(Latin = Loxodonta africana, Afrikaans = Afrikaanse olifant, German = Afrikanischer Elefant)
Numbers: Fairly high
Weight: Up to 6570kg (14 454lb.)
Shoulder height: 4 meters (160 in.)
Pregnancy time: 660 days
Calf quantity: Up to 2, mostly 1
Found in the Kruger National Park (and surrounding Parks), in the most northeastern area of the Northern Province, in the most northeastern area of KwaZulu-Natal, in the Eastern Province only in the Addo Elephant Park, and in some areas of the Bushveld in the Northern Province which reintroduced them late in the twentieth century. Elephants became extinct in the Knysna area of the Western Cape at the end of the last century/millennium. What a wonderful, truly majestic and fascinating animal this is! Although the elephant's extraordinary place in the African wildlife is guaranteed due to its massive size alone, it have such a special and unique way of living, that any tourist may be treated on a elephant safari alone, without tiring for weeks. The elephant is in a class of its own: highly intelligent, very social, much supportive towards one another and by nature in a habit of taking care of their weak ones and their small calves in a way that isn't seen in other mammals. Elephants that have run into difficulty may lean on the others, often in the most literal sense of leaning on the support of their bodies or tusks. If large numbers of lions threaten them, the biggest ones would form a line of defense around the smaller ones. An elephant‚Äôs cushioned feet helps it to move in almost dead silence. This massive animal can pull down a big tree by mere force and can eat up to 300 kg (660lbs) leaves and plants and drink up to 315 liters (70 gallons) of water a day. A big bull can move all 6- 7 tons of its weight at speeds of almost 40 kilometers an hour (24 miles/h). By only one suck of its trunk about 17 liters (3,8 gallons) of water becomes available to him. Tusks of over 450 lbs a pair was recorded!And the elephant may roam the wild bushes for up to 70 years‚ that is, if it can outwit the ivory hunters for all these decades - before the legendary elephant graveyard is visited and this greatest of all land mammals lay down its awesome head.