For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

Videos: YouTube

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Close-up of a giraffes tongue

A giraffe's tongue is 18 to 20 inches (46 to 50 centimeters) and is purplish-black. This adaptation is thought to keep the tongue from sunburn during their all-day feed.
They eat the thorns and leaves of the Acacia trees.
In my trusted reference book, "Behavior Guide to African Mammals", Richard Estes explains how the giraffe is able to do this: "Horny papillae (small bumps) protect the lips and tongue against thorns. The narrow muzzle, extremely flexible upper lip, and long, prehensile tongue enable the giraffe to strip leaves off branches or select individual leaflets from between sharp thorns; thus it can both feed selectively and consume the quantity of foliage needed to sustain its bulk."

No comments: