Their family is giraffidae and it consists only of giraffes and okapi –an animal that looks like a cross between a zebra and a deer.
17 feet (5.2 meters) is not unusual. Male giraffes often weigh more than 2500 lbs (1,100 kg). Females are smaller. Giraffes live for about 15 to 20 years.
Giraffes live in Africa on the savannahs (grassy areas with a few trees here and there) or in grassy areas or even in wooded areas that aren’t too dense.
Giraffes feed on leaves and small branches and can of course reach high up into the trees. They prefer to eat leaves from the thorny acacia tree, using their tongue to get to the food while avoiding the thorns. Their tongue is 21 inches (53-centimeters) long and is black. Giraffes only need to drink every few days since the plants they eat provide so much water. They eat 16 to 20 hours a day and will eat about 65 lbs (30 kg) of vegetation a day.
The only natural predators of adult giraffes are lions and crocodiles. They aren’t completely defenseless: a giraffe can kill a lion with a kick.
Giraffes are the world’s tallest land animal. They can run up to 35 mph (55 km/h) but only for short bursts. Giraffes and humans both have seven neck vertabrae. Giraffe's are just a lot longer - some are more than 10 inches (25.4 centimeters) long. Giraffes are ruminants and that means they have multiple stomachs and the partially digested food comes back up in their mouth and is chewed ("chewing their cud"). Giraffes sleep less than 2 hours a day!