Here are our pictures of african
elephants. You can use these pictures for school projects or as backgrounds on your
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Here is some general information about the
African elephants are the species of
elephants in the genus Loxodonta, one of the two existing genera in Elephantidae. Although
it is commonly believed that the genus was named by Georges Cuvier in 1825, Cuvier spelled
it Loxodonte. An anonymous author romanized the spelling to Loxodonta and the ICZN
recognizes this as the proper authority.
The elephant's nose and upper lip are elongated into a muscular, powerful trunk. This
truly multi-purpose tool is powerful enough to uproot trees but dextrous enough that the
two 'fingers' at its tip can pick up single seeds. Elephants can swim considerable
distances and, in deeper water, will use their trunks like snorkels.
The tusks are elongated upper incisor teeth and are not necessarily the same size. Some
adults lack tusks and some have only one. Bulls typically have thicker, heavier tusks than
females. Elephants will often uproot trees and then use their tusks to chisel the bark
Eyes and Ears
An elephant's eyes are small relative to the huge size of the animal. The ears are very
large, flat and roughly the shape of the African continent, often with tears and holes in
them. The ears are laden with blood vessels and when flapped, help bring down the huge
beast's body temperature.
Feet and Tail
The front feet are roughly circular, with five blunt toenails; the hind feet are oval,
with four blunt toenails. The soles are padded, allowing amazingly silent movement for
such a large amimal. The tail is thin, up to 1.5 m long, and has a whisk of long, thick
hairs at the end.
Visible Male/Female Differences
Females have one pair of mammae, low on the sides of the chest, just behind the forelegs.
Both sexes have a thick flap of skin hanging between their hind legs. Males are larger,
taller and twice as heavy as cows. Bulls have wider heads and in profile they have a more
Very unselective; when browsing acacias they swallow more wood than leaves. In summer,
grass forms the bulk of the diet, replaced in winter by woody plants. Intake is about
150kg wet weight per day while water intake is 120 litres a day for an adult bull.
Single calves weighing 120kg are born throughout the year after a gestation of 22 months.
Calves are weaned at 3-8 years, just before the birth of the next calf.
Elephants are very vocal, producing a wide variety of squeals, screams and high-pitched
trumpeting which are audible to humans. Seventy-five percent of the vocal communication
uses frequencies too low for humans to hear.