Order Artiodactyla
Family Giraffidae
Genus Giraffa
Species Camelopardalis
Height 4.25 – 5.5 metres
Weight Males 1100kgs, Females 700 kgs (average)
Lifespan 20 to 25 years
Habitat African savannah, bush country


Angolan giraffe (g.c. angolensis)
Kordofan giraffe (g.c. antiquorum)
Masai giraffe (g.c. tippelskirchi)
Nubian giraffe (g.c. camelopardalis)
Reticulated giraffe (g.c. reticulata)
Rothschild giraffe (g.c. rothschildi)
South African giraffe (g.c. giraffa)
Thornicroft giraffe (g.c. thornicrofti)
West African giraffe (g.c. peralta)

Standing at over 5 metres the elegant giraffe is the world’s tallest animal and largest ruminant. Their long neck, sloping body and long necks make them unmistakable.

They live in the savannah grasslands south of the Sahara. Using their 18 inch prehensile tongue they feed from the Acacia, Combretum and other trees at a height denied to other herbivores (except elephants). Like camels, they are able to go long periods of time without a drink and usually drink every 2-3 days. To get a drink they have to splay their forelegs to reach the water.

Unlike most mammals giraffes walk using both legs from the same side of the body simultaneously. When they gallop they move both fore legs and both hind legs together, and because of its long stride is faster than it appears, reaching up to speeds of 35 miles per hour.

Although usually quiet, giraffes are not voiceless as the common myth leads us to believe, but instead can produce snorting or moaning noises, particularly when there is danger. They have a good sense of smell, hearing and excellent vision enabling them to see miles away.

Giraffes have the same number of bones in their neck as humans do.

Baby giraffes are about 6 feet tall when they are born.

They are one of the few animals born with horns.

The Okapi is a close relative of the giraffe making up the Giraffidae family.

They only sleep for a few minutes at a time.

Their heart weighs approximately 24 pounds.



Tall Blondes: A Book about giraffes

Author: Lynn Sherr
Hardcover - 128 pages (August 1997)
Andrews & McMeel; ISBN: 0836227697


The Giraffe (Animal Closeups)

Author: Christine Denis-Huot, Michael Denis-Huot
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Paperback - 27 pages (July 1993)
Charlesbridge Publishing Inc; ISBN: 0881064319


Giraffes : Long-Necked Ruminants (Secrets of the Animal World)

Author: Andreu Llamas,
Reading level: Ages 9-12
Library Binding (July 1996)
Gareth Stevens; ISBN: 0836814983


Giraffes (Crabapples)

Author: Bobbie Kalman, Greg Nickles
Reading level: Ages 4-8
School & Library Binding (March 1997)
Crabtree Publishing Company; ISBN: 0865056412


Giraffe Links

The Seasick Giraffe
Gifts for Giraffe Lovers

This is the Wicked Giraffe
Site dedicated to giraffes

The Giraffe Manor
A place to stay in Kenya with the giraffes

Giraffe Links
If you're looking for some more Giraffe links then this is the site to visit. It contains over 320 different Giraffe links!



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