Animal Facts, Clever Kids Corner

All About Giraffes

Giraffes, known for their long necks, graceful glide and calm demeanor. Here are some awesome facts about giraffes!

Habitat

  • Giraffes are found in the dry savannahs of Africa, where they roam among the open plains and woodlands.
  • Giraffe are already extinct in at least seven countries in Africa.
  • A giraffe’s height is helpful for keeping a look out for predators, such as lions and hyenas. Their excellent eyesight allows them to spot hungry beasts from far away, too.
  • Giraffes spend 16 or more hours per day eating and traveling to find food.

Body Structure

  • Well known for their long necks, these gentle giants are the world’s tallest living land animals. An adult male can grow to around 5.5m – that’s taller than three adult humans!
  • Giraffe tongues are bluish-purple and between 45 and 50 cm long.
  • A giraffe’s neck is too short to reach the ground. To drink, giraffe first have to splay their forelegs and/or bend their knees, and only then can they lower their necks to reach the surface of the water.
  • A giraffe heart weighs approximately 11 kilograms and is the biggest of any land mammal. It is used to pump 60 litres of blood around its body every minute at a blood pressure twice that of an average human.
  • The spots on giraffes are unique, no two giraffes spots are the same, just like humans – no two fingerprints are the same.
  • The giraffe is the tallest mammal in the world. Even newborn giraffe are taller than most humans.
  • A male giraffe is called a Bull, baby giraffes are called Calves and females are called Cows.

Diets

  • Herbivores, giraffes only eat plants. Their favorite food is the acacia tree, and they use their long necks to reach the leaves and buds in the treetops. Their long tongues (which grow to a whopping 53cm!) also help them pull down leaves growing way up high.
  • And boy do these guys have an appetite! They spend most of their time eating, and can guzzle up to 45kg of leaves and twigs a day!
  • Whilst they may eat a lot, giraffes don’t drink much water. This is because they get most of their water from their leafy meals, and only need to drink once every few days.

Thanks to Nat Geo Kids , Giraffe Conservation!

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