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介紹動物 編序:001 Introduction of animals
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介紹動物   編序:001  Introduction of animals 

 

 

目錄:http://a-z-animals.com/animals/

 

來源;http://a-z-animals.com/animals/abyssinian/

 

Animals >> Abyssinian

 

Abyssinian History and Domestication

The Abyssinian Cat is thought to be one of the oldest breeds of domestic Cat in the world, as the first domestication of the Abyssinian Cat occurred in Ancient Egyptian times. It is thought that Abyssinian Cats were bought and sold on the banks of the River Nile by traders, where the African Wild Cats (the ancestors of all domestic Cats) lived in their native habitats. Abyssinian Cats are most easily identified by their "ticked" fur which gives their coat a mottled appearance.

Abyssinian Physical Characteristics

The Abyssinian Cat has a more wild looking appearance when compared to many breeds of domestic Cat in modern times. The Abyssinian Cat has large ears (meaning it has fantastic hearing) on top of it's broad head, and the large almond-shaped eyes of the Abyssinian are still distinctive to this breed today. The Abyssinian Cat is a medium sized Cat with a long and muscular yet slender body and a relatively short tail. Although today, the Abyssinian can be found in a variety of different colours from blue to lilac to red, the dense, silky fur of the Abyssinian was originally silver or fawn in colour.

 

Abyssinian Behaviour and Temperament

The Abyssinian Cat is known to be extremely intelligent and playful and is thought to be one of the most active breeds of domestic Cat as the Abyssinian seems to find it almost impossible to sit still. Abyssinian Cats are known to be extremely loyal and obedient felines making them easy to train in the house. The Abyssinian Cat is as wild in temperament as it is in appearance and enjoys to have a lot of attention as well as to keep active, which also tends make these Cats naturally good hunters.

 

Abyssinian Breeding

Today, most species of modern day domestic Cat are thought to have descended from, or be close descendants of, the Abyssinian Cats which were brought to England from Northern Africa in the 19th century. The Abyssinian Cat is thought to have been one of the first species of Wild Cat to have been domesticated by Humans, and is therefore one of the first wild animals to be treated like a household pet. The Abyssinian is now one of the most popular domestic Cat breeds in the USA and was thought to have been first exhibited in Crystal Palace in 1871 and the first official listing of the Abyssinian Cat breed was in 1882.

 

Abyssinian Interesting Facts and Features

In Ancient Egypt, the Abyssinian Cat was seen as a sign from the Ancient Egyptian Gods and was therefore thought to be a sacred animal with legend deeming that the Abyssinian was the "Child of the Gods" and it was therefore worshipped on the banks of the Nile. This meant that the Egyptian people believed that the Abyssinian Cats were extremely special animals and they therefore looked after their Cats very well, with Abyssinian Cats often being depicted as sacred beings in Ancient Egyptian art and legend.

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● 介紹動物 編序:014 Akbash 狗
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   介紹動物   編序:014  Akbash

 

 目錄:http://a-z-animals.com/animals/  

http://a-z-animals.com/animals/akbash-dog/    

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Akbash History and Domestication

The Akbash is a large, white breed of domestic Dog, native to the plains and mountains of western Turkey. The Akbash is a guard Dog and was originally bred by shepherds around 3,000 years ago to create a white-coloured Dog that could guard their flock of Sheep. Although the exact reasons for this particular choice in colour are unknown, it is widely believed that a white guard Dog was wanted, to ensure that it wasn't mistaken for a hungry predator, such as a Wolf. The Akbash is an ancient breed of domestic Dog and although it is thought to have derived from similar breeds in Italy and Hungary, it's exact ancestry is not really known. These other continental guard Dogs however, were thought to have been brought into Europe from parts of Asia.

Akbash Physical Characteristics

The Akbash is a large and powerful breed of Dog, that is perfectly built for a life of Sheep guarding in the mountains. It has a short to medium length coat, which is white in colour with occasional patches of light brown. The coat of the Akbash is coarse to prevent it from matting when exposed to the alpine elements, and the double-layer allows it to also be water-resistant, protecting the Akbash from getting too cold. The Akbash has a big head and powerful jaws, along with a very strong body, a short neck and large, curved toes. The tail of the Akbash is very distinctive to the breed as it is not only long and curved, but is also covered in longer, feathered fur. The Akbash has thickly padded feet and almond-shaped eyes that vary from gold to dark brown in colour.

 

Akbash Behaviour and Temperament

The Akbash was originally bred by shepherds to guard their flocks from large mountain predators, so they are naturally a dominant and aggressive breed. They are one of the most primitive guard Dogs among domestic breeds today and therefore require a firm and experienced owner. They are however, intelligent and courageous animals that risk their lives to protect the animals and people under their guard. The Akbash is a very loyal breed, completely devoted and dedicated to their owner and often regard strangers that are not in their owner's presence, as suspicious. The Akbash is very independent with strong and protective instincts, known to respond quickly and without help in the case of emergency, when it feels that it's flock is under threat.

 

Akbash Breeding

The Akbash breed first appeared roughly 3,000 years ago, when it was bred to be a strong and protective guard Dog that was white in colour. Although the breed itself has changed very little since the early days, individuals found in households today are less dominant and aggressive than these original guard dogs. They are however still bred to guard livestock, particularly on the ranches in southern America where they are used to protect animals from large carnivores like Coyotes and even Bears. Since their introduction the USA in the 1970s, the breed has become a popular guard Dog and although affected by hip problems like other larger breeds, they are not thought to be so badly affected. The Akbash tends to give birth to between 7 and 9 puppies per litter, which are fully mobile within their first 6 weeks,

 

Akbash Interesting Facts and Features

The Akbash is known to be a calm and clean breed of domestic Dog, and happily lives both inside and outside the house. Their fur also has little odour compared to that of other breeds. They are also known to have strong maternal instincts, and have been observed aiding Sheep in cleaning their newborn calves. In it's native country of Turkey, the Akbash was named after the Turkish word akbas, which means "white-headed". The Akbash breed first became popular as a household pet when 40 Dogs were imported into the USA from Turkey in the 1970s. These Akbash individuals are thought to be the ancestors of the entire population there today.

