A large ruminant mammal of Africa, having a very long neck. It is the tallest of quadrupeds.
(1X-118: dp. 14,245; 1. 441'6"; b. 56'11"; dr. 28'4"; s.
11 k.; cpl. 108; a. 15")
Giraffe (IX-118), formerly tanker Sanford B. Dole was launched 11 November 1943 by the California Shipbuilding Corp., Wilmington, Calif.; sponsored by Miss Mary F. Leddy; acquired and simultaneously commissioned 12 December 1943; Lt. Comdr. Frederick F. Daly, USNR, commanding.
Following shakedown, Giraffe put in at Funafuti, Ellice Islands, 10 February 1944 and subsequently refueled warships at Eniwetok, Saipan, Guam, Ulithi, and Palau before reaching Okinawa 21 July 1945. She entered Sasebo, Japan, 20 November at war's end and served the occupation fleet until departing Yokosuka 21 February 1946 for Pearl Harbor and Norfolk. Giraffe reached Norfolk 3 May and decommissioned there 17 June 1946. Returned to the War Department that date, she was stricken from the Navy List 3 July 1946. She was subsequently sold to Metro Petroleum Shipping Co., Inc.
Giraffe was awarded two battle stars for World War II service.
USS Giraffe IX - 118 an Armadillo - class tanker designated an unclassified miscellaneous vessel, was the only ship of the United States Navy to be named
Ledgard Giraffe album an album by Echoboy Giraffe chess a fairy chess piece USS Giraffe IX - 118 Giraffe constellation or Camelopardalis GIRAFFE Radar
USS Oracle AM - 103 was an Auk - class minesweeper built for the United States Navy during World War II. She was commissioned in May 1943 and decommissioned
United States Navy as USS Fort Donelson and in the Chilean Navy as Concepcion. Robert E. Lee was originally the merchant ship Giraffe a schooner - rigged
USS Independence LCS - 2 is the lead ship of the Independence - class of littoral combat ships. She is the sixth ship of the United States Navy to be named
USS Gabrielle Giffords LCS - 10 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. The ship is named after former United States
USS G - 1 SS - 19½ USS G - 2 SS - 27 USS G - 3 SS - 31 USS G - 4 SS - 26 USS G. H. McNeal SP - 312 USS G. L. Brockenborough 1862 USS G. W. Blunt 1861 USS Gabilan
USS Kingsville LCS - 36 will be an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She will be the first ship to be named for Kingsville
USS Murzim AK - 95 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. She was named after Murzim, the star in constellation
USS Hendry APA - 118 was a Haskell - class attack transport of the US Navy that was built and served in World War II. She was of the VC2 - S - AP5 Victory ship
USS Armadillo IX - 111 the lead ship of her class of tanker was the only ship of the United States Navy to be named for the armadillo, an insect - eating
USS Highlands APA - 119 was a Haskell - class attack transport built and used by the US Navy in World War II. She was a Victory ship design, VC2 - S - AP5.
USS Caelum AK - 106 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Caelum was named after the constellation Caelum
USS Ara AK - 136 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Ara is named after the constellation Ara. She
Huge Giraffe Statue Dallas Zoo - Dallas, TX Archived from the original on 2008 - 02 - 05. Tomaso, Bruce 2011 - 10 - 09 Creator of Dallas Zoo s giraffe sculpture
USS Kenmore AP - 162 AK - 221 was a Crater - class cargo ship built during World War II for the US Navy. Kenmore was named after George Washington s sister
grasslands of Africa. The largest exhibit is an area for herbivores, home to giraffes zebras, and ostrich. There are as well enclosures for hippo, African lion
USS Tulsa LCS - 16 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She is the third ship to be named for Tulsa, second - largest
USS Lesuth AK - 125 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Lesuth was named after the star Lesuth in the
USS Sculptor AK - 103 was an Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Sculptor was named after the constellation
USS APc - 1 USS APc - 2 USS APc - 3 USS APc - 4 USS APc - 5 USS APc - 6 USS APc - 7 USS APc - 8 USS APc - 9 USS APc - 10 USS APc - 11 USS APc - 12 USS APc - 13 USS APc - 14 USS APc - 15
USS Coronado LCS - 4 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship. She is the third ship of the United States Navy to be named after Coronado, California
USS Rutilicus AK - 113 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. She was responsible for delivering troops
USS Jackson LCS - 6 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy, and the first ship to be named for Jackson, the capital of
USS Rotanin AK - 108 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Rotanin, which is a misspelling of the name
USS Charleston LCS - 18 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She is the sixth ship to be named for Charleston, the
USS Manchester LCS - 14 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship in the United States Navy. She is the second ship to be named for Manchester, New
USS Omaha LCS - 12 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She is the fourth ship to be named for Omaha, the largest
USS Mobile LCS - 26 will be an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She will be the fifth ship to be named Mobile. Mobile
USS Megrez AK - 126 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Megrez was named after Megrez, a star in the
- USS Giraffe IX - 118 an Armadillo - class tanker designated an unclassified miscellaneous vessel, was the only ship of the United States Navy to be named
- Ledgard Giraffe album an album by Echoboy Giraffe chess a fairy chess piece USS Giraffe IX - 118 Giraffe constellation or Camelopardalis GIRAFFE Radar
- USS Oracle AM - 103 was an Auk - class minesweeper built for the United States Navy during World War II. She was commissioned in May 1943 and decommissioned
- United States Navy as USS Fort Donelson and in the Chilean Navy as Concepcion. Robert E. Lee was originally the merchant ship Giraffe a schooner - rigged
- USS Independence LCS - 2 is the lead ship of the Independence - class of littoral combat ships. She is the sixth ship of the United States Navy to be named
- USS Gabrielle Giffords LCS - 10 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. The ship is named after former United States
- USS G - 1 SS - 19½ USS G - 2 SS - 27 USS G - 3 SS - 31 USS G - 4 SS - 26 USS G. H. McNeal SP - 312 USS G. L. Brockenborough 1862 USS G. W. Blunt 1861 USS Gabilan
- USS Kingsville LCS - 36 will be an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She will be the first ship to be named for Kingsville
- USS Murzim AK - 95 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. She was named after Murzim, the star in constellation
- USS Hendry APA - 118 was a Haskell - class attack transport of the US Navy that was built and served in World War II. She was of the VC2 - S - AP5 Victory ship
- USS Armadillo IX - 111 the lead ship of her class of tanker was the only ship of the United States Navy to be named for the armadillo, an insect - eating
- USS Highlands APA - 119 was a Haskell - class attack transport built and used by the US Navy in World War II. She was a Victory ship design, VC2 - S - AP5.
