SEP 26, 2018 12:36 AM PDT

Why Do Some Animals Have Those Heavy Antlers?


Many species of animals have their own antlers, such as moose and reindeer, but it turns out those long horns are actually quite heavy. With all the strain that added weight puts on the animal's neck muscles, why exactly do they have them in the first place when many other animals don't have any at all?

It turns out that reindeer actually shed their antlers on an annual basis, which helps them to keep their antlers from getting too heavy. Yes, this means they can actually fall off their heads and need to grow back.

During certain parts of the year, the antlers can be useful, but during others when the predators are out and about, they need to be more stealthy and able to maneuver themselves better. Having those heavy antlers do nothing but slow them down, which isn't exactly a plus.

Reindeer use their antlers for self-defense, just like a number of other antlered animals, but they also help with mating. Antlers act as a type of ornamentation, which helps females to choose the best-looking males.

While antlers are certainly weird, they make reindeer distinct and easy to recognize. But now you know a little bit more about those iconic antlers.
About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
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