How is it, that the giraffe have a long neck?
Man’s curiosity is aroused since earliest times by giraffe. The ancient Egyptians and Greeks had a theory that giraffes were a mixture I of camel and leopard. They called the animal “a camelopard”.
The giraffe is the tallest of all living animals. The scientists have I not been able to establish an explanation, as to how it got its so long a neck. Jean Baptiste de Lamarck, a famous French Zoologist, professed a theory that at one time the giraffe’s neck was much shorter than it is at present. He thought that the neck grew so long because of the habit of the animal to reach in the tender leaves in the upper branches of the trees. The scientists in general are not.in the agreement with this theory.
Strange enough, the giraffe’s body is no longer than that of the average horse. its abnormal height, of about six meters is mostly due to its legs and neck. The neck of a giraffe has only seven vertebrae, which is same as in a human neck. But each vertebrae is extremely long. On account of this reason a giraffe always has a stiff neck. Wanting to take a drink from the ground, it has to spread its legs apart in order to be able to reach the ground.
The shape and build of giraffe is perfectly suited to enable it to obtain food. It lives only on plant life. The extra height enables it to reach in the leaves on trees since the growth of grass in the tropical lands is scarce.
A giraffe’s tongue is often forty five centimeters long. The skilled use of the tongue fetches green leaves. Equally well, the giraffe can pick up the thorny plants, small leaves without getting pricked. The log upper lip helps to wrench off many leaves at a time.
The giraffe is able to protect itself against danger in number of ways. First of all, the colouring of its hide makes it practically invisible when it is feeding in the shadow of trees. Its ears are very well developed, and are sensitive to the faintest sounds. It has a keen sense of sight and smell. In all, a giraffe can gallop at more than 50 kilometers per hour, when pursued and can outrun the fastest horse.
When a giraffe is attacked, it can put up a good fight and a strong defence. it kicks out with it hind legs or uses its head as a sledge hammer_ _Even a lien is careful in attacking a giraffe, and always approaches from behind.