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● 介紹動物 編序:013 Airedale Terrier 動物 萬能梗
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   介紹動物   編序:013  Airedale Terrier 動物  萬能梗

 

 目錄:http://a-z-animals.com/animals/  

http://a-z-animals.com/animals/airedale-terrier/   

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Airedale Terrier History and Domestication

Unlike a number of species of other domestic Dog, the origins of the Airedale Terrier are well known. This breed was created 150 years ago by working class farmers in a valley in the West Riding of Yorkshire. Cross-bred from a Welsh Terrier and an Otter Hound, the Airedale Terrier quickly became the Terrier of choice and was officially recognised in 1886. The Airedale Terrier is the largest of all Terrier breeds and was originally bred as a hunter of small animals, particularly rats. Although the large size of the Airedale Terrier meant that it cannot actually go underground, they were very efficient at catching the rats once they had surfaced. The Airedale Terrier has many desirable traits, including being very intelligent meaning that they have also been used as messengers and police Dogs.

Airedale Terrier Physical Characteristics

The Airedale Terrier has a large square body which is only emphasised by it's incredibly straight front legs and a deep, wide chest. It's long head and muzzle are both broad and flat, and it has small pointed ears which are almost always folded down. The stiff, slightly curved tail of the Airedale Terrier is usually docked and tends to most commonly be black in colour. The majority of this breed's stocky body is tan in colour (including it's ears), with black and sometimes reddish coloured markings. Their double coat of fur is waterproof with a coarse and wiry layer, that is lined by softer warmer fur (a characteristic of the Otter Hound). The Airedale Terrier also has a very keen sense of smell due to it's combination of Hound and Terrier.

 

Airedale Terrier Behaviour and Temperament

The Airedale Terrier is known to be a loyal and very intelligent breed of domestic Dog. They are known to be independent and strong-willed, and will often form a close bond with their master and family. The Airedale Terrier is an incredibly sociable Dog and does not appreciate being left without Human companionship for long periods of time. They are known to be quite destructive if they become bored. Airedale Terriers are incredibly active and should be able to get a lot of exercise, although this is something that does appear to subside slightly with age. Like other Terriers, the Airedale Terrier should be trained from an early age as they can be fairly stubborn at times, but are known to be able to co-inhabit households peacefully with other animals and children if properly trained.

 

Airedale Terrier Breeding

The Airedale Terrier was first bred in the 1800s from a Welsh Terrier and an Otter Hound in order to produce a breed that had desirable qualities found in both breeds. Due to the fact that they have been bred as hunting Dogs from the start, the Airedale Terrier is naturally a very intelligent and loyal breed. Females gives birth to average litter sizes of between 7 and 10 puppies that, like many other canines, are born both blind and relatively hairless and it takes at least a couple of weeks before they are able to first see the world. Airedale Terriers should be groomed regularly to reduce the risk of heavy moulting and to prevent skin infections.

 

Airedale Terrier Interesting Facts and Features

The Airedale Terrier is named after the river Aire, which runs through the surrounding valleys that this breed first originated from in Yorkshire. The area was said to have a bigger problem with rats than usual so these larger ratters begin to become the Terrier of choice with the locals. The Airedale Terrier usually lives to be around 13 years old but they are known to suffer from genetic defects including problems with their hips and eyes.

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● 介紹動物 編序:012 Animals >> Ainu Dog 動物 阿伊努狗
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   介紹動物   編序:012  Animals >> Ainu Dog 動物 阿伊努狗

 

目錄:http://a-z-animals.com/animals/

 

來源; http://a-z-animals.com/animals/ainu-dog/  

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Ainu Dog History and Domestication

The Ainu dog is thought to be one of the oldest breeds of dog in the world, first bred by the indigenous Ainu people of Hokkaido, to hunt Salmon, Deer and Bears. Despite being hunter-gatherers that survived in freezing conditions, the Ainu are thought to have kept Dogs from the very beginning and respected them in nearly the same way as other Humans. The Ainu Dog is thought to have descended from medium-sized Dogs that arrived on the island with migrants from the main island around 3,000 years ago. Today, despite it's strong links to the Ainu people, it is more commonly referred to as the Hokkaido-Ken by the native Japanese people. Although the characteristics of the Ainu dog are thought to have changed a little over the years due to cross-breeding, this breed is said to still have a very wild streak.

Ainu Dog Physical Characteristics

The Ainu Dog is a medium sized canine that is well known for it's strength and power. Generally the double coat of thick fur used to keep the Dog warm, is light in colour, with white, grey and fawn being especially common. They are known to have a fearsome expression, due to their small dark, brown eyes, a broad head and a pointed muzzle that is tipped with a black nose. The ears of the Ainu Dog are small and sharply pointed making this breed appear even more alert. The tongue of the Ainu Dog is commonly covered in black spots which is said to suggest a relation to the Chow Chow, a smaller species of domestic Dog that is natively found in neighbouring China.

 

Ainu Dog Behaviour and Temperament

The Ainu Dog breed is a naturally wild and powerful Dog, making this breed an excellent guard Dog, They are also suspicious and alert and incredibly courageous when needing to protect their owner. The Ainu Dog is well known for it's faithfulness, bravery, and the ability to withstand the cold, among it's other desirable traits. It has an innate sense of direction and can therefore return to it's master no matter how great the distance it has travelled alone. The Ainu Dog is also known to howl, making a similar sound to that of a Wolf, when it believes it has done good by it's keeper. They are incredibly active Dogs and are known to not be suitable for apartment living or in households that contain other animals or young children.

 

Ainu Dog Breeding

The Ainu Dog was originally bred by the indigenous hunter-gathers to both help them to catch food, but also to protect them from large animals. Since then, the breed has changed slightly from these original Dogs, due to cross-breeding with similar domestic breeds throughout the Far East. Despite it's long history as a working breed, the Ainu Dog ideally now combines the roles of family pet and hunter. Today, Ainu Dogs are most commonly kept for hunting or as guard Dogs due to their alert and incredibly bold nature. On average, the female has around 7 puppies per litter which, like many other canines, are born both blind and with hardly any fur. Within their first month however, the Ainu Dog puppies will be up on their feet and begin to grow fast. The Ainu Dog can live to be 14 years old and is known to have relatively few genetic health issues.

 

Ainu Dog Interesting Facts and Features

The Ainu Dog has made a name for itself through it's courage nature, known to actually take on very large Bears, a number of times their size, in order to protect their owner. Today, although they can be found in households in parts of Europe and America, the Ainu Dog is most commonly found in Japan, where it remains to be considered a cherished national breed by the Japanese people. The Ainu Dog was officially named the Hokkaido-Ken in 1937, despite it's rich history with the Ainu people.

