All About Elephants *Video*

Who doesn’t love elephants?! I recently came across an adorable video of a baby elephant playing in the ocean for the first time. Then I found a fascinating article in Nature on the discovery of elephant speech patterns and 70 different vocal sounds. Both have fueled my adoration of all things elephant!

Elephants, Etosha, photo by GoErinGoFirst, some fun elephant facts!

We all know that elephants are the largest living land mammal, but did you know that elephants’ closest relative are the hyraxes, aardvarks, and manatees. (What? Really?!)

And elephants:

  • Live between 50 and 70 years
  • Sleep a maximum of 4 hours per night
  • Run at speeds up to 40 mph
  • Grow tusks that can reach 10 feet length and 200 pounds in weight
  • Spend about 16 hours a day eating plants
  • Consume up to 600 lbs of food a day
  • Poop upwards of 330 lbs of dung every day

Now, the adorable baby elephant video:

Can’t see this video? Click on this link: Baby Elephant Frolicking in Ocean

And finally the difference between African and Asian elephants:

There are three species of elephants: the African bush elephant, the African forest elephant, and the Asian elephant. Historically, they’ve inhabited 37 African countries and 13 Asian countries. Here’re the differences between the African and the Asian versions:

African elephant Asian elephant
Weight Up to 7000 kg (more than 15,000 lbs) Up to 6,000 kg (more than 13,000 lbs)
Shoulder height 4 m (more than 12 feet) 3.5 m (more than 11 feet)
Skin More wrinkled Smoother
Number of ribs Up to 21 pairs Up to 20 pairs
Size of the ears Bigger Smaller
Shape of the head Not crumpled from the front to the back, no humped structures, no dent Crumpled from the front to the back, with humped structures on the top of the head, forehead dented
Tusks Existing with both sexes. Bigger with the males Males in many cases have tusks; Females have only rudimentary tusks
Food Mainly leaves Mainly grass
Trunk End Has 2 fingers Has 1 finger
Toenails Foreleg 4 or rarely 5
Hind leg 3 or rarely 4
Foreleg 5
Hind leg 4 or rarely 5

Now, I dare you to disagree with me on the delightful nature of our large-eared trunked friends!

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This entry was posted on Thursday, October 24th, 2013 and is filed under Africa.

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