Camels are rather intriguing beasts, in terms of shape, drinking habits and manners. (Don’t believe anyone who tells you that a spitting camel is professing its love when it spits at you and they make human tongue curling seem a primitive art, these guys can blow their tongues into bubbles or something like that).
There are two types of camel, although the one humped version is perhaps the one that comes to mind sooner. They have rather fancy proper names, they are the Bactrian and the dromedary. I can remember the name ‘dromedary’ but the ‘Bactrian’ never seems to stay in my mind. It’s a rather funny word and I tend to merge it with germy words like bacteria which makes it slightly off-putting. Now which is the Bactrian and which is the dromedary is definitely something I can’t remember.
Then I met a brilliant mnemonic the other day to remember which is which. Just in case identifying camels is something you need to do regularly, you know. (It was my husband who told me it but I’m not going to try to praise him too much!)
Draw out a capital B and then a capital D. Turn them on their side. You have two camels.
The Bactrian camel has two humps. It’s the capital B. (B for Bactrian)
The dromedary camel has one hump. It’s the capital D. (D for dromedary)
I love word pictures!
Oh and even better, camels belong to the family of even-toed ungulates. That’s a great name.