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● 介紹動物 編序:011 非洲野狗 African Wild Dog
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   介紹動物   編序:011  非洲野狗  African Wild Dog

 

目錄:http://a-z-animals.com/animals/

 

來源; http://a-z-animals.com/animals/african-wild-dog/

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African Wild Dog Classification and Evolution

The African Wild Dog (also known as the Painted Dog and the Cape Hunting Dog) is a medium sized species of canine found across sub-Saharan Africa. The African Wild Dog is most easily identified from both domestic and other wild Dogs by their brightly mottled fur, with it's name in Latin aptly meaning painted wolf. The African Wild Dog is said to be the most sociable of all the canines, living in packs of around 30 individuals. Sadly however, this highly intelligent and sociable animal is severely under threat in much of it's natural habitat, primarily due to habitat loss and having been hunted by Humans.

African Wild Dog Anatomy and Appearance

The most distinctive feature of the African Wild Dog is it's beautifully mottled fur which makes this canine very easy to identify. The fur of the African Wild Dog is red, black, white, brown and yellow in colour with the random pattern of colours being unique to each individual. It is also thought to act as a type of camouflage, helping the African Wild Dog to blend into it's surroundings. The African Wild Dog also has large ears, a long muzzle and long legs, with four toes on each foot. This is one of the biggest differences between the African Wild Dog and other canine species as they have five. They also have a large stomach and a long, large intestine which aids them in more effectively absorbing moisture from their food.

 

African Wild Dog Distribution and Habitat

African Wild Dogs are found naturally roaming the deserts, open-plains and arid savanna of sub-Saharan Africa where the range of the African Wild Dog has decreased rapidly. It is thought that the African Wild Dog was once found in nearly 40 different African countries but that number is much lower today, at between 10 and 25. Now most African Wild Dog populations are primarily restricted to National Parks across southern Africa, with the highest populations found in Botswana and Zimbabwe. African Wild Dogs require large territories to support the pack, with pack sizes having in fact dropped in number with their decreasing home-ranges.

 

African Wild Dog Behaviour and Lifestyle

African Wild Dogs are highly sociable animals that gather in packs of generally between 10 and 30 individuals. There is a strict ranking system within the pack, led by the dominant breeding pair. They are the world's most sociable Dogs and do everything as a group, from hunting for and sharing food, to helping sick members and assisting in raising young. African Wild Dogs communicate between one another through touch, movement and sound. Pack members are incredibly close, gathering together before a hunt to nose and lick each other, whilst wagging their tails and making high-pitched noises. African Wild Dogs lead a crepuscular lifestyle meaning that they are most active during dawn and dusk.

 

African Wild Dog Reproduction and Life Cycles

In African Wild Dog packs, there is usually only one breeding pair, which are the dominant male and female members. After a gestation period of around 70 days, the female African Wild Dog gives birth to between 2 and 20 pups in a den, which she remains in with her young for the first few weeks, relying on the other pack members to provide her with food. The African Wild Dog cubs leave the den at between 2 and 3 months old and are fed and cared for by the entire pack until they are old enough to become independent and generally leave to join or start another African Wild Dog pack. It is thought that the more looked after the pups are, the higher their chances of survival.

 

African Wild Dog Diet and Prey

The African Wild Dog is a carnivorous and opportunistic predator, hunting larger animals on the African plains in their big groups. African Wild Dogs primarily prey on large mammals such as Warthogs and numerous species of Antelope, supplementing their diet with Rodents, Lizards, Birds and Insects. They are even known to hunt much larger herbivores that have been made vulnerable through sickness or injury, such as Wildebeest. Although the African Wild Dog's prey is often much faster, the chase can last for miles, and it is this Dog's stamina and perseverance that makes them so successful, along with their ability to maintain their speed. Hunting as a pack also means that the African Wild Dogs can easily corner their prey.

 

African Wild Dog Predators and Threats

Due to the relatively large size and dominant nature of the African Wild Dog and their pack, they have few natural predators within their native habitats. Lions and Hyenas have been known on occasion, to prey on African Wild Dog individuals that have been separated from the rest of the group. One of the biggest threats to the African Wild Dog are farmers that hunt and kill the African Wild Dog in fear that they are preying on their livestock. A drastic decline in their natural habitats has also pushed the remaining African Wild Dog populations into small pockets of their native regions, and they are now most commonly found within National Parks.

 

African Wild Dog Interesting Facts and Features

The long large intestine of the African Wild Dog means that they have a very efficient system for absorbing as much moisture from their food as possible. This gives these canines an advantage in such arid climates as they do not need to find such a regular supply of water. African Wild Dogs are therefore able to go for long periods of time without needing to drink. Unlike many other carnivores, African Wild Dogs kill their prey by starting to bite it when it is still alive. Although this may sound cruel, the animal actually dies more quickly and less painfully than if it was killed in the generally preferred way.

 

African Wild Dog Relationship with Humans

African Wild Dog populations have been declining rapidly across the southern African countries mainly due to loss of much of their natural habitat and the fact that they are commonly hunted by farmers in particular. The slightly savage nature of the African Wild Dog has led to a great deal of superstition regarding it, with locals having almost wiped out entire populations in certain areas. The loss of their historical ranges generally due to growing Human settlements has also led to drastic declines in populations throughout much of their environment. Although the majority of the African Wild Dog population is today confined to National Parks, they tend to require much larger territories and come into conflict with Humans when they leave these protected areas.

 

African Wild Dog Conservation Status and Life Today

Today, the African Wild Dog is listed as an Endangered species as African Wild Dog population numbers have been rapidly declining, particularly in recent years. There are thought to be less than 5,000 individuals left roaming sub-Saharan Africa today, with numbers still declining. Hunting, habitat loss and the fact that they are particularly vulnerable to the spread of disease by livestock, are the main causes for the continent's African Wild Dog loss.

 

African Wild Dog Comments (13)

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● 介紹動物 編序:010 Animals >> African Tree Toad非洲樹蛙
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   介紹動物   編序:010  Animals >> African Tree Toad非洲樹蛙

 

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African Tree Toad Classification and Evolution

 

The African Tree Toad is a small species of Toad found in the forests of Central Africa. Today, little is still known about this tiny amphibian and the constantly decreasing population numbers of the African Tree Toad are making it increasingly difficult for us to learn more about them. There are two known subspecies of the African Tree Toad, which are the African Tree Toad and the Bates' Tree Toad. Both African Tree Toad species are of similar size and colour but tend to differ in the geographical regions they inhabit.

