild horse that is now extinct. They had a gray coat with a pale underside and a stripe on their back. They also had small ears. The tarpan was native to Russia, but was known to roam all throughout Europe. In the mid-1800s farmers killed them as they were believed to be pests and the last tarpan died in 1909. There have been attempts to ‘breed back’ the tarpan which have resulted in the modern Tarpan that is now referred to as the Heck Horse.

Tarpans have a shoulder height between 48”–52” (122-132 cm), overall standing height of 54.3”-59.8” (138-152 cm), and body length of 70.9”-78.7” (180-200 cm). The weight of a Tarpan is between 661-882 lb (300-400 kg). Tarpans have a typical lifespan of 25-30 years.

Set of standing side elevation drawings of the Tarpan with measurements
The Tarpan (Equus ferus ferus) also known as Eurasian wild horse was a subspecies of the wild horse that is now extinct. They had a gray coat with a pale underside and a stripe on their back. They also had small ears. The tarpan was native to Russia, but was known to roam all throughout Europe.

Tarpans have a shoulder height between 48”–52” (122-132 cm), overall standing height of 54.3”-59.8” (138-152 cm), and body length of 70.9”-78.7” (180-200 cm). The weight of a Tarpan is between 661-882 lb (300-400 kg). Tarpans have a typical lifespan of 25-30 years.

Set of standing side elevation drawings of the Tarpan with measurements
Tarpan (Equus ferus ferus)
Height:
54.3”-59.8” | 138-152 cm
Width:
Length:
70.9”-78.7” | 180-200 cm
Depth:
Withers Height
48”–52” | 122-132 cm
Weight:
661-882 lb | 300-400 kg
Area:
Scientific Name
Equus ferus ferus
Lifespan
25-30 years

Drawings include:

Tarpan side elevation (assorted), front, back

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Akhal-Teke
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Akhal-Teke compared to an average person

The Ahkal-Teke (Equus ferus caballus) is a Turkmenistan horse breed and is one of the oldest domesticated horse breeds. Their coat has a metallic sheen giving them their nickname, “Golden Horses”. Physically they are thin, have fine bones, and flat muscles. They are mostly found in Russia and Europe, but they are also in North America.

In the past they were used for transportation, but are now used for horse racing. They are known for their speed, endurance, and intelligence. The diet of the Ahkal-Teke consists of grass, hay, and grains.

Akhal-Tekes have a shoulder height of 14-16 hands (56”-64” | 142-163 cm), an overall weight in the range of 900-1000 lb (408-454 kg) and a typical lifespan of 20 years. Akhal-Tekes have coat colors of Black, bay, red.

Set of standing side elevation drawings of the Akhal-Teke
The Ahkal-Teke is a Turkmenistan horse breed and is one of the oldest domesticated horse breeds. Their coat has a metallic sheen giving them their nickname, “Golden Horses”. Physically they are thin, have fine bones, and flat muscles. They are mostly found in Russia and Europe.

Akhal-Tekes have a shoulder height of 14-16 hands (56”-64” | 142-163 cm), an overall weight in the range of 900-1000 lb (408-454 kg) and a typical lifespan of 20 years. Akhal-Tekes have coat colors of Black, bay, red.

Set of standing side elevation drawings of the Akhal-Teke
Akhal-Teke
Height:
14-16 hands (56”-64” | 142-163 cm)
Width:
Length:
Depth:
Weight:
900-1000 lb | 408-454 kg
Area:
Coat Colors
Black, bay, red
Scientific Name
Lifespan
20 years (Typical)

Drawings include:
Akhal-Teke side elevation (standing), front (standing), side (running)

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Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis)
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Indian Rhinoceros compared to simliar Rhinoceros species

The Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is found in India and some parts of Nepal. It is easy to separate from their African relatives by its hide that resembles a natural body armor coat and a short single horn on the snout. It is also called the greater one-horned rhinoceros, Indian rhino, or great Indian rhinoceros. The coat or skin is thick and gray-brown with little body hair. The Indian rhinoceros is the second largest rhinoceros behind white rhinoceros with huge neck folds. Despite its massive size, it is nimble. The lip is fairly broad, suggesting it is a grazer but often becomes a browser during winter when there is little grass.

Indian Rhinoceros' have a total body length between 10.8’-12.5’ (3.3-3.8 m), standing shoulder height of 5.6’-6.7’ (1.7-2.05 m), body width of 3.6’-4.1’ (1.1-1.25 m), and typical weight in the range of 3,527-4,850 lb (1,600-2,200 kg). The horn of the Indian Rhinoceros has a length between 7.9”-23.6” (20-60 cm). Indian Rhinoceros' have lifespans between 35-45 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Indian Rhinoceros in front and side poses
The Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is found in India and some parts of Nepal. It is easy to separate from their African relatives by its hide that resembles a natural body armor coat and a short single horn on the snout. It is also called the greater one-horned rhinoceros.

Indian Rhinoceros' have a total body length between 10.8’-12.5’ (3.3-3.8 m), standing shoulder height of 5.6’-6.7’ (1.7-2.05 m), body width of 3.6’-4.1’ (1.1-1.25 m), and typical weight in the range of 3,527-4,850 lb (1,600-2,200 kg). The horn of the Indian Rhinoceros has a length between 7.9”-23.6” (20-60 cm). Indian Rhinoceros' have lifespans between 35-45 years.

Scaled collection of drawings of Indian Rhinoceros in front and side poses
Indian Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis)
Height:
5.6’-6.7’ | 1.7-2.05 m
Width:
3.6’-4.1’ | 1.1-1.25 m
Length:
10.8’-12.5’ | 3.3-3.8 m
Depth:
Weight:
3,527-4,850 lb | 1,600-2,200 kg
Area:

Horn Length: 7.9”-23.6” | 20-60 cm

Scientific Name
Rhinoceros unicornis
Lifespan
35-45 years

Drawings include:

Indian Rhinoceros side elevation, front

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Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis)
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Black Rhinoceros compared to simliar Rhino species

The Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) is gray-colored and not black. It falls under the family Rhinocerotidae, native to eastern and southern Africa. Much of the information we know about it is that it is critically endangered, but as for features, it is identified by the pointing upper lip suggesting that it is a browser. It also has two horns, good senses of smell, hearing, and eyesight. The black rhinoceros is a night feeder and also a wallower. Its skin is thick-layered, offering protection against sharp horns and thorns. Bulls are larger than cows that give birth to live calves. Besides, it is solitary except for females with their calves.

Black Rhinoceros' have a total body length between 9.8’-12.3’ (3-3.75 m), standing shoulder height of 4.9’-6.2’ (1.5-1.9 m), body width of 3’-3.6’ (.9-1.1 m), and a typical weight in the range of 1,764-3,086 lb (800-1,400 kg). The front horn of the Black Rhinoceros has a length between 19.7”-51.2” (50-130 cm) while the rear horn has a length of 7.9”-19.7” (20-50 cm). Black Rhinoceros' have lifespans between 30-50 years.

Set of scaled elevation drawings of the Black Rhinoceros viewed from the front and side
The Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) is gray-colored and not black. It falls under the family Rhinocerotidae, native to eastern and southern Africa. Much of the information we know about it is that it is critically endangered, but as for features, it is identified by the pointing upper lip.

Black Rhinoceros' have a total body length between 9.8’-12.3’ (3-3.75 m), standing shoulder height of 4.9’-6.2’ (1.5-1.9 m), body width of 3’-3.6’ (.9-1.1 m), and a typical weight in the range of 1,764-3,086 lb (800-1,400 kg). The front horn of the Black Rhinoceros has a length between 19.7”-51.2” (50-130 cm) while the rear horn has a length of 7.9”-19.7” (20-50 cm). Black Rhinoceros' have lifespans between 30-50 years.

Set of scaled elevation drawings of the Black Rhinoceros viewed from the front and side
Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis)
Height:
4.9’-6.2’ | 1.5-1.9 m
Width:
3’-3.6’ | .9-1.1 m
Length:
9.8’-12.3’ | 3-3.75 m
Depth:
Weight:
1,764-3,086 lb | 800-1,400 kg
Area:

Horn Length: 19.7”-51.2” | 50-130 cm (Front); 7.9”-19.7” | 20-50 cm (Rear)

Scientific Name
Diceros bicornis
Lifespan
30-50 years

Drawings include:

Black Rhinoceros side elevation, front

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