February 13, 2017 -- Yukon Musk Ox
A Musk Ox grazing in Yukon Territory near Whitehorse, YT.
This Arctic mammal noted for its thick coat can be found on the treeless tundra from Alaska east through northern Canada to Greenland. Their name is derived from the strong musky smell of the bulls that is omitted during the mating season in summer. The musky smell is used to attract females during breeding season.
Every spring, qiviut is combed from the musk ox and native knitters expertly turn it into hats, scarves, nachaqs (Eskimo smoke rings), and other clothing; the proceeds help supplement their subsistence lifestyle. Not only does qiviut feel great, but it’s exceptionally warm: It’s actually eight times warmer than sheep’s wool by weight.
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