African Tree Toad Anatomy and Appearance

The African Tree Toad is generally dark to light brown in colour, with white patches on it's belly and like other Toad species, the African Tree Toad has specially designed feet which aid it's semi-aquatic and tree climbing lifestyle. The African Tree Toad is a terrestrial animal and uses it' s toes to also help it to hop about on the ground. The toes of the African Tree Toad are long and thin, with sticky, round discs on the tips. These widely spread digits enable this Toad to grip onto a larger surface area. The tiny striped body of the African Tree Toad grows up 3.8cm in length making these animals particularly hard to spot amongst the debris on the forest floor.

 

African Tree Toad Distribution and Habitat

The African Tree Toad is said to be distributed across it's natural Central African range in countries such as Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and Nigeria. Despite this though, there are very few records of this elusive amphibian meaning that much of it's distribution (and indeed population size) is simply presumed. The natural habitat of the African Tree Toad is subtropical or tropical moist, lowland forests and heavily degraded former forest, where there is a plentiful water supply. Today however, the African Tree Toad is generally restricted to taller forests.

 

African Tree Toad Behaviour and Lifestyle

Like other Toads, the African Tree Toad is a semi-aquatic animal, although it is most commonly found in water when the female is laying her eggs. In a similar way to other tropical Toads, the African Tree Toad spends much of it's life walking, hopping or running about on the ground where it is able to find plenty of food and water. When darkness falls however, the African Tree Toad retreats high into the surrounding vegetation to remain safe during the night from ground-dwelling predators. The colour and markings of their skin, gives the African Tree Toad camouflage amongst the surrounding forest, again giving it extra defence from hungry predators.

 

African Tree Toad Reproduction and Life Cycles

Little is really known about the reproduction of the African Tree Toad besides the fact that female African Tree Toads are known to lay up to 200 sticky eggs in small bodies of water found in hollow tree cavities. These spawning sites are then guarded by the male African Tree Toad until the tiny eggs hatch into tadpoles. It is unknown what the tadpoles feed on, but once developed, they hop out of their watery nest in the tree and begin hunting for food in the forest. African Tree Toads in captivity usually live until they are three or four years old but nothing is known about their lifespan in the wild.

 

African Tree Toad Diet and Prey

The African Tree Toad is a carnivorous amphibian that shoots it's long, sticky tongue out of it's mouth at incredible speeds to catch and secure it's prey. This also helps the Toad to hold onto it's catch whilst it is trying to eat it. The African Tree Toad primarily hunts small invertebrates including Insects, Worms and Spiders that scuttle amongst the debris on the forest floor. In a similar way to other Toad species, it is thought that the African Tree Toad sits in silence, waiting for lunch to pass by, before catching it with lighting speed.

 

African Tree Toad Predators and Threats

Due to its small size, the African Tree Toad is believed to have numerous predators within it's warm and wet, woodland environment. Fish, Birds, Lizards, Snakes, rodents and other, larger amphibians like Frogs and Toads are all thought to be common predators of the African Tree Toad. The largest assumed threat to the African Tree Toad is habitat loss in the form of deforestation and, to a lesser extent, both air and water pollution in their natural habitats. Little is known however about the direct affects of habitat loss on the species as a whole.

 

African Tree Toad Interesting Facts and Features

Very little is known about the African Tree Toad, as only a handful of records exist throughout it's very limited range, and there are in fact no records that confirm it's existence through much of it's so-called natural habitat. It is simply just assumed that the African Tree Toad exists in these areas.

 

African Tree Toad Relationship with Humans

Although having been studied on a small scale by people, relatively little is still known about this tiny Toad. They have however been known to be involved in the exotic pet trade. The small size of the African Tree Toad makes them very hard to spot in their native habitats meaning that the affect of Human activity on the Toads in these areas is still unknown. Deforestation through much of their natural range, along with growing industry causing rising levels of pollution, are thought to be causing the African Tree Toad population to decline.

 

African Tree Toad Conservation Status and Life Today

Today, the African tree toad is rarely seen in the African forests but it has been classified as a species that is of Least Concern of becoming extinct in the near future. This is however, based on their presumably wide distribution throughout Central Africa, despite the fact that they are only known to actually exist in a handful of these areas. It is widely assumed that the African Tree Toad populations are in decline.

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● 介紹動物 編序:009 Animals >> African Penguin 非洲企鵝
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   介紹動物   編序:009  Animals >> African Penguin  非洲企鵝

 

Animals >> African Penguin  非洲企鵝 

 

目錄:http://a-z-animals.com/animals/

 

來源;

http://a-z-animals.com/animals/african-penguin/  

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African Penguin Classification and Evolution

The African Penguin is a small to medium sized Penguin species that is found along the coast of South Africa and on a number of it's surrounding islands. The African Penguin is thought to be most closely related to the Humboldt and Magellanic Penguins found in southern South America, and the Galapagos Penguin found in the Pacific Ocean near the Equator. The African Penguin was named for the fact that it is the only species of Penguin that is found breeding on the African Coast, and it is believed to be one of the first Penguin species to be discovered by humans.

African Penguin Anatomy and Appearance

The African Penguin is a fairly distinctive species of penguin with clean black and white markings and a sharply pointed black beak. The African Penguin also has black feet and a number of dot-like markings flecked across it's white chest which are said to be as unique to the individual Penguin as a Human finger print is, along with a narrow black band. The male African Penguin is generally slightly larger than their female counterparts but both are fairly similar in appearance. One of the African Penguin's most distinctive features is that they have pink glands above their eyes which help them to cope with the temperate climates. The hotter the African Penguin gets, the more blood is sent to these glands so it may be cooled by the surrounding air, which in turn, makes these glands more pink.

 

African Penguin Distribution and Habitat

The African Penguin is found on the south-western coast of Africa, living in 27 colonies on 24 islands between Namibia and Algoa Bay, near Port Elizabeth, South Africa, with the largest colony found on Dyer Island, near Kleinbaai. African Penguins are most densely distributed around the cold, nutrient rich waters of the Benguela Current where there is a plentiful supply of food. Although they spend much of their time at sea, African Penguins gather in nesting sites on rocky islands where they spend their days in sheltered burrows to avoid the hot sun. They are one of the only Penguin species to be found in non-freezing conditions and cope with this by burrowing, emerging at dusk and dawn, and using the pink glands above their eyes to cool the blood down.

 

African Penguin Behaviour and Lifestyle

Like many other Penguin species, African Penguins are incredibly sociable birds, with adults forming pair bonds that last for life (as long as 10 years). African Penguins can often be seen grooming one another, which is not only practical for cleaning purposes, but also for removing parasites and even just rearranging feathers, constantly strengthening the social bond between the pair. Their courtship displays are often very noisy as the male and female Penguin call to each other using a series of donkey-like sounds. African Penguins are also known to submit to a spot of bathing only a few meters from the shore, which they are thought to do quite regularly to both clean and to cool themselves down in the heat.

