The Alpine Ibex Name.


Its names in various European languages are French bouquetin, Italian stambecco, Slovene kozorog, German Steinbock, and Dutch steenbok. Confusingly the Dutch word has entered the English language (via Afrikaans) not for this animal, but as the name for an unrelated species of African antelope, the steenbok (Raphicerus campestris).

alpine-ibex.Since the discovery of the Alpine Ibex, the graceful and pristine animal has been regarded by many as a mystical animal from the alpine forests. There was a time where every part of the Alpine Ibex’s body, even its excrements, were very much valued and coveted as it was believed to be a cure for many different illnesses as well as an ingredient for incantations, salves, and magical potions.

Because of such beliefs in all history since the Alpine ibex has been discovered, there became a time when the beautiful beast was almost extinct. This event came at around the beginning of the 19th century. But thanks to a lot of efforts given by many small groups of foresters and activists, its very few remaining population in Gran Paradiso became protected in 1816. Victor Emmanuel II of Italy even placed the ibex under his very own personal custory in 1854, further extending the protection of the animal.

These days, the Alpine ibex’s remaining numbers are being subject to an extensive amount of reintroduction programs, and is still ongoing up to now. These days, the Alpine ibex’s numbers have increased from only a handful remaining to a healthy amount at present, which is an estimated amount of about 30,000.