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Nov 13, 2008

Largest Land Animal

Did you know
The African Bush Elephant is the largest land animal, the African bush elephant reaches up to 24 feet in length and 13 feet in height. It is the largest of the three elephant species and can weigh up to 11 tons or more and live up to 70 years, longer than any other mammal except humans. African bush elephants are herbivores and need to eat about 350 pounds of vegetation daily. Herds consist of related females and their young, and are managed by the eldest female, called the matriarch. The adult male elephant rarely joins a herd and leads a solitary life, only approaching herds during mating season. These elephants are characterized by their two large ears, pillar-like legs, thickset body and a large head with a muscular, mobile trunk. Two prominent tusks are present in both sexes not just the males as some think. Females give birth to a single calf after 22 months of gestation, the longest gestation known among mammals. These calf sometimes weighs more than 100 kg. The baby feeds on the mothers milk until the age of 5, but also eats solid food from as early as 6 months old. They have no predators because of their strength and bigness. They can run up to 25-30 MPH.They are also known as the African savanna elephant. The largest on record was a bull weighing 12,274 kg (27,060 lb) and standing 4.2 meters (13.8 ft) high, the body of which is now mounted in the rotunda of the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.


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