Masai Giraffe Fact Sheet

Class: Mammalia 


Family: Giraffidae
Genus: Giraffa
Species camelopardalis


Life span:

10 to 15 years in the wild; 20 to 27 years under human care

Gestation: 15 months
Number of young at birth: Usually one, twins are uncommon but do occur
Age of maturity: 3 to 4 years for females, 4 to 5 years for males

Females up to 16 ft tall; males up to 19 ft tall


Females up to 2,600 lbs; males up to 4,250 lbs

Size at birth:

 6 ft tall, 100 to 150 lbs


Come visit Bo and Mac in the Charles and Jennifer Johnson Land of the Giants.


  • Giraffes have a small hump on their back and have a spotted pattern similar to that of a leopard.
  • For a long time, people called the giraffe a “camel-leopard” because they believed that it was a combination of the leopard.
  • Each subspecies of giraffe has a different coat pattern.
  • Masai giraffes are from Kenya and have patterns that look like oak leaves.
  • Both male and female giraffes have two distinct, hair-covered horns called ossicones. 
  • Eat for 16-20 hours a day.
  • Giraffes only need 5-30 minutes of sleep in a 24-hour period.  Often taking quick naps that last only a minute or two at a time.
  • Giraffes can rest while standing but they sometimes also lie down with their head resting on their rump.
  • Giraffes may eat up to 75 lbs of leaves per day.  Their favorite leaves are from acacia trees.
  • A giraffe’s feet are the size of a dinner plate – 12 in across
  • A giraffes tongue is 18-20 inong and blue-black
  • Giraffes can moo, hiss, roar, and whistle
  • A giraffe’s eyes are the size of golf balls