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Giraffes



Giraffes
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.54

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    disadvantage, buffet, lowering, intertwine, injury, mating, plant-eating, savannahs, equally, height, lower, inconvenience, suffer, defeat, actually, rarely


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Giraffes   

1     If we are talking about height, no animal can beat the giraffe! With an astonishingly long neck, a giraffe can be more than 18 feet tall, making it the world's tallest animal. It is also one of the world's heaviest animals - a male giraffe may weigh up to 4,200 pounds!
 
2     Undoubtedly, giraffes take full advantage of their height. When they are hungry, they don't have to lower their necks to eat grass or stand on their toes to reach for leaves. All they need to do is to stand near a tree and have an all-you-can-eat buffet of leaves and twigs from the tops of trees. Since giraffes are so tall, they don't have to compete with other plant-eating animals (such as zebras and antelopes) that also live in African savannahs. Their remarkable height also helps to keep them out of danger, as they can spot hungry lions or hyenas from far away.
 
3     Are there any disadvantages of being so tall? Actually, there are none! Giraffes rarely drink water, so they don't have to inconvenience themselves by spreading their front legs wide apart, bending their knees, and lowering their necks all the time. How do they survive then? Well, giraffes can get all the moisture they need from simply licking dew and eating plants. Because they can survive for a long time without drinking water, they don't have to join other savannah animals that migrate to other areas during the dry season.

Paragraphs 4 to 5:
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Animal Themes
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