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I was very interested in photographing this elephant on my recent trip to Calgary, AB and her lovely zoo. I have taken many photos of African elephants while on safari in Kenya but never close enough to capture their feet like this. I was fascinated with the elegant stance of this beautiful creature and equally engrossed watching the movement of it’s trunk.Please take a look at the extra photo I’ve included on this page of the tip of it’s trunk. It had a life of it’s own! (Boy! Am I easily amused or what?)
I enjoyed researching some info on this animal and have included some of the details below for those who might be interested.
The Asian or Asiatic Elephant, sometimes known by the name of one of its subspecies, the Indian Elephant, is one of the three living species of elephant, and the only living species of the genus Elephas. It is the largest living land animal in Asia. The species is found primarily in Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Indochina and parts of Nepal and Indonesia (primarily Borneo), Vietnam, Thailand,Cambodia, Laos, Burma, China, Bhutan, and Sumatra. It is considered endangered due to habitat loss and poaching, with between 41,410 and 52,345 left in the wild.
The Asian Elephant is slightly smaller than its African relatives; the easiest way to distinguish the two is that the Asian elephant has smaller ears. The Asian Elephant tends to grow to around 2 to 3.6 metres (6.6 to 11.8 ft) in height and 3,000–5,000 kilograms (6,600–11,000 lb) in weight.
The trunk is an amazing organ of extreme dexterity: it is the single most important feature of an elephant, and gives the Order Proboscidea its name. It is actually a fusion between the nose and upper lip, and consists of some 100 000 muscle units, which allow the elephant to move the trunk with such a wide range of movement.
Elephants use their trunks to, among other things: breathe through, smell with, to pick up water to drink (the trunk can hold 8.5 litres), to pick leaves, fruit, etc., either off trees or off the ground, to cover themselves with mud, water or dust, and to communicate with each other, via touch, smell and the production of sound. It is also used for lifting objects and as a weapon. African elephants have two ‘fingers’ at the tip of the trunk, which are fleshy, mobile and very sensitive.
Nikkor 70-300mm VR lens