How often do you get to see a giraffe in Nigeria? Not so much I guess.
This majestic beauties can be found in Kenya. Giraffes are one of Africa’s most iconic animals, you should be able to recognize them instantly for people of all ages and backgrounds from around the world.
Many people don’t realize that there are actually nine different subspecies of giraffe, three of which are found in Kenya: the reticulated giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis reticulata; also known as the Somali giraffe), Rothschild’s giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis rothschildi), and the Masai giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchi; also known as the Kilimanjaro giraffe).
Rothschild’s giraffes are highly endangered because they frequently hybridize with other subspecies; only a few hundred “pure” individuals are thought to exist in the wild.
It is named after the Tring Museum’s founder, Walter Rothschild and it’s also known as the Baringo giraffe, after Lake Baringo in Kenya.
One of the few locations where they can be observed is at the Giraffe Manor in Nairobi Kenya where they come out to have breakfast with you. They can also be observed is Lake Nakuru National Park where they move in small herds.
Telling the spies apart could look complicated to an untrained mind, but in reality it’s not exactly a difficult thing. The ‘Reticulated giraffe’ has much whiter lines between their brownish patches on their pelt, and the patches are bordered by smooth lines.
‘Masai giraffe’ and ‘Rothschild’s giraffe’ have much creamier lines in between their patches, and the patches have more jagged edges.
The key to telling these two subspecies apart is the legs: Masai giraffes’ legs are decorated with brown spots all the way down to their feet, but Rothschild’s giraffes appear to be wearing a white/cream colored kneel level socks.
Seeing a giraffe for the first time can be pretty spectacular because they are so magnificent and really gigantic indeed, they are the tallest extant terrestrial animals and also, unsurprisingly, the largest ruminant.
Giraffes are also known for having horns–or, more accurately, ossicones, which are horn-like growths of ossified cartilage (not bone tissue) that are permanently covered in skin and fur.
Adult giraffes are so large that they usually don’t have to worry about the large predators that share their habitat. Although the young, sick, and old giraffes, however, may be targeted by lions, leopards, hyenas, and wild dogs. Giraffes for food, target acacia trees, from which they get their food supplies with the aid of their incredibly long tongues. All bits of the giraffes’ mouths are quite tough, since they have to withstand exposure to the sharp thorns of acacia trees. This tolerance allows an individual giraffe to make its way through over 30 kg of foliage each day.
There is not quite as experiencing a giraffe for yourself. Like it’s often said “Don’t listen to what they say, go see for yourself”