World Giraffe Day
Giraffes are the tallest living terrestrial animals and the largest ruminants on the planet. They can stand anywhere from 14 feet to 19 feet tall, and they have a maximum speed of 37 miles per hour while sprinting. They are one of the most remarkable animals on Earth, and unfortunately, they are currently rated as being vulnerable to possible extinction.
Of course, they are endangered according to the scientific definition of the term, but they haven’t yet been classified as such legally. Currently, there are approximately 68,000 giraffes left in the world, which is a population decline of about 40% over the past three decades.
And that’s why it’s important for all of us to observe World Giraffe Day on June 21st. This holiday encourages everyone to think more about giraffes and work towards protecting this magnificent species. And we feel that this holiday provides the perfect launching pad for doing just that.
The History of World Giraffe Day
This holiday and the annual event were first created by the Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF) in 2014. This non-profit organization is dedicated to the management and conservation of African giraffe populations.
The 21st of June was chosen for the celebration of this holiday because that day is the Summer Solstice — which is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and the shortest day of the year in the Southern Hemisphere. This dichotomy between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres is symbolic of the giraffes’ “stretched neck.”
Some Fun Facts About Giraffes
How much do you really know about giraffes? A little bit, a lot, not much at all? Well, no matter what level of giraffe education you have, we feel at least some of the following facts will prove informative and entertaining, so let’s take a quick look at them.
- Giraffes only need to drink water every few days. Most of their water comes from vegetation.
- Many giraffe calves are killed by hyenas, leopards, and African wild dogs despite their mothers’ best efforts to protect them.
- Giraffes only need about 30 minutes of sleep in any 24-hour period.
Observing World Giraffe Day
The first order of business for anyone observing World Giraffe Day should be to head to the Giraffe Conservation Foundation’s website at giraffeconservation.org. That website has a wealth of information about their adopt-a-giraffe program and how people can help with giraffe conservation.
This is also a good day for people to learn more about giraffes and to contribute to giraffe conservation. People can also help support this cause by spreading the word about this holiday online using the hashtag #WorldGiraffeDay.