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Species name: Giraffa camelopardalis is the tallest animal to walk the earth. The giraffe has been likened in appearance to a camel which is also ungulate.
Both the neck and the legs are extremely elongated allowing the giraffe to browse leaves that are beyond the reach of other species. The prefferred food is the acacia leafe which the giraffe pulls with a rough tongue up to 21 inches long. Thus the giraffe occupies a unique environmental niches on the grassy plains and in open forests. The Giraffe is a ruminant mammal regurgitating food to be rechewed as cud.
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These unusual animals will meander across the grasslands in collections of six or seven individuals, although they do not form strong social bonds. Males will fight to win the right to sire young using the neck as a weapon. The successful male will subsequently leave the female to raise the calves alone.
Despite their great height giraffes are predated by lions and the younger giraffes can also fall prey to lesser predators of the savannahs such as Hyenas wild dogs and leopards. Giraffes legs are about six feet long and at a sprint they can reach 35mph. They can run for longer periods at 10mph to cover distance. The height they enjoy affords the Giraffe an excellent vantage point from which spy approaching predator threats. Predators must be wary of the violent force inflicted by a kick from such enormous and powerful limbs.