Learn All About African Bush Elephant

The African Bush Elephant is the largest land mammal in the entire world. It reaches 13 feet tall and 24 feet long. This massive giant is unique and fascinating to learn about.

What You Should Know

The African Savanna Elephant is another common name for the African Bush Elephant. It lives in most countries in Africa, among various habitats. You will find it in the high rainforest, desert and open savanna. It’s the largest species of the three elephant types and can weigh up to 11 tons. It also lives up to 70 years, which is more than any other mammal besides humans.

The African Bush Elephant is a herbivore and eats up to 350 pounds of vegetation every day. The herd of African Bush Elephant typically contains about a thousand elephants. This social activity helps the elephant remains safe from danger.

What Sound Do They Make?

The African Bush Elephant makes mighty roars and rumbles, but that isn’t all they do to communicate. They also are heard making grunts, barks, snorts, cries and trumpet-like sounds to talk to others in their herd.

Here is an excellent illustration of their trumpet call.

Group Characteristics

The African Bush Elephant herd contains females and their young. It’s managed by the older female, otherwise known as a matriarch. An adult male elephant doesn’t typically join the herd. He prefers to live a solitary life. The only time you find a male near the crowd is during mating season.

Females spend 22 months carrying their calf and give birth to one elephant. This is the longest gestation period of any mammal. The mother will also nurse her calf for two years, but it remains under her care for at least six years. The female elephant reaches maturity after ten years, but are most fertile between the ages of 25 and 45.

The African Bush Elephant spends a lot of time on the move. They have been noted as displaying loving and caring behaviors, just like humans do. When a relative dies, they even spend time grieving the loss.

How Many are There?

During the early 20th century, African Bush Elephants were counted in the millions, possibly three to five. Now, there are only about 415,000 remaining. Despite this, only about 20% of the habitat is under any type of formal protection.

There aren’t many natural predators that threaten its survival, because of the elephant’s size. These elephants co-habitat with all of the other mammals and birds without a problem. Occasionally, a hyena or lion will hunt a baby elephant that’s been separated from its mother. The biggest threat is humans who continue to poach the African Bush Elephant for its ivory tusks. The other danger is habitat loss.

Watch a Video

In this first video, you can learn the differences between an African Bush Elephant & African Forest Elephant.

Here are some African Bush Elephant facts you might not have known.

Pop Culture

While elephants are a common occurrence in today’s culture, some of the most well-known include Babar the animated elephant, Dumbo the title character in a Disney movie and Horton from the famous Dr. Seuss book and movie.

Elephants are now commonplace in most zoos worldwide, but they aren’t always the African variety. Some of the zoos feature Asian elephants instead.

Interesting Facts

The African Bush Elephant uses its long trunk to cool off in the heat. It fills up the trunk with water and then sprays it over its body. It will also spray down its young to keep it cool. The elephant tries to visit watering holes often, but will also settle for muddy spots, when needed.