- USS Caelum AK - 106 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Caelum was named after the constellation Caelum
- USS Ara AK - 136 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Ara is named after the constellation Ara. She
- Huge Giraffe Statue Dallas Zoo - Dallas, TX Archived from the original on 2008 - 02 - 05. Tomaso, Bruce 2011 - 10 - 09 Creator of Dallas Zoo s giraffe sculpture
- USS Kenmore AP - 162 AK - 221 was a Crater - class cargo ship built during World War II for the US Navy. Kenmore was named after George Washington s sister
- grasslands of Africa. The largest exhibit is an area for herbivores, home to giraffes zebras, and ostrich. There are as well enclosures for hippo, African lion
- USS Tulsa LCS - 16 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She is the third ship to be named for Tulsa, second - largest
- USS Lesuth AK - 125 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Lesuth was named after the star Lesuth in the
- USS Sculptor AK - 103 was an Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Sculptor was named after the constellation
- USS APc - 1 USS APc - 2 USS APc - 3 USS APc - 4 USS APc - 5 USS APc - 6 USS APc - 7 USS APc - 8 USS APc - 9 USS APc - 10 USS APc - 11 USS APc - 12 USS APc - 13 USS APc - 14 USS APc - 15
- USS Coronado LCS - 4 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship. She is the third ship of the United States Navy to be named after Coronado, California
- USS Rutilicus AK - 113 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. She was responsible for delivering troops
- USS Jackson LCS - 6 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy, and the first ship to be named for Jackson, the capital of
- USS Rotanin AK - 108 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Rotanin, which is a misspelling of the name
- USS Charleston LCS - 18 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She is the sixth ship to be named for Charleston, the
- USS Manchester LCS - 14 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship in the United States Navy. She is the second ship to be named for Manchester, New
- USS Omaha LCS - 12 is an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She is the fourth ship to be named for Omaha, the largest
- USS Mobile LCS - 26 will be an Independence - class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. She will be the fifth ship to be named Mobile. Mobile
- USS Megrez AK - 126 was a Crater - class cargo ship commissioned by the US Navy for service in World War II. Megrez was named after Megrez, a star in the
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Giraffes use their height to good advantage and browse on leaves and buds in treetops that few other animals can reach (acacias are a favorite). Even the giraffe's tongue is long! The 21-inch tongue helps them pluck tasty morsels from branches. Giraffes eat most of the time and, like cows, regurgitate food and chew it as cud. A giraffe eats hundreds of pounds of leaves each week and must travel miles to find enough food.
The giraffe's height also helps it to keep a sharp lookout for predators across the wide expanse of the African savanna.
The giraffe's stature can be a disadvantage as well—it is difficult and dangerous for a giraffe to drink at a water hole. To do so they must spread their legs and bend down in an awkward position that makes them vulnerable to predators like Africa's big cats. Giraffes only need to drink once every several days they get most of their water from the luscious plants they eat.
Female giraffes give birth standing up. Their young endure a rather rude welcome into the world by falling more than 5 feet to the ground at birth. These infants can stand in half an hour and run with their mothers an incredible ten hours after birth.
- Giraffes: Africa's Gentle Giants - 2016, BBC (UK)/PBS (US)
- Conservation challenges surrounding giraffes
- Relocating giraffes to promote survival
- Biographical narrative of giraffe biologist, Julian Fennessy, Ph.D.
- Narrated by David Attenborough (UK)/Paul Christie (US)
- Giraffe conservation issues
- Research profiles, including Anne Innis Dagg, "the Jane Goodall of giraffes"
- David Attenborough narrates this journey through the diverse continent of Africa.
- Giraffes shown in the episode titled Kalahari.
- Season 21 of the documentary series Nature depicts an episode taking place in Kenya.
- Viewers witness the birth of a giraffe and relocation of giraffes to a wildlife refuge.
- Giraffe: Biology, Behaviour and Conservation (Anne Innis Dagg 2014)
- Zarafa: A Giraffe's True Story, from Deep in Africa to the Heart of Paris (Michael Allin 1998)
- Giraffes (Lucia Raatma 2013)
- Children's book with important facts about conservation and information on the species.