 

African Penguin Reproduction and Life Cycles

African Penguins begin to breed at the average age of four, when a male and female will pair up, and tend to breed together for the rest of their lives. The female African Penguin either digs herself a burrow or finds a dip beneath a rock or bush, in which she lays two eggs. The eggs are incubated by both parents for up to 40 days, when only one of the eggs will usually hatch. The African Penguin chicks are fed and kept warm by their parents constantly until they are a month old when they begin to be left on their own, forming crèches with other chicks for protection from predators. They tend to remain with their parents until they are between 3 and 5 months old, when they will leave the colony (this is dependant though on the supply and quality of food in the area). The chicks return to the colony after a couple of years to moult into their adult plumage. African Penguins generally live for between 10 and 15 years.

 

African Penguin Diet and Prey

The African Penguin is a carnivorous animal that, like all other Penguin species, survives on a diet that is only comprised of marine organisms. Shoaling fish including Anchovies, Sardines, Horse Mackerel and Round Herrings make up the bulk of the African Penguin's diet, along with the occasional Squid or Crustacean when normal food is in short supply. The streamlined body of the African Penguin allows it to move through the water like a rocket, capable of reaching a top speed of around 20 kph when hunting for food. African Penguins catch their prey by diving into the ocean depths for around 2 minutes at a time. Although they normally go to depths of around 30 meters, it is not uncommon for them to be found hunting more than 100 meters beneath the water's surface.

 

African Penguin Predators and Threats

The African Penguin's smaller size means that it has many predators both in the water and also on dry land. Their marine predators are primarily Sharks and Cape Fur Seals, but the biggest threat to them on land is not just to the adult Penguins, but more the vulnerable eggs and chicks. Kelp Gulls and Scared Ibises prey on them from the air and Mongooses, Snakes, and Leopards have been observed hunting them on ground. The African Penguin has also been severely affected by Human activity in their native regions, with populations thought to have taken a drastic decline, mainly due to the exploitation of their eggs for food when they were first discovered. They are also severely affected by the disruption of their natural habitats.

 

African Penguin Interesting Facts and Features

Penguins have more feathers than any other bird, which act as a waterproof layer keeping their skin dry. African Penguins moult once a year which they do back in their colonies. The whole process lasts for about 20 days, in which time, the African Penguins cannot swim or eat, and can lose almost half of their body weight. African Penguins are known to spend long periods of time fishing out at sea, and depending on the area, can travel between 30 and 110 km in one trip. However, those African Penguins who have chicks to feed, will rarely go that far, catching food closer to the shore, and as quickly as possible. The African Penguin is also known as the Jackass penguin, due to the donkey-like call that they make during their courtship rituals.

 

African Penguin Relationship with Humans

It is widely believed that African Penguins were one of the first Penguin species to come into contact with Humans, due to the fact that they are found on the temperate South African coast rather than in the heart of Antarctica. This however, does not seem to have worked to the bird's advantage as their eggs were stolen for food (slowing the rate of reproduction), and the guano used in nest building was harvested for fertiliser. Today, other threats face the African Penguin including competition for food from commercial fishing and oil pollution in the water. Only a small handful of nesting sites can be accessed by tourists, but the Penguin's nervous nature of people means that these areas have to be strictly monitored.

 

African Penguin Conservation Status and Life Today

Today, the African Penguin is considered to be a vulnerable animal and has been listed as being Endangered by the IUCN. It is thought that today's African Penguin population of around 70,000 breeding pairs, is less than 10% of the population that existed in 1900. By the 1950s, the African Penguin population had halved, and it had then halved again by 1980. There is an approximate 2% decline in the African Penguin population every year, mainly due to the Human consumption of their eggs, competition for food and habitat disruption.

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African Palm Civet Classification and Evolution

The African Palm Civet (also commonly known as the Two-Spotted Palm Civet) is a species of Civet natively found in the tropical jungles of eastern and central Africa. Unlike the other Civet species which are all very closely related to one another, the African Palm Civet is in a genetic group of it's own, making it the most distinctive among the Civet species. The African Palm Civet is widespread throughout a number of habitats with an abundance in numbers in certain areas. The African Palm Civet is a great opportunist and is thought to be the most common forest-dwelling small carnivore in all of Africa.

African Palm Civet Anatomy and Appearance

Despite their Cat-like appearance and behaviours, the African Palm Civet is not a feline at all but are in fact more closely related to other small carnivores including Genets, Weasels and Mongooses. One of the African Palm Civets most distinctive features are their brown to light-tan to yellow coloured thick fur, which is mottled with a series of darker brown spots. The fur is darker on the top half of it's body and allows the civet to be more easily camouflaged amongst the trees. The muzzle of the African Palm Civet is sharply pointed as with other Civet species, and it has strong and muscular yet relatively short limbs. They have small, rounded ears and yellow-green eyes with slit shaped pupils.

 

African Palm Civet Distribution and Habitat

The African Palm Civet is found inhabiting the tropical jungles and forest across much of eastern African and is even found parts of central and western Africa, where it's native habitats still exist. Today it's range extends from southern Sudan to Guinea, throughout Angola and into eastern Zimbabwe. African Palm Civets have proved to be extremely adaptable animals and are found in a wide variety of habitats from deciduous forests and lowland rainforests, to river and savanna woodlands. The African Palm Civet however is being threatened in much of it's natural range due to deforestation causing destruction to or total loss of many of their historical regions.

 

African Palm Civet Behaviour and Lifestyle

The African Palm Civet is a solitary animal that leads a crepuscular lifestyle, meaning that it only emerges for a few hours at dawn and dusk in order to hunt for food. They are primarily tree-dwelling creatures that spend most of the day and night hours resting in the safety and shelter of the trees. Despite being generally very solitary creatures, the African Palm Civet has been known to gather in groups of up to 15 members when food is in abundance. African Palm Civets have two sets of scent glands that secret strong-smelling substances. Found between the third and forth toes on each foot, and on the lower part of their abdomen, these glandular secretions are primarily for marking territories and are involved in mating.

 

African Palm Civet Reproduction and Life Cycles

African Palm Civets are able to breed twice a year in May and October during the rainy seasons, when there is more food available. The female African Palm Civet usually gives birth to up to 4 young after a gestation period that lasts for a couple of months. The babies are weaned by their mother until they are strong enough to fend for themselves when they are usually around 60 days old. The female's mammary glands produce a orange-yellow liquid which stains both her tummy and the babies fur the same colour. This is thought to discourage males that are either looking for a mate or who want to harm her young. African Palm Civets can live for up to 15 years, although few rarely get to be this old in the wild.

