Oryx, an antelope of Africa and the Middle East. There are three species—the Arabian, or white, oryx; the scimitar oryx; and the gemsbok. The oryx is creamy white with black or brown markings on the face, ears, and legs. It is 36 to 51 inches (0.9 to 1.3 m) high at the shoulder and weighs 200 to 450 pounds (90 to 200 kg). The oryx has short, broad ears that are rounded at the tips; a short, dark mane; and a long tail. Both sexes have ridged horns, which range in length from 24 to 54 inches (0.6 to 1.4 m). The horns are used defensively against predators. Oryxes live in herds of 20 to 100 animals. They feed on grasses and shrubs and can go long periods with little water.
The Arabian oryx and scimitar oryx are in danger of extinction due to loss of habitat and hunting for their horns and hides. The Arabian oryx disappeared from the wild in 1972 but has been bred in zoos; a population was reestablished in the wild in the 1980's.
Oryxes make up the genus Oryx of the family Bovidae The Arabian oryx is O. leucoryx, scimitar oryx, 0. dammah; gemsbok, 0. gazella.