Cultivating Public Awareness and Appreciation
History (Mitchell 2009)
- , Republic of Niger, West Africa (Bradshaw Foundation Trust for African Rock Art)
- Engravings/carvings on rock (sandstone)
- Life-sized, approximately 19 feet high
- Depicts two giraffes, large male with smaller female behind
- Site: Dabous, west of Aïr Mountains
- Date unclear, estimated 7-10,000 BC
- Prehistoric probably of the pre-Pastoral Period
- Earliest: 3400 BC
- Latest: 1225. Wall of the temple of Ramses II.
- Greeks: displayed by Caesar in his 46 BC games
- Romans: instances of being slain in games or paraded in celebration of military triumphs
- Not featured in Greek or Roman art (Mitchell 2009 Graham Mitchell, personal communication)
- No lasting impact "It would be another 340 years before a living giraffe was seen in Europe again" (Mitchell 2009).
- During expedition of the northwest coast of the Cape of Good Hope led by Sergeant Jonas de la Guerre
- No description given no specimens appear to have been collected.
- Evidence of how far south giraffe occurred naturally.
- 1758: Linnaeus publishes a taxonomic evaluation. Places giraffes in the genus Cervus, thinking it was related to deer, judging by the horn-like antlers.
- 1761 or 1762: The first specimen: A skin from a young giraffe. Obtained after a rest station for the Dutch East India Company at the Cape of Good Hope, South Africa, was opened.
- 1762: French zoologist Marhurin Brisson places giraffes in a new genus, Giraffa, because he suspected the horns to be permanent.
- 1764: Specimens sent to Leiden University in Holland for study by Swiss-born J.N.S. (Jean) Allamand, Professor of Natural History. Stuffed and exhibited at the University.
- Particularly interested in whether giraffe shed their horns or not, hoping to settle taxonomic controversy begun by Linnaeus and Brisson (neither had seen a specimen).
- Start of the scientific study of giraffes
- Specimen sent to famous anatomist John Hunter.
- 1780: Skin and parts of a skeleton prominently displayed in his personal museum. However, not thoroughly studied or described.
- First specimen of a giraffe seen in England.
- Last specimens sent from southern Africa.
- Allamand collaborates with Buffon, who incorporates descriptions into his Histoire Naturelle.
- A giraffe sent to France lived for 17 years in the Jardin des Plantes in Paris.
- An important stimulus to scientific study of giraffes
- Modified by Dagg and Foster (1976)
- Giraffes become an infamous example when used by Jean Baptiste Lamarck to illustrate how animals adapt to challenges of their environment (Gadjev 2014)
- Zoological Philosophy, 1809
Results and Discussion
A total of 65 different behaviours could be identified. These behaviours were subdivided into 30 Activities and 35 Interactions. Activities were subdivided further into General activities (Additional file 1: Table S1) and Abnormal repetitive behaviours (Additional file 2: Table S2). Interactions were structured by sex and age class of the acting animal, and of the animals the behaviour is presumably directed to. This resulted in General interactions (Additional file 3: Table S3), Bull-Cow behaviour (Additional file 4: Table S4), Bull-Bull behaviour (Additional file 5: Table S5), Cow-Bull behaviour (Additional file 6: Table S6), interactions by calves (Additional file 7: Table S7), and maternal behaviours (Additional file 8: Table S8). No behaviours were found being performed exclusively between cows.
As mentioned above, behaviours allocated to the category Activities are not related to any type of interactive behaviour and also not restricted to one sex or age class. Behaviours of the Activities category were further subdivided into General Activities (Additional file 1: Table S1) and Abnormal repetitive behaviours (Additional file 2: Table S2).
Abnormal repetitive behaviours
As in other species, it is assumed that abnormal repetitive behaviours often develop in captive animals due to a time budget shift in the daily activity pattern [46, 47]. Giraffes in captivity spend considerably less time feeding compared to the amount of time giraffes browse in the wild [16, 20].
This section includes behaviours which are characterised by any type of direct or indirect social interaction between individual giraffes. Behaviours of the Interactions category were further subdivided into General Interactions (Additional file 3: Table 3), Bull - Cow Behaviour (Additional file 4: Table S4), Bull - Bull Behaviour (Additional file 5: Table S5), Cow - Bull Behaviour (Additional file 6: Table S6), behavioural Interactions by Calves (Additional file 7: Table S7) and maternal behaviours (Additional file 8: Table S8). All behaviours performed between cows (cow-cow) were also observed between other constellations of sex and age, thus listed under general interactions.
This ethogram was compiled to serve as a basis for current and future studies designed to further examine the complex behavioural patterns of the species. Based on our own observations, several often older descriptions could be verified and even new insights added to what is stated in literature.
The classification of the described behaviours into activities and interactions might appear rather clear from a definition point of view, but should be used with precaution, because the complete intention and purpose of an observed behaviour always remains an interpretation based on a projection of the observer’s conception. The animal’s behaviour can not be reduced to the sum of different behavioural acts, which is why clear and precise terminology is essential to create a common language understandable among human observers and to contribute to the understanding of wildlife behaviour.
Regarding social interactions not restricted to one sex or age class (General Interactions), it is worth noting that many of these behaviours were originally described as exclusively exaggerated by one sex, or by a specific age class. However, during our observations, we also register the performance of these behaviours by the respective opposite sex, or across age classes, respectively.
The section on play behaviour was kept rather short and comprehensive. For the sake of brevity, all behaviours of the same obvious (play) intention were summarised. Nevertheless, future studies might be able to reveal various forms of play behaviour in giraffe, similar to that of other ungulates, although probably not as pronounced as e.g. in horses .