 

African Palm Civet Diet and Prey

The African Palm Civet is an omnivorous animal, and like other species of Civet, it survives on a diet comprised of both plants and other animals. Despite this, pineapples and other fruits make up the majority of it's diet. Small animals such as Rodents, Lizards, Birds and Frogs are also hunted by the African Palm Civet, along with insects. African Palm Civets feed by holding their prey in their hands and bite it powerfully a number of times to kill it, before then swallowing it whole. The long, sturdy tail is thought to be used as a brace when the Civet is balancing only on it's hind legs, and along with the thick-skinned pads on the bottom of it's feet, stabilises the African Palm Civet on the branch while its eating.

 

African Palm Civet Predators and Threats

Despite being a secretive yet relatively ferocious predator, the African Palm Civet is actually preyed upon by a number of predators within their natural environment. Although they do spend most of their lives in the trees, African Palm Civets come down to the ground to look for food fairly often, and will even venture outside of the forest if prey is in short supply. Large predatory Cats are the most common predators of the African Palm Civet including Lions, and Leopards that are able to hunt the Civet in the trees. Reptiles such as large Snakes and Crocodiles also hunt the African Palm Civet if given the chance. One of the biggest threats to the African Palm Civet today though is the loss of much of it's natural habitat, mainly due to deforestation.

 

African Palm Civet Interesting Facts and Features

The musk secreted by the glands close to the African Palm Civet's reproductive organs has been collected by Humans for hundreds of years. In it's concentrated form, the smell is said to be quite offensive to people, but much more pleasant once diluted. It was this scent that became one of the ingredients in some of the most expensive perfumes in the world. African Palm Civet females are known to produce milk from the exact number of teats as they have young, to ensure that each of their offspring has enough milk to drink and individuals are not so easily excluded during feeding time. Although it is not so common today, African Palm Civets were once commonly hunted as bushmeat in certain parts of the continent.

 

African Palm Civet Relationship with Humans

Farmers that live in the native habitats of the African Palm Civet view these animals very much as pests, as they are commonly known to raid poultry coops in order to get an easy meal. They are extremely persistent and abundant carnivores, which added to their secretiveness, has meant that they have caused great damage to livestock numbers in the past. Humans though have been a bigger threat to the African Palm Civet for years as they were hunted and trapped for their meat, scent and thick fur coat which is used to make traditional ceremonial garments. The destruction of the African Palm Civet's natural environment by people is thought to be the biggest threat to the species today.

 

African Palm Civet Conservation Status and Life Today

The African Palm Civet has been listed as an animal that is at lower risk and therefore of Least Concern of becoming extinct in the wild in the immediate future. They are known to be widely distributed, found in a variety of habitats and population numbers are also in abundance in certain areas. Today, the African Palm Civet is under threat from deforestation and has been subjected to the drastic loss of much of its natural habitat. The main reason for such extensive deforestation in these areas is either for logging or to clear the land to make way for palm oil plantations.

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African Clawed Frog Classification and Evolution

The African Clawed Frog is a large species of flat Frog that is primarily found dwelling at the bottom of lakes and rivers. The African Clawed Frog is also known as the Platanna and has a number of very unique features that mean it is specially adapted to it's habitat. The African Clawed Frog is thought to have originated in South Africa, and is today found naturally across the African continent. The African Clawed Frog has also been introduced to the Americas and parts of Europe.

African Clawed Frog Anatomy and Appearance

The average adult African Clawed Frog grows to about 12 cm in length, and weighs around 200g. The African Clawed Frog is often a greenish, grey colour although other colours of the African Clawed Frog are not uncommon (such as albino). The colour of the African Clawed Frog's skin, along with it's mottled pattern, gives it more camouflage from hungry predators. They have a line of stitch-marks along either side of their bodies which act as sense organs to detect prey in the surrounding water. Their eyes and nose are located on top of the head enabling them to see and breathe but without being too visible.

 

African Clawed Frog Distribution and Habitat

The African Clawed Frog is most commonly found in eastern and southern Africa, along the African Rift Valley where they prefer stagnant waters to fast-flowing streams. African Clawed Frogs are bottom-dwelling animals and will only leave the safety of the water if they are forced to migrate. They inhabit warm shallow creeks and rivers during the summer and move into the flooded forests during the rainy season. Due to introduction by Humans, the African Clawed Frog can now be found in numerous freshwater habitats outside of Africa where they can be a very invasive species.

 

African Clawed Frog Behaviour and Lifestyle

The African Clawed Frog spends its whole life in water, except for poking its head up to the surface from time to time to breathe. The African Clawed Frog can swim at astonishing speeds sideways, backwards, forwards, up and down, and in all other directions. It is a ferocious predator and once food has been spotted, the African Clawed Frog then catches it's prey using it's claws, which shovel it into the African Clawed Frog's mouth. The African Clawed Frog has evolved very successfully as a bottom-dwelling animal, which means that it has greater protection from predators and a better choice of food.

 

African Clawed Frog Reproduction and Life Cycles

Female African Clawed Frogs are often nearly double the size of the males, and are able to reproduce more than once a year. After mating, the female African Clawed Frog can lay thousands of eggs at a time on an underwater object, which are held together in the water by a jelly-like substance. After hatching, the African Clawed Frog tadpoles begin their life in the water until they grow legs and are able to venture out onto the river banks if need be. The African Clawed Frog is known to have a long lifespan for small aquatic animals, and can live to around 5 to 15 years in the wild. Some adult African Clawed Frogs have been recorded to live to nearly 30 years old in captivity.

 

African Clawed Frog Diet and Prey

The African Clawed Frog is a carnivorous animal and an apex predator within it's underwater environment. The African Clawed Frog's main food is Water Bugs and small Fish but the African Clawed Frog is also known to eat it's own skin whenever it is shed. African Clawed Frogs also hunt other small invertebrates such as Insects, Spiders and Worms, which it scoops into it's mouth using it's clawed front feet. African Clawed Frogs in captivity have a much less varied diet which primarily consists of Worms.

 

African Clawed Frog Predators and Threats

Due to its small size, the African Clawed Frog has a number of natural predators within its native environment, that occur both in and out of the water. Small mammals including Rodents, Cats and Dogs, and numerous Birds and Reptiles, all prey on the African Clawed Frog, but herons are their most common threat. By living on the muddy bottoms of lakes and rivers, the African Clawed Frog can remain safely hidden for much of the time, and only it's eyes and nose appear above the water-line when it surfaces. Although not as vulnerable as many other amphibians, the African Clawed Frog is also being threatened by water pollution.

