WHERE DO ELEPHANTS LIVE?



Most of us are familiar with African and Indian elephants, in fact the African and the Asian elephants diverged from a common ancestor some 7.6 million years ago.

There are actually three species of elephant in existence today - the Indian (or Asian) elephant the African Bush (or Savanna) elephant, and the African forest elephant.

However, these last two are usually just grouped together and known as the 'African elephant'.

The African Bush elephant is the largest of all elephant species and ranges over much of the savanna zone south of the Sahara. They usually live in grasslands, marshes and beside lakes.

The African Forest elephant inhabits the dense African rain forests of central and western Africa, although occasionally they roam the edges of forests, thus overlapping the savanna elephant home ranges and hybridizing.

The Asian elephant species is the only surviving member of the Asian elephant genus, in fact, the Asian elephant is the sister species to the woolly mammoth! However, the Asian elephants can be divided further into the following four subspecies.

1. The Sri Lankan elephant is found only on the island of Sri Lanka and is the largest subspecies of the Asian elephant.

2. The Indian elephant makes up the bulk of the Asian elephant population. The mainland Asian can be found in 11 Asian countries, from India to Indonesia and including western China. They prefer forested areas and transitional zones, between forests and grasslands, where greater food variety is available.

3. The Sumatran elephant is found only on the island of Sumatra, usually in forested regions and partially wooded habitats.

4. In 2003, a further subspecies was identified on Borneo. Named the Borneo pygmy elephant, it is smaller and tamer than any other Asian elephants. It also has relatively larger ears, longer tail and straighter tusks.

For related articles click onto the following links:
BABY ELEPHANTS
ELEPHANT FACTS
HOW DO ELEPHANTS COMMUNICATE AND TALK TO EACH OTHER?
THE AFRICAN ELEPHANT
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AFRICAN AND INDIAN ELEPHANTS?
WHAT IS ELEPHANT GRASS?
WHERE DO ELEPHANTS LIVE?
WHERE DO ELEPHANTS LIVE?
WHERE DO LEOPARDS LIVE?
WHY DO ELEPHANTS HAVE BIG EARS?

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