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Quantitative Macroscopic Anatomy of the Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) Digestive Tract

Quantitative data on digestive anatomy of the world’s largest ruminant, the giraffe, are scarce. Data were collected from a total of 25 wild-caught and 13 zoo-housed giraffes. Anatomical measures were quantified by dimension, area or weight and analysed by allometric regression. The majority of measures scaled positively and isometrically to body mass. Giraffes had lower tissue weight of all stomach compartments and longer large intestinal length than cattle. When compared to other ruminants, the giraffe digestive tract showed many of

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Biomechanics of The Giraffe Larynx and Trachea

Despite possession of a well developed larynx and a gregarious nature, the Giraffe is able to utter only low moans or bleats. Morphological and histological examination, together with measurements of trachea and subglottic area on three fresh larynges (Giraffa camelopardalis) has made it possible to explain the lack of vocal power. Factors such as thoracic expiratory flow rate, length of trachea and recurrent laryngeal nerves, together with morphological details of vocal folds and intrinsic laryngeal muscles have all been considered,

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Computer-aided photographic pelage pattern analysis of Giraffa camelopardalis (Artiodactyla:Girrafidae)

The giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) is one of the most recognisable animal species on earth. Yet hunting and habitat loss and fragmentation have led to severe, but until recently largely unnoticed, declines of giraffe populations all over Africa. The IUCN recognised one single species with nine subspecies and changed the status from ‘Least Concern’ to ‘Vulnerable’ in 2016. However, the number of giraffe species and its subspecies has been a topic of ongoing discussion for more than a century. To date,

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Molecular and Morphological Phylogenies of Ruminantia and the Alternative Position of the Moschidae

The ruminants constitute the largest group of ungulates, with >190 species, and its distribution is widespread throughout all continents except Australia and Antarctica. Six families are traditionally recognized within the suborder Ruminantia: Antilocapridae (pronghorns), Bovidae (cattle, sheep, and antelopes), Cervidae (deer), Giraffidae (giraffes and okapis), Moschidae (musk deer), and Tragulidae (chevrotains). The interrelationships of the families have been an area of controversy among morphology, palaeontology, and molecular studies, and almost all possible evolutionary scenarios have been proposed in the literature.

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Higher masseter muscle mass in grazing than in browsing ruminants.

Using cranioskeletal measurements, several studies have generated evidence that grazing ruminants have a more pronounced mastication apparatus, in terms of muscle insertion areas and protuberances, than browsing ruminants, with the resulting hypothesis that grazers should have larger, heavier chewing muscles than browsers. However, the only investigation of this so far [Axmacher and Hofmann (J Zool 215:463–473, 1988)] did not find differences between ruminant feeding types in the masseter muscle mass of 22 species. Here, we expand the dataset to 48

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First comprehensive morphological analysis on the metapodials of Giraffidae

Giraffids are a group of relict pecoran ruminants with only two living taxa. During the Miocene, however, this group was much more diverse, with more than 20 different species showing a wide range of variability. In addition to many other parts of the skeleton this variability is also represented in their metapodials. We find inter-specific anatomical differences in the giraffid metapodials; each taxon evaluated possesses a unique combination of limb morphologies. The proximo-palmar/plantar metapodial surface provides useful characteristics and allows

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The giraffe’s long neck : From evolutionary fable to whole organism

A LONE GIRAFFE BULL STOOD at the edge of the scrubby bush forest that opened into a grassland. It was August, the beginning of spring, but also the middle of the dry season in the southern African savannah. The grasses and forbs were yellowed and brittle. Many trees and bushes had no leaves, though some still bore fruit, and others were just beginning to flower. The giraffe didn’t seem bothered by our presence, although we were off the main tourist track.

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Left Ventricular Morphology of the Giraffe Heart Examined by Stereological Methods

The giraffe heart has a relative mass similar to other mammals, but generates twice the blood pressure to overcome the gravitational challenge of perfusing the cerebral circulation. To provide insight as to how the giraffe left ventricle (LV) is structurally adapted to tackle such a high afterload, we performed a quantitative structural study of the LV myocardium in young and adult giraffe hearts. Tissue samples were collected from young and adult giraffe LV. Design-based stereology was used to obtain unbiased

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