noun, plural: camelids
Camelids refer to the members of the family Camelidae. This family includes the camels, llamas, alpacas, guanacos and vicuñas. These ungulates can be classified into two major groups: the Old World and the New World. The Old World camelids are the true camels such as the dromedaries and the Bactrian camels. The two animals are characterized by their humps on their back and the dulla, which is an organ found on the throat of male camels and is believed to be associated with the display of dominance among males and for attracting females. The New World camelids include the llamas, alpacas, guanacos, and vicuñas.
The common features of camelids are their necks that are long and slender neck as well as their legs that are also long. Their feet have two toes and soft pads. Their upper lips are split into two independently mobile protrusions. They are ruminants but not like other ruminants the camelids have true canine teeth and tusk-like premolars. Their stomachs have three chambers in contrast to other ruminants that have four.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Artiodactyla
- Suborder: Tylopoda
- Family: Camelidae [Gray, 1821]