Giraffes and Impalas

The Angola or Namibia Giraffe, which is now only rarely found in Angola but is still free-roaming in Namibia, is a desert adapted mammal. It can go for weeks without water and can close its nostrils completely to ward off against dust. 

The heart of a giraffe is very large and can weigh more than 25 pounds. As the blood must travel a long way from the heart to the head, a giraffe’s blood pressure is approximately double that required by humans. Giraffes, furthermore, have unusually high heart rates for their size, at 150 beats per minute.

The horns of female giraffes are slightly thinner and are tufted on top, whereas the horns of the males get thicker and go bald on top. Giraffes are born with horns. Initially they are not attached to the skull and are composed of cartilage. They are neatly folded back on the head and only straighten out and calcify as the young giraffe grows. Male giraffes often get up to three other horns or bony lumps on their face. These include a large bump on the forehead and two smaller bumps behind the head.


Blackfaced Impalas are fiercely protected in the Etosha National Park of Namibia. In order to keep them pure, any non-black-faced Impalas are promptly culled from the herds. 

They are the favorite prey of lions as they are not as skittish as other mammals, so they are easier to catch. If you take a close look at an impala's rump, you will notice  McDonald's golden arches.


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