What are the interesting features of giraffes, the tallest land animal?« Back to Questions List

Giraffes known for their long necks are the tallest land animals. The legs are about 6 feet long and length of the neck ranges from about 1.5 – 1.8 meters. Though very heavy, the neck is very much flexible and can move back and forth as well as to and fro. Their tongue can also stretch as far as 18 inches to munch on even the highest hanging leaf. Giraffes have four stomachs. Their main habitat is grasslands or open woodlands in African Savannas. 


giraffe, tallest animal, land

Giraffe males are known as bulls. An average male’s height is 5.3 meters and that of a female is 4.3 meters. The animal has a specialized cardiovascular system which allows blood to travel a very long distance from the heart to all other parts. Giraffes possess a supercharged, powerful heart that is quite different compared to other animals. 

How the cardio vascular system has adapted to produce a high blood pressure is actually unknown. The blood must overcome the downward pressure caused by gravity before it could reach the head. The blood pressure of a giraffe is almost twice as compared to other mammals. Their blood vessels are equipped with special valves that prevent blood from back tracking due to gravity. Giraffes have a higher concentration of red blood cells. They are known for large hearts and tighter skin. The large heart helps circulate blood better. In their legs, the skin is very tight and blood vessels are under great pressure. There are elastic blood vessels in the brain that prevents the blood from swelling when they bend over.

Giraffes only sleep for about 10 minutes to two hours. They need to drink water only once every few days. They get most of their water from the plants they feed on. They are more sociable mammals whose spots help identify their age. The darker the spot, older is the giraffe.



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