10 Interesting Facts about African Elephants

One of these following facts about African elephants will give you much information about this elephant. The African elephants are elephants of the genus Loxodonta. from the Greek words loxo (oblique sided) and donto (tooth). The genus consists of two extant species: the African bush elephant and the smaller African forest elephant. Loxodonta is one is one of two existing genera of the family, Elephantidae. Fossil remains of Loxodonta have been found only in Africa, in strata as old as the middle Pliocene. To get to know more about this animal, here are some other facts about African elephants you might like.

Facts about African elephants 1: Size

In the world of elephants, bigger is definitely better, even if it means just looking big.  Male African elephants continue to grow throughout their lives, and can reach 7.5 tons which is more than two Hummers.

Facts about African elephants 2: Teeth

Elephants have four molars; each weighs about 5 kg (11 lb) and measures about 30 cm (12 in) long. As the front pair wears down and drops out in pieces, the back pair moves forward, and two new molars emerge in the back of the mouth. Elephants replace their teeth four to six times in their lifetime.

Facts about African Elephants - Bush Elephant

Facts about African Elephants – Bush Elephant

Facts about African elephants 3: Bush Elephant

One species of African elephant, the bush elephant, is the largest living terrestrial animal, while the forest elephant is the third largest. Their thickset bodies rest on stocky legs, and they have concave backs.

Facts about African elephants 4: Distribution and Habitat

African elephants are found in Eastern, Southern and West Africa, in dense forests, mopane and miombo woodlands, Sahelian scrub or deserts.

 

Facts about African Elephants - Female bush Elephant

Facts about African Elephants – Female bush Elephant

 

Facts about African elephants 5: Social Structure

A typical elephant family is comprised of a group of related females (maybe 2, maybe 40) and their young, including males younger than about 14.  Different families sometimes meet and feed in the same area. The family is led by the oldest female, the “matriarch”, and the others follow her lead in every circumstance.  She decides when to stop, and when to move on, and where to go.

Facts about African elephants 6: Feeding

While feeding, elephants use their trunks to pluck at leaves and their tusks to tear at branches, which can cause enormous damage to foliage. A herd may deplete an area of foliage depriving other herbivores for a time.

Facts about African Elephants - Skull

Facts about African Elephants – Skull

Facts about African elephants 7: Intelligence

African elephants are highly intelligent, and they have a very large and highly convoluted neocortex, a trait they share with humans, apes and some dolphin species. They are amongst the world’s most intelligent species.

Facts about African elephants 8: Reproduction

African elephants show sexual dimorphism in weight and shoulder height by age 20, due to the rapid early growth of males; by age 25, males are double the weight of females. However, both sexes continue to grow throughout their lives.

Facts about African Elephants - Small Bush elephant

Facts about African Elephants – Small Bush elephant

Facts about African elephants 9: Breeding

A female usually bears her first calf between 10 and 20 years old and bears again every 4-6 years.  It takes over a year and a half for an elephant embryo to develop, but at birth calves can stand within an hour, and swim soon after.

Facts about African elephants 10: Infrasonic Sounds

Amazingly, many elephant calls are too low (15 hertz) for human hearing ability (20 hertz).  These infrasonic sounds are capable of traveling long distances, and most occur in the early morning or evening hours, when ground air is cool enough to carry the frequency without interference.

Facts about African Elephants - With young elephant

Facts about African Elephants – With young elephant

Hope you would find those African elephants facts really interesting, useful and helpful for your additional reading.



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