Several behaviours, although often only observed in form of an attempt (e.g. mounting, mating, nursing) are classified as separate behaviours in this ethogram, because attempts seem to be distinct and important, therefore these behaviours might be considered as a separate sub-section in an ethogram used for observations.
It must be also mentioned, that for the visual communication of dominance, contradictory descriptions are given in literature. Pratt and Anderson  report that a dominant bull will walk towards an opponent with its head held high, intending to look as big as possible. On the contrary, Dagg  states that a dominant bull, threatening an opponent will carry his head deep with the neck parallel to the ground, as if assuming a fighting position. We suggest that both observations are adequate and that communication of dominance might vary with the distance between opponents. In this regard, the “head-high” posture could be assumed for a distance of more then two body lengths, while the “fight” posture would be assumed with the opponent in close proximity, as it has been seen during our own observations. The typical intention of a threatening giraffe bull is often expressed by an arched and tensed neck (see Dominance gesture), as it is also seen in other ungulates, e.g. horses  or reindeer . The visual communication of submission is contrary to that of dominance and thus is also described contradictory in literature. According to Pratt and Anderson [5, 27], the subdominant individual will carry its head low to look smaller than it is, in order to not provoke aggression. Dagg  reports that inferior giraffe bulls stand with an erect neck and the nose pointed upwards, assuming a feeding position and thereby exposing the body to attacks. As well as for dominance, a distance dependent expression for submission might be considered. In this regard, the plasticity of social behaviour and communication patterns should be borne in mind during conduction and interpretation of behavioural observations.
Appearance and anatomy
Fully grown giraffes stand 5–6 m (16–20 ft) tall, with males taller than females. [ 11 ] The average weight is 1,600 kg (3,500 lb) for an adult male and 830 kg (1,800 lb) for an adult female. [ 25 ] Despite its long neck and legs, the giraffe's body is relatively short. [ 26 ] :66 Located at both sides of the head, the giraffe's large, bulging eyes give it good all-round vision from its great height. [ 27 ] :25 Giraffes see in color [ 27 ] :26 and their senses of hearing and smell are also sharp. [ 12 ] The animal can close its muscular nostrils to protect against sandstorms and ants. [ 27 ] :27 The giraffe's prehensile tongue is about 50 cm (20 in) long. It is purplish-black in color, perhaps to protect against sunburn, and is useful for grasping foliage as well as for grooming and cleaning the animal's nose. [ 27 ] :27 The upper lip of the giraffe is also prehensile and useful when foraging. The lips, tongue and inside of the mouth are covered in papillae to protect against thorns. [ 11 ]
The coat has dark blotches or patches (which can be orange, chestnut, brown or nearly black on color [ 12 ] ) separated by light hair (usually white or cream in color [ 12 ] ). Each individual giraffe has a unique coat pattern. [ 23 ] The coat pattern serves as camouflage, allowing it to blend in the light and shade patterns of savanna woodlands. [ 9 ] [ 14 ] The skin underneath the dark areas may serve as windows for thermoregulation, being sites for complex blood vessel systems and large sweat glands. [ 28 ] The skin of a giraffe is mostly gray. [ 25 ] It is also thick and allows them to run through thorn bush without being punctured. [ 27 ] :34 Their fur may serve as a chemical defence, as it is full of parasite repellents that give the animal a characteristic scent. There are at least eleven main aromatic chemicals in the fur, although indole and 3-methylindole are responsible for most of the smell. Because the males have a stronger odor than the females, it is suspected that it also has a sexual function. [ 29 ] Along the animal's neck is a mane made of short, erect hairs. [ 11 ] The 1 m (3.3 ft) tail ends in a long, dark tuft of hair and is used as a defense against insects. [ 27 ] :36
Skull and ossicones
Both sexes have prominent horn-like structures called ossicones, which are formed from ossified cartilage, covered in skin and fused to the skull at the parietal bones. [ 23 ] Being vascularized, the ossicones may have a role in thermoregulation. [ 28 ] Appearance is a reliable guide to the sex or age of a giraffe: the ossicones of females and young are thin and display tufts of hair on top, whereas those of adult males end in knobs and tend to be bald on top. [ 23 ] There is also a median lump, which is more prominent in males, at the front of the skull. [ 11 ] Males develop calcium deposits that form bumps on their skulls as they age. [ 12 ] A giraffe's skull is lightened by multiple sinuses. [ 26 ] :70 However, as males age, their skulls become heavier and more club-like, helping them become more dominant in combat. [ 23 ] The upper jaw has a grooved palate and lacks front teeth. [ 27 ] :26 The surface of the giraffe's molars are rougher than those of some other mammals. [ 27 ] :27
Legs, locomotion and posture
The front legs of a giraffe are slightly longer than its hind legs. The radius and ulna of the front legs are articulated by the carpus, which, while structurally equivalent to the human wrist, functions as a knee. [ 30 ] The foot of the giraffe reaches a diameter of 30 cm (12 in), and the hoof is 15 cm (5.9 in) high in males and 10 cm (3.9 in) in females. [ 27 ] :36 The rear of each hoof is low and the fetlock is close to the ground, allowing the foot to support the animal's weight. [ 11 ] Giraffes lack dewclaws and interdigital glands. The giraffe's pelvis, though relatively short, has an ilium that is outspread at the upper ends. [ 11 ]
A giraffe has only two gaits: walking and galloping. Walking is done by moving the legs on one side of the body at the same time, then doing the same on the other side. [ 23 ] When galloping, the hind legs move around the front legs before the latter move forward, [ 12 ] and the tail will curl up. [ 23 ] The animal relies on the forward and backward motions of its head and neck to maintain balance and the counter momentum while galloping. [ 8 ] :327–29 The giraffe can reach a sprint speed of up to 60 km/h (37 mph), [ 31 ] and can sustain 50 km/h (31 mph) for several kilometers. [ 32 ]
