- Feral camels in Australia
- More than 1 million total number
- Australia ()
The largest population of camels in the wild, estimated at more than 1 million individuals as of 2023, is found in neither Arabia nor Mongolia, the traditional homelands of genuinely wild camels, but instead in the Australian desert. According to the Northern Territory government's website, the population may double every nine years or so if left unchecked. From the 1840s until the early 1900s, camels were imported into Australia principally for transportation purposes in the country’s hot, arid deserts. As technology advanced, however, the camels were no longer needed as much and, consequently, many were released or escaped into the desert, where they bred and thrived in a feral state.
Camels in Australia are feral, not wild. Feral animals are domesticated animals living in the wild after escaping domestication or captivity.The only true wild camel as recognized by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which controls the Red Book of Endangered Species, is Camelus ferus – the double-humped camel, which separated from any other form of camel over 700,000 years ago. As of 2017, there are only approximately 900–1,000 individuals in the wild in north-west China and south-west Mongolia, and the IUCN lists it as critically endangered.