The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary







This article is about the animal. See Yakovlev for the aircraft and Jeff Minter for the game designer.

|- | style="text-align:center;" | A drawing of a yak
|- style="text-align:center;" ! style="background: pink;" | Scientific classification |- style="text-align:center;" |

|- valign=top |Kingdom:||Animalia |- valign=top |Phylum:||Chordata |- valign=top |Class:||Mammalia |- valign=top |Order:||Artiodactyla |- valign=top |Family:||Bovidae |- valign=top |Genus:||Bos |- valign=top |Species:||gruniens |} |- style="text-align:center;" ! style="background: pink;" | Binomial name |- style="text-align:center;" |Bos gruniens
Linnaeus, 1766 |} The yak (Bos grunniens) is a long-haired humped domestic bovine found in Tibet and throughout the Himalayan region of south central Asia. The word yak refers to the male of the species; a female is a dri or nak.

Wild yak stand about two meters tall at the shoulder. Domestic yak are about half that height. Both types have long shaggy hair to insulate them from the cold. Wild yak can be either brown or black. Domesticated ones can also be white.

Domesticated yak are kept primarily for their milk (to make butter for lamps in Buddist monastries), meat and they are used as beasts of burden; transporting goods across mountain passes for local farmers and traders as well as in support of climbing and trekking expeditions. Often the pack animals are actually crossbreeds of the yak and Bos taurus (common domestic cattle). These are known in Tibetan as dzo or dzopkyo.

The yak grunts instead of mooing.

The wild yak is an endangered species.

Last updated: 05-02-2005 19:27:57