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Title : Facts about Giraffe Previous topic PreviousNext Next topic

· Giraffe is the tallest animals in the world, with even new-born babies being taller than most humans.A giraffe's legs alone are taller than many humans—about 6 feet (1.8 meters). These long legs allow giraffes to run as fast as 35 miles (56 kilometers) an hour over short distances and cruise comfortably at 10 miles (16 kilometers) an hour over longer distances.

· Male giraffes weigh 3,000-4,000 lbs. and can reach 20 feet height; female giraffes weigh 1,500-2,500 lbs. and are about 14 feet tall; baby giraffes are 6 feet tall.

· Baby Giraffes can stand within half an hour and after only 10 hours can actually run alongside their family.

· Giraffes live for 10-15 years in the wild, but average 25 years at zoos.

· A giraffe is able to clean its ears with its own tongue.

· Giraffes only spend between 10 minutes and two hours asleep per day. They have one of the shortest sleep requirements of any mammal.

· Young giraffes hang out in nursery groups until they are around 5 months old, resting and playing together while their mothers forage in the distance.

· The hair that makes up a giraffes tail is about 10 times thicker than the average strand of human hair.

· Drinking is one of the most dangerous times for a giraffe. While it is getting a drink it cannot keep a look out for predators and is vulnerable to attack.

· Giraffes are sociable, peaceful animals which rarely fight. Males do perform a behavior called ‘necking’ where they will hit necks; however these encounters rarely last more than a couple of minutes and seldom result in injury.

· Giraffes spread their front legs in order to reach the water on ground level to drink—their tall necks are shorter than their legs.

· Giraffes’ mouth has a hard inner surface making it easy to eat thorny plants.

· When giraffes walk, they move both legs on one side of their body and then both legs on the other side; this is unique to giraffes. However, they run in a similar style to other mammals, swinging their rear legs and front legs in unison. They can reach 55 km/h (35 mph) at full speed but only in brief spurts.

· Even giraffes tongues are huge. They are up to 45cm long and are specially adapted to allow giraffes to forage on trees that other animals would avoid, such as acacias which are very thorny.

· Giraffes can eat up to 77 pounds (35 kilograms) of food every day. They do not eat meat, but prefer the leaves and tender shoots of trees and shrubs. Their favorite meal, the leaves and twigs of the thorny acacia tree, have all the nutrients a growing giraffe needs, except for calcium and salt. The leaves also contain a lot of water, making water holes much less of a necessity. With that kind of motivation, it's no wonder they like the acacia so much.

· The average giraffe's blood pressure is two or three times that of a healthy man.

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