Posted by: Frame To Frame - Bob and Jean | March 8, 2017

Our encounters with Cape Giraffe in Kruger

Our encounters with Cape Giraffe in Kruger

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One of my favorite animals seen when visiting South Africa was the tall, elegant South African Giraffe.  Also known as the Cape Giraffe, Bob and I came across these gentle giants on several occasions as we toured Kruger National Park, and it was always a pleasure to sit and observe them.

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Bob and I spent the hot, sunny days driving ourselves around Kruger National Park always in the hopes of seeing various species of wildlife.  We were never disappointed.  One afternoon, as we completed a loop south towards Mitomeni, Gayisenga and then north again to Skukuza, we came across, among other birds and animals, Elephants, Impalas, and this lovely trio of South African Giraffes going about its business with an air of serenity.

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Giraffes are social animals that enjoy each others’ company, and usually it is related females with their young that travel together in a group.  Males are nomadic and roam from one group of females to another, sometimes as a group of unrelated bachelors.

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Giraffes prefer semi-arid savanna and open woodlands that provide scattered bushes and trees upon which to feed.  They consume leaves, fruit, buds, twigs and flowers of woody plants with a preference for acacia trees.  Given the threat of predation by Lions, Leopards, Hyenas and African Wild Dogs, one might wonder why Giraffes expose themselves on open savanna when feeding, especially when they have such an effective means of camouflage in the colour of their hide.

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Even at close range, an adult Giraffe can essentially disappear behind reasonable leaf cover, but most foraging is done on the open savanna where a Giraffe stands a better chance of detecting approaching predators.  The calves are hidden a distance away in among trees and bushes where their spotted coat blends with the flickering shadows and light of the woodlands.

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It is not only a Giraffe’s height that is an advantage on the open plains but also the placement of its large, bulging eyes on the sides of its head.  This means a Giraffe has almost an aerial view of its surroundings combined with all-around vision.  Add to these skills excellent hearing, color vision, and a sharp sense of smell, and an adult Giraffe has a real advantage over its predators.

Visit Our encounters with Cape Giraffe in Kruger National Park for the full post.

Frame To Frame


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