Difference Between Deer And Antelopes

Taxonomically, both deer and antelopes belong to same order called Artiodactyla or Even-toed ungulates. In the even-toed animals, the weight of the body of the animal is borne by 3rd and 4th toe of the forefeet. Most of the four-footed animals belong to this order. Common examples are cows, goats, sheets, Buffaloes, Pigs, Camels, deers, antelopes etc.

In the Odd Toed animals, the weight of the body is borne by the third toe only. Common example of such animals is Horse.


Going down the taxonomical hierarchy, Deer belongs to family Cervidae (family of deers), while Antelopes or Gazelle belong to family Bovidae (family of cattle, sheep, water buffalo, and bison). While the male deer (and female reindeer) grow and shed new antlers each year, Antelope is permanently horned.  Antelopes also have a white streak down each side of the face and a dusky patch above the nose.

Common Examples of two families:

Common animals of these two families are as follows:

  • Deer Family: All kinds of deers including pudú and chital and except musk deer and mouse deer.
  • Antelopes: Gazelles, Blackbucks, Hangul, Chikkara, Nilgai, Tibetan Antelope (Chiru) etc.
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