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Majestic African Elephants In The Wild

Updated on June 4, 2017

A Statuesque African Elephant

African Elephants Are Massive

African Elephants are grizzled and wrinkled like very old trees, and they move in perfect rhythm to Africa’s awesomeness. African Elephants are part of the big five game animals in Africa. Their scientific name is Loxodonta Africana. They are massive, powerful and so robust, and they’re also incredibly beautiful. They look a bit like grey tanks. There were a few million African Elephants at the turn of the 20th century, but these days, there are about 450 000 to 700 000 African Elephants. Their numbers are dwindling, because they’re being killed for their ivory tusks. This is really tragic, because they’re so magnificent, and totally fascinating.

Elephants Form Deep Family Bonds

Elephants live in snug matriarchal family groups of related females, which is called a herd. They form such deep family bonds. The oldest, and often biggest female in the herd, known as a matriarch, leads the herd. There are eight to a hundred elephants in a herd. The size of herds depends on terrain and also on family size. Elephants have poor eyesight. They are very clever animals. Their sense of smell and hearing is fantastic. They have memories that span so many years. This fantastic memory helps matriarchs well in the dry seasons when they have to guide their herds, often for tens of miles, to watering holes that they recall from their past. Elephants produce a sub-sonic rumble that can travel over the ground quicker than sound through air, and this is how they communicate over long distances. Other elephants get the messages through the sensitive skin on their trunks and feet. It is thought that potential mates and social groups communicate in this manner. Elephants also show signs of happiness, anger, grief and play. When they flap their huge ears, it’s an awesome sight ! Elephants have a musky smell, and they move with noiseless grace. In the evenings, they like sloshing in muddy pools, and then they spray one another joyfully with their trunks.

Two Elephant Calves With Their Mother

The Trunk Of An Elephant

An elephant’s trunk weighs about 250 kilograms and is a phalanx of tens of thousands of muscle units. By using its trunk, it can uproot a tree, break an enemy or delicately lift a marula berry from the ground. An elephant’s trunk is extremely powerful. It’s also highly sensitive and movable. By holding its trunk high in the air, it can sense odours in the wind. An elephant sucks water into its trunk, and then it squirts the water into its mouth, or over its body.

The Tusks Of An Elephant

In dry seasons, elephants often gouge into the wood of a Baobab tree with their tusks to get at the moisture within. An elephant’s tusks is quite spectacular. Males have larger tusks than females.

Elephants Are Intelligent

Elephants have the biggest brains in the kingdom of animals. African savannah elephants can be found in savannah areas in 37 countries south of the Sahara Desert, and there are many African forest elephants in the dense rainforests of Central and West Africa. The African Elephant is the biggest of all land mammals. It is quite incredible that they can swim for long distances. They live for about seventy years. They eat leaves, grass, roots, bark and they’re also known to eat crops like sugarcane and bananas, which are grown by farmers. Adult elephants eat 300 to 495 pounds of food and drink 200 liters of water per day. They spend around 16 hours per day eating food. They sleep for only three to four hours per day, and their calls can be heard over a range of a hundred square miles, which is quite amazing. Elephants can be tamed, and once they are tame, some people ride on their backs. They’re also being used for different types of work. For elephants, mating occurs mostly during the rainy season. The gestation period is twenty two months. The weight of a male elephant is 6000-15000 lbs, and the height of a male elephant is 5-14 feet at the shoulders. Females are smaller than males. The length of an elephant is up to 30 feet trunk to tail.

A Beautiful Elephant Calf

The Calf Of An Elephant

Elephants can give birth every three to four years. The litter size is one calf (twins are rare). A calf is raised and protected by the whole matriarchal herd when it is born. When they’re between the ages of twelve to fifteen, males leave the family unit, and they may lead solitary lives, or live temporarily with other males. At birth, a calf weighs between 200-250 lbs, and its trunk has no muscle tone, so it suckles through its mouth. A calf will gain full control of its trunk, but it takes a few months. A calf gets breastfed by its mother until it is four years old. A mother elephant is extremely protective of her calf. When there’s danger, she lovingly scoops her calf up with her trunk.

An African Elephant In Its Natural Environment

A Blissful Experience

For a truly blissful and unique experience, you may want to visit one of many wonderful and luxurious game reserves in Southern, Eastern, Western or Central Africa, where you can view the African Elephant, and the other big five game animals, while you soak up the lovely atmosphere of Africa. It’s what glorious memories are made of !


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