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Of Favorite Organism - Research Paper Example

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Favourite Organism: Elephant Introduction Elephants are large animals. They mainly live in South Asia, Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa (Fowler and Mikota, 2006). They have several distinctive features when compared to other mammals. They have a long trunk, also known as proboscis which serves several purposes including grasping objects…
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Research paper of Favorite Organism
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Download file to see previous pages Their physiological characteristics are different and interesting. In this essay various aspects of elephants will be discussed. Taxonomic classification The family to which elephant belongs is Elephantidae. It is the only family under the order Proboscidea. The domain is living, kingdom is Animalia, phylum is Chordata and class is Mammalia. Under the family Elephantidae, there are 2 genuses and they are Loxodonta or African Genus and Elephas or Asian genus. There are 2 species: africana or African species and maximus or Asian species. The subspecies in the former are africana and cyclotis and in the later are indicus, borneensis and sumatranus. Elephants are the only living members of the Proboscidea order (Fowler and Mikota, 2006). Description of the organism Elephants are mammals. The two main species are African elephant and Asian elephant. Extinct species of the order Proboscidea are mastodons and mammoths. Currently, elephants are the largest living terrestrial animals. A male elephant can reach a height of 4 m and can weight upto 7000 kg (Fowler and Mikota, 2006). African elephants have larger ears and backs that are concave. On the other hand, Asian elephants have smaller ears and backs that are convex. ...
The Asian elephant is considered endangered and the African elephant is considered as vulnerable. These animals are poached for their tusks because of their ivory value. Elephants are also at threat because of habitat destruction and conflicts with people in the local region. In Asia, these animals are used for heavy work. They are also displayed in circuses and zoos. They are also featured in ceremonies and cultural events. Asian elephants have smoother skin, only one extension at the tip of the trunk and their abdomen is horizontal. The molars have narrower looped ridges in the Asian elephant when compared to African elephant which is diamond shaped (Shoshani, 2005). Other than these features, the Asian elephant has dorsal bumps on the head and also some depigmentation patches. Status of the organism The Asian elephant is on the crux of becoming endangered because of severe poaching on the animal for the purpose of tusk. Ivory can be derived from the tusk and it has a very good commercial value. Ivory is used to make different ornaments and objects. The leather of the elephant is also used for several purposes. African elephant on the other hand is not endangered but is called vulnerable (Fowler and Mikota, 2006). Unique physiological characteristics The word elephant is derived from the Latin word "elephantus". Of all the terrestrial living animals, elephant is the largest. The height of an African elephant is about 3-4 meters and that of an Asian elephant is 2- 3.5 meters. The former weighs between 4000- 7000 kgs and the latter weighs between 3000- 5000 kgs. Males are larger than females. The skeleton of an elephant has 326- 351 bones (Fowler and Mikota, 2006). The flexibility of the backbone of an ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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