Giraffes are mainly found in open woodlands and grasslands since they like open spaces where they can roam freely. They can mostly be found in East Africa or in reserves like Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park and Kenya’s Amboseli National Park.
Giraffes are the tallest mammals on the planet, known commonly for their extremely long necks. The males can grow up to 5.5 meters, while the females can grow up to 4.5 meters tall. Their height is an evolutionary trait to help them reach the top foliage almost 6 meters above the ground.
They manage to reach so high because of their half a meter long tongue that can wrap itself around any leaf to eat. They also have really long legs and beautiful patterns of irregular brown patches on a contrasting light, fawn-skin. Fun fact: every giraffe has a different pattern just like human fingerprints!
Giraffes live in groups of up to 20 as they like to roam around together. They are non-territorial creatures preferring to live in harmony. Their home ranges are usually pretty small in wetter areas but can go to 1,500 square km in drier regions.
Giraffes are really social animals, which also helps them stay vigilant for any predators. They also have excellent vision and work together to raise the alarm about prey. They live up to almost 26 years but can live longer in captivity.
Their diet consists of new leaves and shoots, mostly from the Acacia tree. They love to eat! They can easily consume up to 65 kgs of food per day. Female giraffes, also known as cows, eat more low-fiber, high energy things. A coat of tough tissues provides protection to the inside of their mouth and tongue.
They pull the leaves into their mouths with their prehensile tongue or lips. They get most of their water from their food, but they need to drink at least once every three days in dry seasons. They reach the ground with their heads by spreading their forelegs apart.
Giraffes are beautiful, gentle creatures but their habitats continue to shrink due to human activity. They are also hunted for their skin and meat. Even their favorite Acacia trees are being chopped down to make way for settlements and roads. It is important to protect these animals from harm since they are such stunning creatures.