Elephants have the longest pregnancy in the animal kingdom, lasting 22 months from conception to birth. Elephants can give birth every three to four years, but will typically only have four calves in their lifetime.
Elephants have four molars– two on top and two on the bottom, located on the side of their mouths. Each molar weighs around five pounds and is the size of a brick. They can only grow 6 sets of molars over their lifetimes. When the last set is lost, the animal is unable to eat and eventually dies.
If you’re on safari and see an Elephant lift its trunk in your direction, it’s probably smelling you. Elephants have terrible eyesight, but a very keen sense of smell.
Elephants have large, thin ears that contain a complex network of blood vessels that help to regulate body temperature. The average ear of a male African Elephant weighs over 100 pounds.
All baby Elephants are born blind, but they can stand up almost immediately.
We’ve all seen the videos of Elephants playing in the water. It’s not only fun for them, but it also provides health benefits. The buoyancy they experience when swimming gives their leg joints a much-needed break.
An Elephant’s tusk will continue to grow throughout its lifetime. An adult male’s tusk will grow about 7 inches each year on average.
Despite the massive size of their feet, elephants actually walk on their toes! In studies of their walking patterns, researchers have found that elephants put the most pressure on the outer toes of their front feet and the least amount of pressure on their heels.
African elephants are divided into two subspecies: Savannah (bush) and forest. Savannah elephants are larger, with curved tusks, while forest elephants are smaller, with tusks that are straighter and point downward.