Elephants in Africa

The African Plains Savanna Elephant "Loxodonta Africana" the largest of all the living elephants measuring 3.5 meters at the shoulder.

The African plains elephant is easy to differentiate from other elephants, it has very large ears, fours hooves at each front foot, and its front legs are noticeably longer that the hind legs. When elephants are excited about anything, they spread their ears and bring them in line with there forehead. In order to increase the effect of this threatening posture, ancient war elephants were occasinally deployed with their heads and ears painted red, white or yellow.

In 1955, a gigantic elephant was shot dead near the Cuando River in South Africa, It measured 13 feet and 2 inches at the shoulder, weighed 13 tons, and each tusk measured 14 feet from base to tip. It is said that a mounted specimen of this huge tusker could be seen at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C, US. Generally most mature male African Elephant have tusks weighing between 100 lbs and 175 lbs each, and in the case of female elephant tusks weigh in between 40 lbs and 45 lbs each. The heaviest tusk recorded weighed 220 lbs.

The tusks of old elephants are said to contain a kind of pearl known as "gaja-mutha" and believed to be the most durable of pearls. Pearls are calcareous (chalky) substances that grow from lustrous globules or granules, and such concretions of nacre found with the tusks are highly priced for their beauty and quality.

Characteristics

  • Statistics - 3,5 to 4 Meters
  • Body Length - 6,5 to 7,5 Meters
  • Weight - From 7 Tons

Typical Features

  • Flat forehead.
  • Front legs noticeably longer than hind legs.
  • Four hooves on each front foot, three on each hind foot.
  • Very large ears.
  • Two opposite fingers on each trunk.
  • Females and males carry large tusks. In rare cases, males may have tusks up to 3.5 meters long.
  • Skin is Slate blue gray and often coloured pale brown by dirt and dust.
  • There are many differences between African and Asian elephants. African elephants have much larger ears than Asian elephants. African elephants
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