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Watch | Why are giraffes disappearing from Africa?

Giraffes are fast disappearing from Africa.

A recent survey from the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, or the GCF, shows that only 1,17,000 giraffes remain in Africa.

In the 1980s, there were more than 1,55,000 giraffes on the continent. This is a drop of almost 30%.

Now, for every three to four elephants in Africa, only one giraffe remains.

Giraffes are the world’s tallest mammals. On average, the height of these herbivorous animals is around 14-17 feet

They have adapted to various habitats and can survive in deserts as well as woodland.

The GCF estimates that there are four distinct species of giraffes- northern giraffe, southern giraffe, Masai giraffe and reticulated giraffe.

It says that three of these four giraffe species are now threatened with extinction.

The northern giraffe is the rarest of the four species with around 5,900 of them remaining.

As per the GCF, giraffes are already extinct in at least seven countries in Africa.

Their existence is threatened by habitat loss, civil unrest, and illegal hunting.

Mozambique in southeastern Africa is one such example where years of civil war has wiped out giraffes in large numbers

Acacia trees, their main food source, are cut to make space for agricultural and other constructional activities.

Giraffes are also poached for their hides, meat, and body parts.

In 2016, giraffes were listed as ‘Vulnerable’ on the IUCN Red List of threatened species The GCF, which supports giraffe conservation in 17 African countries, has started an action fund to increase giraffe numbers, their distribution and habitat


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Printable version | Aug 2, 2022 12:30:04 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/watch-why-are-giraffes-disappearing-from-africa/article65710950.ece