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World Giraffe Day

World Giraffe Day is celebrated annually on June 21st, and we’re taking this as an opportunity to raise awareness and educate people on these magnificent long-neck creatures.

A Masaii giraffe herd eating on the plains of the Masaii Mara

 Facts

Giraffes are known as the tallest animals in the world, and they can be found living in the savannas of Central, Eastern, and Southern Africa – where they roam amongst the trees, plains, and forests.   As social animals, Giraffes tend to travel in large herds, and they use their long necks to eat leaves off tress.  Interestedly enough, Giraffes can go several days without drinking water, instead staying hydrated by the moisture they consume from the tree leaves. In addition, Giraffes also have small horns on the top of their heads, which grow to about 5 inches long, and are used for head protection should they get into a fight.  The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) currently recognizes only one species of Giraffe with nine subspecies.

 

Plight

Unfortunately, Giraffes are currently suffering from a “silent extinction” as a result of a loss of their habitat – due to urbanization, logging, farming, and growing human populations!  In addition, there has been an increase in agriculture in recent years, which has further led to the destruction of their homes.  Sadly, illegal hunting has also taken a toll on their numbers, with Giraffes now being poached for bush-meat, as well as for trophies.  As a result, the IUCN is once again drawing attention to their situation by assessing seven of the nine Giraffe subspecies.  At this point, there are three Giraffe subspecies which are now listed as “Critically Endangered” and “Endangered”, while others range from “Vulnerable” to “Near Threatened.”

 

Conclusion

Giraffes are definitely at risk of becoming extinct, if the current trends mentioned above continue.  However, there are actions that we can take to prevent this from happening.  Let’s start with raising awareness by educating people on the importance of protecting Giraffes, we can also support sustainable agriculture near Giraffe habitats, and we must stop the poaching! 

 

World Giraffe Day is held annually on June 21st – the longest day of the year, and it is a time to celebrate these amazing animals, while also raising awareness by shedding light onto the challenges they face in the wild.