What Does a Giraffe Say?


Quick Answer

The sound made by male giraffes is similar to a loud human cough and is used to attract a potential mate. Researchers have observed giraffes making noises both in the wild and in captivity, often during the mating season.

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Full Answer

Females use a low, bellowing sound when separated from their calves and a hissing or growling sound to reprimand and protect them. Young giraffes emit a variety of sounds that include snorts, mewing and mooing.

Giraffes are also capable of hearing infrasound at frequencies well below what the human ear can detect. This may explain why they appear sensitive to approaching danger and natural disasters. Infrasound is especially useful when communicating over long distances, such as the grassy plains of southern and central Africa, where giraffes make their home.

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