What do you get if you cross a Camel and a Leopard?

Well according to Pliny the Elder a Giraffe or "Wild Sheep", due to its placid nature. This is a bit unfair as Pliny actually said it was the name camelopard that meant giraffe.

Giraffe skiing

This Giraffe is far from placid and loves to ski!

Do you love Giraffes?

Well you are not alone. In a highly scientific poll of remembering what drawings people have asked for, we have to say Giraffes are at the top. Because we are such people pleasers at Koala Chess Art we have travelled the world in search of Giraffe facts!

Animal prints are so in fashion right now!

Well Giraffes have been setting the trend for quite a while. The spots work as great camouflage but they also have another interesting function. They work as heat regulation for the body. Under each spot is a complex series of blood vessels. The spots are unique to each giraffe which is useful for police line ups and probably why crime is so low amongst giraffes.

Giraffe hoodie

Koala and giraffe shooting some hoops hoodie

How tall?

Well very. The giraffe is in fact the largest terrestrial (lives on land) mammal out there. Giraffes can reach a whopping 5.5 metres in height. Perfect for reaching high shelves or for playing basketball.

What about that neck?

Giraffes necks are long, very long but they are not born that way. Their necks grow over time reaching up to 2.4 metres. They have the same amount of vertebrae as we do just 7. They have had to evolve specially adapted hearts to pump blood to the brain. If you are looking for an animal with a lot of heart look no further than the giraffe.

Dancing giraffes t shirt

Giraffes are head and shoulders above
other animals when it comes to chorus lines!

Why is it so long?

That's a great question. There are two main schools of thought. The first is that it enables Giraffes to eat higher leaves. There is less competition for leaves higher up and therefore it's easier to eat more. Recent studies dispute this as Giraffes don't actually eat lots of leaves high up. It might be that Giraffes use their necks in mating displays and the longer the neck the more dominant the giraffe.

What is clear is that the transition from the short neck occurred over many stages. You can see how the Giraffe might have looked without the long neck if you look at its evolutionary relative the Okapi.

What do you call a group of them?

A tower!

Why not take a look at our Giraffe collection now!

 

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