A giraffe rests by lying with its body on top of its folded legs. [ 8 ] :329 To lie down, the animal kneels on its front legs and then lowers the rest of its body. To get back up, it first gets on its knees and spreads its hind legs to raise its hindquarters. It then straightens its front legs. With each step, the animal swings its head. [ 27 ] :31 The giraffe sleeps intermittently around 4.6 hours per day, mostly at night. [ 33 ] It usually sleeps lying down, however, standing sleeps have been recorded, particularly in older individuals. Intermittent short "deep sleep" phases while lying are characterized by the giraffe bending its neck backwards and resting its head on the hip or thigh, a position believed to indicate paradoxical sleep. [ 33 ] If the giraffe wants to bend down to drink, it either spreads its front legs or bends its knees. [ 23 ] Giraffes would probably not be competent swimmers as their long legs would be highly cumbersome in the water, [ 34 ] although they could possibly float. [ 35 ] When swimming, the thorax would be weighed down by the front legs, making it difficult for the animal to move its neck and legs in harmony [ 34 ] [ 35 ] or keep its head above the surface. [ 34 ]
The giraffe has an extremely elongated neck, which can be up to 2 m (6 ftه in) in length, accounting for much of the animal's vertical height. [ 27 ] :29 The long neck results from a disproportionate lengthening of the cervical vertebrae, not from the addition of more vertebrae. Each cervical vertebra is over 28 cm (11 in) long. [ 26 ] :71 They comprise 52–54 percent of the giraffe's vertebral column, compared with the 27–33 percent typical of similar large ungulates, including the giraffe’s closest living relative, the okapi. [ 36 ] This elongation largely takes place after birth, as giraffe mothers would have a difficult time giving birth to young with the same neck proportions as adults. [ 37 ] The giraffe's head and neck are held up by large muscles and a nuchal ligament, which are anchored by long dorsal spines on the anterior thoracic vertebrae, giving the animal a hump. [ 11 ]
The giraffe's neck vertebrae have ball and socket joints. [ 26 ] :71 In particular, the atlas–axis joint (C1 and C2) allows the animal to tilt its head vertically and reach more branches with the tongue. [ 27 ] :29 The point of articulation between the cervical and thoracic vertebrae of giraffes is shifted to lie between the first and second thoracic vertebrae (T1 and T2), unlike most other ruminants where the articulation is between the seventh cervical vertebra (C7) and T1. [ 36 ] [ 37 ] This allows C7 to contribute directly to increased neck length and has given rise to the suggestion that T1 is actually C8, and that giraffes have added an extra cervical vertebra. [ 38 ] However, this proposition is not generally accepted, as T1 has other morphological features, such as an articulating rib, deemed diagnostic of thoracic vertebrae, and because exceptions to the mammalian limit of seven cervical vertebrae are generally characterized by increased neurological anomalies and maladies. [ 36 ]
There are two main hypotheses regarding the evolutionary origin and maintenance of elongation in giraffe necks. [ 39 ] The "competing browsers hypothesis" was originally suggested by Charles Darwin and only challenged recently. It suggests that competitive pressure from smaller browsers, such as kudu, steenbok and impala, encouraged the elongation of the neck, as it enabled giraffes to reach food that competitors could not. This advantage is real, as giraffes can and do feed up to 4.5 m (15 ft) high, while even quite large competitors, such as kudu, can only feed up to about 2 m (6 ftه in) high. [ 40 ] There is also research suggesting that browsing competition is intense at lower levels, and giraffes feed more efficiently (gaining more leaf biomass with each mouthful) high in the canopy. [ 41 ] [ 42 ] However, scientists disagree about just how much time giraffes spend feeding at levels beyond the reach of other browsers. [ 10 ] [ 39 ] [ 40 ] [ 43 ]
The other main theory, the sexual selection hypothesis, proposes that the long necks evolved as a secondary sexual characteristic, giving males an advantage in "necking" contests (see below) to establish dominance and obtain access to sexually receptive females. [ 10 ] In support of this theory, necks are longer and heavier for males than females of the same age, [ 10 ] [ 39 ] and the former do not employ other forms of combat. [ 10 ] However, one objection is that it fails to explain why female giraffes also have long necks. [ 44 ]
In mammals, the left recurrent laryngeal nerve is longer than the right in the giraffe it is over 30 cm (12 in) longer. These nerves are longer in the giraffe than in any other living animal [ 45 ] the left nerve is over 2 m (6 ftه in) long. [ 46 ] Each nerve cell in this path begins in the brainstem and passes down the neck along the vagus nerve, then branches off into the recurrent laryngeal nerve which passes back up the neck to the larynx. Thus, these nerve cells have a length of nearly 5 m (16 ft) in the largest giraffes. [ 45 ] The structure of a giraffe's brain resembles that of domestic cattle. [ 27 ] :31 The shape of the skeleton gives the giraffe a small lung volume relative to its mass. [ 47 ] Its long neck gives it a large amount of dead space, in spite of its narrow windpipe. These factors increase the resistance to airflow. Nevertheless, the animal can still supply enough oxygen to its tissues. [ 47 ]
The circulatory system of the giraffe has several adaptations for its great height. Its heart, which can weigh more than 25 lb (11 kg) and measures about 2 ft (61 cm) long, must generate approximately double the blood pressure required for a human to maintain blood flow to the brain. [ 12 ] Giraffes have usually high heart rates for their size, at 150 beats per minute. [ 26 ] :76 In the upper neck, the rete mirabile prevents excess blood flow to the brain when the giraffe lowers its head. [ 14 ] The jugular veins also contain several (most commonly seven) valves to prevent blood flowing back into the head from the inferior vena cava and right atrium while the head is lowered. [ 48 ] Conversely, the blood vessels in the lower legs are under great pressure (because of the weight of fluid pressing down on them). To solve this problem, the giraffe's lower legs have a thick, tight layer of skin, which prevents too much blood from pouring into them. [ 14 ]
