Scimitar-horned oryx Oryx dammah once ranged across North Africa but are believed to be extinct in the wild and currently live only in zoos. The good news for the future of these animals is that there are several successful breeding herds in zoos. San Diego Zoo Global has had over 500 scimitar-horned oryx births, a world record! Perhaps one day these animals can be reintroduced to the wild.
Arabian oryx Oryx leucoryx are endangered. Sadly, this antelope of the Arabian Peninsula and Sinai Desert became extinct in the wild by the late 1960s, mostly due to hunters with high-powered rifles. In an effort to help save these animals, nine Arabian oryx from private collections in Oman, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia, as well as from the London Zoo, were moved to the Phoenix Zoo in Arizona. These nine oryx became known as the World Herd. A second breeding group of three oryx, from a zoo in Saudi Arabia, was started at the Los Angeles Zoo, and in the 1970s, animals from both of these herds were sent to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.
As of 2012, 359 Arabian oryx have been born at the Park! In one of the great success stories of conservation, Arabian oryx have been returned to Oman and Jordan for reintroduction in their native range.