Q:

How many elephants are there in the world?

A:

Quick Answer

As of July 2014, there are between 450,000 and 700,000 African elephants in the world, and between 35,000 and 40,000 Asian elephants, according to Defenders of Wildlife. Both species are threatened not only by habitat loss, but also by poaching for the illegal ivory trade.

Continue Reading
How many elephants are there in the world?
Credit: Nigel Pavitt AWL Images Getty Images

Full Answer

Despite restrictions, the ivory trade still flourishes in many parts of the world. The organization WildAid reports that 30,000 elephants are killed every year for their tusks. Elephant populations are also threatened by loss of habitat. Many climate change projections suggest that elephant habitats may become hotter and drier, meaning poorer foraging conditions for herds. Even under the best conditions, elephant populations are very slow growing, in part because of the elephant's 22-month gestation period, the longest of any mammal.

Learn more about Elephants

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is some good elephant information for kids?

    A:

    Characterized by their long trunks and large ears, elephants are the largest land-living mammals in the world. There are two types of elephants: African and Asian elephants. Elephants have no natural predators; human development and poachers present the largest threats to the elephant population.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Where do elephants originally come from?

    A:

    The original ancestors of African and Asian elephants appeared in what is modern day east Africa 16 million years ago. The elephant's biological family split into the genera of mammuthus, loxodonta and elephas over a 2.4-million-year period that began 7.6 million years ago.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What do Indian elephants eat?

    A:

    Indian elephants are mega-herbivores and consume a wide variety of grasses, shrubs, tree stems, vines, bark and roots. The type and proportions of the plants they consume are dependent on the season and their specific habitat.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do elephants move?

    A:

    When elephants walk, each of their legs functions independently, according to John Hutchinson of London's Royal Veterinary College. Elephants position their legs directly under their bodies to support their extreme weight.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore