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Elephant Gifts

Elephants are large land mammals in two genera of the family Elephantidae: Elephas and Loxodonta. Three species of elephant are living today: the African Bush Elephant, the African Forest Elephant and the Asian Elephant (also known as the Indian Elephant). The elephant has appeared in cultures across the world. They are a symbol of wisdom in Asian cultures and are famed for their memory and intelligence.

African elephants are distinguished from Asian elephants in several ways, the most noticeable being their much larger ears. In addition, the African elephant is typically larger than the Asian elephant and has a concave back. In Asian elephants only males have tusks, but both males and females of African elephants have tusks and are usually less hairy than their Asian cousins.

Elephant Facts

Elephant Overview

Elephants are the largest of all land mammals. There two primary kinds of elephants, Asian Elephants and African Elephants. Both, Asian and African Elephants are two of the largest land animals.

Asian Elephants are actually much smaller than African Elephants. Male African Elephants grow to a height of 10-13 feet and weigh approximately 15,000 lbs. Male Asian Elephants grow to a height of 10 feet and weigh approximately 11,000 lbs.

Elephants are herbivorous, meaning that elephants only eat plants, their diet consists of vegetation including grass, leaves, fruit and bark. Elephants spend an average of 16 hours a day eating.

Elephants have prehensile trunks. An elephants trunk has a whopping 100,000 muscles, giving it an amazing amount of flexibility. Elephants will sometimes use their tusks to fell trees and uproot shrubs. Elephants use their trunks to drink, trumpet, breath, grasp items, show affection, fighting and to smell. An elephants smell is highly developed. Elephants can communicate with each other at a distance of 5-6 miles, using low frequency calls that cannot be heard by humans.

The upper incisor in an elephant’s mouth forms long tusks made of ivory. All African Elephants have tusks while only Male Asian Elephants have tusks. An elephants tusks are an indication of an elephants age, as the tusks grow throughout the elephants life. Elephants have a complex social structure, they are affectionate and social. An elephant will show their affection by entwining trunks and caressing each other.

African Elephants have ears that are bigger than an Asian Elephant. Elephants use movement of their ears to signal anger or warn of danger. An Elephant’s ears are also use to control body temperature. Elephants use their ears as fans to cool their body in the heat of the day. An Elephant’s eyesight is relatively poor.

Adult male elephants are called bulls, while adult female elephants are cows and a baby elephant are referred to as a calves. Elephants form small family groups known as herds.The herd is usually lead by the most senior female elephant.

Male elephants are expelled from the herd at 12-15 years of age, while females mature sexually at 11 years of age and usually stay with their herd. The young males though they are sexually mature, do not actually mate until their mid 20’s.

Elephants typically only have a single calf at a time. An elephants gestation is 22 months. African Elephants give birth to a single calf every two to four years. A newborn African Elephant calf weigh 200 lbs and is around 3 feet tall. Orphaned calves are usually adopted by other females in the head. Elephant mothers are attentive keeping their offspring with them for many years.

Elephants have faced a depleting population in African due to overhunting and the spread of the desert. Elephants are able to adapt to almost any habitat but poachers have made their ability to thrive difficult.

Elephants typically live to 60-70 years

About the Author
Jacob Maddox manages content for Wildlife Animals an educational wildlife and animal website. Jacob also guest writes for Dog Pound

Elephant Gifts




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