Safari! Animal #5. - Life is grand way up here...: the giraffe.
Twiga in Swahili means giraffe. Everyone knows that giraffes are the tallest land animal (in Kenya, they had to raise the telephone lines so the giraffes wouldn't get their necks caught in them); but did you know that giraffes are taller on the day they are born than most humans ever get. Many are 6 or 7 feet (two meters) tall when they see their first light of day. Because they grow even much taller than that (sometimes reaching 18 feet - almost 6 meters), they practically have to do a split to get their mouth all the way to the ground when they drink water. It's a funny sight, as the poem suggests. The poem also says the giraffe is sometimes called a 'camel-leopard.' That's because there is a story in Africa that says after the Creator made the camel and the leopard he had some leftover parts which he used to make the giraffe.
© 2007 OneWorld Classrooms