TONY CAMACHO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY TONY CAMACHO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Young African elephant (Loxodonta africana) being helped up a mud bank by an adult's trunk. Calves are born after a 22 month gestation period and they nurse for around three years. The birth is assisted by other females in the group, who help the baby to stand and remove its foetal membrane. The African elephant is the largest and heaviest land animal alive today. It may weigh over 7000 kilograms. It is a herbivore which lives in large social groups throughout the plains of central and eastern Africa. The groups, which can number over 30 individuals, are led by a mature female. Photographed in Zimbabwe.
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