Giraffa camelopardalis

About the Giraffe

Giraffes are the tallest animal on Earth and it’s their height that gives them access to the tops of trees that not many animals can get too. A 45cm tongue enables them to grab at leaves and avoid the thorny branches of some of the trees they browse on. They 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 their paths cross. Although not technically in a herd they do keep visual contact with other individuals thanks to their loft vantage point.

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

Fact Finder

Giraffes are the tallest living land mammal.

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

Do they sleep standing up or lying down? – Well both and neither, they can lie down but they don’t sleep as you and I would know it.


Giraffes are even-toed ungulates like cows, sheep and camel, all of which are herbivores which means they feed solely on plant vegetation.

They also share the same sort of digestive system. These animals stomachs (which they have 4) are working constantly to process fibrous vegetation which includes a process commonly known as chewing the cud. A small amount of the food they have previously swallowed is brought to the mouth for another round of chewing until ground small enough that the rest of the digestive system can deal with it. This system is a 24 hour, 7 day a week process so no lengthy sleep can theoretically take place without risking the giraffe, cow or sheep etc from choking on the food being sent back to the mouth for chewing. Giraffes can lie down, but don’t sleep as you and I know it.

Giraffes are from dry savannah areas in sub-Saharan Africa.

Giraffe are listed as least concern and have decreasing populations. Some populations are under more threats than others which can include hunting and through living in human conflict zones.


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