Giraffe Anatomy

Giraffe Anatomy

Giraffe Physical Characteristics

Due to the fact that the giraffe has such a unique body design, it warranted creating a name for it that was also special. However, the word giraffe is African and has to do with the characteristics of this animal. To many the body style including the hump on the back, while not as prominent, was resembling of the camel. The spots on it were also something that they had seen in regards to some felines.

The giraffe has a body design that is very different from any others out there, yet it is one that works quite well for them. Due to how tall they are it is hard to believe that they can weigh so much. Yet a full grown male giraffe can be up to 2,600 pounds with females quite a bit smaller at about 1,800 pounds.  Both sexes average in height from 15 to 18 feet tall.

There is no missing that extra long tongue of the giraffe which can be up to 18 inches in length. It helps them to clean bugs off their face as well as to reach very high for food sources in the trees. This prehensile tongue is very strong and powerful. The lips of the giraffe give its face a very serious look all the time. They are very thick to help protect them during eating. Many of the twigs and trees that they eat from have sharp elements that could harm them if they weren’t.

Many people find it strange that this long animal has such small horns on its head. They certainly aren’t there to offer them a weapon for fighting off predators. The head of a giraffe is small and quite long with a rounded mouth at the end of it. They feature small ears that look like those of a deer at the sides of their horns. The neck is the part of the giraffe that can’t be missed.

Giraffe and coat patterns

Giraffe Physical Characteristics

There are 7 individual vertebrates found in the neck of a giraffe. Each one of them contains individual joints too which is why these animals are able to be so flexible. The shoulders of these animals are extremely powerful. Many wonder how they can hold up that heavy neck though. The two are anchored together through a variety of muscles so that there isn’t strain on the shoulders.

The legs of a giraffe are very long and they are extremely strong. That is what they use for protection against predators. While they can run up to 35 miles per hour they can’t do so for very long. What is interesting is that they move both legs on the same side at the same time instead of the two front and then the two back ones.

The stomach of the giraffe is very complex in nature as well. They are able to digest food very well so the majority of what they take in gets used positively for the body. There are four chambers to the stomach. They will chew food, regurgitate it, chew it again, and then it is allowed to pass to the stomach.

In order to keep up with this unique anatomy the giraffe also has a very unusual circulatory system. You may not realize it but their heart weigh about 25 pounds and are 2 feet long. This is much larger than you might imagine when you are simply looking at a giraffe out there. In order for them to get the blood to the brain properly they have a very high blood pressure rate. However, this design also ensures that the brain doesn’t get too much blood when they giraffe lowers its head to eat or to drink water.