Gazella dorcas isabella
Named for the Isabella or isabelline color, a grayish-yellow or light buff.
DESCRIPTION Shoulder height 24-25 inches (61-64 cm). Weight 45-50 pounds (20-23 kg).
The isabelline gazelle is a larger race of dorcas gazelle. The general color is brownish, the flank band may be indistinct, the upper surface of the tail is reddish brown rather than black, and older individuals may develop a dark nose spot. The shape of the horns is very variable, but tends to be other than perfectly lyrate, with the tips turned sharply inward.
DISTRIBUTION Eritrea, including the Anseba and Barka valleys to about 5,000 feet (1,500 m) elevation; then southward in Ethiopia through the eastern Danakil Desert and lower Awash Valley to about the northern border of Djibouti.
Boundaries with the Eritrean gazelle to the north are not clear, but, for simplicity in record keeping, we use the Eritrea/Sudan border.
TAXONOMIC NOTES Includes beccarii (Anseba and Barka valleys in Eritrea), and isabella (Red Sea coast south of Suakin), with isabella Gray, 1846 having priority.
Some authorities believe that dorcas gazelles from the Danakil region of Ethiopia are intermediate in character between isabella and pelzelni (Pelzeln gazelle). For record keeping, we treat them as isabella.
Many authorities now lump the isabelline (isabella) and Eritrean (littoralis) gazelles, using the common name Eritrean gazelle and subspecific name isabella, as isabella Gray, 1846 has priority. But for now we continue to list them separately, because each is a traditional hunting category.