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Mule

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Mule Facts

Kingdom:
Five groups that classify all living things
Animalia
Phylum:
A group of animals within the animal kingdom
Chordata
Class:
A group of animals within a pylum
Mammalia
Order:
A group of animals within a class
Perissodactyla
Family:
A group of animals within an order
Equidae
Genus:
A group of animals within a family
Equus
Scientific Name:
Comprised of the genus followed by the species
Equus Mule
Type:
The animal group that the species belongs to
Mammal
Diet:
What kind of foods the animal eats
Herbivore
Size:
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is
1.2-1.5m (47-59in)
Weight:
The measurement of how heavy the animal is
350-450kg (771-992lbs)
Top Speed:
The fastest recorded speed of the animal
24km/h (15mph)
Life Span:
How long the animal lives for
15-20 years
Lifestyle:
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable
Herd
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct
Least Concern
Colour:
The colour of the animal's coat or markings
Grey, Brown, Black
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal
Fur
Favourite Food:Grass
Habitat:
The specific area where the animal lives
Arid forests and deserts
Average Litter Size:
The average number of babies born at once
0
Main Prey:Grass, Weeds, Vegetables
Predators:
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal
Fox, Wolf, Lion
Special Features:Stocky body and long snout and ears

Mule Location

Map of Mule Locations

Mule

A mule is the result of the mating of a male donkey (jack) and a female horse (mare) to produce a hybrid. The much rarer hinny is the result of mating a female donkey (jennet) with a male horse (stallion) although the hinny is much harder to produce than the mule. The jennet's reproductive system is more efficient at detecting and eliminating foreign DNA than the mare's is. The hinny conception rate is lower and the miscarriage rate is higher. It really isn't possible to distinguish a mule from a hinny by appearance.Mules are anatomically normal and show normal breeding behavior unless gelded (castrated) early in life.

Mules are sterile due to an uneven chromosome count. There are have been a very few rare cases since the 1500s where female mules have been known to produce a foal when mated to a stallion or jack. Males are completely sterile, and as an old muleman said,"Ain't nothing meaner than a stud mule!"

Mules are commonly found around the world in any area where there are donkeys and horses inhabiting the same environment. Mules have been bred by humans for use as riding and pack animals, and for ploughing or any work one does with horses.

The mule's body type and temperament depend on the breed of mare and jack used. Huge draft mules are created by breeding draft horses such as Belgians to Mammoth jacks. They have the size and power of the draft horse with the mule's ability to tolerate heat and less feed. Racing mules are produced using Throughbred mares, and trail mules are often produced from Quarter horses, Paint horses, and Appaloosas. Mules come in any horse or donkey color or combination of both. A mule is easily distinguished from a donkey by looking at the tail. A mule's tail is haired all the way to the top like a horse's tail; a donkey's tail has a tuft on the end like a cow. They compete successfully with horses in all venues including dressage.

The mule has the patience, endurance, sure footedness, sense, and drought tolerance of the donkey, combined with the size, speed, strength and courage of the horse. Operators of working animals generally find mules preferable to horses as mules have harder skin that is less sensitive than that of horses, meaning that mules can deal with climate extremes such as strong sun and rain more easily. They require less food and water than a horse of the same size. The mules hooves are harder than horses hooves, and both the mule and the mules hooves show a natural resistance to disease and insects.

Mule Comments

Anonymous
"working animals are a very important source to the working people that can work with the land with less impact to the enviroment best wishes to you thanks for yor coments on this issue...mcm"
brett
"I got all the information I need to make my zoo."
Lisa Medors
"Just because man bred the mule, donkey etc does not give then the right to use them to tote people up and down the mountain. Their hooves are harder, skin harder...does not give anyone the right to use them. If a human cant do it, why is it ok for a mule? I wonder what God wants. So the next time your going up the mountain on the back of an animal, think about could you do it. How tired they must get."
karilin yiu
"very good details that all relate to the topic"
Showing 4 of 4 comments.

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First Published: 17th December 2008, Last Updated: 9th January 2017 [View Sources]

Sources:
1. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 17 Dec 2008]
2. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2011]
3. David W. Macdonald, Oxford University Press (2010) The Encyclopedia Of Mammals [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2010]
4. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 17 Dec 2008]
5. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2009]
6. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 17 Dec 2008]

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