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Are Giraffes an Endangered Species and Can you Ride One?

Are giraffes an endangered speciesGiraffes are incredibly fascinating creatures. But are giraffes an endangered species and can you ride one? We will find out. But for most people, the main features that set them apart from other animals are their extra-long legs and necks. But there are many more fascinating things about giraffes that set them apart even more.

Does a Giraffe Make a Sound?

It was widely believed that giraffes do not make any sounds, even during mating season. But recently, it has been observed that they actually do make several distinct sounds. They have been heard bellowing, snorting and hissing. Also, it only happens at night, but they make unique low frequency humming sounds. The frequency of some of these sounds are too low for the human ear to pick up, but some are actually audible to humans. Are they communicating with each other? Very possibly yes, but more research is needed.

How Many Bones are in a Giraffes Neck?

A giraffe’s neck has the same number of bones as a human neck. This seems surprising when you consider the size difference between humans and giraffes. But is even more so when you consider that the number of bones is only seven. All that neck and only 7 bones. But on second thought, if you are going to have so much neck you want those bones to be really big and strong. Score one for the giraffes.

Do Giraffes Have Spots or Stripes?

Giraffes have beautiful coats! Their spotted patterns are unique with no two giraffes sporting the same pattern. Exactly like fingerprints or the stripes of a tiger, no two are the same. These, “spots” have two functions. The simplest and most obvious function is for camouflage. But those spots also play an important role in thermoregulation. There is a system of blood vessels; the larger leading to the spots and the smaller deployed underneath the spots that regulate body heat.

 “Animals are, like us, endangered species on an endangered planet, and we are the ones who are endangering them, it, and ourselves. They are innocent sufferers in a hell of our making.” – Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson & Susan MCcarthy.

Are Giraffes an Endangered Species?

Giraffes are not currently listed as an endangered species. But they are considered “vulnerable”. This means they are at great risk of extinction in the wild due to hunting and loss of habitat. Fortunately, there are zoos and safe sanctuaries. But giraffes wild and free is something that would be a shame to lose.

Can You Ride a Giraffe?

Besides the obvious fact that a giraffe is a very big, very wild animal, their anatomy is not suited for riding. Their backs slope steeply. You would have to create a very unusual saddle for such an animal. That being said, it has been done in connection with the circus in South Africa back in the 1950s. A descendant of the old giraffe rider recently was able to ride a young hand-raised giraffe but admits that riding a full-grown adult would be problematic at best.

“It’s an incredibly difficult thing to bring a giraffe down. They can kill a lion with a single blow from their feet.” –  Joanna Lumley.

More Interesting Facts About Giraffes

  • Giraffes only need to drink once every few days. This is because they get most of their water from the plants they eat.
  • The world’s tallest land mammal, the giraffe stands up to 18 feet (5 meters) high and weighs up to 3,000 pounds (1,360 kilograms).
  • Their long necks are used to browse the leaves of trees, their main food source.
  • The average life expectancy of a giraffe is between 25 and 30 years.
  • The giraffe is related to deer and cattle; however, it is placed in a separate family, the Giraffidae, consisting only of the giraffe and its closest relative, the okapi.
  • Giraffes can run as fast as 35 miles per hour, but not for long. Cruising speed over long distances is about 10 mph.
  • Giraffes are almost always standing, even while sleeping and giving birth.
  • Giraffe have a unique tongue which is blue-black in color due to the high concentration of melanin contained within it. This protects them from sunburn while they are feeding on tree leaves.

Fossil records show that many species of giraffids once inhabited parts of Africa and Eurasia from the Miocene through Pleistocene eras; however today there is only one living species: Giraffa camelopardalis (the modern giraffe) inhabiting sub-Saharan Africa. There are nine recognized subspecies of G. camelopardalis ranging throughout eastern and southern Africa but separated by geography and behavior.

Amazing Giraffe Facts You Need To Know!

So, are giraffes an endangered species? Not yet but the future is not rosy. And for sure, giraffes are not really “rideable”. But one thing is for sure. Giraffes are incredibly interesting creatures and it would be a great loss if they were to disappear from the wild.


The giraffe is the tallest mammal in the world, with even new-born babies being taller than most humans

Giraffe Facts

Interesting Facts About Giraffes

A little perspective on just how big a giraffe really is.


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