Elephants are large mammals that have actually long trunks and also substantial ears. African elephants are the largest land also animals in the world. They deserve to get as tall as 13 feet (4 meters) and also weigh as much as 14000 pounds (6 tonnes). The herbal habitats of elephants are in the wild of some parts of Africa, South Asia and also Southeast Asia. So why do they have massive ears, tusks and also long trunk?


Why do elephants have actually tusks?

Tusks are massive teeth (incisors) that thrive past the mouth of the elephant. These ivory teeth are beautiful and important for pet species’ survival. Tusks thrive repeatedly throughout their resides, extending from deep within their upper jaw. Tusks prosper to weigh even more than 100 lb (45.35 Kgs). 

We likewise have actually incisors; they are the teeth at the front of our mouths, which we use for biting food.

You are watching: Why do elephants have large flat ears

Their tusks assist them in transporting out tasks: 

Digging for water or important minerals in the ground, Lifting objects, Gathering food, Stripping bark from trees to eat to secure fibrous food, Defence,Helping males contend for females,The tusks additionally safeguard the trunk.

Just as humans are left or right-handed, elephants, as well, are left tusked or best tusked. The dominant tusk gets wear and tear from regular usage. 

Both male and female Afrihave the right to elephants have tusks, while just male Asian elephants, and only a particular percent of males this day, have tusks. 

Why are elephants evolving to be tuskless? 

Humans are attracted to the beautiful tusks of elephants. Since Ivory is the a lot of extremely prized product in the herbal people, its demand has actually resulted in the deaths of countless elephants throughout Africa. Moreover, the only way that humans have the right to get organize of their tusks is by killing them. Poachers kill 20,000 elephants per year for their tusks and also trade them illegally in the international industry. This profession is a wildlife crime. In the past, elephant tusks frequently weighed in at more than 200 lb (91 Kgs). Due to the degree of the poaching of elephants, the big-tusk gene has vaniburned from the population. Fifty percent of male elephants in the Oriental populace perform not prosper tusks at all. Animals via tusks that have actually the genes to thrive tusks are rerelocated from the populace by poachers. Animals that carry out not have actually tusks endured because they carry out not appeal to the poachers. 

Why carry out elephants have substantial ears?

 Elephants’ ears are one of the methods to tell the difference in between Afrideserve to and also Oriental elephants.

Oriental elephants have smoother skin and also smaller sized ears than Afrideserve to Elephants.

The ears of African elephants deserve to prosper six feet (1.82 m) and 4 feet (1.21 m) wide. They resemble the form of the Afrihave the right to continent. On the other hand also, the ears of the Eastern elephants are round form.

Elephant ears help them continue to be cool!

The factor why Asian and also Afrideserve to elephants have actually various ear sizes has to execute with their habitats. Afrideserve to elephants live in extreme temperature environments and also savannas and require protection from the sun. On the other hand also, Eastern elephants live in shady forests wbelow they perform not check out sunlight. 

Because of this, they have huge ears to assist them stay cool. They are huge, which suggests they develop a lot of body warm. They need to have a very efficient way to get rid of their added body warmth. Unlike the human body, the pet body cannot sweat to store him cool. Luckily, they come through a built-in solution: big, floppy ears.

Thousands of blood vessels comprise the animal’s ears. These vessels are thin and also close to the skin. They enable the excess body warmth to escape the elephant’s body and also manage their body temperature. 

Anvarious other reason why they have big ears is to use their ears as fans to cool off their bodies. Their ears can cool their body by as much as 5° Celcius (that is 9° Fahrenheit)! 

Experiment time:Hold an ice cube in the palm of your hand. It will start to melt.

Heat flows from a space of high warmth to another of low warm. 

The ice cube is not making your hand also cold. In fact, the warm from your hand is making the ice cube warmer. So, that’s why it melts.

This is precisely what happens in the elephant’s ears when the elephant’s body temperature is higher than the temperature of his surroundings, warmth is released from the ears.

Elephants’ ears help them hear long distances and therefore communicate!

