Category: Herbivore

Location: Foot Safari

About Giraffes 

Giraffes are the tallest animal on Earth and it’s their height that allows them to feed on the tops of trees. A 45cm tongue enables them to grab at leaves and avoid thorny branches. 

Giraffes can be found in arid and drier regions of African Savannah wherever trees grow. They don’t really herd together but you can usually find their territories overlap and find multiple giraffes within close proximity to one another. Due to their lofty vantage point, they are able to keep visual contact with many other animals from a distance. 

To drink, a giraffe spreads its front legs to allow its head to get to reach water and can also stretch high into the foliage for food. Calves are born after a gestation period of roughly 14 months, within a minimum interval of 16 months between calves.

You can find our giraffes on our Foot Safari. 


Name: Giraffes

Location: Sub-Saharan Africa

Population: 111,000

Status: Vulnerable

Threats: Hunting and living in human conflict zones

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Fun facts about Giraffes 

Before visiting these gentle giants at Knowsley Safari, brush up on some fun giraffe facts! Read all about what makes these wonderful animals unique in preparation for meeting our beloved patterned pals.  

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    Giraffes are herbivores, which means they feed solely on plant vegetation.

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    They have the same amount of neck bones as we do, which is 7.

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    They are even-toed ungulates, like cows, sheep and camel.

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    They also share the same kind of digestive system with four stomachs which constantly work to process fibrous vegetation.

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Giraffe facts - Your questions answered!

The Masai subspecies of giraffe has been declared endangered due to poaching and changes in habitat. There are an estimated 35,000 Masai giraffes left, however, their population has fallen by nearly 50% in the last 30 years.

Giraffes are generally very quiet animals and many people believe that they don't make any sound. This, however, is not the case. Younger giraffes bleat, mew, cough and hiss while older ones grunt and snore. Some sounds are so quiet that they are undetectable by the human ear.

You’ll find these herbivores nearly always munching on a tree. Their diet is predominantly made up of leaves and twigs, especially of acacia in the wild.

The average height of a male giraffe is 5-6 meters, whereas female giraffes are 4.6 meters. A giraffe’s neck alone is 3 metre’s long! A baby giraffe is approximately 2 metres tall when it is born - after dropping two metres from the ground and landing on its head during birth.

Giraffes live primarily in savanna areas in sub-Saharan Africa. They can also inhabit grasslands and open woodlands. Their ideal habitat would be filled with acacia growth.

Well, both and neither. They can lie down but they don’t sleep as you and I would know it. They usually settle down on the ground with their neck either vertical or twisted over their body. Adult giraffes can sleep standing up but won’t assume the position for very long.

A giraffe’s 45-50 cm long tongue is either black, blue or purple with a pink back. It’s speculated that this is to prevent the tongue from getting sunburned as they are frequently exposed to the sun while eating.

A group of giraffe standing together is called a tower. A group of giraffe traveling is called a journey. Female giraffes are called cows and males are called bulls, the same nouns used to describe cattle. Baby giraffes are called calves.

Ever wondered how we feed our giraffe?

Where to see the Giraffe at Knowsley Safari

You’ll pass by the tallest animal in the world on our Foot Safari. As you walk through the Foot Safari, you’ll see everything from giraffes, meerkats, tigers, on top of incredible sea lion displays. 


Conservation of Giraffes 

Giraffes are listed as Least Concern but have decreasing populations. Some populations are under more threats than others which can include hunting and through living in human conflict zones.


Giraffe Experience 

We are offering an amazing opportunity for you to meet these majestic animals up close! Join our team behind the scenes with our giraffes and climb onto the viewing platform to come face-to-face with the world’s tallest animal. 

For 30 minutes, you’ll be up close and personal with the giraffes and assist the team in preparing for the feeding procedures. As well as meeting our wonderful giraffes and learning from the team, enjoy several other perks such as free safari entry and other amazing discounts and benefits. 

Find out more about our unforgettable lion experience for adults aged 8 years and over here.



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