musk ox


musk ox

noun

Definition of MUSK OX

:  a heavyset shaggy-coated wild ox (Ovibos moschatus) of tundra regions of Greenland, Canada, and Alaska with the males producing a strong musky odor from glands beneath the eyes

Illustration of MUSK OX

First Known Use of MUSK OX

1744

musk ox

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Musk oxen (Ovibos moschatus).—Leonard Lee Rue III

Arctic ruminant (bovid species Ovibos moschatus) with a musky odour, large head, and small ears. The neck, legs, and tail are short. Males stand 5 ft (1.5 m) tall and may weigh almost 900 lb (400 kg). Both sexes have horns. The broad-based horns of males, up to 2 ft (60 cm) long, start at the middle of the head, dip downward along the sides, and then curve upward. The shaggy, dark brown coat reaches nearly to the feet. Eskimos make a fine cashmerelike cloth from the thick wool undercoat, which is shed in summer. Musk oxen travel in herds of 20–30, eating grass, lichen, willow, and other low-growing plants.

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