The giraffe

giraffe (mammal)
   The giraffe is a cloven-hoofed, cud-chewing animal of south central Africa. Naturalists place it between the deer and the antelope. The forehead bears two bony, antler-like projections, covered with skin. The eye of the giraffe stands out so far that the owner is able to see behind him. It is the tallest animal known, attaining a height of twenty feet. The length, although the latter contains but seven bones, as is usual in animals of the antelope kind. The giraffe feeds chiefly on the leaves of the mimosa tree which its extraordinary height enables it to reach with ease. In feeding, a slender tongue is thrust out a foot or two beyond the lips and curls around the leaves, drawing them into the mouth. The giraffe is usually fawn colored, and is marked with darker spots, giving it the name of camelopard, or leopard camel. It is a playful, inoffensive animal, bounding away on the approach of danger or defending itself against the lion by tremendous kicks with its hind feet.