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Giraffa camelopardalis

(Reticulated Giraffe)

Overview

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Average male height 17 feet (5.3 meters), Weight averages 1800 pounds (800 kg ). The hoofed animals have chestnut brown blotches on buff colored fur. The spots on the fur darken as the animal ages. Giraffes have very long, flexible tongues and lips to go along with their long slender necks. The male giraffe's neck continues to grow after sexual maturity has been reached, whereas the females' neck stops growing when maturity is reached at about 10 years of age. Giraffes have seven vertebrae in their necks, just as humans do. They have very large eyes on the sides of their head , atop a periscope like neck, that give them wonderful eyesight. Also on the top of their head, they carry 2-4 stubby horns that lie under the skin . Their 8 inch ears give them a good sense of hearing.

Interesting Facts

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Common Names

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Click on the language to view common names.

Common Names in Afrikaans:

Kameelperd

Common Names in Albanian:

Gjirafa

Common Names in Amharic:

ቀጭኔ

Common Names in Arabic:

زرافة

Common Names in Azerbaijani:

Zürafə

Common Names in Bambara:

Ntilen

Common Names in Basque:

Jirafa

Common Names in Belarusian:

Жырафа

Common Names in Bengali, Bangla:

জিরাফ

Common Names in Bosnian:

Žirafa

Common Names in Breton:

Jirafenn

Common Names in Bulgarian:

Жираф

Common Names in Burmese:

သစ်ကုလားအုပ်

Common Names in Catalan, Valencian:

Girafa

Common Names in Chinese:

长颈鹿

Common Names in Croatian:

Žirafa

Common Names in Czech:

Žirafa

Common Names in Danish:

Giraf

Common Names in Dutch:

Giraffe, Giraffe (dier)

Common Names in English:

Giraffe, Masai Giraffe, Reticulated Giraffe

Common Names in Esperanto:

Ĝirafo

Common Names in Estonian:

Kaelkirjak

Common Names in Faroese:

Giraffur

Common Names in Finnish:

Kirahvi

Common Names in French:

Girafe

Common Names in Galician:

Xirafa

Common Names in German:

Giraffe

Common Names in Greek (modern):

Καμηλοπάρδαλη

Common Names in Gujarati:

જિરાફ

Common Names in Haitian, Haitian Creole:

Jiraf

Common Names in Hausa:

Raƙumin dawa

Common Names in Hebrew (modern):

ג'ירף

Common Names in Hindi:

जिराफ़

Common Names in Hungarian:

Zsiráf

Common Names in Icelandic:

Gíraffi

Common Names in Ido:

Jirafo

Common Names in Indonesian:

Jerapah

Common Names in Irish:

Sioráf

Common Names in Japanese:

キリン

Common Names in Javanese:

Jerapah

Common Names in Kannada:

ಜಿರಾಫೆ

Common Names in Kazakh:

Керік

Common Names in Korean:

기린

Common Names in Kurdish:

Canhêştir

Common Names in Latin:

Giraffa

Common Names in Latvian:

Žirafe

Common Names in Lingala:

Dikálá

Common Names in Lithuanian:

Žirafa

Common Names in Luxembourgish, Letzeburgesch:

Giraff

Common Names in Macedonian:

Жирафа

Common Names in Malay:

Zirafah

Common Names in Malayalam:

ജിറാഫ്

Common Names in Manx:

Mwannalagh

Common Names in Marathi (Marāṭhī):

जिराफ

Common Names in Mongolian:

Анааш

Common Names in Navajo, Navaho:

Tsin yilátah ayání

Common Names in Nepali:

जिराफ

Common Names in Norwegian:

Sjiraff

Common Names in Norwegian Nynorsk:

Sjiraff

Common Names in Persian (Farsi):

زرافه

Common Names in Polish:

Żyrafa

Common Names in Portuguese:

Girafa

Common Names in Quechua:

Hirapha

Common Names in Romanian:

Girafă

Common Names in Russian:

Жираф

Common Names in Sango:

Kôlo

Common Names in Scottish Gaelic, Gaelic:

Sioraf

Common Names in Serbian:

Жирафа

Common Names in Shona:

Twiza

Common Names in Sinhala, Sinhalese:

ජිරාෆ්

Common Names in Slovak:

Žirafa štíhla

Common Names in Slovene:

Žirafa

Common Names in Somali:

Geri

Common Names in Sundanese:

Jarapah

Common Names in Swahili:

Twiga

Common Names in Swedish:

Giraff

Common Names in Tajik:

Зарофа

Common Names in Tamil:

ஒட்டகச் சிவிங்கி

Common Names in Telugu:

జిరాఫీ

Common Names in Thai:

ยีราฟ

Common Names in Tibetan Standard, Tibetan, Central:

ཤ་བ་སྐེ་རིང་།

Common Names in Turkish:

Zürafa

Common Names in Ukrainian:

Жирафа

Common Names in Urdu:

زرافہ

Common Names in Uyghur, Uighur:

زىراپە

Common Names in Vietnamese:

Hươu cao cổ

Common Names in Yiddish:

זשיראף

Common Names in Zulu:

Indlulamithi

Description

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Physical Description

Species Giraffa camelopardalis

The Giraffe is the tallest animal in the world. Males may be 16-18 feet tall and weigh up to 2,000 pounds . Females are usually lighter and about two feet shorter. The giraffe's front legs are only slightly longer than the back ones, the height of the fore part of the body being largely due to the heavy muscular development of the base of the neck.

The long neck has the usual seven vertebrae of most mammals, although each is greatly elongated. The giraffe's soup-plate-sized hooves are used as offensive weapons, usually in the defense of the calves . The powerful kick from the front feet can kill a lion.

The giraffe is one of the few ruminants born with horns. Both sexes have horns which are covered with skin . The horns of males are thicker and heavier and are used in fights between males.

The giraffe's canine teeth are splayed out in two or three lobes to comb the leaves off shoots . Their long black tongue, which can be extended 18 inches, is used to gather food into the mouth . To compensate for the sudden increase in blood pressure when the head is lowered, the giraffe has very elastic blood vessels and valves in the venous system of the neck.

Habitat

Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 2,163 meters (0 to 7,096 feet).[1]

Ecology: Typically associated with Acacia, Commiphora and Combretum savannas , but they also occur marginally in miombo Brachystegia woodland and in Isoberlina woodland, in Cameroon (Ciofolo and Pendu in press ). Giraffes are selective browsers , with Acacia species forming the bulk of their diet throughout the range , but also species of the genera Balanites, Commiphora, Detarium, Boscia, Combretum, Ziziphus and Grewia (Ciofolo and Pendu in press).[2].

List of Habitats :

[more info]

Biology

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Diet

Giraffes are highly selective feeders , the bulk of their diet comprising the leaves and shoots of trees and shrubs , supplemented by climbers , vines and some herbs. Various species of acacia are favorite foods.

A large male may consume up to 75 pounds of food every 24 hours. Their stomach is like a cow's stomach, having four chambers that require the animal to chew its cud , fist sized balls of unchewed food that are regurgitated. These animals are thought to be very intelligent

Taxonomy

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Similar Species

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Members of the genus Giraffa

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 7 species and subspecies in this genus:

G. camelopardalis (Reticulated Giraffe) · G. camelopardalis giraffa (Giraffe) · G. camelopardalis peralta (Niger Giraffe) · G. camelopardalis reticulata (Reticulated Giraffe) · G. camelopardalis rothschildi (Rothschilds Giraffe) · G. camelopardalis thornicrofti (Rhodesian Giraffe) · G. camelopardalis tippelskirchi (Giraffe)

More Info

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Further Reading

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Notes

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Contributors

Data Sources

Accessed through GBIF Data Portal November 26, 2007:

Identifiers

Footnotes

  1. Mean = 569.790 meters (1,869.390 feet), Standard Deviation = 1,572.140 based on 24 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]
  2. Fennessy, J. & Brown, D. 2010. Giraffa camelopardalis. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 01 February 2012. [back]
Last Revised: 2014-11-29