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GIRRAFES

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by

Kendall Koslosky

on 28 January 2014

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Transcript of GIRRAFES

GIRAFFES
Cooperative (social) Behavior
Female giraffes associate in groups (called herds) that sometimes including a few younger males
More mature males line in groups (called bachelor herds) and use their necks to fight for dominance
The older males are often solitary
Giraffes can make a variety of sounds like moaning, snoring, hissing, and flute-like sounds
These noises allow for an individual within the herd to warn the rest of the group of danger
When a giraffe is angry, it will lower its neck
This allows for the rest of the group to realize that the certain giraffe is angry- which is probably a good indication to leave that giraffe alone
Females tend to associate with other females when they have calf groups
This allows the calves to play together
It's a major advantage as it protects the young from predators
The older males already have a rank within the herd so they don't fight for their mating rights
Males build dominance over other males by "necking" to earn their rank
INNATE (instinctive) BEHAVIOR
Group Behaviors
Giraffes are creatures that like to wonder on their own
A herd of giraffes like to have their own area to eat food
A herd of giraffes can stretch close to a mile
Giraffes grunt to alarm others near
Females whistle to call their young
Calfs can bleat or cry to their mother
Males fight by hitting each other to assert dominance and win mating rights
To protect young female giraffes use their hooves as weapons
Sexual (reproductive)
Behavior
"Necking" creates a hierarchy amongst the males.
Males mate with as many females as they can which keeps the gene pool strong.
Mating season is year long for giraffes
Males taste the urine to detect female hormones.
Courting lasts a day at most. When a male courts a female, he follows her around giving her cues he is interested.
Females are pregnant for about 14.5 months
Males do not stay around to care for the baby
Learned Behavior
Definition: A behavior that is performed by the individual within the group that has a specific role to play for the benefit of the group.
Description
One of the world's tallest mammals
Well known for their long necks, long legs, and spotted patterns
They have small horns on the top of their heads that grow to be about 5 inches long (used to fight)
Males weigh between 2,400 and 3,000 lbs and are 19 feet tall on average
Females weigh between 1,600 and 2,600 lbs and are 16 feet tall on average
Populations are relatively stable
Can be found in central, eastern, and southern Africa
Healthy giraffes live about 25 years in the wild
Mostly eat acacia tree leaves
There are no current laws to protect giraffes
Cheyenne Mountain Zoo
The giraffes are out daily when local temperatures are above 40 degrees fahrenheit
Zoo diet consists of alfalfa hay, herbivore grain, and giraffe crackers
People that visit the zoo are allowed to feed the giraffes and walk right up to them
Cheyenne Mountain has the largest herd of giraffes at any zoo
Improvements
The food that the giraffes are fed is very irregular compared to what a giraffe would eat in the wild (grass, twigs, leaves, and fruit from trees)
Humans are constantly feeding the giraffes in captivity, especially at the Cheyenne Mountain zoo
This is causing the animals to behave in different ways
Behaviors are changing
What to do...
Feed the giraffes more grass, leaves, twigs, etc. as well as stop allowing humans to get so close to these animals and feed them so that their natural behaviors will stop changing over time
Innate behavior:
A behavior that an
animal is born with.
(Instinctive).
When giraffes are born they are
automatically herbivores.
Since they have such long necks, they
learn to eat from trees at a very young age
because its what they can reach and get to.
A baby giraffe can stand very shortly after being
born and can also walk around.
They no when they are in danger and how to run away as fast as possible when they are born.
Giraffes almost immediately know what other giraffes are in their own herd and are accepted as a part of that herd right when they are born.
Group Behavior
A behavior expressed
to help the herd as a
whole
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