An elephant's immense size, huge ears, impressive tusks, and outlandish trunk are what make these giant beasts so different from any other living mammal. As the world's largest land mammal, elephants have a commanding presence but, despite their appearance, they are not brutish animals. They are intelligent family-oriented animals who work together to survive in somewhat inhospitable habitats.
Elephants is an outstanding collection of photographs showing the two distinct species of elephants – African and Asian – in action. It is divided into chapters on family, body, behaviour, and calves. You'll discover how an elephant's trunk is like a fifth limb, used like a hand to pick up food. The trunk's entire structure is able to contort in all directions thanks to 100,000 separate muscle blocks.
You'll also learn many other fascinating facts, such as how elephants only sleep for four or five hours a day, often while standing up; their huge tongue weighs up to 26 lb (12 kg); and they have the ability to hear the deep rumble of thunder from 175 miles (280 km) away. They will head towards the sound of the thunder – and the resulting vibrations running through the ground – in the hope of finding a supply of fresh water.
In 175 outstanding colour photographs Elephants takes a glimpse inside the lives of these colossal animals – from family life, physical appearance, feeding and communication, to surviving in the wild, defending themselves from danger and bringing up their young.
Tom Jackson is a leading natural history writer based in the United Kingdom. As an author and contributor, he has worked on more than 60 books. A zoology graduate from the University of Bristol, he has also worked as a zookeeper and in safari parks in Zimbabwe.