Elephants are some of the most popular animals in the world. They are loved by people of all ages for their gentle nature and comical antics. Did you know that elephants are also some of the smartest animals on the planet? Here are 10 fun facts about elephants that you may not know.
1 – Adult elephants weigh between two and six metric tons. That’s the equivalent of three to six small cars! The largest elephant on record weighed in at 24 metric tons, which is about as much as 10 midsize cars.
2 – Baby elephants are called calves. They weigh around 200 pounds at birth and can stand up on their own within minutes. Calves drink up to 12 litres of milk a day!
3 – Despite their large size, elephants can run as fast as 25 miles per hour. They are also excellent swimmers and can hold their breath for up to five minutes underwater.
4 – Elephants have very few natural predators due to their size and strength. However, lions and crocodiles will occasionally attack and kill young elephants or sick adults.
5 – An elephant’s trunk is actually a fusion of its upper lip and nose. A trunk is extremely versatile and can be used for drinking, bathing, eating, touching, lifting, and making loud trumpet-like calls.
6 – African elephants have larger ears than Asian elephants. Their large ears help them to regulate their body temperature since they don’t sweat like we do.
7 – Elephants are herbivores and eat mostly grasses, roots, bark, and leafy greens. They spend up to 16 hours a day eating!
8 – Elephants live in family groups called herds that consist of related females and their young calves. Adult males typically live alone or with other males once they reach maturity at around age 15-20 years old.
9 – Asian elephants are an endangered species with only around 40,000 individuals remaining in the wild today while there are several hundred thousand African elephants living in the wild today.
10 – You might be familiar with the expression “an elephant never forgets.” This saying is based on an element of truth since elephants have excellent memories and can remember things for many years. For example, scientists have observed captive African elephants greeting humans that they haven’t seen in over 20 years!
If you want to learn even more about these amazing animals, be sure to check out one of the many Elephant habitats located at a Texas Zoo where you can meet these gentle giants up close and personal! If you’re ever lucky enough to see one of these majestic creatures in person, be sure to take a moment to appreciate all they have to offer!
Texas Zoos with Elephant Habitats:
Caldwell Zoo: https://caldwellzoo.org/east-africa/
Cameron Park Zoo: https://www.cameronparkzoo.com/explore/animals/mammals/african-elephant/
El Paso Zoo: https://www.elpasozoo.org/animals/asia/asian-elephant/
Fort Worth Zoo: https://www.fortworthzoo.org/animals-and-habitats#item=536266
Houston Zoo: https://www.houstonzoo.org/explore/animals/elephant-asian/