Giraffes are superbly adapted to exploit a food source that is out of reach for other hooved animals. They feed almost entirely on leaves of acacia, mimosa, and wild apricot trees. The 18-inch tongue is wrapped around a branch and as the head is pulled away, leaves are stripped off. To reach the ground a giraffe must spread its forelegs widely and well to the front or bend at the knees.
They are vulnerable to lion predation when lying down, ground feeding or drinking. Giraffes usually sleep standing up but do lie down occasionally.
Giraffes have horns unlike any other mammal. They are present at birth as cartilaginous knobs which rapidly ossify. They grow slowly throughout life and are covered with skin and hair. Hair may become worn away from the apex of the horn.
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