Threatened Mammals Of Saudi Arabia

The Arabian oryx is one of the threatened mammals of Saudi Arabia.
The Arabian oryx is one of the threatened mammals of Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia, officially known as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is located in western Asia with an estimated area of 830,000 square miles making it the fifth largest country in Asia with a population of 28.7 million. It has two coastal regions one being the red sea coast and another being the Persian Gulf coast whereas, some parts of the state contain very inhabitable desert which life cannot thrive in. The kingdom was founded in 1932 and ever since has faced criticism due to gender inequality and poor status of women in the community.

Threatened Mammals Of Saudi Arabia

Asiatic Lion

The Asiatic lion, scientifically known as Panthera Leo persica, is a lion subspecies from the family of Felidae and the species of P.leo. This sub-species exhibit sexual dimorphism, the male adult lion weighs up to 190kg and is approximately 113 inches long while the female lion which weighs up to 120kg and is 111 inches long. The Lions live in pride, hunt in groups, and are less sociable with other members of a different pride or group. Due to the ever decreasing numbers of this subspecies, sanctuaries have been built for both their protection and the surrounding community.

Arabian Tahr

The Arabian Tahr, scientifically known as Arabitragus jayakari, is a species of Tahr from the family of Bovidae native to Arabia. It is the smallest species of tahr with red-brown hair, backward arching horns, and manes in males which grow longer depending on its age. The Arabian Tahr is mainly found in higher altitudes of up to 5,906 feet above sea level, grouped into two or three individuals. It is a herbivorous animal feeding on mainly grass, leaves, fruits, and shrubs with a short gestation period of up to 145 days.

Arabian Oryx

The Arabian Oryx, scientifically known as Oryx leucoryx, is a medium sized antelope from the Bovidae Family. It is the smallest member of the Oryx genus with long straight horns, tufted tail, and a shoulder bump. The Arabian Oryx (both male and female) has a height of approximately 39 inches, body weight of up to 70kg, and an estimated 30 inches long horns. It is a herbivorous animal adapted to a semi- arid environment as they can go weeks without water.


The Dugong, scientifically known as the Dugong dugon, is a herbivorous marine mammal from the family of Dugongidae. It is mainly found in the warm coast areas, waters, and habitats like the mangroves which support the growth of seagrass meadows. It has a large cylindrical body with paddle-like forelimbs, dolphin-like tail, a downturned skull and teeth for feeding on the grass but do not have hind limbs nor a dorsal fin.

Threats Facing The Mammals Of Saudi Arabia

The Asiatic lion has been on a continuous decrease due to epidemics, large forest fires, or even poaching and this has been solved by the creation of sanctuaries and their re-introduction to their former habitats. The Arabian Tahr has been listed as an endangered species due to poaching, habitat destruction, and overgrazing; this has been dealt with by education of the populace on its protection. The Arabian Oryx has faced major threats of extinction due to its widespread hunting, but the remaining number were captured in sanctuaries and zoos have helped in its conservation. The Dugong have been hunted in the past for their meat, oil, skin, and bones, efforts have been put in place to ensure their safety and non-extinction.

Threatened Mammals Of Saudi Arabia

Threatened Mammals of Saudi ArabiaScientific Name
Arabian JirdMeriones arimalius
Asiatic LionPanthera leo persica
Nubian IbexCapra nubiana
Arabian TahrArabitragus jayakari
Arabian OryxOryx leucoryx
DugongDugong dugon
Geoffroy's BatMyotis emarginatus
Sind BatEptesicus nasutus
Patrizi's Trident Leaf-Nosed Bat
Asellia patrizii
Goitered GazelleGazella subgutturosa

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