 

African Clawed Frog Interesting Facts and Features

The African Clawed Frog is named for their unique feet, as their hind feet are webbed but their front legs have clawed toes instead, which are used to help shovel food into their mouths. In the 1940s the African Clawed Frog became the world's first pregnancy test for Humans, which although barbaric, has led to them being found worldwide today. The African Clawed Frog has also been a popular test subject for scientific research for in general. They are known to be highly aggressive animals and particularly ferocious amphibians.

 

African Clawed Frog Relationship with Humans

Over the years, Humans have managed to find a number of uses for the African Clawed Frog in our day to day lives. The most notable (and probably cruellest) of these practises was the use of the African Clawed Frog females as a type of pregnancy test. The hormone produced by Human babies (passed on through the mother's urine) known as HCG, induces ovulation in the female African Clawed Frog. Humans also use them in laboratories worldwide for research and teaching. Habitat loss and water pollution caused by people nearby is also having a drastic effect on African Clawed Frog populations.

 

African Clawed Frog Conservation Status and Life Today

Although the African Clawed Frog has been classified as being at Least Concern from imminent extinction, population numbers have fallen in certain areas due to deteriorating water quality. Elsewhere, African Clawed Frog populations around the world have often become non-native pests to the local plants and wildlife.

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African Civet Classification and Evolution

The African Civet is a large species of Civet found across sub-Saharan Africa. The African Civet is the only remaining member in it's genetic group and is considered to be the largest Civet-like animal on the African continent. Despite their cat-like appearance and behaviours, the African Civets are not felines at all but are in fact, more closely related to other small carnivores including Weasels and Mongooses. The African Civet is most well known for the musk that it secretes to mark it's territory (called Civetone), which has been used in the manufacturing of perfumes for centuries, and it's striking black and white markings, make the African Civet one of the easiest Civet species to identify.

African Civet Anatomy and Appearance

One of the African Civet's most distinctive features are the black and white markings on their fur and grey face, which along with the black band around their eyes, gives these animals a Raccoon-like appearance. The similarity is only heightened by the fact that the African Civet's hind legs are quite a bit longer than the front legs, making it's stance very different to that of a Mongoose. The average adult African Civet has a body length of around 70cm with nearly the same length tail on top of that. The paws of the African Civet each have five digits with non-retractable claws to enable the Civet to move about in the trees more easily.

 

African Civet Distribution and Habitat

The African Civet is found in a variety of habitats on the African continent, with it's range extending from coast to coast in sub-Saharan Africa. African Civets are most commonly found in tropical forests and jungles and areas where there is plenty of dense vegetation to provide both cover and animals that the African Civets feeds on. African Civets are never found in arid regions and always must be in an area which has a good water source. Despite this though, it is not uncommon for African Civets to be found along rivers that lead into the more arid regions. They are capable swimmers and often spend their time hunting and resting in the trees as well as on the ground.

 

African Civet Behaviour and Lifestyle

The African Civet is a solitary animal that only comes out under the cover of night to hunt and catch food. These nocturnal animals are primarily tree-dwelling creatures that spend most of the daylight hours resting in the safety of the trees high above. African Civets tend to be most active just after sunset but tend to hunt in areas that still provide plenty of cover. Despite being generally very solitary creatures, the African Civet has been known to gather in groups of up to 15 members particularly during the mating season. They are also highly territorial animals, marking their boundaries with the scent released by their perineal glands.

 

African Civet Reproduction and Life Cycles

The only time when African Civets seem to be seen together is when they are mating. The female African Civet usually gives birth to up to 4 young after a gestation period that lasts for a couple of months. The female African Civet nests in an underground burrow that has been dug by another animal in order to safely raise her young. Unlike many of their carnivorous relatives, Civet babies are usually born quite mobile and with their fur. The babies are nursed by their mother until they are strong enough to fend for themselves. African Civets can live for up to 20 years, although many rarely get to be this old.

 

African Civet Diet and Prey

Despite the fact that the African Civet is a carnivorous mammal, it has a very varied diet that consists of both animal and plant matter. Small animals such as Rodents, Lizards, Snakes and Frogs make up the majority of the African Civet's diet, along with Insects, berries and fallen fruits that it finds on the forest floor. The African Civet predominantly uses it's teeth and mouth to gather food instead of using it's paws. This method of eating means that the African Civet can use it's 40 sharp teeth effectively to break it's catch down, and the strong jaw of the African Civet makes it harder for it's meal to try and escape.

 

African Civet Predators and Threats

Despite being a secretive yet a relatively ferocious predator, the African Civet is actually preyed upon by a number of other predators within their natural environment. Large predatory Cats are the most common predators of the African Civet including Lions and Leopards along with reptiles such as large Snakes and Crocodiles. African Civet populations are also under threat from both habitat loss and deforestation, and have been subject to trophy hunters in the past, across the continent. One of the biggest threats to the African Civet is the want for their musk.

 

African Civet Interesting Facts and Features

The musk secreted by the glands close to the African Civet's reproductive organs has been collected by Humans for hundreds of years. In it's concentrated form, the smell is said to be quite offensive to people, but much more pleasant once diluted. It was this scent that became one of the ingredients in some of the most expensive perfumes in the world (and made the African Civet a well-known African animal). African Civets are known to carry the rabies disease, which is contracted through contact with an already infected animal. The African Civet is also known to use designated areas around it's territory, where it is able to go to the toilet.

 

African Civet Relationship with Humans

Each African Civet secretes up to 4g of musk every week, which is normally collected from African Civets in the wild. However, the capturing and keeping of African Civets for their musk is not unknown and is said to be an incredibly cruel industry. Today, few perfumes still contain actual musk from the glands of an African Civet as many scents today are easily reproduced artificially. Although it is a protected yet not an endangered animal, the African Civet populations have also been severely affected by Human hunters, who hunt these little carnivores to simply add their skin to the trophy cabinet.

 

African Civet Conservation Status and Life Today

Today, the African Civet is under threat from deforestation and therefore drastic loss of much of it's natural habitat. The main reason for such extensive deforestation in the area is either for logging or to clear the land to make way for palm oil plantations. The African Civet is listed as being Least Concern, which means that there is little threat at the moment that the African Civet will become extinct in the near future.

