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Category Archives: Species Profile

Though the African Elephant continues to exist across much of Africa, they are under serious threat.

African elephant herd

Elephant Herd Led By A Bull At Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa

The African elephant holds the title of the largest land animal on Earth today. There are actually two distinct species of this elephant under the genus Loxodonta: the African bush elephant (Loxodonta Africana), and the smaller African forest elephant (Loxodonta Cyclotis).

Though they look similar to the Asian elephant from afar, closer examination shows some remarkable differences.

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The Asian elephant is the largest living land animal in Asia.

Male Asian Elephant

A Male (Bull) Asian Elephant In Bandipur National Park (Author: Yathin S Krishnappa/Wikimedia Commons cc 3.0)

The Asian elephant, or Asiatic elephant, is the largest living land animal in Asia. There are three recognized subspecies of this elephant: Elephas maximus maximus (Sri Lanka), Elephas maximus indicus (Mainland Asia), and Elephas maximus sumatranus (Sumatra).

The Asian Elephant is generally smaller than the African elephant. Its body is gray and it has small ears. Elephants of this species also have very thick skin: over 1 inch thick on some parts of their body.  The males of the species have large tusks sometimes measuring up to 5 or 6 feet long. Though, some males do not have tusks at all.

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