What Does Giraffe Eat?
The giraffe browses on the twigs of trees, preferring plants of the Mimosa genus; but it appears that it can live without inconvenience on other vegetable food. A giraffe can eat 63 kg (140 lb) of leaves and twigs daily.
The pace of the giraffe is an amble, though when pursued it can run extremely fast. It can not sustain a lengthened chase. Its leg length compels an unusual gait with the left legs moving together followed by right (similar to pacing) at low speed, and the back legs crossing outside the front at high speed.
The giraffe defends itself against threats by kicking with great force. A single well-placed kick of an adult giraffe can shatter a lion's skull or break its spine.
The giraffe has one of the shortest sleep requirements of any mammal, which is between 10 minutes and two hours in a 24-hour period. This has led to the myth that giraffes cannot lie down and that if they do so, they will die.
A giraffe will clean off any bugs that appear on its face with its extremely long tongue (about 18 inches/45 centimeter). The tongue is tough on account of the giraffe's diet, which includes thorns from the tree it is making a meal of. In Southern Africa, giraffes are partial to all acacias - particularly Acacia erioloba - and possess a specially-adapted tongue and lips that appear to be immune to the vicious thorns.
Giraffes are believed to be mute; however, eventhough generally quiet, they have been heard to grunt, snort and bleat and also recent research has shown evidence that the animal communicates at an infrasound level.
The instinct of some other African animals is to stay close to the giraffe, for the giraffe's high vantage point can see predators from far away.
Posted by: Kelly