15 Cool Facts about Camels

*How the Camel Got Its Hump, a Golden Book

What you never knew about camels:

  1. There are 99 names of God in Islam. Somalis say, “Why does the camel smile? Because it knows the 100th name.”
  2. Camel pee can be as thick as syrup because they retain water.
  3. Camel milk is lower in fat and sugar than cow’s milk (unpasteurized, it can give you violent vomiting and runs. I know, I drank it in Somaliland and bore the consequences)
  4. A camel’s hump does not store water, it stores fat. (Tom knows, he ate camel hump, all fatty and jiggly with the former president of Somaliland)
  5. Camels have a double row of long, curly eyelashes to keep out sand and dust.
  6. Camels can drink up to 40 gallons of water at a time.
  7. One reason camels can go so long without water is because their red blood cells are oval-shaped. They flow, rather than clump, when the camel is dehydrated.
  8. Camel’s don’t start sweating until 41 degrees Celsius. (they sweat a lot in Djibouti, like everything else)
  9. Camels can go for up to two months without water.
  10. Camels can kick in all four directions with all four of their legs.


I will also add a few Somali-specific camel facts.

  1. A man is worth 100 camels.
  2. A woman is worth 50 camels.
  3. To be sure of something, one would pay even a female camel. (Somali proverb)
  4. There are more than 6 million camels in Somalia and Somaliland.
  5. There are 46 (or more) different Somali words for camel. (take that Eskimos and snow!)

Sources: Environmental Graffiti, First News World Explorer

Do you know anything else cool about camels?