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 Post subject: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:56 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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On our quick trip to Berg en Dal last weekend, we saw this giraffe on the river road towards Croc Bridge ...
We first thought that it was drinking water from a puddle hidden in the grass...

Image



but then it stood up and had something in its mouth ...

Image



We couldn't identify the object, as the giraffe let it drop down too quickly.
It looked like small bird or bullfrog !!!
However the giraffe picked it up a number of times and only when it picked up a bigger bone, we realised that it was a vertebra of probably a giraffe ?!
Now I guess it was just licking / trying to chew the bones - being after the salty taste just like cattle and most antelopes do ? Or could we have witnessed some bisarre show of respect to dead companions ?- unlikely I guess ?


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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 2:01 pm 
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:shock: Homage to a fellow giraffe. Who knows? Very unusual and a great pic, Herman. :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 2:02 pm 
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:clap: Very interesting and great pics as well...:clap:

They are after the minerals in the bones maybe?

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 2:24 pm 
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:hmz: wonder if this is so?

copied from here

Quote:
Sunday, October 24th, 2010

Giraffes are herbivores - everyone knows that - so when you are out in the bush and you come across a giraffe standing chewing what looks like a bone … you are certainly within your right to think your eyes are completely deceiving you and you should have gone to SpecSavers.

But don’t panic … because the giraffe is indeed chewing on a bone. They will pick up discarded bones from the remains of skeletons that the hyenas don’t want anymore, and will chew on the bone to get the calcium to supplement their diet.

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 2:27 pm 
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Location: Daar waar die bobbejane hul borshare kam
CC and Dots :thumbs_up:


And here... http://www.africanwildlifeguide.com/spe ... ls/giraffe

So it seems to be quite a 'common' phenomenon - one I have never had the priviledge of witnessing.

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 2:49 pm 
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Quite impressive sighting, Herman :big_eyes: :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 4:20 pm 
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That's it Dotty and Elzet.

That is also the reason that dried excrements are also whitish in colour.
You see the same PHENOMENON WITH THE EXCREMENTS OF E.G. hyena.


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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 4:35 pm 
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I could watch the same a few years back and also was told by a friend that they lick the bones for minerals. Here are some pics:

Image

Image

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 4:37 pm 
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Very interesting - Thanks peeps!! :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 5:13 pm 
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Was also told by a guide on one of the drives that giraffe eat hyena dung for the calcium!


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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:26 pm 
The phenomenon is called "pica", don't know why, but quite well documented in Kruger.


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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:32 pm 
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Many different animals will use sources for calcium and other minerals. i.e.: Tortoises - eat hyena dung. Porcupines, gnaw on bones. Pica is actually a disorder, while osteophage is the term used for the normal behavioural trait.

Many animals will eat dirt, for the minerals they can secure in this way. But not just any dirt. They will go there where a specific source of the desired mineral is available. Animals known to do this include giraffe, elephant and a variety of antelope. This is called geophage.


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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:21 pm 
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Thanks Imberbe! That proofs again how clever these animals are :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Giraffe - strange behaviour
Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 3:23 pm 
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:clap: :clap: WoW!! Now I have definitely learnt something new for the day Brilliant :clap: :clap:

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 Post subject: Girafes, Unusual behavior
Unread postPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2012 5:13 pm 
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I'm guessing this is a mating behavior? :hmz: though I have never observed it before

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