30 Amazing Elephant Facts


  • In a 1956 episode of “The Price Is Right”, an Elephant was offered as a “bonus prize.” The contestant won, insisted on the prize, and a live Elephant from Kenya had to be delivered to him.
  • When an older male wants to spar with a younger male, they will often get down on their knees, it is a great example of Elephant understanding and empathy.
An older Elephant gets on its knees to play with the baby
  • Elephants can hear other Elephant’s  trumpeting calls up to 5 miles (8 kilometres) away.
  • The largest Elephant on record weighed about 24,000 pounds (10,886 kg) with a height of 13 feet (3.96 m).
  • Elephants can get sunburned so they protect themselves with sand.
  • African Elephants have the best sense of smell in the animal kingdom.
  • Topsy, an Elephant who killed three workers at Coney Island’s Luna Amusement Park, Thomas Edison’s technicians in 1903 to prove Tesla’s AC current was dangerous.
Topsy the Elephant, electrocuted by Thomas Edison’s technicians
  • Africa is home to the world’s largest living land animal, the African Elephant, and the tallest, the Giraffe.
  • Elephants are the only mammals, besides humans, to have chins.
  • Elephants normally only sleep 2 or 3 hours each day.
  • An adult Elephant requires up to 300 kg of food and 160 litres of water per day.
  • When the “Elephant Whisperer” Lawrence Anthony died, a herd of Elephants arrived at his house to mourn him.
A herd of Elephants making their way to the home of Lawrence Anthony after he died.
  • An Elephant’s pair of tusks may exceed 441 pounds (200 kg).
  • 96 Elephants are killed every day in Africa.
  • Elephants are pregnant for 2 years.
  • An Elephant can smell water from 12 miles away.
  • Working Asian Elephants sometimes wear wooden bells. The young Elephants will deliberately stuff them with clay so that they can sneak into banana groves without being heard in order to steal as much as possible!
  • Elephants can detect rain 150 miles away.
Elephants can detect rain 15o miles away
  • Elephant brains can weigh as much as 5 KG (11 LB), more than the brain of any other land animal.
  • Dogs and Elephants are the only animals that seem to instinctively understand pointing.
  • Elephants and chimpanzees can display behaviour patterns similar to post-traumatic stress disorder and depression.
Elephants can suffer from PTSD
  • An Elephant can smell water from 12 miles away.
  • Elephants rarely get cancer because they have 40 copies of genes that code for the tumour suppressor protein p53—humans have two.
  • Elephants know to come to humans for help (e.g. if they’ve been poisoned) and can find us even over long distances.
  • An adult Asian Elephant is capable of holding 8.5 L (2.2 US gal) of water in its trunk.
  • As in all young mammals, an Elephant calf’s sucking reflex, which prompts it to drink from its mother’s breast, is strong. And when a youngster is not feeding, it may suck its trunk for comfort, just as a human baby would suck its thumb.
A baby Elephant sucking its trunk for comfort
  • Elephants use their feet to listen, they can pick up sub-sonic rumblings made by other Elephants, through vibrations in the ground. Elephants are observed listening by putting trunks on the ground and carefully positioning their feet.
  • Elephants are highly sensitive and caring animals. If a baby Elephant complains, the entire family will rumble and go over to touch and caress it. Elephants express grief, compassion, self-awareness, altruism and play.
  • Elephants pay homage to the bones of their dead, gently touching the skulls and tusks with their trunks and feet. When an Elephant walks past a place that a loved one has died, he/she will stop dead still; a silent and empty pause that can last several minutes.
  • Baby Elephants don’t know how to use their trunks to drink until about a year-old. Until they master the use of their trunk they have to drink using their mouth.
A baby Elephant drinks with its mouth until it learns to use its trunk
The Trunk Code

12 Facts To Make You Change The Way You View Elephants

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