Giraffes have oesophageal muscles that are unusually strong to allow regurgitation of food from the stomach up the neck and into the mouth for rumination. [ 26 ] :78 They have four chambered stomachs, as in all ruminants, and the first chamber has adapted to their specialized diet. [ 11 ] The giraffe's intestines measure up to 80 m (260 ft) in length [ 11 ] and have a relatively small ratio of small to large intestine. [ 49 ] The liver of the giraffe is small and compact. [ 26 ] :76 A gallbladder is generally present during fetal life, but it may disappear before birth. [ 11 ] [ 50 ] [ 51 ]
The evolution that giraffes have had since their earliest ancestors to the actual specimens is fascinating. What animals share genetic code with them? Was their neck part of an evolutive process?
While the giraffe as we know it is native to Africa, more than 20-25 million years ago their ancestors also roamed along Europe and Asia. There aren’t many fossils of them, but some information has allowed scientists to come up with some evolution theories.
These ancient giraffes looked like deer and were much shorter than what we know of them today, but the scientific debate focus on how they ended up with the extremely long necks of today’s giraffes. There are a couple of theories that resume most ideas. Some believe it occurred slowly, over a long time due to the trees in the areas where they lived that trying to reach them got giraffes taller in the process.
They are even-toed ungulates which are those animals with hooves like deer, pigs, hippos, among others that share this peculiarity. There are three suborders within the Artiodactyla order:
Tylopoda which includes camels and llamas Suina a suborder composed by pigs and peccaries and finally the clade Cetruminantia which includes whales, hippos, and ruminants the suborder to which giraffes belong.
They are ruminant artiodactyls which only has two extant genera Okapia and Giraffa. Although externally they look very different, both have a genetic and morphological relationship. Both okapis and giraffes are distributed only in the African continent.
According to scientific studies, they evolved in the Miocene from ungulate animals occupying regions of Africa and Eurasia We are talking about 25 million years ago. Eventually, they became extinct, but a new species emerged.
The long neck is a later adaptation since such ancestors had short necks and were smaller resembling more a modern okapi than an actual giraffe. Fossils of these species such as the Giraffokeryx, has short necks, horns on one side of the head and behind. By their placement has suggested the possibility that the males wrestled with lateral head movements and not with the long neck like the current giraffes.
How did the giraffes develop such a long neck? There are two theories: one from Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and the other from Charles Darwin.
This hypothesis, known as the Lamarck Theory, was introduced in the early 1800s. It states that the food on the ground was scarce and that these animals were instinctively raising their necks as high up as they could to reach what was there. Over time, the size of those necks was longer which provide them an adaptation that allowed their survival.
The theory of the French naturalist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck is the concept of use and disuse That is, a characteristic that is used very frequently by a living being, gradually develops and strengthens until it meets the need of the species. The parts of the body not used go missing until disappearing entirely.
On the other side, Charles Darwin had another theory about the survival of the fittest. He believed that some of the giraffes had a genetic mutation that allowed them to develop longer necks. These individuals were able to eat more, and so they were stronger. That means that those males were the ones breeding and that genetic code was passed down to the next generations. Those that couldn’t get enough to eat weren’t strong enough to mate with the females, and they eventually died without having offspring.
Darwin explains that individuals with characteristics better adapted to their environment are more likely to survive and therefore, such traits are inherited. He also said that species that can not compete and adapt eventually become extinct.
However, there is not a definitive explanation for the long necks of giraffes accepted by most scientists. Both theories, have interesting points, but they also have inconsistent and unconfirmed details.
Other scientists such as Elissa Cameron and Johan du Toit agree with the hypothesis that the necks of giraffes are long because of their continuous reach of high trees, especially because of their preference for the acacia, whose leaves are at heights that other herbivores cannot reach.
Nevertheless, researchers like Robert Simmons and Lue Scheepers disagree with this idea. They claim that regardless of whether they go through the dry season or not, giraffes feed on lower shrubs, even if there are tall trees in the same area. They observed that the females spent more time feeding with their neck in a horizontal position and that both genders ingested quantities of food at a faster rate than when they did it in a vertical position.
The hypothesis that giraffes have long neck due to the scarcity of food at low heights is not entirely accepted, so the dilemma is not fully explained yet.
Another related question is why only the giraffes developed this feature when many other animals in the zone are also herbivores? The theories and hypotheses have arisen to explain this subject, but none has the general acceptance of the scientific community.
Recently another theory appeared trying to explain this unique feature of giraffes and is related to the successful reproduction as male giraffes fight for the right to mate with a female through necking, so the bulls with the stronger necks have better chances to reproduce.
