Updated: May 9, 2022
Elephants are magnificent animals and are extremely intelligent. Here are some facts about these beautiful creatures.
Asian V African elephants
Asian elephants are slightly smaller than African elephants and have smaller ears as a result. Their skin is typically dark grey or brown, with pink or yellow spots on the cheeks, ears, and trunk.
The African elephant boasts the world's largest brain, weighing up to 5 kg! When you consider how much an elephant weighs (Asian elephants weigh around 5400kg, while African elephants can weigh up to 6000kg! ), this is incredible. When calculated as a percentage of our overall body weight, however, the human brain is larger.
Elephants live for 50 to 70 years on average, yet the world's oldest known elephant died at the age of 86.
Elephants can be spotted grazing on a variety of plant life for up to 16 hours a day. Adult elephants eat for roughly 16 hours a day, consuming up to 300 kilogrammes of food and 160 litres of water per day.
Elephant babies are born blind and rely on their trunks and mothers for assistance.
Elephants can walk at a speed of roughly 4 miles per hour and can swim for great distances. However, they are the only animal that cannot jump. Elephants have been recorded running at 15 mph, although it is thought that they might run as fast as 25 mph over a short sharp distance.
Elephants have six sets of molar teeth, which are essential to their existence. The animal becomes unable to feed after the last set is gone, and eventually dies of famine.
The trunk of an elephant is a powerful multi-tool. It serves as a hand to grip things, as well as a nose for smelling, breathing, and trumpeting. It is sensitive enough to pick up a blade of grass and strong enough to rip the limbs off a tree. Elephants can suck up to 14 litres of water into their trunks at a time and then blow the water into their mouths to drink. They often use their trunks to shower themselves with water and mud when bathing. The trunk has over 40,000 muscles! Elephants use their trunks to improve their sense of smell.
Elephants' skin is extremely sensitive, thus they utilise mud as a sunscreen. They need to take mud baths on a frequent basis to avoid sunburn, insect bites, and moisture loss.
Elephant feet have a soft padding that helps maintain their weight while also preventing sliding and dampening the sound of their footfall. As a result, despite their enormous weight, elephants can walk nearly softly.
The tusks of an elephant continue to develop throughout their lives. Each year, an adult male's tusk grows roughly 7 inches.
Female elephants spend their entire lives with the same herd. Males only stay with the herd until they are between the ages of 12 and 15. Male elephants then have the option of joining a "bachelor" herd or living alone.
Elephants also use their feet to listen to sub-sonic rumblings created by other elephants through ground vibrations. They have been observed listening by carefully arranging their feet and placing their trunks on the ground.
Elephants have a variety of methods to communicate, including body signals and infrared rumbles that can be heard from miles away. They have their own language and grammar, based on their comprehension of syntax.
Elephants have the longest gestation period of all mammals, lasting two years. Having a baby elephant is also a significant commitment. If you're wondering how much an elephant weighs at birth, the answer is a whopping 120kg!
Elephants are very intelligent animals and can show empathy, compassion, self-awareness, and grief.
Elephants' vast cerebral cortex helps them to be excellent problem solvers, which they demonstrate in a variety of ways.
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