Asian Elephant

Elephas Maximus

The Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) is the only living species of the Elephas family. Historically, it populated about 9 million square meters of Asia, including Iraq, the banks of the Yangtze River in China, the Indian subcontinent and even Sri Lanka and Indonesia. Asian elephants are the largest living land animals in Asia. These elephants have gray skin covered in hair. In adults, this hair is fine, while younger elephants have thicker brown hair. The body length varies between 550 and 640 cm.

Since 1986, the Asian elephant has been classified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, as populations have declined by at least 50% in the last three generations. These mammals have a life expectancy of around 70 years, but today they are threatened, mainly by hunting and the destruction and fragmentation of their natural habitat.

The elephant has relevant ecological importance, as it is a key species in many ecosystems and its presence can affect the distribution of other animal and plant species. It is a symbol of wildlife conservation. Furthermore, the elephant helps maintaining the biodiversity and stability of the ecosystems where it lives. Asian elephants live in a variety of habitats in the tropical region, including grasslands, tropical evergreen forests, moist deciduous forests and shrublands. They normally live at altitudes of up to 3,000 meters, but elephants that live near the Himalayan mountains sometimes climb higher than this height in warmer climates.

It is one of the most threatened species due to poaching, habitat loss and conflicts with humans.

Culturally, the elephant has a long history in many societies, being considered a sacred animal and a symbol of strength, intelligence and nobility.




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