The Giraffe’s Tongue : The giraffes are known as the tallest land animals in the world, with the long necks of up to 1.8 meters and therefore with the appropriately size tongues to match with them, and foremost the giraffes tongue is such a mazing piece of mother nature’s engineering and the fascinating thing for many reasons.
The giraffe’s tongue is typically black to blue or to purple and if you look nearer at the protruding giraffe tongue you may notice that only the end 20cm or so are this dark colour and the rest of it being actually a more expected pinkish colour, and can measure 45 to 50 inches long, the tongue also prehensile meaning the animal can use its strong, muscular tongue to grasp and manipulate objects, thus giraffes can use their tongues to adeptly remove the leaves and shoots from even the thorniest of the plants, the giraffe’s tongue is so attractive and unique to be observed on a Kenya safari, in almost all the animal species to achieve this its recommended to organize a safari in any national park and reserve in Kenya to identify the most different tongue among the animal species in Kenya like in Maasai Mara National reserve, Amboseli national park, Chyulu Hills National Park, Tsavo East and Tsavo West national park.
The dark colour of the giraffe’s tongue is like that because of the density of the melanin colour pigments and there is no scientific evidence and any reason to why this strange colour of the giraffe’s tongue clouring, though others say that it is because the melanin provides UV protection to prevent the sunburn, this can be true because the giraffes spend 12 hours feeding while with their tongues sticking out and while exposed to the sun.
The giraffe’s tongue is long in that it allows it to reach the most highest, tastiest leaves while avoiding the sharp thorns, also the tongue has the feature of a thick, tough layer that protects the giraffe from being cut by the thorns, also the thick saliva is also believed to help and protect the giraffe’s tongue and the mouth against the defensive mechanisms of their favorite food.
Giraffe’s tongue is such a prehensile, that is the giraffe use its tongue to grasp things with it, with the presence of the strong and fine-tuned muscular to control over it, so therefore the giraffes having the prehensile tongue it allows a giraffe to grasp and pull leaves into their mouth like how a human being uses a hand or the elephant using elephant’s trunk. Not only having the prehensile tongue, the giraffe has the prehensile lips that helps the tongue to work together while in the stripping leaves from the trees and the navigating around the thorns , Kenya Safaris.
The length of the giraffe’s tongue helps them to avoid the thorns whenever they are feeding on the acacia trees, take an example if a giraffe gets a thorn inside the mouth, then their tongue has evolved to give them an a additional level of protection, also aided by the protective leathery lips and the mouths, the giraffes secrete a sticky, also the thick saliva that the giraffe has helps in the coating any thorn that makes it past their lips like if the tongue gets cut, this thick saliva has got the most unique characters that helps it to heal and recover quickly even without getting infected.
The capability of the shape, size and the color of the giraffe’s tongue also helps the giraffe to perfectly adapt to their favorite food, as it is known as the giraffes diet are leaves from the acacia tree with the thorns, the giraffe’s tongue has the ability to grasp here it is the giraffe’s tongue to strip the leaves while avoiding the very sharp thorns. The giraffes are the among the most animal species that feed on the acacia trees and the giraffe’s height and long tongue helps them to access the leaves that is the giraffes do not have competition for food. Also the acacia leaves provides an important source of water to the giraffes therefore the giraffes can reduce on the water requirement as in they reduce on the water they have to drink from the lakes, rivers, waterholes.