Muskox

Musk-Ox  (Ovibos moschatus ).—The Musk-ox, or Musk-Sheep, has its home in central Asia and Arctic America. The male has in its upper jaw two incisors in the shape of tusks, and in a gland of its abdomen the well-known, strong-scented musk. In the forests of the Himalayas it is found at elevations of upwards of eight thousand five hundred feet. A full-grown animal weighs about four hundred and fifty pounds. They live in herds, and feed on mosses, leaves and underbrush.

The quaint and complex musk ox, a lone relic of a past era now exiled to the remotest north, is a connecting link between the sheep and the cattle, the last and best of the ruminants. Here, as elsewhere, the style of the horns is characteristic of the group—slender, backward curved or twisted, and somewhat compressed or keeled, in most antelopes; heavy, cross-ridged, triangular in section and often spiral in the sheep and goats; rough and helmetlike in the musk ox and some buffaloes; and in the oxen round, smooth and always springing from the side of the skull. The cattle fall into three groups: buffaloes, bisons, and oxen.