The urial, also known as the arkars or shapo, is a subspecies group of the wild sheep. Six to nine subspecies can be recognized, differing in the size and color of the male’s winter neck-ruff, and the color of its saddle patch and its horn shape. Males have massive horns, the females’ horns being much smaller. Their hair is generally brownish red, and males have white ‘beards’ below their mouth, while females are usually the same color over their whole body, with the exception of their legs near the hooves.
Urials show such genetic variation, both within and between populations, that it is hard for taxonomists to agree upon their classification. Some zoologists give these sheep the taxonomic name of O. vignei; others suggest . Mouflons have also been classified as urials by some zoologists, but others have recently split them into separate species.