Interesting Facts about Elephants
Elephants are mammals of the family Elephantidae and the world’s largest existing land animals. Three species are currently recognized:
- The African bush elephant
- The African forest elephant
- The Asian elephant
Elephants are known for their large ears, tusks made of ivory and their trunks which are actually a fusion of their nose and upper lip. Some of the amazing facts about them are:
- Elephant families are led by females.
A herd of elephants is led by the oldest female known as the matriarch. She will decide where and when they move and rest, day to day and season to season.
- Elephants don’t need much sleep.
While human beings require eight hours of sleep for total functionality, elephants are way more flexible. They only sleep four hours per night and they even spend half of their sleep standing up.
- Elephants have a very impressive memory.
Elephants do not only have huge bodies they also have a brain that ways five kilograms, so they are very intelligent animals. With their large size and brain capacity, they can store information and remember things for years.
- Elephants love a good shower.
A trunk is a very useful tool. Elephants use it to spray water on their bodies and they also use their trunks to spray mud and dust on their skin to remove parasites and prevent others from approaching.
- Elephants have record-long pregnancies.
Imagine being pregnant for almost two years. Female elephants are only fertile for a few days per year, and during those days a lot of males will seek to mate with them. Elephants use courting rituals before actually mating but if the female allows, she will be pregnant for twenty-two months.
- They can easily get sunburned.
Elephants have created their own sunscreen! After a river or swamp bath, they’ll throw mud and sand up and over themselves to protect their skin from the hot, burning sun.