Reticulated Giraffe

Giraffes may live in a herd of 30-50 individuals. Males will often fight over females by kicking or striking each other with the horns on their heads. Giraffes have these horns from birth, making them the only animals that don’t grow their horns later in life.

Giraffes are known to eat leaves from the thorny acacia tree. Their 18-inch tongue is dark purple to protect from sunburn, and covered in slime to protect from harsh thorns. A male giraffe may eat as much as 70 lbs. of vegetation in a single day. Giraffes are similar to cows in that they chew their cud (regurgitated food) after eating and then re- swallow it for digestion.

Reticulated Giraffe

Giraffa camelopardalis reticulate

Habitat: African Savannah

Diet in the wild: Leaves from acacia, mimosa, and sausage trees

Diet at Caldwell Zoo: Sweet feed, Caldwell Zoo pellets, alfalfa

Size: Females are generally 13-15 feet in height, while males can reach 18-19 feet.

Family: Female giraffes will “babysit” each other’s offspring

Status: Vulnerable

Did you know? Giraffes have a prehensile tongue

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