Read the article. Why do giraffes have long necks?
Bryan Shorrocks. The Giraffe: Biology, Ecology, Evolution and Behaviour. John Wiley & Sons, Aug 8, 2016. Page 42.
Hassanin, Alexandre Douzery, Emmanuel J. P. (2003). “Molecular and Morphological Phylogenies of Ruminantia and the Alternative Position of the Moschidae”. Systematic Biology.
Darwin, Charles (1872). Origin of Species. Sixth Edition.
Brownlee, A. (1963). “Evolution of the Giraffe,” Nature vol. 200, p. 1022.
یواساس جیراف (آیایکس-۱۱۸)
یواساس جیراف (آیایکس-۱۱۸) (به انگلیسی: USS Giraffe (IX-118) ) یک کشتی بود که طول آن ۴۴۱ فوت ۶ اینچ (۱۳۴٫۵۷ متر) بود. این کشتی در سال ۱۹۴۳ ساخته شد.
یواساس جیراف (آیایکس-۱۱۸)
پیشینه مالک آغاز کار: ۱۱ نوامبر ۱۹۴۳ اعزام: ۱۲ دسامبر ۱۹۴۳ مشخصات اصلی وزن: 14,245 tons درازا: ۴۴۱ فوت ۶ اینچ (۱۳۴٫۵۷ متر) پهنا: ۵۶ فوت ۱۱ اینچ (۱۷٫۳۵ متر) آبخور: ۲۸ فوت ۴ اینچ (۸٫۶۴ متر) سرعت: 11 knots
این یک مقالهٔ خرد کشتی یا قایق است. میتوانید با گسترش آن به ویکیپدیا کمک کنید.
The nonprofit Giraffe Heroes Project was born in the head and heart of Ann Medlock, a freelance editor, publicist and writer living in Manhattan. Ann started the Project in 1981 as an antidote to the mind-numbing violence and trivia that pervaded the media, eroding civic energy and hope. People needed to know about the heroes of our times and all that they were accomplishing as courageous, compassionate citizens.
Ann’s strategy for the Giraffe Heroes Project was simple—she would find unknown heroes, commend them as Giraffes for sticking their necks out, and get their stories told on radio and television and in print. Giraffe stories would show the public that there was headway being made on the problems of the world, that there were individuals who had solutions—and the courage to move into action. The stories would feed people’s souls, inform their attitudes—and get them moving on public problems that mattered to them.
The idea of telling heroes’ stories to inspire others to action has deep roots. People had been telling the stories of heroes for thousands of years as a way to communicate core values. Ann Medlock invented the Giraffe Project to do the same thing for our times. She knew that stories go straight to the heart and stay there, bypassing the objections that the mind can throw up to keep out theories, rules and admonitions. Ann also knew that the giraffe metaphor and imagery were great ways to get people’s attention, to engage their interest and, once engaged, to get past both their fears and their anti-message radar.
In those days of getting the Project started, friends and family were asking Ann why she was putting so much into something that could well be a lost cause. Flying off to Paris to write a speech for the Aga Khan hadn’t been a bad way to make a living. Why was she going on and on with this Giraffe thing? She wasn’t sure herself.
She got the answer on a trip west, at a seminar Joseph Campbell was giving at Esalen. Ann had attended Campbell’s classes whenever he taught in New York City she couldn’t pass up this chance to hear Campbell talk for a full weekend on the story of Parsifal.
Campbell showed Parsifal as a recurring theme in mythology, the story of the Holy Fool. This Fool is always considered a dummy by the smart, hip people who really know the score. In Parsifal’s case, there’s a mysterious blight on the land, nothing will grow and no one knows how to break the spell. Parsifal, the Holy Fool, sets out to find the cause, right the wrong, and save the people. He’s told he can’t do it, that he’s too dumb, too weak, too everything. But he goes ahead anyway, breaking the curse on the land and bringing life back to the people.
The Holy Fool is the most dangerous person on earth, Campbell explained, the most threatening to all hierarchical institutions, because he ignores their power. He has no concern for naysayers. He’s unfazed by risk. He’s not limited by his limitations, not listening to reason, not stoppable, not controllable. He knows what he has to do and he’s doing it, no matter what.
Driving up the California coast after the seminar, Ann had what later seemed to her an obvious revelation—the reason she had been so obsessed with finding Giraffes and telling their stories was that these were our time’s Holy Fools she had locked into an archetype that had her in thrall, one that was desperately needed in the spiritual blight of the 1980’s. No matter what it took, she would go on.
Back in New York, she had lunch with Campbell and told him what she was doing, what his seminar had made clear to her, how grateful she was that he’d shown her the reason for her obsession. She was amazed to see his eyes well up, and delighted to have his endorsement of her quest.
At its beginnings in 1981, the Giraffe Project had been just Ann, running around New York City interviewing the people whose stories she wanted to tell. The first Giraffes were people like Gene Gitelson, a Vietnam vet who’d left the security of his banking career to help down-and-out vets, and Elsa Hart, a gems expert who’d faced down crooked middlemen to get an Apache tribe in Arizona a fair deal for the gemstones from their mine.
After she recorded an interview, Ann would write a radio public service announcement around it, then convince an actor such as Candice Bergen, John Denver or Sam Waterston, to record it. She sent the records to hundreds of radio stations–who began playing them. Just as Ann had hoped, the stories of Giraffes were so compelling they were soon picked up by print media and television, both local and national. In effect, she was a press agent for America’s heroes.
