Asian and African elephants are the largest land animals. They typically weigh between 4,900 and 14,000 pounds, but as of 2014, the highest recorded weight of an elephant was 24,000 pounds. Unsurprisingly, these massive creatures can deliver 200-pound babies, which are usually around 3 feet tall at birth. On average, elephants in the wild can survive between 60 and 70 years.
Adult elephants have hefty diets, consuming 300 to 400 pounds of food daily. They eat roots, grass, bamboo, sugarcane and bananas, depending on their habitats. Elephant calves use their trunks for suckling, gradually developing muscular control over several months.
Elephants have sensitive, veiny ears that help keep their bodies cool in warm climates. They wave their ears back and forth, cooling blood in the veins and circulating it to other parts of the body. Elephants' multifunctional trunks allow them to collect food, drink water and communicate with their herd. They can hear each other trumpeting from 5 miles away.
Elephants can detect vibrations in the ground and locate the direction of the sound. Their feet contain sensory cells that recognize seismic signals and transmit the vibrations through the body to the middle ear. However, elephants do not use their feet for running. The animals never lift more than two feet at a time, while running would require lifting all four.