Giraffes come from the African savanna area. They are the tallest mammals on earth, ranging from 14 to 19 feet tall. All giraffes are tan with spotted coats, but every giraffe has a different pattern, which makes each one unique.
As herbivores, they receive nutrition by browsing the tops of trees where they can find buds, leaves, and plants that other animals cannot reach. They eat hundreds of pounds of leaves each week, but finding the ideal amount of food usually requires them to travel for miles.
The giraffe can reach speeds of 35 miles an hour, due to their long legs (which are over six feet tall). Typically, they cruise at a steady pace of 10 miles an hour when they are roaming open grasslands. The giraffe’s stature gives them many advantages, the most notable being that they can see their predators approaching from miles away in the savanna.
One disadvantage of their height is the hazardous act of drinking water from a hole. In order to drink water, giraffes must spread their legs and bend down in an awkward position that makes them an easy target for predators―specifically, Africa’s intimidating cats. Thankfully, they only have to drink every few days because they receive an excessive amount of water from the plants.
Our giraffe Clifford is here during the summer and spends his winters in Florida...lucky guy!