GIRAFFE

Giraffe Average weight of male 1600kg(3520lbs) and female 830kg(1830lbs). Height averages at 5m(16,5ft) for males and 4m(13,2 ft) for females. They have a life expectancy of about 25 years.

Identification
It is the largest living animal, with an extremely long neck and legs. It has two horn-like ossicones and a distinctive patchwork coat pattern. These patches can be orange, chestnut or dark brown in colour. The front legs are longer than the hind legs and they have a tufted tail and a short erected mane along the neck.

Difference between male and female
The male is much larger than the female. The female carries a tuft of hair on her ossicone which are absent with the male

Habits
Giraffes inhabit open woodlands, grasslands and savannah. They browse on twigs of trees and have a preference for Acasia trees. Giraffes require less food in proportion to other herbivores because of the high nutrient content of the foliage they eat and their more effective digestive system. Will consume about 35kg(75lbs) of food daily. Form groups that will include several individuals rather than family members . Males will become solitary as they grow older. Males use their necks as weapons when fighting over dominance and can deliver power full kicks at predators .Giraffes have a very large heart that must generate almost double the blood pressure required by a human to maintain the blood flow to the brain. Special valves in the artery system prevent the blood flowing back into the head when the giraffe lowers its head.

Breeding
A single calf and occasionally two gets born after a gestation period of 400-460 days. The mother gives birth standing up.

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