John Graham joined Ann on the quest—but it took him awhile. A U.S. Foreign Service Officer for fifteen years, he’d been in the middle of wars, revolutions and arms sales. A three-year stint working at the U.S. Mission to the UN gave him the chance to focus his skills and energy on ending apartheid and other human rights abuses, and on stopping wars instead of starting them. In September 1980, he decided he could do more for peace by quitting the Foreign Service and training the opponents of government policies—people who wanted America to cut nuclear arms, do more to end apartheid, or combat poverty at home and abroad.
John had met Ann just as she was developing the Giraffe idea. At first, he admits, he thought what she wanted to do was lightweight he couldn’t see how just telling stories would change anything, especially if the symbol for it all was a giraffe.
Still, as friends, Ann and John understood that her Giraffe Project and his trainings were aimed at compatible goals by different paths. By the middle of 1981, however, they’d fallen in love, and whatever skepticism John had felt about Ann’s path needed another look. He began to feel the archetypal power of the stories she was telling and to see her genius in using the giraffe metaphor to get them into people’s heads and hearts. He could see that people were listening to Giraffe stories, and that the Giraffe Project was already changing lives. It was anything but lightweight. The two paths began to merge. By 1983 Ann’s media work and John’s trainings were all under the Giraffe banner, and the two of them were working on the Project seven days a week.
The Project was soon telling Giraffe stories, not just on radio, but on television and in magazines and newspapers. It began publishing Giraffe News, and Giraffes were being featured in major media such as Time, Parade, USA Weekend, Readers’ Digest, People, The New York Times, Glamour, CBS, PBS, CNN, ABC and the Voice of America. The exposure attracted resources of many kinds to the Giraffes, and their stories inspired others to action, from setting up a soup kitchen in Tucson to saving a wetland on Long Island.
In 1991, the Giraffe Project moved into schools with the first editions of the Giraffe Heroes Program, a character education and service-learning curriculum that teaches courageous compassion and active citizenship to kids in grades K through 12. That same year, Ann Medlock launched her award-winning radio broadcasts on public radio. In 1995, the Project launched its web site, one of the first in the nonprofit world.
In ’98, Ann created Stan Tall & Bea Tall, cartoon giraffes who tell heroes’ stories to the very young. John wrote an active-citizenship handbook for teens and then one for people of all ages. Thanks to grants from several foundations, many of these materials are now online, as free downloads.
Now called the Giraffe Heroes Project, the team has commended over a thousand Giraffes and all are available to the world in a free online database. Over a quarter million kids have done the Giraffe Heroes Program at school. Giraffe speeches, trainings, books, OpEds, the website, and an ever expanding social media presence have brought the message of courageous service to people all over the world.
Almost four decades of experience have proved Ann Medlock right the Giraffe message can and does move people to take the brave and compassionate actions that are the mainstays of free and healthy societies.
Description: The tallest land mammal, with a neck as long as 6 feet, the giraffe is also well known for the unique brown and white pattern on its coat (&ldquopelage&rdquo) and its lengthy eyelashes and legs.
Habitat: Giraffes use both semi-arid savannah and savannah woodlands in Africa.
Range: Giraffes are found in fragmented habitats scattered throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
Breeding: Giraffe pregnancy usually lasts about 15 months, with two-year intervals between births. Females give birth throughout the year and usually reach sexual maturity between the ages of five and seven years. Males reach sexual maturity between seven and eight years of age and travel extensively to detect and investigate females receptive to mating.
Life Cycle: Giraffes can live as long as 25 years.
Feeding: Giraffes eat a very wide variety of trees and shrubs and spend a large part of each day browsing.
Threats: Giraffes have experienced severe habitat loss and fragmentation as a result of the expansion of human activities into their habitats. Uncontrolled timber harvest, the conversion of native habitat for agricultural development, mining, poor land-use planning, and urban expansion have all played a role in the loss and degradation of giraffe habitat. Giraffes are hunted both legally and illegally for sport and for their parts and products. Lack of enforcement of local laws, in addition to civil unrest in certain parts of giraffes' range, have allowed poaching for bushmeat, bones, tail hair and other giraffe parts to become a leading cause of this species' mortality and a major contributor to its decline. Poaching and legal sport hunting are both spurred by the international trade in giraffe parts and products. Giraffes are further threatened by the proliferation of diseases like giraffe skin disease, as well as inbreeding depression in isolated populations, collisions with automobiles and airplanes, and the increased frequency and magnitude of droughts associated with climate change.
Population Trend: Giraffes once occupied much of the savannah and savannah woodlands of Africa, but the species currently remains in only a fraction of that expansive range. According to the IUCN's 2016 estimate, giraffes have undergone a 36&ndash40 percent population decline over the past 30 years. Today roughly 97,500 giraffes remain in Africa &mdash compared to the 150,000-plus giraffes recorded in Africa in 1985 (or within the last three generations).
Subspecies: There are currently nine subspecies of giraffes that are generally recognized by taxnomonists: West African (Giraffa camelopardalis peralta) Kordofan (G. c. antiquorum) Nubian (G. c. camelopardalis) reticulated (G. c. reticulata) Rothschild's (G. c. rothschildi) Masai (G. c. tippelskirchi) Thornicroft's (G. c. thornicrofti) Angolan (G. c. angolensis) and South African (G. c. giraffa).
Watch the video: The Evolution of the Giraffe (January 2022).