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African Bush Elephant 動物 >> 非洲叢林大象

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The African Bush Elephant is the largest of all living creatures on land today, with some individuals growing to weigh more than 6 tons. The Elephant is thought to have been named after the Greek word for ivory, meaning that Elephants were named for their uniquely long tusks. Although many of the ancestors of the African Bush Elephant became extinct during the last ice-age (including the Woolly Mammoth), there are three distinct species of Elephant remaining today which are the Asian Elephant (of which there are a number of sub-species), the African Bush Elephant and the African Forest Elephant. Although these two Elephant species are very similar, the African Bush Elephant is considered to be generally larger than the African Forest Elephant, which has rounder ears and straighter tusks.

African Bush Elephant Anatomy and Appearance

The African Bush Elephant is the largest known land mammal on Earth, with male African Bush Elephants reaching up to 3.5 metres in height and the females being slightly smaller at around 3 metres tall. The body of the African Bush Elephants can also grow to between 6 and 7 meters long. The tusks of an African Bush Elephant can be nearly 2.5 meters in length and generally weigh between 50 and 100 pounds, which is about the same as a small adult Human. African Bush Elephants have four molar teeth each weighing about 5.0 kg and measuring about 12 inches long. As the front pair of molars in the mouth of the African Bush Elephant wear down and drop out in pieces, the back pair shift forward and two new molars emerge in the back of the African Bush Elephant's mouth. African Bush Elephants replace their teeth six times during their lives but when the African Bush Elephant is between 40 to 60 years old, it no longer has teeth and will likely die of starvation, which is sadly a common cause of death of Elephants in the African wilderness.

 

African Bush Elephant Distribution and Habitat

Although the historical range of it's ancestors ranged right into the Arctic Circle, today the African Bush Elephant is mainly found in central and southern Africa in nomadic herds that wander the plains and grasslands of Africa grazing for food and searching for waterholes. Unlike the slightly smaller African Forest Elephant, the African Bush Elephant inhabits the grassy savanna plains and shrub-land of the African continent in groups that contain mothers and their calves. Generally African Bush Elephant herds contains around 10 individuals but it is not uncommon for family groups to join together, forming a clan which can contains over 1,000 Elephants. This very social lifestyle means that the African Bush Elephants are less vulnerable on the open African plains.

 

African Bush Elephant Behaviour and Lifestyle

Not only is the African Bush Elephant an incredibly sociable mammal but it is also a very active one. African Bush Elephants are nomadic animals meaning that they are constantly on the move in search of food, so moving within these family herds allows them to have greater protection both from predators and from the elements. The trunk of the African Bush Elephant is one of it's most distinguishing features and this extra long nose is not only flexible enough to gather and handle food but can also collect water. It's trunk, along with it's tusks can also be used to defend itself from predators such as Lions, and to fight with other male African Bush Elephants during the mating season. African Bush Elephants are also considered to be highly intelligent and emotional animals displaying behaviours that include giving and receiving love, caring deeply for the young and grieving for dead relatives.

 

African Bush Elephant Reproduction and Life Cycles

African Bush Elephants tend to live relatively long lives, with the average life span being between 60 and 70 years, Female African Bush Elephants reach sexual maturity (are able to reproduce) after 10 or 11 years, but are thought to be most fertile between the ages of 25 and 45. Male African Bush Elephants however, often don't reach sexual maturity until they are nearly 20 years old. After mating and a gestation period of up to 2 years, the female African Bush Elephant gives birth to a single calf (twins have been known but are extremely rare). The African Bush Elephant calf is nursed for 2 years but will remain under the guidance and protection of the herd until it is old enough to support itself (around 6 years old). It is at this point that the tusks of the African Bush Elephant calf will be starting to grow.

 

African Bush Elephant Diet and Prey

Despite it's immense size, the African Bush Elephant is a herbivorous mammal meaning that it survives on a diet that solely consists of plants and plant matter. The bulk of the African Bush Elephant's diet is comprised of leaves and branches that are stripped off the trees and bushes using it's trunk. The African Bush Elephant also grazes on fruits and grasses and uses it's immense tusks for digging for roots in the ground and to strip the bark of trees. Food is fed into it's mouth using the trunk, and the large, flat teeth of the African Bush Elephant are then the perfect tool for grinding the vegetation and course plants down so that they can then be more easily digested.

 

African Bush Elephant Predators and Threats

The African Bush Elephant has no real natural predators to threaten its survival, mainly due to it's sheer size and the fact that African Bush Elephants often remain within the safety of the herd. African Bush Elephants are Africa's peaceful giants and can be seen co-inhabiting the African wilderness with other large mammals and birds, without problem. In the animal world, Lions and Hyenas may occasionally be able to pick off a young African Bush Elephant that has been separated from it's mother and have also been known to attack adults that are old and sick and therefore more vulnerable. Humans that poach the African Bush Elephants for their ivory tusks are the biggest threat to their survival along with habitat loss across the continent.

 

African Bush Elephant Interesting Facts and Features

In the early 19th century, the story of the African Bush Elephant was very different with their being up to 5 million individuals thought to have been roaming the African continent. However due to the increased demand for ivory, Africa's Bush Elephant population is thought to have fallen as much as 85% in some areas. The large ears of the African Bush Elephant are said by some to be shaped somewhat like Africa, but these large flaps of skin are not just for hearing, they are a vital tool in keeping the Elephant cool in the African heat. Like many of the herbivores found throughout Africa, the calves can walk at birth to maximise their chances of survival. An adult African Bush Elephant can drink up to 50 gallons of water every day, and is able to take 1.5 gallons of water into their trunks at at time.

 

African Bush Elephant Relationship with Humans

Sadly, due to an increase of outside interest in Africa and its exotic wonders (particularly towards the mid 20th century), the African Bush Elephant population took a devastating decline towards extinction. After having been brutally killed by poachers for years for their ivory, African Bush Elephants had vanished from much of their native habitat. In 1989 a worldwide elephant ivory hunting ban fell into place, after the populations had dropped so dramatically across the continent. In northern and central parts of Africa, the African Bush Elephant is now rare and confined to protected areas, and although the story is similar in the south, South African Elephant populations are thought to be doing better with an estimated 300,000 individuals in the region.

 

African Bush Elephant Conservation Status and Life Today

Today, although recovering, African Bush Elephant populations are still threatened from increasing levels of illegal poaching and habitat destruction. Deforestation in the African Bush Elephant's territory means that the African Bush Elephants lose both their food and shelter making them more vulnerable in the wild. Despite the ban, African Bush Elephants are also constantly threatened by poachers hunting the elephants for their ivory tusks.

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