Elephants are the largest living land mammals on Earth and can weight over 6000 kg (13,228 lbs). They are easily recognized by their distinctive trunk, which is used for collecting food, drinking water and smelling. It is generally accepted that there are 3 species of elephants; the African bush elephant, African forest elephant and the Asian elephant (sometimes called Indian elephant). However, some researchers claim there are more or less species. If you have ever wondered how long elephants live for, keep reading to find out.
What is the life span of an elephant?
Although it does vary somewhat between the different species the average life span of an elephant is somewhere between 50-70 years. They have been known to live past 80 years on occasion and the oldest elephant is believed to have been 86 years old. This Asian elephant elephant lived at the Taipai Zoo and was named Lin Wang. It was believed to have been born in the wild jungle of Burma in 1917 and arrived at the Taipai Zoo in 1954, where it lived until its death in 2003.
Did you know?
African elephants go through 6 sets of teeth throughout their life. They usually lose their last set around 40-60 years of age and then die of starvation!