The elephants hear approximately 6 miles (10 km) ameans from their existing place. Elephants interact making use of a mystery language using a low-pitch voice that our ears cannot pick.

Elephants are as noisy as cows on a farm, however because our ears only hear frequencies in between 20 Hz and 20 kHz, we cannot hear the ultrasonic sounds that elephants create while connecting.

Infrasonic sound waves (low frequency) have much longer wavelengths and deserve to travel approximately 5 KMs (3 miles).

In addition, the inner ear framework of the elephants is huge, making them able to capture infrasonic sound waves. The animals will certainly occasionally raise their ears and also stand still to listen to various other animals and also the sounds of nature. They usage their super-hearing to forecast the weather. Elephants deserve to hear a storm almost from 300 KMs away!

When they attempt to intimiday someone or animals, they spreview their ears wide open to present prominence.


Why do elephants have a long trunk?

The elephants’ trunk is an extension of their nose that fsupplies through their optimal lip. They use it for smelling, breapoint, trumpeting, drinking, and also, to grab points such as food. 


Scientists found that elephants have over 2,000 genes coding for olfactory receptors. Oh wow! Too many type of smelling receptors. That suggests that they have actually a great sense of smell; 4 times even more sensitive than a bloodhound dog. They use their trunk to find food and water that they can smell from 12 miles (roughly 19 km) away. 


Afrihave the right to elephants have two finger-favor functions on the end of their trunk necessary to master tiny objects. However before, Asian elephants have actually only one. These fingers are incredibly strong and exact, permitting them to pick up a tiny peanut, break the shell and then eat the uncrushed nut inside.

Trunks deserve to thrive up to 2 meters in length, and also they deserve to weigh 160 kg (353 pounds). Rings of cartilage support the two nostrils all along the trunk. The trunk does not have actually bones. Therefore, elephants can move their versatile trunk in whatever direction they have to.

The trunk alone includes around 40,000 muscles compared to human beings 650. With all those muscles, the trunk have the right to lift objects of 320 kgs (772 pounds).

Elephants additionally fill their trunk through water and also carry this water into their mouth. An elephant deserve to organize approximately 2 gallons (7.5 litres) of water in one gulp.


Elephants choose to swim to cool off in the water. They use their trunk as snorkels to enable them to breathe. 

Show affection

Elephants are emotionally intelligent and they have actually deep family members bonds. They use their trunk to display affection to one one more by stroking the head and also back of other elephants to caress, display compassion and also comfort. The baby elephants likewise suck on their trunks to comfort themselves. Like as soon as a baby human sucks on his thumb for comfort.

They additionally usage their trunk to trumpet warning one another versus wilderness dangers.

See more: How Funky Is Your Chicken How Loose Is Your Goose, Six Degrees Of Eliza Dushku

Feel their means around

Elephants carry out not have the ideal eyesight, so they use their trunks to feel their method through forests. They use their trunks to rip branches and also knock down trees to make courses in the woodland. Their trunk have the right to reach branches approximately 20 feet in height (6 meters)

Elephants have wanted trunk side, simply favor right-handed/left-handed people. 


Fun Facts

Did you recognize that elephants:

Have a bigger brain than any other land mammals that can obtain as big as 13 pounds (6 kgs). That is why they are so clever and also have actually an remarkable memory.Are herbivores; they only eat plants.Ears have a distinctive pattern of veins; simply prefer fingerprints, no two are afavor. Can live for approximately 60-70 years.Spend three-quarters of their time eating as they require around 150 kg of food per day.Can communicate with sounds that produce vibrations in the ground. They detect sounds vibrations via their bones.Several of the longest tusks ever before taped belonged to an old elephant referred to as Ahmed, that lived in Kenya till the ripe old age of 65. His tusks were 3m in length and also weighed 67kg each. That is 5kg even more than the average weight of an adult human.An elephant’s skin is 2.5cm thick and also it’s so wrinckly. The folds and also wrinkles in their skin have the right to retain approximately 10 times even more water than flat skin does, which helps to cool them down. They keep their skin clean and safeguard themselves from sunburn by taking consistent dust and mud baths.