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The Magnificent Giraffes Essay

1890 words - 8 pages

Why are giraffes magnificent creatures? For one they are the tallest creatures in the world, thanks to their long legs and neck (“Giraffe.” National para. 1). Second, there are areas where large animals have disappeared, but the giraffes have survived; researchers think it is because of their height (Maisano para. 30). Giraffe camelopardalis is the scientific name (“Giraffe.” Britannica para. 8). There is a lot to learn about giraffes, such as how they were suspected to have evolved, their poaching, their physical appearance, and their behavior.
The evolution of giraffes started with Jean-Baptist Lamarck in 1809 (Holdrege para. 2). He observed that the giraffes forelegs have grown longer than it’s back legs, and it’s neck had lengthened so much that the giraffe can attain a height of six meters without standing on its hind legs (Holdrege para. 3). He also found out that giraffes live in the interior of Africa where the soil is dry, so they can feed on trees (Holdrege para. 3). Charles Darwin made an adjustment on the evolution of giraffes sixty years later (Holdrege para. 5). Charles Darwin thought that the giraffe have long legs, neck, and tongue to eat off of higher branches in trees (Holdrege para. 6). Pinche, in 1949, thought that the most fantastic thing about the giraffe was their legs because they could move fast for their size (Holdrege para. 17). In 1963, Brownlee said that the length of the legs and neck gives them a large surface area, which could disperse the heat (Holdrege para. 19). In 1996 with Simmons and Scheepers, they say that in the spring they eat in lower valley bottoms, so they are eating below shoulder length (Holdrege para. 13). Most of the time when giraffes are eating, they are not using their long neck (Holdrege para. 13). Simmons and Scheeper say that the reason giraffes are the way that they are is because of sexual selection (Holdrege para. 22). The reason that sexual selection is causing long necks is because if a giraffe has a long neck that means that they fight more often, and mate more (Holdrege para. 22).
Giraffes, famous for their large orange-brown spots and skinny white legs, were being over-hunted and had to move because of humans (Ainsworth para. 1). The giraffes that were in West Africa were close to being extinct (Ainsworth para. 1). It was estimated that there were fifty still roaming Africa in 1996 (Ainsworth para. 1). The giraffes made a comeback (Ainsworth para. 2). Habitat destruction lessened the population, but it is becoming stable with conservations (Maisano para. 30). It is estimated that the population of giraffes quadrupled in thirteen years; the credit goes to the government intervention, conservationists, and locals who worked together to save the giraffes (Ainsworth para. 2). People who live near giraffes think it is worth their time to help them out; the Association to Safeguard the Giraffes of Niger is giving out loans to people who let guides bring tourists to look at the animals...

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