First Pic of an Okapi Residing in the African Rainforest
11 September 2008
First picture of the African Okapi in their natural habitat:
This animal is home to the Democratic Republic of Congo and they are usually only seen at zoos. These pictures have now proved their continued existence in their natural habitat. There are some zoos including the Brookfield Zoo that are home to some of these rare animals. History tells that they were known to the Europeans as the "African unicorn" because of the bump that resides on their forehead. No one outside of Africa knew of their existence until 1900. They are descendants of the giraffe sharing the characteristics of the dark tongue and hair covered horn on the top of their heads. Their stripped skin also resembles a zebra. They primary live in the rain forest and are also known as forest giraffes. They like to live in high altitudes deep in the forest and herbivores.
The Okapi are not an endangered species but because of their unique skins, they are illegally hunted and are in danger of extinction in the near future. Another concern for them is the continuing development, mining, and farming that invades their homes.