Where do giraffes live?
Giraffes are found in arid and dry savanna zones south of the Sahara, wherever trees occur.
Tags: Botswana, Cameroon, DRC, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kazungula, Maasai Steppe, Regional Parc W, Samburu, East Africa, Southern Africa, West/Central Africa
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What are giraffes?
Giraffes are the world’s tallest mammals. They are uniquely adapted to reach vegetation inaccessible to other herbivores. The giraffe has unusually elastic blood vessels with a series of valves that help offset the sudden buildup of blood (and to prevent fainting) when its head is raised, lowered, or swung quickly. Giraffe "horns" are actually knobs covered with skin and hair above the eyes that protect the head from injury.
Giraffes are extremely picky eaters.
Although it feeds 16 to 20 hours a day, the giraffe may consume only about 65 pounds of foliage during that time. It can maintain itself on as little as 15 pounds of foliage per day. It will eat grass and fruits of various trees and shrubs, but its principal food source is the acacia tree.
They are not heavy drinkers.
Giraffes drink water when it is available, and they are able to survive in areas with scarce water.
Young giraffes are self-sufficient but vulnerable.
The 6-foot-tall calf grows rapidly, as much as an inch a day. By 2 months of age, the young giraffe is eating leaves and at 6 months, it is fairly independent of its mother. A young giraffe can even survive early weaning at 2 or 3 months. Although few predators attack adult giraffes, lions, hyenas, and leopards take their toll on the young. Scientists report that only a quarter of infants survive their first year of life.