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Camel

humped desert

Camel, 2 species of haired, cud-chewing animals with humped backs, long necks, and hooves. The 1-humped Arabian camel or dromedary (Camelus dromedarius) of Africa and the Middle East is a widely kept domestic animal. The 2-humped Bactrian camel (C. bactrianus) is found from Asia Minor to Manchuria, and a few still live wild in the Gobi Desert. Domesticated in Babylonia about 1100 B.C., camels are invaluable in the desert. They can carry enormous loads and are able to withstand the loss of about one third of their body fluid without danger. Their humps are fatty tissue, not water storage vessels. Their use as bearers has been greatly reduced by the use of motor vehicles.

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