Tamaraw are dark brown to grayish in color small hoofed mammals with short and stocky limbs. There are white markings in the hooves and the inner lower forelegs. Most of the members of the species also have a pair of gray-white strips that begins from the inner corner of the eye to the horns. The nose and lips have black skin. The ears have white markings on the insides. Both males and females have short black horns in a V-shaped manner; the horns have flat surfaces and are triangular at their base.
Tamaraw are native to the island of Mindoro in the Philippines. They prefer tropical highland forested areas and are usually found in thick brush, near open-canopied glades. Within their mountainous environment, tamaraws will usually be found not far from sources of water. They live in moist areas such as marshes and grasslands.
Tamaraw are naturally diurnal animals, however, recently they became nocturnal in order to avoid human contact. They are generally solitary and do not occur in herds or smaller packs and are often found alone. Only juveniles may gather in herds and establish hierarchy. Males and females may associate all year round but this interaction lasts only a few hours. Males are often solitary and apparently aggressive while adult females can be alone, accompanied by a bull, or three young of different ages. Similar to other bovines, tamaraw enjoy mud wallowing; it is thought that this behavior helps the animals to avoid biting insects. Another distinct behavior in tamaraw is their fierceness. When threatened they lower the head and shake their horns. They may also chase one another.
Little is known about the mating system in tamaraw. They breed from December to May and females give birth to a single calf. The gestation period lasts around 300 days. Calves are born reddish-brown in color and get darker closer to 3-4 years of age. Young usually stay around 2-4 years with their mother before becoming independent. Females stay with mothers longer than males.
The biggest threat to tamaraw is habitat loss due to infrastructure development, logging, and agriculture. Hunting for food and sustenance is another serious threat that affected the species' numbers. Tamarw also suffer from poaching and diseases from livestock.
According to the IUCN Red List, the total population size of tamaraw is around 220-300 mature individuals. This species’ numbers are decreasing and it is currently classified as Critically Endangered (CR) on the IUCN Red List.