Since 1902

Amazing facts about elephants

Elephants at Tsavo West National Park. [David Gichuru, Standard]

Elephants are the world’s largest land animals.

There are lots of different kinds. There’s the African Forest elephant, the African Savannah elephant and the Asian elephant. You can tell them apart by their ears. African elephants’ ears are the same shape as the map of Africa. Asian elephants’ ears look like the Indian map.

The African Forest elephant is a completely different species from the African Savannah elephant. You can tell them apart by looking at their tusks. African Forest elephants have straighter tusks. Their tusks never stop growing. Elephants with huge tusks will be old elephants. The female Asian elephants, however, don’t grow tusks.

Imagine eating for 12 to 18 hours of the day. Almost equal to all of the time you are awake! That’s how often elephants eat.

They’re herbivores meaning they don’t eat meat, like vegetarians. They, however, drink a lot. They drink as much water as nearly three hundred big bottles of coke.

The skin of an elephant may look more wrinkled than your 80-year-old granny. But it actually helps to keep their skin healthy by holding in moisture.

Once they’ve had a bath, they cover themselves in mud and sand. The moisture of the mud remains in the wrinkles to continue softening the elephant’s skin.

Why do elephants have big ears? Not to fly! The ears help elephants to stay cool by transferring heat away from their bodies.

Although they don’t look like they are built for swimming, elephants love the water. They use their trunks like snorkels, making sure they get air when they are underwater.  

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