African Elephant

AnimalAfrican Elephant
Scientific NameLoxodonta africana
TypeMammals
DietHerbivore
Lifespan70 years
SizeHeight at shoulder: 2.4 – 3.9 m
Weight2267.96 – 6350.29 kilograms
PhylumChordata
Conservation statusLeast concern > Near threatened >
Vulnerable > Endangered >
Critically endangered > Extinct in the wild >
Extinct
Information

Measuring up to 3.9 meters and weighing up to 6350 kilograms, African elephants are the largest mammal to roam the earth. Their trunks are used for holding items and smelling and their ears emit extra heat. They can be categorized into two subspecies: savanna elephants and forest elephants, which are not as big.

Fully grown elephants eat 136 kilograms of food daily. Their diet consists of fruits, roots, bark, and grass. They can travel very far in the search for food, sometimes accidentally wandering into cities and eating tons of crops—there are times where they may eat a whole season of crops.

Elephants live in herds led by a matriarch which is the oldest female in the group. The gestation period is twenty-two months and every two to four years, elephants give birth to a calf which weighs around 90 pounds. The calf is at risk of attacks from crocodiles and lions, hyenas, and leopards.

There are approximately 415,000 African elephants left in the wild. Before 1870, there were over 26 million individuals. After Europeans arrived in Africa, they began hunting them for their ivory tusks. This kept on happening and numbers kept declining. Cities are also occupying areas where elephants used to travel.

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