A few African elephant facts.
Scientific name: Loxodonta africana
Diet: Elephants are herbivores and eat grasses, trees, fruit, and bark. An adult elephant can consume 300 pounds of food in just one day.
Life span: They live up to 70 years in the wild.
XL: African elephants are the largest land mammal on Earth weighing up to 8 tons.
About the ears: They have large, thin ears that act as a cooling system in hot weather –– which, when stretched out, are shaped like the African continent.
And the trunk: Incredibly versatile, their trunk serves as a nose, a hand, a tool for gathering food/water, dusting, digging and more.
How they drink: Elephants use their trunk to suck up to 2 gallons of water at a time. Then they curl their trunk into their mouth and drink.
Herds: Females live in family herds made up of mothers, sisters, cousins, aunts and babies. They’re led by a smart female called the matriarch; she knows where to find food and water and how to get there. Males live on their own or travel in small groups called bachelor herds.
Ivory: Both male and female African elephants have tusks –– made of ivory –– which they use to dig for food and water and to strip bark from trees.
Endangered status: Africa is losing its elephants. They’re being poached for their ivory at a rate of about 100 per day.
How you can help: Learn more. Spread the word. For more information or to get involved, check out the great work of Tusk Trust, the World Wildlife Fund, Save the Elephants, The Nature Conservancy, Wild Aid or any of the other organizations working tirelessly to stop poaching and protect wildlife.
This post is part of TCW’s effort to bring attention and awareness to animals far and wide, large and small, well-known and obscure, who face the threat of extinction.